New infusion center to relieve patients from lengthy hospital stays

New infusion center to relieve patients from lengthy hospital stays (Photo: Dr. Nya Ebama, M.D.)

Many people in our community suffer from illnesses that require them to be in hospitals for long periods of time for treatment.

What if we told you, you don't necessarily have to be in the hospital during your entire recovery process? You can heal at home because of infusion clinics.

There's a new infusion clinic in Conway, it's located inside the Lowcountry Infectious Diseases Office.

"It keeps patients out of the hospital, and that's always exciting because people do heal better when they're home and when they're surrounded by loved ones," said Dr. Nya Ebama, the infectious disease physician at the practice.

Unless you're employed there, there's a chance you aren't choosing to be in the hospital.

Infusion centers are intended to reduce lengthy stays at hospitals and eliminate hospital acquired infections. They give intravenous antibiotics rather than pills.

"They work a lot stronger and they work a lot faster. However, if you're doing well otherwise, you could come here to get the treatments," said Ebama.

Ebama says the Office Infusion Center (OIC) offers many of the same medicines used in hospitals.

"So you get to sleep at home, you can do more things that you wouldn't get to do just sitting in a hospital system," she said.

People with immune deficiencies, a number of diseases like Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA), Enteritis, Crohn's disease or deep infections would benefit the most, but also those who can't stomach pills.

"They can't tolerate it. Their stomach just all messed up, so doing the intravenous route is the best route because it bypasses the stomach system and people are able to get care even when their stomach fails them," said Ebama.

After they tell you what the procedure entails, here's how it works: "You sit in the big comfy chairs that we have, you can watch your TV or your phone or whatever you have and we can just monitor you while you get your medication. We disconnect you from it and monitor you, make sure you have no reactions then you're able to go home," said Dena Stewart, R.N., infusion site coordinator at the OIC.

Also if you're being treated, you'll get a new friend in Nurse Stewart.

"Unless you're watching something on Netflix, then I'll leave you alone to watch it, but otherwise, I like getting to know my patients," she said.

The infusion center accepts patient referrals from all of the hospitals in our area. If you'd like more information about the Lowcountry Infectious Disease OIC, visit their website here.

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