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Health Enewsletter November 2015

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Eczema or Atopic Dermatitis

Sammy the Skin Cell
 
Dr. Chapman went to Washington DC, October 4th-6th, 2015 to discuss 2 pieces of federal legislation and proper funding for NIAMS, the National Institute of Arthritis&Muskuloskeletal&Skin Diseases.

Dr. Woodbury delivered the TASD Program at Memphis University School 09/23/2015: the Tobacco, Alcohol, and Street Drugs Program.

Rheumatology and Dermatology Associates
8143 Walnut Grove Road
Cordova TN 38018
1-901-753-0168; Rheuderm@Comcast.net
 

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Dr. George
Woodbury and Dr. Cathy Chapman
Rheumatology and Dermatology Associates
8143 Walnut Grove Road
Cordova, TN 38018
 (901) 753-0168
Rheuderm@comcast.net
 

 
 
This baby is suffering from eczema. Photo used by permission of the American Academy of Dermatology.
 
Eczema or Atopic Dermatitis 
 One of the most rewarding treatments that we dermatologists provide is to help patients and their families to feel better by alleviating the itching and soreness that come with eczema. Eczema, also called atopic dermatitis or “winter itch,” is a term for itchy and sore sensitive skin conditions that are partly genetic—since they run in families along with asthma and hay fever. Fall and winter are the bad season for eczema, too, since dry skin conditions are made more itchy and inflamed by cold air. Treatment usually involves intervening in the pressing current problem—which is often an uncomfortable rash—and also addressing factors that led to this current problem—like underlieing skin dryness or an allergy to a chemical in a product being used.
Some patients develop an itch/scratch cycle, called lichen simplex chronicus, in which the itching leads to more scratching, which leads to more itching. We dermatologists often try to break that cycle by use of steroid creams and ointments and sometimes also with steroid tablets. Often a steroid shot into a muscle is really helpful. Sometimes we also do skin testing by taking a sample for evaluation by the lab—called a “biopsy” - or even doing what’s called allergy patch testing—in which we put suspected chemicals onto the skin—then look for reactions in several follow-up visits.

 

 
Rheumatology and Dermatology Nurse Kristen reviews medications with a patient and counsels him about skin care. We believe that an educated and engaged patient is more likely to achieve better results, so we can many times  offer educational materials to help. You can help us in caring for you if you bring products like soaps, shampoos, and toiletries that you've been using at home with you to your follow-up visits.
Dr. Woodbury (11/07/2015)

 

 

Rheumatology and Dermatology Medical Assistants Vicki and Shirley encourage families to learn about eczema through several on-line tools. The phrase is "improving patient engagement" in healthcare services. Knowledge is helpful in getting people better.

One such tool is called Sammy the Skin Cell, and it comes from the American Academy of Dermatology web site.
Check out the American Academy of Dermatology web site. Go to AAD.org=>Home=>Dermatology A to Z=>For Kids. 



Dr. Chapman traveled to Washington DC October 4th to the 6th 2015, with about 70 other rheumatologists and patient advocates and the American College of Rheumatology, to speak with federal legislators about healthcare issues.



Here Dr. Chapman greets to Washington DC's Senate Building (left to right) Dr. Joseph Hufstadter (a rheumatologist from Hixson TN, near Chattanooga), Tennessee Senator Lamar Alexander, Dr. Christopher Morrison (a rheumatologist from Kingsport TN), Tennessee Senator Bob Corker, and patient advocate Leslie McQuirter.


 


 
Emily Woodbury designed our practice's grassroots logo to illustrate
that people benefit most when patients and healthcare personnel work together in a team-wise approach. Everything comes together in a big circle.


 
  So what are the big healthcare issues
in Washington DC? 

   The main issues we have underscored with the elected officials in Washington DC are the Patient Access to Treatment Act, the Medicare Advantage Participant Bill of Rights, and the need to properly fund the National Institues of Health to help research projects in rheumatology and dermatology. 

  The Patient Access to Treatment Act—also called HR 1600—is a valuable measure that would require insurance companies to stick to 3 levels of coverage for prescription drugs—and prohibit the establishment of very high deductibles for injectable drugs like biologic therapies for arthritis.

  The Medicare Advantage Participant Bill of Rights—also called HR 4998—is a valuable measure which would pertain to private companies who insure patients in the Medicare age range—called Medicare Advantage (MA) Plans. HR 4998 would improve transparency by prohibiting MA organizations from removing providers mid-year from health plans without cause. It would require MA organizations to ensure that continuity of care requirements are satisfied when a provider is terminated from a network plan, and would require MA network plans be finalized at least 60 days before Open Enrollment begins, and seek provider, patient, and MA organization input regarding network adequacy standards.

 
The National Institue of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases is a division of Health and Human Services, in Washington, D.C., which funds research to projects in rheumatology and dermatology. Adequate funding of NIAMS is vital for our country to find treatments that work in these specialties. Such funding has been affected by the current "Sequester" process in Washington, DC, and freezing this funding is going to affect future advances in rheumatology and dermatology. It would be worthwhile for us all to talk with our federal elected officials about this problem.
 

If you would like to comment on any of these issues to your elected official:
To reach your elected officials: 1-888-434-6200:
 
TN Senators: Bob Corker+Lamar Alexander; Rep. Steve Cohen+Rep. Stephen Fincher.

Arkansas Senators: Tom Cotton+John Boozman. Rep.Rick Crawford

Mississippi Senators: Thad Cochran+Roger Wicker. Representative Kelly Trent.
George Woodbury Jr. M.D. 11/07/2015
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Dr. Woodbury was the guest speaker at his high school, Memphis University School, 09/23/2015. The topic was the “Tobacco, Alcohol, and Street Drugs Program.” Dr. Woodbury spoke with over 500 students about why medically it’s important for teens to say no to alcohol, tobacco, and street drugs. Here MUS Headmaster Ellis Haguewood and three ninth graders greet Dr. Woodbury onto the school’s campus.

The Tobacco, Alcohol, and Street Drugs Program, or the TASD Program for short, is a resource that Dr. Woodbury developed while a medical student at the University of Chicago, in 1987. The premise is that knowledge can help young people build healthier stress management skills. He has delivered the TASD progjram to over 300 audiences in over 50 primary and secondary schools in the Mid-South since 1987.
 
Would you like to become more engaged in the
politics of your healthcare?

Dr. Woodbury is the matchmaker within the PURPLhealth Network. That means he sets up coffees, breakfasts, and lunches between both state and federal legislators and healthcare personnel, to discuss issues that have been identified by the Tennessee Medical Association, the Memphis Medical Society, and the American Academy of Dermatology Association. If you would like more information on these meetings, or to get involved, please drop me a return Email or phone call to PURPLhealth@yahoo.com, or call 901-753-0168.
 

For questions, comments, or if you would like to
be added to our email list, please email “purplhealth@yahoo.com”or call 1-901-753-0168.
George Woodbury Jr. M.D. (11/07/2015)