For many San Augustine area dialysis patients the wait is over. After months of planning and waiting, Memorial Medical Center’s – San Augustine Dialysis Center is now open. According to Memorial Medical Center—San Augustine Administrator, Darlene Williams, it has been a lengthy process to get the center open. “We have been working diligently to open the center since last summer. Numerous onsite surveys and inspections had to be scheduled by the state before a license would be awarded.” Memorial Medical Center—San Augustine received word this week that the Dialysis Center had successfully passed all facets of the certification process and could now accept patients.
Although the San Augustine Dialysis Center can accept new patients, the first to be admitted into the program are those who have had their names on a waiting list for treatment. At this time, twenty San Augustine patients have access to the highest levels of dialysis care close to home. The number of patients accepted into the treatment program is scheduled to increase to 40 later this year.
For those who have not signed up for the program, patients are encouraged to do so that they can be placed on the waiting list for future openings. The San Augustine Dialysis Center treats patients every Monday, Wednesday and Friday with two shifts per day. According to Ms. Williams, the Dialysis Center anticipates adding a Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday shift soon. The Center has 10 beds available with one being an isolation bed for blood borne pathogens.
State Representative Wayne Christian says he is pleased that the Dialysis Center at San Augustine Memorial Medical Center can now move forward at its full potential in providing quality health care to East Texans. “The Center brings much-needed medical care and personnel to our area, and I am very happy to have helped in expediting theinspection process. I appreciate the cooperation and assistance of the Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS) and their responsiveness to my requests. Like other rural areas in our state, East Texas is underserved in regards to health care for the population. I commend the leadership and staff of the center who demonstrated their dedication to patients by working through a difficult process to address this issue,” said Representative Christian.
The San Augustine Dialysis Center is equipped with a Telehealth computer monitoring system. The system includes a camera and stethoscope that allows physicians the ability to communicate with patients without being in the same room or even the same town. While assessing the patient, a physician in Lufkin has the ability to hear the patient’s blood flow and discuss concerns over weight and blood pressure. This technology allows communication between physician and patient during treatment.
“San Augustine area dialysis patients have traveled to Lufkin, Nacogdoches and even as far away as Houston for years seeking dialysis treatments,” stated Ms. Williams. “Memorial is proud to offer these patients the ability to stay close to home while receiving dialysis treatment.”
Memorial Medical Center – San Augustine and the San Augustine Dialysis Center will soon invite the community to tour its new facility with an Open House celebration this summer. For questions regarding dialysis, please contact 936-275-3446 extension 317.