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In The News: Future of hospitals: Revamping to Meet Patient Needs

As technology expands, its use in hospitals increases dramatically. In the future, the use of technology will allow hospitals to center their facilities around patient needs instead of the needs of doctors and nurses.

Instead of simply going to the closest hospital, an increasing amount of patients search online to find the best possible care. This has inspired hospitals to rebrand their facilities in order to attract patients.

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In the News: Florida State head football coach’s son treated at U of M

Although Jimbo Fisher and his Florida State University football team emerged victorious in the BCS National Championship on Monday night, he and his family are in the midst of an even tougher battle.

Fisher’s son, Ethan, now 8, was diagnosed with a rare blood disease known as Fanconi Anemia when he was just five years old. The Fishers were devastated by the news and sought treatment at the University of Minnesota’s Amplatz Children’s Hospital. Amplatz currently transplants more patients with Fanconi Anemia than any other centers in the U.S. combined…

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U of M up for several Leaders in Health Care Awards

Today, Minnesota Business Magazine will announce the Leaders in Health Care Awards recipients and the University of Minnesota and Amplatz Children’s Hospital are finalists in several categories including:

  • Jakub Tolar, M.D., Ph.D., associate professor of pediatrics and Director of the Stem Cell Institute, University of Minnesota (Category: Change Agent)
  • Michael Verneris, M.D., associate professor of pediatrics, University of Minnesota (Category: Health Care Practitioner)
  • Child and Adolescent Mental Health and Intensive Treatment Center, University of Minnesota Amplatz Children’s Hospital (Category: Interior Design/Architecture Project)
  • Department of Pediatrics, University of Minnesota Medical School (Category: Education and Workforce Development)
  • Video Guidance (Category: Software/Web)

In addition to these award finalists, the late Theodore Thompson, M.D., is the winner of the Lifetime Achievement category.

Finalists will be profiled in an upcoming article in the November 2013 edition of Minnesota Business Magazine. For a complete list of finalists please visit here.

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Breast feeding is baby friendly, doctor approved


Nurse early and often to start building a successful nursing relationship.
Photo courtesy Flickr user Gatanass

Research continually shows breast milk is best for babies, but nursing can be stressful for mothers. There are a few great ways to get off on the right foot, so we checked in with Emily Borman-Shoap, M.D., director of newborn care at University of Minnesota Amplatz Children’s Hospital, to learn more.

“Amplatz Children’s Hospital is designated Baby-Friendly. This means we are passionate about providing children and parents with the care they need to get off on the right foot, especially when it comes to breast feeding,” said Borman-Shoap.

Here’s what Borman-Shoap tells new moms both in her office and on the unit:

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Health Talk recommends: Clouds by Zach Sobiech

If given only months to live, what would you do? Zach Sobiech’s response: embrace every day with hope and joy. And that’s just what he is doing.

Meet Zach Sobiech, a 17-year-old from Lakeland, Minnesota who has been battling cancer for 3 years.

His journey started in November 2009, when Zach was diagnosed with osteosarcoma, a rare type of bone cancer most typically found in the long bones of growing teenagers.

At the end of May 2012, following many surgeries, chemotherapy treatments and ups and downs, he was given the news there were no know effective treatments left.

So now, Zach is saying goodbye to his friends and family through music – writing and performing songs like “Clouds.”

Some days are harder than others, but Zach remains upbeat and positive.

Health Talk wants to thank University of Minnesota Amplatz Children’s HospitalChildren’s Cancer Research Fund and Woolly Rhino Productions for sharing Zach’s story with us. We hope our readers continue to spread the message of hope and joy. 

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U of M Amplatz Children’s Hospital treats Hurler’s Syndrome in 2-year-old girl from Michigan

We here at Health Talk are big fans of good news.  If you’re the same way, let us share the story of Lauren Hood, a 2-year-old little girl from Michigan.

Last night, WCCO offered a touching look at Lauren’s experience at the University of Minnesota Amplatz Children’s Hospital where she’s recovering from a bone marrow transplant for a very rare but very serious medical condition.

According to the WCCO report from reporter James Schugel:

“Lauren Hood came to the Twin Cities from Michigan to treat a rare, potentially deadly disorder called Hurler Syndrome. She’s missing an enzyme that breaks down complex sugars in her body. If left untreated, sugars will accumulate in her body and cause bone, cardiac and other medical issues.”

Children diagnosed with Hurler Syndrome need treatment in the form of a bone marrow transplant by around age 10 or the condition can be fatal.  Lauren arrived at Amplatz Children’s Hospital when her first transplant didn’t work.

Lauren’s doctor, University of Minnesota Physician pediatric bone marrow transplant expert Paul Orchard, M.D., an associate professor in the University of Minnesota Medical School, explained the purpose of the transplant to WCCO:

“The concept with the transplant is to eliminate the immune system’s blood producing cells…and replace them with normal, healthy blood cells,” said Orchard, who added that the healthy cells then provide patients the enzyme needed to break down complex sugars.

Doctors at Amplatz have treated more than 100 children with Hurler’s Syndrome.  For those wondering what’s next for Lauren, she will need to return to the Twin Cities for check ups, but should recover going forward.

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