BELLEVILLE — A new outpatient service at St. Elizabeth's Hospital aims to help patient's treat and manage chronic and nonhealing wounds.
The Wound Care Center opened to patients in December at 300 W. Lincoln St. in Medical Office Building B, Suite 200, on the hospital's Belleville campus. The new service has partnered with Healogics, the world's largest outpatient wound care management company.
Wound Care Center Program Director Misty Conway said the new service provides comprehensive care to manage chronic or nonhealing wounds caused by diabetes, circulatory problems and other conditions. Conway said the center soon will add hyperbaric oxygen chambers to assist in treatment.
"We take a look at all conditions of patients," Conway said. "If they have nonhealing wounds, it's usually from underlying conditions. We really focus on conditions that could be causing wounds. We do an overall treatment and work closely with other departments to make them get comprehensive treatment approach."
Conway leads the new center staff of two physicians, two registered nurses, a licensed practicing nurse, an administrative assistant and a nursing practitioner who serves as a diabetes educator. The center's physicians and nurses have received special extended wound treatment training in Jacksonville, Fla.
Patients do not need a physician's referral and can schedule their own appointments at the Wound Care Center.
The hospital found that a majority of nonhealing wounds result from complications of diabetes. Almost 24 million Americans, one in 12, are diabetic and an estimated 6.5 million of those suffer with chronic or nonhealing wounds. As many as 25 percent will eventually develop foot ulcers and if not aggressively treated can lead to amputation.
The Wound Care Center is open Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
Conway said an open house for the public and another open house for providers in the area are being planned; dates will be announced soon.
Contact reporter Will Buss at firstname.lastname@example.org or 239-2526.