One System

Patients as Partners: External Programs Encourage Healthy Choices

Enhanced patient education was simply one means to encourage greater personal involvement in maintaining good health. Throughout 2012, clinical teams in multiple settings sponsored events to promote wellness and healthier choices.

Chef preparing salad

For example, Carolinas Medical Center-Union and Carolinas Medical Center-Waxhaw offered a "Dinner with the Doctor" series. Carolinas Medical Center-NorthEast hosted heart healthy cooking classes. Additionally, Carolinas Medical Center-Pineville and Carolinas Medical Center-Mercy hosted monthly community seminars on such topics as preventing heart disease and caring for elderly loved ones.

The Neurosciences Institute collaborated with corporate wellness specialists, Carolinas Rehabilitation and the YMCA to create RENEW (Research and Education in Neuro-Wellness). RENEW is a community-based program for Parkinson's disease patients, which promotes more active lifestyles and increases independence and safety-consciousness.

It is believed to be the first program of its kind in the nation. "Our hope is to transform care from simply supporting patients to actually empowering them," said Sanjay Iyer, MD, Co-Medical Director of Neurosciences.

Rick Dunlap shares his experience of having a stroke and how the team at Carolinas HealthCare System helped him recover in days instead of weeks.