Sacred Heart News & Upcoming Events
Sacred Heart Opens Satellite High-Risk Obstetric Office in Dothan, Ala.
Posted: 2/3/2009

Sacred Heart Women’s Hospital is extending its expertise in managing high risk pregnancies by opening a satellite office in Dothan, Ala., located at 1362 West Main St., Suite 2.

This office will allow pregnant women in Houston, Geneva, Henry, Dale, and Coffee Counties in Alabama to receive expert care from Sacred Heart’s Regional Perinatal Center without having to travel to Pensacola.

“We wanted to expand the regional availability of our services and improve birth outcomes in Northwest Florida and South Alabama, while allowing patients to get expert prenatal care closer to home,” said Dr. James Thorp, a specialist in Maternal-Fetal Medicine and medical director of the Regional Perinatal Center at Sacred Heart.

Here’s how it works:

Beginning Feb. 4, 2009, a Maternal-Fetal Medicine physician and support staff from the Regional Perinatal Center in Pensacola will travel to their newly-opened office in Dothan and will be available for evaluation, consultations and diagnostic testing every other Wednesday.
All potential patients must be referred by their obstetrician to the satellite office.  There, the sonographer will perform a high quality ultrasound scan of the mother’s womb to monitor fetal development.  Then the Maternal-Fetal Medicine physician will perform a physical examination of patient and will review his recommendations with her and a plan of care will be sent to the referring physician.

“This innovative approach of bringing the high-risk services to the patient has allowed us to extend our services to underserved rural areas of Northwest Florida and South Alabama that do not have a physician specializing in high risk pregnancy,” said Elisabeth Allerellie, nurse coordinator of the satellite office. “It will assist the referring physicians by providing them with a documented plan of care for their patients and it will lower the number of sick/low birth weight infants born to these mothers who would not normally have been able to access this care.  It also means patients and their families can save time and money by avoiding a long trip to Pensacola or another tertiary center.”

There is currently a critical shortage of Maternal-Fetal Medicine specialists throughout the United States, and this new satellite office will allow the Regional Perinatal Center to provide their services to the areas that are most in need.

For more information on Sacred Heart’s Regional Perinatal Center, please call (850) 416-2477 or toll free at 1-866-904-8738.


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