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Rio Rancho Observer

With expanded services at the Lovelace Westside Hospital and more physicians working for the Lovelace Medical Group, Lovelace is working to provide convenience and innovation for patients who live in Rio Rancho and Albuquerque’s West Side.

Lovelace Medical Group Women’s Services opened earlier this month on the hospital campus. Services available include annual exams, prenatal care, pregnancy testing and minimally invasive gynecology surgery.

“These health care centers make it easier for our patients to get the care they need in one location,” said Abraham Lichtmacher, chief of Women Services for Lovelace Health System. “The health care centers are conveniently located right by a Lovelace hospital so patients can easily access hospital services as well.”

The new women’s services center ties into the birthing center at the hospital. The physicians and midwives who work there can handle all normal and C-section deliveries, Lichtmacher said. Lovelace Women’s Hospital, in the Northeast Heights of Albuquerque, works with high-risk deliveries.

The birthing center at Lovelace Westside Hospital opened almost three years ago. It features labor, delivery, recovery and postpartum rooms, which are set up for all stages of the birthing process to happen in one room, according to hospital CEO Farron Sneed.

Patients at the new women’s services center will see several new and familiar faces. Providers include Patrick Dawson, MD; Sahar Nouri, MD; and Gary Pugh, D.O. Three midwives are on rotation: Lowry Simpson, CNM; Janet Hardt, CNM; and Patricia Heinz, CNM.

They are available for same-day and next-day appointments, Monday-Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Patients can call Lovelace at 727-4500 and speak with a customer service representative. The providers accept most major insurance plans.

Wound Care

The Lovelace Wound Care Clinic at Lovelace Westside Hospital moves into a larger space on Feb. 3. Occupational therapist Ann Marie Santoyo and physical therapist Angela Arbelaez said they are receiving a steady stream of referrals from local doctors.

These two therapists, who are certified by the National Alliance of Wound Care, primarily serve a geriatric population. Patients most often come seeking help with cellulitis, chronic, diabetic, non-healing, surgical or venal wounds, they said.

Physicians send their clients for outpatient care. Patients usually start out visiting the clinic twice a week. As the therapists see progress, such as skin replacing the wound, they switch to visits once a week. For most patients, they said, the wound healing takes about two months.

The therapists offer a unique service. They collaborate with doctors and nutritionists. They have access to a wide range of supplies and materials, unlike what is often found in home health care. They said they know the signs that will appear when wounds are on their path toward healing.

Santoyo and Arbelaez most often receive referrals from podiatrists and vascular surgeons. They also receive patients from heart specialists, as well as primary and urgent physicians. Any patient wanting wound care service should seek a doctor referral to the Lovelace Westside Hospital.



Dr. Sahar Nouri, left, and midwife Lowry Simpson read a medical chart in a patient room at Lovelace Medical Group Women’s Services, located on the Lovelace Westside Hospital campus. The new center started seeing patients earlier this month.

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