Forsyth Medical Center announced the establishment of the Maya Angelou Center for Women’s Health and Wellness, the region’s first center to coordinate comprehensive healthcare and wellness services specifically designed to meet the unique needs of women through every stage of life. The center will also be the region’s first to employ women’s health navigators to help coordinate the vast array of women’s services available throughout the medical center around the specific needs of women.
“We’re changing the traditional approach of caring for women by reorienting our entire medical center to recognize the significant physical and social differences that women have compared to men,” says Jeff Lindsay, president of Forsyth Medical Center. “In many diseases and illnesses, women present with different symptoms and require a different approach to diagnosis and treatment.”
Lindsay says that the Maya Angelou Center for Women’s Health and Wellness brings together all the clinical programs and services at the medical center that touch women’s health, including heart, wellness, cancer, surgical services, maternity, emergency care, bone and joint health, and behavioral care. “Women are often so busy caring for everyone around them that they can neglect their own needs. We want to remove all the barriers we can so that women receive the timely, appropriate care that they need and deserve, including by bringing conversations about their preventive health and wellness needs to the bedside. In this way, we can offer to coordinate any needed appointments or support services to for them to make getting care easy for them,” Lindsay explained. He added, “We are confident that this collaboration in research, education and treatment will bring about innovations in care that will improve the health of women in our community, throughout our state and across the nation.”
According to Lindsay, the inspiration for the center’s name and its focus on creating greater health and wellness among women came from Dr. Angelou who transcends generations and whose words and ideas resonate with women around the world.
“When the hale and hearty gather to improve the condition of the ailing and the weak, the entire community is inspired and the needy are cared for,” says poet and author Maya Angelou. “I am honored that the Center for Women’s Health and Wellness has been named for me. I am impressed that the center’s intent is to coordinate the focus on all of women’s health: cancer, cardiac/heart, maternity, surgical care, etc... I am further impressed because this center will focus on gender specific training and means to offer prevention as a process to achieving good health.”
In developing plans for the center, it was essential that it be more than a coordination of services to improve care and access to care for women, according to Chere Gregory, MD, director of neurosciences at Forsyth Medical Center and a member of the team that created the vision for the center.“We knew that we were embarking on a project that would change virtually every aspect of our medical center,” Dr. Gregory says. “This is a rethinking of how we deliver women’s health and wellness services from our women’s health nurse navigators who guide the care of our patients, to advance the support of our physicians, nurses and staff to provide care customized to every woman to optimize her health and sense of well-being.
The Maya Angelou Center for Women’s Health & Wellness will not only provide award-winning care, but their goal is to help educate, inform and empower women to make smart, healthy choices for themselves and their families.
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