Dover-Foxcroft, ME, January 6, 2017 – Outpatient Medical Director Dr. Elizabeth Dennis has established a Wellness Bag Program at Mayo Regional Hospital. In collaboration with Mayo Regional Hospital’s management team, Dr. Dennis has launched an annual initiative to provide patients in the Primary Care Practices and Emergency Department with a wellness bag that includes cough drops, tissues, hand sanitizer and other assorted items with the goal of reducing unnecessary antibiotic use. The wellness bags will also have education material provided by Choosing Wisely. Staff will begin distribution of the wellness bags in January 2017.
The five practices, (Dover-Foxcroft, Guilford, Milo, Dexter and Corinth) and the hospital’s Emergency Department will be kicking off their campaign at the beginning of the New Year in an effort to reduce unnecessary antibiotic use. Although indicated for some illnesses, the majority of sore throats, colds and coughs, including bronchitis are viral infections. Patients with these types of viral infections get better on their own. Although not widely understood, it is common for patients to cough for several weeks after having a viral infection. Antibiotics do not help people recover from viral illnesses.
Dr. Dennis remarked “This project is especially exciting as it involves a collaborative effort between primary care practices and the emergency department. I am confident that our efforts will both educate patients and keep them safer as they seek care in their local community.”
Mayo Regional Hospital is a 25 Bed Critical Access Hospital and Health System in Dover-Foxcroft Maine. Mayo has 5 Rural Health clinics throughout the region, provides EMS for all of Piscataquis county, psychiatry and counseling services, and various surgical specialties. Mayo Regional is the hub for healthcare and the largest employer in their region.