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Hospital features expanded cardiac care

The Hudson Hospital & Clinics has greatly expanded cardiac care at the hospital's Specialty Clinic. Improvements include four cardiologists, expanded services and new equipment, such as the programming device on the table. One of the cardiologists is Dr. Stephen Smalley, center, who was instrumental in expanding Hudson's service. With Smalley are Cardiology Patient Care Coordinator Beth Raebel, RN, left, and Specialty Clinic Manager Jackie Glaser, right. Photo by Doug Stohlberg

New and expanded heart services offered at Hudson Hospital combine big-city technology with small-town personal service.

The local hospital now offers a complete range of cardiology services that makes Hudson one of the leaders in heart care in western Wisconsin.

Dr. Stephen Smalley is one of the cardiologists from Regions Hospital who comes to Hudson on a regular basis. He, Dr. Thomas Kottke and Dr. Marco Guerrero come to Hudson now - a fourth cardiologist, Dr. Kiran Pandey, begins her duties here Oct. 2.

"We have a more personalized service here," Smalley said. "People can come here in a much more relaxed setting. When you think about it, who wouldn't rather pull into this parking lot (Hudson Hospital) rather than go into downtown St. Paul?

"When patients come here they see the same doctors -- we get to know our patients and they get to know us. When you go to a big facility in the Twin Cities you often are in a rushed setting and seldom see the same doctor - this is a better setting for everyone.

"It's a mixture of modern, high-end medicine and the older-style patient/doctor relationship."

Specialty Clinic Manager Jackie Glaser said patient demand helped drive the need for more heart services in Hudson.

"In the past year, we have seen a 40 percent increase in patients using cardiac services," Glaser said. "We have seen a steady increase."

And, patients have been pleased with the services provided.

"I send thank-you notes to our patients, and I have received many calls from them," Glaser said. "They are appreciative of being able to get services in Hudson and they like our doctors."

Currently the Specialty Clinic is staffed about two and a half days each week by a cardiologist.

But it's not just a matter of bringing doctors to the clinic. The Hudson Hospital now offers many more specialized care services. Among them are:

  • Specialized cardiac imaging and diagnostic testing.
  • Cardiac Device Clinic (management of pacemaker and defibrillator implants).
  • Lipid, cholesterol and other risk factor management.
  • Phase 2 and 3 cardiac rehabilitation after a heart attack.
  • Cardiac education and support groups.
  • Personalized and coordinated care with primary doctors.
  • Cardiac level 1 emergency response in partnership with Regions Hospital Heart Center and St. Croix EMS.

    "The heart program has been extensively developed," Smalley said. "Before these services were added we simply saw patients and sent them on to Regions. Now we can offer many of the services here in Hudson. The standard has been raised significantly."

    "Heart disease is the leading cause of death in the U.S.," said Kottke. "I have a tremendous opportunity to help people reduce their burden and suffering. If someone has had a heart attack, I can reduce their likelihood of death by 80 to 90 percent."

    To read the full story, see the October 1 print edition of the Hudson Star-Observer.

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