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Medical/Residential Complex Gets Under Way
LAKE CHARLES — On July 20, the City Council approved annexation of 76 acres of land off of Nelson Road for
a multiuse development that will include a surgical specialty hospital, a rehab hospital, a health and wellness center, medical office buildings and ultimately residential and retail space, the American Press reported. The City Council also voted to change the zoning classification to “business and residential.”

Construction on the Imperial Pointe development should begin within the next six to eight months. Derek Development Corp., Barras Architects and civil engineer Barry J. Bleichner, all of Lafayette, will work together on the project. Roland L. “Rocky” Robin, a pharmacist and Derek Development’s managing partner, has also developed hospitals in Opelousas and Hammond.

The first phase will be developing medical space; later phases will incorporate retail and dining spaces, a community center, town houses and apartments and assisted living areas. The final goal is a development similar to Lafayette’s planned community of River Ranch with the bonus of extremely easy access to a wide range of medical services.

“It is our intent to maximize all of the medical community to join us and create a solid medical community where everyone can receive the highest degree of medical care in a broader area between New Orleans and Houston,” Derek Development said in a press release.

Gov. Jindal Signs Youth Concussion Act
SHREVEPORT — Dr. Anil Nanda, professor and chairman of the Department of Neurosurgery at the LSU Health Sciences Center Shreveport, worked with state Sen. Sherri Cheek (R-Shreveport), the NFL, the New Orleans Saints and the Concussion Coalition to help pass SB 189. Gov. Bobby Jindal signed the bill into law on June 28.

SB 189, also known as the Louisiana Youth Concussion Act, aims to make youth sports safer by making parents and coaches more aware of the symptoms and long-term effects of head injuries. Under the new law, schools, clubs and any other organizations that participate in youth sports will have to give parents and young athletes information about concussions and the potential effects of continuing to play after an injury, and coaches and officials must undergo annual training to learn how to spot symptoms of a concussion. Also, if a concussion is even suspected, coaches must now immediately remove the athlete from the practice or game. The injured player must have written clearance from a physician or licensed trainer to return to play. 

Less Stressful MRIs at Lakeview Regional
COVINGTON — Lakeview Regional Medical Center recently installed the first
hi-def MRI system in the state – and one of only three in the entire Southeast. The center is also one of the first in the region to incorporate the CinemaVision Virtual Reality System.

MRI, which stands for “magnetic resonance imaging,” exams are generally ordered by a physician when medical problems, such as tumors, cysts or brain injuries, are suspected but not readily detectable from an external exam.

The scans offer detailed images of the vascular system and major organs. The system at Lakeview Regional can do vascular exams without contrast media, making it safer for patients. In addition, the system is the only one of its kind in the region that can perform cardiac MRI exams, which can help determine if the heart is damaged or has any weak areas; this is particularly helpful information for doctors to have before performing bypass surgery.

The new system produces more detailed images in less time – and the CinemaVision technology can help lessen anxiety. This last point is crucial because an estimated 20 percent of patients become panicky or claustrophobic during MRI exams, which can be confining, dark and noisy, and thus cannot finish the procedure.

“It is important for us to always be aware of our patient needs, and this new system assists our patients that may present special challenges when undergoing [MRI procedures],” John Gerhold, associate administrator, said in a press release. “With our new CinemaVision Virtual Reality System, we are able to bring a relaxing multimedia experience and entertainment inside the MRI while patients are being imaged, helping them to tolerate the exams better. Patients can watch television [or] movies or listen to music during their exam.”

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