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Chandler, AZ — Jan 14, 2019 — By Mark Slyter (President and CEO of Dignity Health Chandler Regional and Mercy Gilbert Medical Centers)
During my long career in health care, I’ve witnessed the struggles of patients facing complex neurological conditions.
For some, a lengthy commute to the hospital can pose a barrier to the care they desperately need.
That’s why I’m excited to bring the world-class Barrow Neurological Institute to Dignity Health Chandler Regional Medical Center. No longer do the residents in the burgeoning East Valley have to fight crosstown traffic to find the cutting-edge and specialty health care that has long been offered at Barrow’s main campus at Dignity Health St. Joseph’s Hospital and Medical Center in central Phoenix.
From Barrow’s perspective, it makes sense to expand to the East Valley. The East Valley partnership estimates that 1.4 million people live in the area, with a million more expected in the coming years.
As those residents age, some will experience movement disorders, including Parkinson’s disease, which afflicts an estimated 1 million Americans.
Barrow’s mission is to advance the knowledge and practice of medicine in neuroscience through basic and clinical research, education of medical professionals and innovation in clinical techniques and technology. And now that mission will be carried out in the East Valley.
The new facility will offer some of the same services available at Barrow Neurological Institute at St. Joseph’s, an internationally renowned center that offers care for people with brain and spine diseases, disorders and injuries. U.S. News & World Report routinely lists St. Joseph’s as one of the nation’s best hospitals for neurological and neurosurgical care.
Among Barrow’s most advanced East Valley services is Deep Brain Stimulation (DBS), a surgical treatment for people with Parkinson’s disease and other movement disorders that involves placing an electrode in a targeted area of the brain. The electrode is connected to a “pacemaker” and an electrical current is sent from the pacemaker to the electrode to help control motor symptoms.
Despite its remarkable success rate, DBS remains a mystery to many patients (and some family practice physicians). Studies have shown that 80 to 90 percent of essential tremor patients see only a personal care physician, not a neurologist. As a result, many patients aren’t aware of a proven treatment that is covered by most insurance plans, including Medicare.
In addition to DBS treatment, the Barrow surgeons located at Chandler are also treating patients with other complex types of neurological conditions and spine conditions, including advanced treatment for scoliosis, spinal stenosis and disc herniation.
Patients travel from all over the world to receive Barrow’s expert care. Now, patients in the East Valley can get it without leaving their neighborhood.
-- Barrow --
Sara (Baird) Patterson