Millions of Americans are on coumadin therapy, a medication that prevents blood from clotting. Coumadin is a powerful and effective drug, but it also has potential side effects if the patient's response to the medication changes.
"The Coumadin Clinic is an innovative program designed to meet the special needs of patients on Coumadin. The clinic's monitoring maximizes the benefits of patients' therapy and minimizes their risk of complications," says Gregg Fulmer, MD, Coumadin Clinic medical director.
The primary responsibility of Mary Rutan Hospital's (MRH) Coumadin Clinic is to monitor patients who require blood-thinners and educate them about food and drug safety. "We treat patients who have a wide variety of conditions, such as atrial fibrillation, pulmonary embolism and deep vein thrombosis, as well as some who have had major joint replacements, and help them prevent clotting in their legs," says Melannie Hunsicker, pharmacist at MRH. Patients at the clinic are seen in the Outpatient Department at MRH and receive individualized patient education. "Our patients are much better informed and better able to activiely participate in their care," says Hunsicker.
After making an appointment with the Coumadin Clinic, patients are promptly tested and their medication is adjusted as necessary. This process generally takes about 15 minutes.