Ten years ago, while enjoying retirement, Ray Bellamy was working on a porch project when he went into sudden cardiac arrest. As a result, Ray learned firsthand the importance of Cardiac Rehabilitation for heart patients.
When Ray and his wife moved to the Methodist Manor in Florence about eighteen months ago, he decided to get involved with the Level III Cardiac Rehab Program at the McLeod Health and Fitness Center. Not only does Ray participate in the program weekly, but he also volunteers his time to assist other cardiac rehab patients daily.
“Our region has a high occurrence of heart disease, so it is important to keep our heart healthy,” says Ray.
Ray also believes in the significance of Cardiac Rehab scholarships.
Because of the opportunities Ray was afforded in life, he gives to the McLeod Cardiac Rehab program each year and sees how the generosity of others
Cardiac Rehab Scholarships The McLeod Foundation provides scholarships for Cardiac Rehab patients who are not financially able to continue their path of recovery and wellness. Cardiac Rehab Phases III and IV are not paid for by private insurance, Medicaid, or Medicare. These scholarships are available in Florence, Dillon and Cheraw.
After suffering a thoracic aortic aneurysm, Joe Luckey began Cardiac Rehabilitation at McLeod Dillon confined to a wheelchair. Today, he can walk independently and spends 30 minutes on the treadmill as part of his exercise routine. The McLeod Foundation Cardiac Rehabilitation Scholarship has played a significant role in his recovery.
Following a heart attack, patients often benefit greatly from participation in Cardiac Rehabilitation. This form of rehabilitation involves a prescribed exercise, education and diet program that helps an individual with heart disease return to a more normal and productive lifestyle. Patients receive many benefits, such as reduced body fat, slowed heart rate, lower blood pressure and cholesterol levels, and improved muscle tone.
The Cardiac Rehabilitation program is offered in several phases of supervised exercise and education sessions. At McLeod Dillon, Phase II begins after a patient is discharged from the hospital with a heart-related illness or procedure. During this phase, patients come to the Cardiac Rehabilitation Department three days a week to participate. During exercise, their blood pressure, pulse rate and oxygen levels are monitored to ensure they stay within safe levels.
Phase III begins after the patient has been in Phase II for eight to 12 weeks. This phase is followed by Phase IV which is designed for patients that are at risk for heart disease. A patient in Phase IV may or may not have been in any other phase of Cardiac Rehabilitation.
While significant in a patient’s journey to a healthier lifestyle and preventive by design, Phase III and Phase IV are unfortunately not covered by insurance. However, thanks to generous donors in and around the Dillon community, the McLeod Health Foundation has been able to grant funding since 2001 to provide scholarships for Phase III and Phase IV to those patients who show a true desire to protect their life by participating in Cardiac Rehabilitation but are faced with economic barriers.
In 2006, Dillon Family Medicine contributed to the scholarship program and worked with the Foundation to designate it as the Dr. Douglas Jenkins Cardiac Rehabilitation Scholarship Fund. Dr. Jenkins is remembered as a pioneer in the field of medicine in Dillon County and because of his great interest in heart disease, this fund honors his memory.
Over the years and with many patients serving as evidence of the program’s impact, the numbers of patients whose physicians have urgently recommended that they participate in this life-saving care has increased dramatically. The average monthly visits to Cardiac Rehabilitation in 2011 was 779 and in 2013 that rose to 849. With much strain being placed on the Dr. Douglas Jenkins Cardiac Rehabilitation Scholarship Fund to meet the growing need, the Dillon community generously responded in 2014 to requests to financially support the program so that patients would not go unserved.
Many physicians, McLeod Dillon employees, community groups, businesses, local foundations, Cardiac Rehabilitation patients, and individuals in the Dillon community rallied around to support the Dr. Douglas Jenkins Scholarship Fund. These community members showed how deeply they care about the health care struggles of their patients and neighbors.
