All posts by oakbend

Important Updates from Joe Freudenberger, CEO of OakBend Medical Center

“COVID-19 Updates

OakBend Medical Group has been preparing for potential COVID-19 (Coronavirus) patients since the cases were announced in China. Protocols and policies are in place to ensure the safety of the patients and staff while providing appropriate care to patients.

From the CEO

Have a question about OakBend or COVID-19 that you want Joe to address via video? Email info@obmc.org with the subject line “COVID-19.”

November 9, 2020: Today’s update on our COVID-19 response from our CEO Joe Freudenberger

November 3, 2020: Today’s update on our COVID-19 response from our CEO Joe Freudenberger

October 29, 2020: Today’s update on our COVID-19 response from our CEO Joe Freudenberger

Read More

COVID-19 and Pregnancy


“Pregnancy is generally a joyous time in a woman’s life.  The months leading up to delivery are filled with planning and anticipation of the arrival of your little one.  The year 2020 has changed this outlook with the arrival of Covid-19.  

Historically, respiratory illnesses have been thought to increase a woman’s overall risk for severe illness in pregnancy.  In a recent data analysis from the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), pregnant woman appear to be at an increased risk for certain manifestations of severe illness compared to their non-pregnant peers.  Pregnant woman have a higher risk of ICU admission and need for mechanical ventilation.  Fortunately, there is no increased risk of mortality or risk of death.  In the same analysis, Black or Hispanic pregnant patients were disproportionately affected by SARS-CoV-2 infection.  Pregnant patients with comorbidities such as obesity have an increased risk of complications from SARS-CoV-2 infection similar to the general population with similar comorbidities.  

There are reported cases of vertical transmission (transmission directly from mother to baby) of Covid-19; However, the data is reassuring that vertical transmission is rare.  

Health care providers should counsel pregnant patients and those considering pregnancy about their potential risk of severe illness from Covid-19 and advise them on actions to employ to reduce their risk of infection.  

Pregnant patients are encouraged to 

  • Wear a mask/facial covering at work or while in a public place
  • Wash hands frequently for at least 20 seconds 
  • Practice social distancing 
  • Limit contact with other individuals outside of your household as much as possible
  • Attend all scheduled prenatal appointments

After all this preparedness and anticipation your little one has arrived and you are looking forward to the moment of cuddling and care. Due to the overwhelming benefit to the infant, The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends 6 months of exclusive breastfeeding unless contraindications are present.  The majority of data has not demonstrated a presence of SARS-CoV-2 in breastmilk.  Thus, suspected or confirmed maternal infection is not a contraindication to breastfeeding.  

Moms with suspected or confirmed Covid-19 are encouraged to provide breastmilk to their infants through the following methods-

  • Breastmilk expression (manual or electric breast pump)
  • Direct breast contact (practice hand hygiene and wear mask/facial covering)

Obstetricians and other Maternal Care Practitioners continue to support mother’s during this time to make informed decisions about nutrition for their infant whether that be exclusive breastfeeding, mixed feeding, or formula feeding. 

With so many decisions to be made and actions to carryout to provide a safe environment for yourself and your infant, Covid-19 has made this period unbelievably stressful.  Coping with this stress is one more thing added to your unsaid list of responsibilities as a mother. 

Obstetricians and other Maternal Care Practitioners should screen for anxiety and depression during the prenatal period and the postpartum period.  I encourage mothers-to-be and moms to be open in communication with their care team should any of these symptoms arise.  Patients should be encouraged that there are effective treatments and support options available during this troubling time.  

Lastly, if you or any of your loved ones experience any Covid-19 symptoms 

  • Fever > 100.4
  • Cough
  • Difficulty breathing/shortness of breath
  • Muscle/body aches
  • Fatigue
  • Loss of taste or smell
  • Chills 
  • Congestion/runny nose 
  • Sore throat 
  • Exposure to a known Covid-19 individual

                                                                                                PLEASE GET TESTED!!!

