(Joplin, MO) – Caregivers help patients with care that can range from dressing and bathing to meal prep, transportation to doctor appointments and social activities. This care can take a toll on the caregiver both mentally and physically. According to the Family Caregiver’s Alliance, 25% of male caregivers and 35% of female caregivers report high stress due to caregiving. Exercise provides an outlet for stress and offers relief and relaxation.

Personal trainer Karen King, of the Joplin Family YMCA, will share advice for caregivers at the Freeman Caregiver Support Group meeting July 14. King will explain what caregivers can do to ensure fitness and nutrition for their loved ones and themselves. She will explain opportunities available at the YMCA, as well as provide tips to be successful.

Facilitated by Ozark Center Assistant Director of Adult Outpatient Services Jennifer Berry, MSW, LCSW, the support group meets from 10:30 am to 12:00 pm at the Freeman Business Center conference rooms. Guests should enter from the rear parking lot. Physical distancing and mask wearing will be practiced. Refreshments and door prizes are provided.

Please RSVP to Kathy Mason at kdmason@freemanhealth.com or call 417.347.8463.


Kathy Mason, Freeman Community Health Worker
Freeman Health System

Written by Amber Allen, Field Specialist in Human Development & Family Science, MU Extension

It is natural to feel stress in our lives. Our lives are busy with kids, jobs, caring for ill parents, and taking care of ourselves. A study by the American Physiological Society found that people are more likely to have higher stress hormones in the summer than in the winter. As you enjoy nicer weather and more outdoor activities, make sure to be proactive in your overall mental well-being.

Here are some tips to check in with your overall mental well-being throughout the summer:

  • To help your emotional well-being, practice coping skills, set healthy boundaries, and try different self-care techniques.
  • Develop a sense of connection and establish a support system. Join groups that are focused on a favorite activity or hobby.
  • Find ways to expand your knowledge and skills through intellectually stimulating activities.
  • Become aware of your stress symptoms and identify and clarify your stressors.

It is important to know everyone handles stress differently. If you are interested in learning more on how you handle stress check out the upcoming Taking Care of You classes that MU Extension is providing. Learn more here.

About the MU Extension: 

University of Missouri Extension programs focus on the high-priority needs of Missourians to improve lives, communities and economies by providing relevant, responsive and reliable educational solutions. MU Extension programs are open to all

Join the Missouri SBDC hosted at Missouri Southern State University (MSSU) and Freeman Health System for Wellness for Business Part Three: Growing Your Employee Wellness Program on Tuesday, August 23, 2022.

During this session, participants will hear from Lori Scott Dreiling, Pittsburg State University’s HR Director and former HR Director for Modine Manufacturing who received the Missouri Worksite Wellness Gold Award in 2019. Lori will discuss her experience with worksite wellness and then join a panel of local businesses that have implemented wellness programs.

The Wellness Panel includes:

  • Lori Scott Dreiling, Pittsburg State University’s HR Director and former HR Director for Modine Manufacturing. They received a Missouri Worksite Wellness Gold Award in 2019.
  • Suzan Morang, City of Joplin Health Department’s Community Health Planner/Educator. They received a Missouri Worksite Wellness Silver Award in 2021.
  • Chelsey Davenport, Neosho School District’s Wellness Liaison. They received a Missouri Worksite Wellness Platinum Award in 2021.
  • Michael Sanders, Freeman Health System’s Controller and Healthy Joplin representative.

The panel will be begin at 8:00 am at the Freeman Health System Business Center Conference Room. Virtual attendance is available via Zoom. Attendance fees are covered by Freeman Health System.

Learn more here.


Missouri SBDC

(Carthage, MO) – The Alliance of Southwest Missouri will be hosting free parenting classes starting Tuesday, June 21 at Fairview Christian Church.

These parenting classes are free, ten-week courses designed for parents or caregivers of children and teens. The course focuses on:

  • Play therapy
  • Regaining control as a parent
  • Helping your child develop self-control
  • Effectively disciplining and limiting inappropriate behavior
  • Understanding your child’s emotional needs
  • Communicating more effectively with your child

Classes will be from 5:30 to 7:30 on Tuesday nights from June 21 to August 23. Dinner and childcare will be provided at no cost to the participants.

To register for this class, please click here or call 417.782.9899. Classes will be coming to Joplin, Lamar, and McDonald County in September.

Learn about what’s new in local healthcare with Freeman Health System’s newsletter, Freeman in a Flash. Read about Freeman’s recognition as a Healthy People 2030 Champion, upcoming events, and much more. 

Freeman Recognized as a Healthy People 2030 Champion

Freeman Health System is proud to be recognized by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Office of Disease Prevention and Health Promotion(ODPHP) as a Healthy People 2030 Champion.

