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City And Hospitals Sign Breastfeeding Policies

Mayor Greg Fischer and Louisville hospital representatives have signed policies to encourage and make it easier for women to breastfeed their babies.

Metro Government has established 13 “lactation stations” at its work sites—private areas where employees can express breast milk during their break times.

They also have access to free breastfeeding classes and other services offered by the health department.

“One of our big aims to have a culture of healthy eating and a healthy diet. That really happens starting at birth and breastfeeding is a big important way to start there, said Dr. Matt Zahn, the department’s acting director.

Representatives of Louisville’s four birthing hospitals also signed standardized breastfeeding policies under which they’ll boost efforts to inform new mothers about the benefits of breastfeeding.

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Drive Through Flu Shot Clinic To Be Held Tuesday

By Sheila Ash

Papa John’s Cardinal Stadium will be the site of a drive through flu shot clinic Tuesday.

The shots are being offered by the University of Louisville Hospital.

This year, people will only need one shot to cover both the seasonal virus and H1N1. The cost of the vaccination is $25 and pre-payment and pre-registration are available online. Medicare payments can be handled on-site.

Linda Goss, the hospital’s director of Infection Prevention and Control, says there are other precautions people can take to avoid getting the flu.

“Wash your hands, number one. And number two, just in crowded situations where you know people are sick to avoid those if at all possible. Keep your home clean as far as if someone is sick to wipe down areas using some type of disinfectant in your home environment high touch surfaces certainly door knobs, sinks,” she said.

The clinic is only for those 18 and older. Also people at risk such as pregnant women and anyone over 50 should be vaccinated. The clinic will be open from 7:00 am to 7:00 pm.

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Double Hand Transplant Underway At Jewish Hospital

A team of surgeons has begun a double hand transplant at the Jewish Hospital Hand Care Center.

This is the sixth hand transplant operation at the center and the first there to involve two hands. It’s also the first to include Twitter updates from just outside the operating suite.       

No information has been released about the patient or the donor.

The surgical team, led by Dr. Warren Breidenbach, includes doctors from  Kleinert, Kutz and Associates and the University of Louisville.

“The patient’s family is very excited about being able to follow the surgery online instead of occasional updates throughout the surgery by hospital personnel. We want others to follow the surgery as well to understand how it all works, identifying and connecting bones, arteries and veins. Our team has already performed five hand transplants over the past eleven years and we have been reconnecting fingers, hands and arms for more than 50 years,” Breidenbach said in a statement.

The surgery began about 7:30pm Tuesday and was expected to last some 16 to 20 hours. The transplant is sponsored by the Department of Defense, Office of Naval Research and Office of Army Research.

The nation’s first hand transplant was performed at Jewish Hospital in 1999.

(Illustration courtesy of www.handtransplant.com).

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U of L Med School Students Going To Kenya

By Rick Howlett

A group of University of Louisville medical school students will take part in a mission to Kenya later this summer.

Second year medical student Matt Love (pictured with, from left, fellow team members Jessica Drews and Amanda Jo Lott) says the 11 participants will leave for Africa July 20 and return in early August.

“We’re going to be all over the place, we’re going to be in orphanages, doing vaccinations to children there,” Love said. “We’re going to be doing full physicals on the children in these orphanages. There are several orphanages that will open when we will be over there. So that’s part of the duties, we’re going to be in clinics and hospitals, a lot of different things while we’re over there.”

Love says one of the leading causes of death among Kenyans under age five is preventable diarrhea, measles and malaria.

The group will also bring along a load of medical supplies donated by the U of L Hospital.

The trip is being organized by the Kansas-based Mercy and Truth Medical Missions.

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U of L Trauma Center Re-Verified As Level 1

The University of Louisville Hospital’s trauma center has maintained its Level 1 status following a review by the American College of Surgeons.

Level One verification allows hospitals to treat the most critical emergency cases.

Concerns about the future of the hospital’s Level 1 status were raised earlier this year when eight U of L faculty neurosurgeons moved to Norton Healthcare.

U of L Hospital President Dr. James Taylor says the school has been able to bring in some visiting doctors while the permanent positions are filled.

“They are people who come here a week at a time and they’re all highly qualified individuals. But they likely as we hire new full-time faculty, will drop out,” Taylor said.

U of L Hospital has one of only two Level 1 trauma facilites in the state for adults. The other is at the University of Kentucky Medical Center.

The American College of Surgeons will conduct a follow-up visit to U of L Hospital in one year.

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U of L Stroke Unit Unveiled

University of Louisville Hospital has officially unveiled its new critical care stroke unit.

Neurologist Dr. Kerri Remmel  says the facility will allow doctors to provide a higher degree of treatment when it’s most needed.

“It’s well known that stroke patients who receive care in an organized, dedicated unit, are more likely to be alive, independent and living at home after one year,” Remmel said.

A dedication ceremony for the six-bed unit, part of the U of L Hospital’s Stroke Center, was held Thursday evening.