Amber Dobyne MD

Obstetrics and Gynecology

OakBend Medical Group

References:  ACOG- Novel Coronavirus 2019 (Covid-19) Practice Advisory: July 2020

ACOG-SMFM:  Outpatient Assessment and Management for Pregnant Women with Suspected or Confirmed Novel Coronavirus (Covid-19): July 14 2020”

Read More

OakBend Medical Group New Updated Policies

“Down below are OakBend Medical Group’s updated policy’s, this is not only to ensure our employee’s safety but also yours during this pandemic-

1.       Proper signage will be placed on the doors to provide updated information related to OakBend Medical Group policy and procedure changes.

a.       “No Visitor Policy”

b.      “Please Do Not Enter the Office”

c.       “Notice of Compliance Requirements Concerning COVID-19 – Minimum Standards of Safe Practice”

d.      “Mask required for patients, physicians, and staff”

2.       Updates to the visitor policy includes the following:

a.       No visitors allowed within our clinics.  No pharmaceutical representatives allowed. 

b.      Here are the only exceptions: 

                                                               i.      1 parent or caregiver with a child

                                                             ii.      1 required medical decision maker with adults

                                                            iii.      1 caregiver for patients unable to ambulate by themselves

c.       This policy applies to all of our outpatient clinics.

3.       No patients allowed in the waiting room areas to help keep COVID-19 from spreading.

a.       Patients will be notified the day before their appointments to call the office at the phone number provided.

b.      Once the patient calls, the staff will provide the patient with instructions of when to enter the facility.

c.       Patients arriving will check in and be immediately taken into a patient room.

d.      All paperwork and triage will be completed in the patient room.

4.       All clinic staff temperatures and symptoms checked daily and documented

5.       Plexiglass dividers will be installed into the front reception areas to protect our front desk staff. 

a.       Office managers have taken pictures of the front desk areas for orders.

6.       (1) N-95 mask provided to all staff and physicians.

7.       Clean and Sanitize Workplaces

a.       Cleaning of clinic areas:

                                                               i.      Use EPA approved disinfectants to clean the clinic areas, ie. waiting room, patient rooms, patient restroom, etc.

                                                             ii.      Follow the directions on the label for proper use of the disinfectants

                                                            iii.      Target high traffic areas like doorknobs, light switches, handles, phones, faucets and sinks

                                                           iv.      Clean visibly dirty surfaces with soap and water

b.      Cleaning of patient examination rooms:

                                                               i.      Use PPE when cleaning patient rooms of a suspected COVID-19 symptoms

                                                             ii.      Follow the directions on the label for proper use of the disinfectants and do not use the room for 1 hour.

8.       Maintain Good Hygiene: 

a.       Continue to wash hands between patients and to avoid direct contact with your eyes, nose, and mouth.  Wash with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.  When soap and water are not available use an alcohol –based sanitizer. 

b.      Practice social distancing.

c.       Practice good respiratory etiquette, including covering coughs and sneezes.

d.      Notify your office lead/manager if you are sick. Stay home.”

Read More

OakBend Medical Group COVID-19 team members participate in the FortBend County Chambers Scavenger Hunt

COVID-19 team members Hannah Kendziora, Savannah Ramirez, Samantha Charles, Belinda Gonzales, Ann Moreno, Valerie Varela, and Claudia Lopez had a blast participating in the FortBend County Chambers Scavenger Hunt as well as OakBend Medical Group sponsoring to be one of the location selfie spots for the scavenger hunt!

Read More

OAKBEND MEDICAL GROUP OFFERS DRIVE-THRU COVID-19 TESTING

Fort Bend County Location

OAKBEND MEDICAL GROUP OFFERS DRIVE-THRU COVID-19 TESTING

Effective Thursday, March 26, 2020, OakBend Medical Group will conduct COVID-19 Testing if, and only if, the patient meets the following criteria:

Initial criteria for the COVID-19 Testing will require a Telehealth visit:
o   A telehealth visit will be instituted by calling 281-238-7870
o   Our Medical staff will schedule a visit via tele health
o   The patient will be screened during the Telehealth visit for criteria that suggests a possible positive COVID-19.
§  Criteria for COVID-19 Testing:
·         Patients must have symptoms (fever, cough, shortness of breath) AND have one of the following risk factors:
o   Older than 65 years old
o   People who have serious underlying health conditions (heart disease, diabetes, lung disease/asthma, HIV, immunocompromised)
o   Healthcare workers with suspected exposure
o   COVID-19 testing is 8am – 1pm with  the numbers of tests limited
o   All tests must have an order from the telehealth visit 
o   Test Results take 24-48 hours.
o   COVID-19 testing will be charged to patient insurance for patients that have Medicare, Medicaid or Commercial insurance.  For self-pay patients the cost of the test is $100 at the time of service. Patients must pay by credit/debit card prior to arriving for the COVID-19 testing.
o   The patient will be given instructions by the provider’s office to come to the testing site. 

