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New Cath Lab coming to Ouachita County Medical Center

June 25, 2019

Abbott talks of cardiology program at OCMC by Bradly Gill | October 18, 2018 at 10:23 a.m.

Ouachita County Medical Center President/CEO Peggy Abbott shared what she touted as “exciting news” to the Camden Noon Lions Club at Catherine’s Bistro on Wednesday.

Camden will soon be the home of a cardiologist service line courtesy of the South Arkansas Cardiovascular and Vein Center.

“Back during the sales tax campaign, we had had the good fortune, at that time, to bring an orthopedic surgery line to Camden,” Abbott said. “That has remained very successful.”

Dr. Greg Massanelli of El Dorado chose OCMC as the site to perform in-patient joint replacement surgeries, Abbott stated. Since that time, 3 to 6 surgeries are done per week and the hospital has expanded its operating room. During that time, Abbott had what she refers to as “a dream to bring peripheral vascular surgeries to south Arkansas. Recruiting a cardiologist is no small feat. It’s almost impossible for a small town.”

Luckily, one was found in Dr. Sadee Mahmood, a cardiologist who practices in Pine Bluff who, likewise, had the dream of bringing the entire scope of cardiology services to rural Arkansas. He is bringing cardiologist Dr. Harvinder S. Dodd along with him.

“They are already seeing patients in an area of the hospital they have leased,” said Abbott, “They will be renovating what was formerly the Family Dollar building.” states, “Dr. Sadeem Mahmood is a cardiologist in Pine Bluff, Arkansas and is affiliated with multiple hospitals in the area, including Arkansas Heart Hospital and CHI St. Vincent Infirmary. He received his medical degree from Dow University of Health Sciences and has been in practice for more than 20 years. Dr. Mahmood accepts several types of health insurance. He is one of 26 doctors at Arkansas Heart Hospital and one of 38 at CHI St. Vincent Infirmary who specialize in Cardiology. He also speaks multiple languages, including Urdu and Punjabi.”

The site states, “Harvinder S. Dodd, MD is a practicing Cardiologist (Heart Specialist) in El Dorado, AR. He completed a residency at McKeesport Hospital - UPMC. Dr. Dodd also specializes in Internal Medicine. He currently practices at Medical Center South Arkansas and is affiliated with Medical Center of South Arkansas. Dr. Dodd accepts multiple insurance plans including Aetna, Medicare and Humana. Dr. Dodd also practices at Daniel D Schrader MD PLLC in El Dorado, AR.

“In addition to English, Dr. Dodd’s practice supports these languages: Spanish, Italian and German.”

Abbott said that while recruiting some doctors usually requires the hospital to help with recruitment fees, relocation fees or guaranteeing a salary, the only expense the hospital is incurring in this new venture is a $750,000 permanent cath lab.

A catheterization laboratory - aka cath lab - is an examination room in a hospital or clinic with diagnostic imaging equipment used to visualize the arteries of the heart and the chambers of the heart and treat any stenosis or abnormality found.

Abbott said normally it costs around $2 million to renovate a space and install a permanent cath lab.

Another development at the hospital is that it will have a full-time helicopter service.

Abbott said she was approached by a company interested in using the helipad at OCMC, and a second company interested in part-time use.

Gill, Bradly. (2018, October 18). Abbott talks of cardiology program at OCMC.  Camden News.

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