The Healthy People 2030 Champion distinction recognizes Freeman’s commitment to helping achieve the Healthy People 2030 vision of a society in which all people can achieve their full potential for health and well-being across their lifespans. ODPHP recognizes Freeman, along with other Healthy People 2030 Champions, as part of a growing network of organizations partnering with ODPHP to improve health and well-being at the local, state and tribal level.

“Because Freeman focuses on meeting the health and wellness needs of those we serve, this partnership is a great fit,” said Kris Drake, Freeman Wellness Coordinator. “As we continually look for new ways to reach and strengthen our community through wellness education and outreach, this program will surely support our efforts.”

Find out more here.

Freeman Among Nation’s Top Hospitals for Heart Attack Patient Care

Freeman Health System is one of only 240 hospitals nationwide to receive the American College of Cardiology NCDR Chest Pain – MI Registry Platinum Performance Achievement Award for 2022. The award recognizes Freeman Heart & Vascular Institute’s commitment and success in implementing a higher standard of care for heart attack patients.

“It’s an impressive accomplishment for our heart care team, and it reflects the dedication, commitment and clinical excellence of our cardiologists, cardiothoracic surgeons, nurses, technicians and support staff,” said Freeman President and Chief Executive Officer Paula F. Baker. “It’s gratifying to see their efforts recognized by the American College of Cardiology.”

Read more here.

The Missing Step in Tuberculosis Screening

Facilities that serve large populations of people – like daycares and nursing homes – have long screened for tuberculosis (TB), a potentially serious bacterial disease that affects the lungs. Most companies use the tuberculin skin test (TST), also called TB skin test or two-step TB test. However, many companies only complete the first of the two-step process.

Commonly, patients and employers do not realize that returning for a second test is required to complete the two-step process, which actually requires a total of four visits to your medical provider:

  • Visit 1: Injection of TB antigen fluid.
  • Visit 2: Return 48 to 72 hours later for the test to be read.
  • Visit 3: Return one to three weeks later to repeat the injection (check for latent TB).
  • Visit 4: Return 48 to 72 hours later for test to be read and finalized.

Alternatively, employers may request a T-SPOT TB test, which is a single visit blood test, drawn by a medical professional, and sent to a lab for analysis.

Patients can walk in to any OccuMed clinic (except Thursdays) for a TB skin test. T-SPOTS can be done Monday to Friday.

Printable Freeman OccuMed Clinic Map Now Available

Helping employees get to their Freeman OccuMed appointment just got easier. The printable Freeman OccuMed clinic map shows contact information and a thumbnail image of each clinic location. A place to write in your employee’s appointment serves as a visual reminder of their scheduled time. Download this form to help reduce late and missed appointments.

Find printable resources here.

As Freeman Celebrates 300 TAVR Procedures, Meet Patient John Tescher In His Own Words

“Before transcatheter aortic valve replacement, or TAVR for short, I was really weak. Just walking across the room, I’d have to sit down and take a break.

“I was one of the first people to have TAVR done at Freeman. I was excited about it. I was a little nervous about stepping into the unknown of a new procedure, but I knew that if it worked, it would be beneficial to my daily life.

“I noticed the improvement right away. I’ve regained my energy and my strength. I can do whatever I want to do – I can work on my yard or go shopping with my wife. I feel good.”

Read more of John’s story here.

Five Numbers You need to Know for a Healthy Heart

Quarterly, Your Friends at Freeman debut a poster for employers to post in breakrooms or other high traffic areas. You’re encouraged to share it electronically if that is effective for your employee communication.

This quarter, we’re premiering the Five Numbers You Need to Know for Heart Health poster.

Discover this poster and other printable resources here.

Wellness for Business Series: Part 2, Building Your Employee Wellness Program

During this free session, attendees will be guided through a “crash course” in workplace wellness by the WorkWell Missouri Toolkit. Developed to assist businesses in starting, adding to, or maintaining a wellness program, this is a step-by-step guide for employers to use in assessing, planning, implementing, and evaluating a workplace wellness program.

Interested individuals can register to participate in-person at the Freeman Business Center, here, or register here to attend virtually.

Caregiver Support Group

The Freeman Caregiver Support Group will meet on Thursday, January 20 at 10:30 am in the Freeman East Conference Rooms.

Join fellow caregivers for this support group meeting to gain advice on what lies ahead, make new friends and learn how to better take care of family members. Door prizes will be given out.

RSVP to Kathy Mason at 417.347.8463 or kdmason@freemanhealth.com. To see the full list of upcoming events offered by Freeman, click here.

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