Testing is done at our New Territory location: 4911 Sandhill Dr. Sugar Land, Tx77479

Read More

Are you prepared for the Coronavirus (COVID-19)

If you think that you may have the Coronavirus (COVID-19)?

Take these steps:

  1. Start with a call to your primary care physician.  You will be advised what to do next.
  2. Call ahead before going in person to any OakBend Medical Group clinic location.
  3. Don’t go to the emergency department for COVID-19 testing.  The emergency department is only for those who need the most critical care.

* If you have chest pain, shortness of breath, dizziness, a severe headache or other potentially life-threatening problems, go to the nearest emergency department or call 911.

For COVID-19 related questions, contact the Texas Department of State Health Services by email or by phone:

Email: coronavirus@dshs.texas.gov

For questions about COVID-19, dial 2-1-1, then choose Option 6.
Hours: 7:00 a.m. – 8:00 p.m., 7 days per week.

For local assistance, see the listing of Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID?19) Local Health Entities.

For more information related to Coronavirus (COVID-19)-
click here https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-nCoV/index.html

Read More

Press Release for 2019 Physician of the Year

OAKBEND MEDICAL CENTER ANNOUNCES
2019 PHYSICIAN OF THE YEAR

Richmond, TX…Dr. Long Cao, M.D., FACC has received the 2019 Physician of the Year Award from OakBend Medical Center. The other nominees were Dr. David Chao and Dr. Chris Chen.

The Physician of the Year award, OakBend’s highest recognition, is presented annually to one outstanding physician who possesses significant practice experience, compassion, kindness and sincerity that translates not only to their patients, but to their nurses and other staff members that work closely with them. These physicians look and act professional at all times and are a role model both professionally and personally.

According to Joe Freudenberger, CEO of OakBend Medical Center, “Dr. Cao is excellent at making the complex simple. He is the ultimate team player and is there for all events and participates.”

Dr. Long Cao was born in Vietnam and raised in Houston.  With the support and encouragement of his parents, his lifelong dream of being a physician became a reality.

Cao graduated magna cum laude from Baylor University and is a medical graduate of the University of Texas.  He completed his residency training at Baylor College of Medicine and his Cardiology Fellowship in North Carolina.  

He is Board Certified in Internal Medicine and Cardiovascular Disease.  He is also certified in Echocardiography, Nuclear Cardiology and Vascular Interpretation.

With a passion for teaching, Dr. Cao was an Associate Professor for Medicine and a public speaker where he enjoys speaking on cardiac disease and cardiac prevention awareness. 

A father of three, Dr. Cao enjoys spending time with family and friends, exploring the outdoors, traveling and painting. He speaks English, Vietnamese and Spanish.

Accepting the award, Cao stated, “I never expected this, especially knowing Dr. Chen and Dr. Chao, they are way more deserving of this. I didn’t expect this yet; I wanted to work toward it. I saw Dr. Ceballos and Dr. Aly had received this award and I always wanted to work up to it and to be deserving of it. Now that I have received this, I’m going to keep working hard and make sure I deserve it.”

About OakBend Medical Center

OakBend Medical Center is the last remaining independent, nonprofit hospital in the Greater Houston area, providing exceptional service with its three hospitals and many specialty centers. OakBend follows an innovative model of care that makes the patient the captain of the care team, up-ending the traditional approach to nursing where the doctors and nurses act as leaders of the team. This patient-centered care drives OakBend’s services and programs, including its signature No Wait ER, an advanced trauma center and the Jack and Billie Wendt Acute Care for the Elderly (ACE) unit.

We remain committed to developing the very best ways to care for our patients, ensuring a healthy future for generations to come.

 For more information, please visit www.oakbendmedcenter.org. Connect with us on FacebookTwitter, LinkedIn, Instagram, and Snapchat.

