A Busy Gemma Fueled by Infusion Therapy

Gemma Davis and the staff at CHRISTUS St. Michael Outpatient Infusion Center

Texarkana native Gemma Davis has little room for time or energy wasted. Despite a chronic battle with anemia, Gemma, with the help of CHRISTUS St. Michael Health System Outpatient Infusion Center, puts her time and energy into doing.

“I have had anemia for over 10 years,” Gemma shares. “Before the Outpatient Infusion Center opened, I would hope there was enough room to receive my transfusion in the W. Temple Webber Cancer Center with all of the patients they were treating. If they didn’t have room available, I would have to get admitted into the hospital, which is a much longer process than an outpatient procedure.” Gemma now receives a blood transfusion once a month in the CHRISTUS St. Michael Outpatient Infusion Center. “I can’t tell you how wonderful it is to have the Outpatient Infusion Center available in Texarkana,” Gemma says.

“I go in, receive my blood transfusion and then get on with my day.” When Gemma begins to feel the effects of the anemia, she goes to see her primary care doctor who sends an order to the Outpatient Infusion Center. The Outpatient Infusion Center will usually get her in for her transfusion the following day. “We provide convenient access for therapy administration including infusion therapy and injection services 12 hours a day, seven days a week, in a comfortable atmosphere,” says Charlotte McKamie, MSN, RN, nurse manager with the W. Temple Webber Cancer Center and Infusion Center.

“Our professional staff is experienced in compassionate and critical care.” “I can’t say enough about the staff,” Gemma says. “Even when you first go in and feel so bad, they get you comfortable and are so accommodating. They truly are like family.” With the convenience and care of the Outpatient Infusion Center, Gemma not only has the time but also the energy and health to do what she loves — playing with her dogs, working in her yard, serving as her church’s financial secretary, volunteering at the Texarkana Friendship Center and spending time with her daughter and granddaughters.

Convenient and Comfortable

According to Charlotte McKamie, nurse manager with the W. Temple Webber Cancer Center and Infusion Center, infusion therapy is the single most effective way to give medications for conditions such as resistant infections, hormone deficiencies, dehydration and autoimmune hematological disorders. The CHRISTUS St. Michael Health System Outpatient Infusion Center, located in the CHRISTUS St. Michael Medical Office Building, provides patients true comfort with overstuffed recliners and a large-screen television for relaxation while they receive treatment.

“We offer the most updated infusion therapy suite in the region,” Charlotte says. “Once new patients are pre certified for the first visit, they will be scheduled within hours. With the ability to treat eight patients at a time, it is our goal that infusion patients are never kept waiting to begin treatment.” Additionally, the center accepts referrals from physicians outside of the Texarkana area, including Dallas, Little Rock and Shreveport. “We help patients return to normal life, taking part in their own treatments,” Charlotte says. “This allows infusion patients to live at home, remain at school or on the job without serious disruption.”