“These donors realized that Heart Disease in Dillon County is life-threatening and for those who survive, Cardiac Rehabilitation is a life-line,” said Abby Lambert, RN, Supervisor of the McLeod Dillon Cardiac Rehabilitation Program. “For many in our community who struggle financially every day, this life-line is out of reach.
“Most of our patients share the fear and anxiety associated with their heart condition,” explained Abby. “But by participating in the program they offer reassurance to each other. We also extensively educate and monitor patients. They soon realize that while they have experienced a temporary setback, their quality of life can be improved.”
Thanks to donors who made gifts to the Dr. Douglas Jenkins Cardiac Rehabilitation Scholarship Fund through the McLeod Health Foundation, patients are receiving the life-saving resources they need to continue their journey to health in a safe, supervised environment for years to come.
McLeod Registered Diagnostic Cardiac Sonographer Chalandra Hart performs an Echocardiography Ultrasound in the McLeod Plaza Radiology Department.
A servant’s heart is reflected in the faces of the McLeod Health staff, and demonstrated in their response to a calling in healthcare.
This caring nature recently led one team to approach the McLeod Foundation on behalf of their patient population. Their concern was for patients with cardiopulmonary problems who had to walk a considerable distance from Registration to the McLeod Echocardiography Department in the McLeod Tower. The request was to purchase a second Echocardiography Ultrasound machine for use in an outpatient location that was both convenient and easily accessible for these patients. An Echocardiography Ultrasound provides images of the wall motion and valve function of the heart. The test is painless and non-invasive. It also helps the physician determine a diagnostic and treatment plan for the patient.
In 2009, the McLeod Foundation awarded a grant in the amount of $161,330 to the Department of Echocardiography for the purchase of a second Echocardiography Ultrasound machine.
The new Echocardiography Ultrasound machine is located in the Radiology Department on the first floor of the McLeod Plaza, where patients can enter through either entrance and go directly to Registration and straight into the Echocardiography area all within a few convenient steps. This additional machine has also doubled the amount of screening times that are available for Outpatient Services, and relieved scheduling issues.
The caring hearts of the McLeod Echo Department is a reflection of how even one person can have a powerful impact on the lives of patients.
An Echocardiography Ultrasound provides images of the wall motion and valve function of the heart.
Naomi Thompson looks forward to her Cardiac Rehabilitation sessions at McLeod Medical Center Dillon.
Douglas W. Jenkins, M.D. is remembered as a pioneer in the field of medicine in Dillon County. Today, his legacy lives on as a scholarship established in his name provides for cardiac rehabilitation to those in need.
After the passing of Dr. Jenkins in 2006, Dillon Family Medicine, P.A. established the Dr. Douglas Jenkins Scholarship Fund through the McLeod Health Foundation to provide funding for patients who would not otherwise be able to afford participation in the Cardiac Rehabilitation program at McLeod Medical Center Dillon. Cardiac Rehabilitation is the recommended therapy for individuals after suffering a heart attack or cardiac intervention.
“Dr. Jenkins’ great interest in heart disease is why Dillon Family Medicine established a scholarship fund that would benefit cardiac patients and honor Dr. Jenkins’ memory,” said Dr. Michael Brown with Dillon Family Medicine.
In August of 2009, a generous gift of $3,000 was contributed to the McLeod Health Foundation by Dillon Family Medicine to provide continued funding for the Dr. Douglas W. Jenkins Scholarship Fund.
The McLeod Health Foundation has supported the McLeod Medical Center Dillon Cardiac Rehabilitation program since 2001. In the interest of participants’ continued health and wellness, $56,000 in grant funding has been provided for patients needing assistance.
At any given time, there are approximately twenty patients enrolled in the Cardiac Rehabilitation program that are benefiting from the Dr. Douglas W. Jenkins Scholarship Fund provided through the McLeod Health Foundation.
“Dr. Jenkins’ great interest in heart disease is why Dillon Family Medicine established a scholarship fund that would benefit cardiac patients and honor Dr. Jenkins’ memory.”
– Dr. Michael Brown,
Dillon Family Medicine