Read More

Press Release for Dr. Cindy John

OAKBEND MEDICAL GROUP ANNOUNCES NEW CARDIOLOGIST

Richmond, TX…OakBend Medical Group is proud to announce its newest Cardiologist, Dr. Cindy John. Born and raised in West Chester, Pennsylvania, she graduated from Ross University School of Medicine in 2010 with “High Honors.” John next graduated from Residency in Internal Medicine in 2013 at Hahnemann University Hospital in Philadelphia, PA. Following her residency at Hahnemann, she graduated from its Fellowship in Cardiovascular Disease in 2016.

Dr. John is board certified in Internal Medicine, Cardiovascular Disease, Echocardiography and Nuclear Medicine. She has received Diplomate Status with both the National Board on Echocardiography and the Certification Board of Nuclear Cardiology. She is currently a member of the American College of Cardiology, American Society of Nuclear Cardiology and the American Society of Echocardiography.

John believes in treating every patient like they are her own mother, father, brother or sister. She loves to attend church, host family get-togethers, going on weekend getaways with her husband and playing with her dog Max.  She has a passion for prevention and works together with her patients to identify risks and take real steps toward changing outcomes. Taking time to listen to her patients, answer questions and provide individualized care help Dr. John a compassionate doctor with a strong bedside manner.

“Heart disease is the number one killer of both men and women in the United States. As your cardiologist, I care about you and I see you as so much more than a statistic. Let’s work together to come up with a plan so I can help you and your family take steps towards living a heart healthy life today,” states Dr. John.

About OakBend Medical Center:

OakBend Medical Center is the last remaining independent, nonprofit hospital in the Greater Houston area, providing exceptional service with its three hospitals and many specialty centers. OakBend follows an innovative model of care that makes the patient the captain of the care team, up-ending the traditional approach to nursing where the doctors and nurses act as leaders of the team. This patient-centered care drives OakBend’s services and programs, including its signature No Wait ER, an advanced trauma center and the Jack and Billie Wendt Acute Care for the Elderly (ACE) unit.

We remain committed to developing the very best ways to care for our patients, ensuring a healthy future for generations to come.

 For more information, please visit www.oakbendmedcenter.org. Connect with us on FacebookTwitter, LinkedIn, Instagram, and Snapchat.

Read More

Press Release for Drs. Venyah and Wong

TWO NEW FAMILY PRACTICE PHYSICIANS JOIN
OAKBEND MEDICAL GROUP?

Richmond, TX…OakBend Medical Group is proud to announce the addition of Dr. Titus Venyah and Dr. Harry Wong, both family practice physicians.

Dr. Harry Wong is a native Houstonian. He attended The University of St. Thomas in Houston, graduating with a B.A. in Chemistry. He received his M.D. degree from the University of Texas Medical Branch – Galveston and did his Family Practice residency at St. Mary’s/St. Elizabeth’s Hospitals in Port Arthur and Beaumont, Texas, two of the cities in Texas’ Golden Triangle.

Wong’s patient care philosophy is that he sees his patients as family; he gives advice and treats them like he would any family member.

At the age of 47 Wong began running but then discovered dragon boat racing where he qualified for the nationals in a race where he was on the team representing the United States. They won!

Dr. Titus Venyah is a Board Certified Family Medicine physician. He completed training in 2003 with Michigan State University College of Human Medicine at Genesys Regional Medical Center in Grand Blanc, Michigan. He has worked in Primary care, Hospital medicine, Wound care, Hospice/Palliative care and Geriatrics including Medical director in Long term care and post-acute care facilities.

Prior to medicine he earned a Master degree in Exercise Physiology and worked in Cardiac Rehabilitation, exercise training and nutrition.

He is committed to excellence in the delivery of medicine to people and is a strong believer in educating his patients about healthy habits and their disease processes. He is skills allow him to help his patients manage a wide range of chronic diseases as well as acute illnesses. He seeks to establish a personal connection with all patients that he is involved with.

When not working, Dr. Venyah enjoys spending time with his wife and children, sporting activities, and worshiping God.

OakBend Medical Group is pleased to have the two new family practice physicians join their team.

