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Southeastern Health’s new women’s healthcare team has expanded to become the largest women’s healthcare team in the region. The group is a mix of new and familiar faces to the community. Future expansion plans may include a permanent high-risk obstetric physician (maternal-fetal medicine, also called a perinatologist) onto the team next fall.

“Women’s health involves a very wide range of care, from pre-adolescent issues through a women’s reproductive life into the postmenopausal years,” Dr. McKinley said. “Each phase is unique and requires individual support tailored to their lives.”

The new team combines the resources of three women’s healthcare offices – Southeastern Health Women’s Clinic on West 27th Street (910-739-5550), Southeastern Women’s Healthcare on Fayetteville Road (910-608-3078) and Southeastern Women’s Healthcare at The Oaks (910-738-2454).

“Our long-term goal is to re-locate under one roof in a Women’s Health Pavilion that can further increase our abilities,” Dr. McKinley said. “Our team is also available to SeHealth community clinics and other offices as specialty consultants. We have partnered with local agencies, including the Robeson County Health Department and Robeson Health Care Corp., to help use our resources more efficiently. Together, we are working on providing more comprehensive health care delivery to women, improving pregnancy outcomes and reducing preterm deliveries in our region.”

His vision for SeHealth is to enhance and develop women’s care involving all aspects including: preventative care, advanced non-invasive surgery, pelvic support and bladder/incontinence management, cancer screening and early treatment, pre-pregnancy and prenatal care, high risk obstetrics support, infertility and menopause management.

“Within our system, we have a large number of excellent primary care providers and multiple medical/surgical specialists, including SeHealth/Duke Health-backed Cardiology/Cardiovascular surgery program, general surgery specialists, the Diabetes Community Center and 3-D mammography services,” he said.

Dr. McKinley also notes that substance abuse, including opioids, has gripped our nation and strangled so many lives and families.

“We are actively developing a program for women and partnering with established local facilities, experts and organizations to be able to more directly respond to and help these victims in our community. Its impact on a woman’s life, family and on her pregnancy is devastating,” he said.

Southeastern Health already has an outstanding and newly renovated Level 2 neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) which can care for babies who are delivered up to 10 weeks early.

“This allows our program to manage most high-risk pregnancies and keep the family together, should the need arise,” Dr. McKinley said. “We have excellent neonatologists, neonatal nurse practitioners and support staff to help, and their wonderful track record speaks for itself. We are also proud of our low Cesarean section rate, which is a result of the combined efforts of our staff and providers.”

Another area the program is enhancing is breastfeeding (lactation), through the Enrich Carolinas initiative, which is part of the Carolina Global Breastfeeding Institute at the University of North Carolina Chapel Hill. SeHealth is one of only 17 sites in the state that have been accepted into this program, which aims to improve maternity care and breastfeeding rates in underserved communities in the Carolinas. Southeastern Regional Medical Center has also started a new, modern childbirth class for expectant couples that is offered on a convenient schedule and resumed offering tours of the childbirth facilities. The tours of the Labor and Delivery areas begin at 7 p.m. on the third Thursday of each month. Participants must sign in at the information desk in the main lobby of the Bed Tower.

“I have a great team in place and feel privileged to work alongside our very qualified staff and support personnel,” Dr. McKinley said. “I am very proud of the work we have done and the direction we are going.”
The impact of women’s healthcare extends beyond an individual woman and is an important driver for the overall health of their families.

“It is well established that women are responsible for over 75 percent of the choices for their family’s healthcare,” Dr. McKinley said. “I firmly believe that our Women’s Health team, together with the unwavering support of SeHealth, will be able to provide new and unmatched levels of care to our region. What we have planned is not available in any of the surrounding markets. We want patients to choose us because of our quality, attention to individual care and our commitment to women’s health.”

To learn more about SeHealth Women’s Health services, go to www.southeasternhealth.org/womenshealthcare or call 910-608-3078.

For Maternal/Child Health nursing career opportunities at Southeastern Regional Medical Center, call SeHealth Nurse Recruiter Tammy McDuffie at 910-272-3024.

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