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More MS news articles for May 2003

Rockwood Clinic opens multiple sclerosis center

New facility will compete for patients with center Holy Family opened in ’99

May 23, 2003
By  Kim Crompton
Spokane Journal Of Business

Rockwood Clinic PS has opened a multiple sclerosis center in its main facility at 400 E. Fifth near downtown Spokane, says Dr. Steven Pugh, a neurologist there and the new center’s medical director.

The center is the second one here devoted to providing diagnostic, treatment, and related support services to Inland Northwest multiple sclerosis sufferers. It will compete for patients with an MS center that Holy Family Hospital opened across the street from its North Side medical complex four years ago.

“Our incentive to do this was, obviously, there is a huge MS population here,” Pugh says. “We felt like because of that need, Rockwood Clinic needs to offer a comprehensive center. We’re doing our own thing on this side (of town).”

Multiple sclerosis is a chronic disease of the central nervous system that affects the brain and spinal cord. Common symptoms include extreme fatigue, numbness or weakness, tremors, and loss of vision or mobility. The Inland Northwest is believed to have the second highest prevalence of MS in the world.

Rockwood Clinic has set aside space within its neurology department to house the MS center, including five exam rooms, an infusion suite for intravenous drug therapy, and other facilities, Pugh says. Also, it has hired Teri Tupper, a nurse practitioner at Holy Family with extensive MS-related experience, to help operate the center, he says.

Rockwood Clinic plans to use a multidisciplinary approach that will include referring patients, when appropriate, to rehabilitation specialist Dr. John Long, whose offices are in the Sacred Heart Doctors Building, Pugh says. It also will coordinate treatment, as warranted, with therapists at St. Luke’s Rehabilitation Institute, across the street from Rockwood Clinic, he says.

In addition, Pugh says, “Our center is going to collaborate with the MS center at Swedish Hospital in Seattle, as well as the Western MS Center at the University of Washington, which is where I received my training.”

Pugh joined Rockwood Clinic in June 2002 after graduating from the University of Missouri Medical School and doing his residency at the University of Washington. He says the Multiple Sclerosis Center at Rockwood Clinic, as the new center there is being called, will participate in research and provide patients the opportunity to participate in clinical trials.

New director at Holy Family

Meanwhile, Dr. Roy A. Kanter has been named the new medical director of the Holy Family Hospital Multiple Sclerosis Center. Kanter, who has practiced neurology in Cheyenne, Wyo., for the last 17 years and whose mother was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis in the mid-1980s, will begin seeing patients here June 2.

He will replace Dr. Craig Senzon, who together with Tupper had been providing interim medical oversight at the center over the last eight months following the departure of the center’s previous medical director, Dr. Steven S. Beall.

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