About OakBend Medical Group

OakBend Medical Group a community-minded group of physicians who provide services in the heart of Fort Bend County. They offer many locations for the convenience of our patients. The  services are provided by excellent physicians whose specialties include Family Practice, Obstetrics and Gynecology, OrthopedicsSports Medicine ,GeriatricsCardiology, and Internal Medicine.

OakBend Medical Group is affiliated with the OakBend Medical Center, providing two campuses, both easily accessible with free parking for patient’s convenience . Find out more at www.oakbendmedicalgroup.com or follow on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/OakbendMedGroup.

Read More

Press Release for Measles

WHAT YOU DON’T KNOW ABOUT THE MEASLES CAN HURT YOU

Measles, sometimes referred to as rebeola or red measles, is a highly contagious respiratory infection that can spread through the air when an infected person breathes, coughs or sneezes. The virus can float in the air up to one hour after someone coughs or sneezes indoors.

As of today, there are seven cases of measles reported in Texas with one more suspected in Galveston County. And, while none have been reported in Fort Bend County, the Center for Disease Control (CDC)  has reported that there are three active cases in Harris County.

“The spreading of this disease can be stopped. All that is needed is the vaccine MMR (measles, mumps and rubella) and MMRV (measles, mumps, rubella and varicella [chicken pox]). In general most children get the vaccine as part of their regular shots which is why measles are rare in the U.S. It is the unvaccinated that spread the disease,” stated Dr. Joe Anzuldúa, with OakBend Medical Group.

There is a faction of parents that believe the MMR Vaccine can cause autism in their children. As in most controversies, there are two sides but the CDC published a study (https://www.jpeds.com/article/S0022-3476(13)00144-3/pdf?ext=.pdf) stating that there is no link between vaccines and autism.

On average it takes between seven and 14 days after exposure to see signs of the measles with the first noticeable sign being high fever of 102+ then two to three days after the fever the characteristic red rash begins to form at the hairline and travels downward. Other symptoms include a cough, red watery eyes and runny nose. Measles are contagious four days before and four days after the onset of the rash.

Measles are so contagious that 90% of unvaccinated people that are exposed will get the infection. So what can you do? If you are a parent, please get your children vaccinated. The first dose (MMR) is administered between 12 and 15 months and the second dose (MMRV) should be administered between the ages of four and six. The first shot is 93% effective in preventing measles and the second shot is 97% effective.

If you are an adult traveling abroad, check the CDC website at www.cdc.gov  to see if there is an outbreak in the country you are planning to visit. Currently Europe, Africa, Asia and the Pacific all have outbreaks of measles.  If you are not sure you have been vaccinated there are two options. The first is to have a blood test done but this extremely expensive and take a while to get the results. The fasted and easiest way is to get the vaccine. Even if you were inoculated as a child, getting the shot again is not harmful.

Should you suspect that you or your child has contracted measles, consult a physician immediately. While there is no specific treatment for measles, lab tests can be done to confirm the infection. Once you or your child has the measles, you can expect for it to take approximately three to five days before the rash to begin to fade. Without complications those that have measles usually start to recover as soon at the rash appears and feel back to normal in two to three weeks. However, up to 40% of patients have complications which can lead to pneumonia and even death especially in young children and older adults.

About OakBend Medical Center

OakBend Medical Center is the last remaining independent, nonprofit hospital in the Greater Houston area, providing exceptional service with its four hospitals and many specialty centers. We recognize the importance of being connected to our community. Our patients are our neighbors, our family, and our friends. By acting with integrity and compassion, and each person taking ownership for providing quality care, we illustrate an absolute commitment to excellence in all that we do. We remain committed to developing the very best ways to care for our patients, ensuring a healthy future for generations to come.

OakBend Medical Center distinguishes itself among its healthcare peers in Fort Bend County by housing several unique programs and facilities including:

•             No Wait Emergency Room

•             Hospital-based Skilled Nursing Facility

•             Advanced (Level III) Trauma Program

•             Acute Care for the Elderly (ACE) Unit

•             Geriatric Psychiatric Unit

•             Permanent Hospital-based Air Ambulance

For more information, please visit www.oakbendmedcenter.org. Connect with us on FacebookTwitter, LinkedIn, Instagram, and Snapchat.

Read More