Saint Francis launches new physician practice

Friday, May 16, 2008

CAPE GIRARDEAU, Mo. -- Saint Francis Medical Center is continuing to expand its healthcare services. Through a recent partnership with Cape Gastroenterology Specialists, a new physician practice of Saint Francis, patients in Southeast Missouri can access specialized gastrointestinal (GI) care as part of the continuum of care provided at the Medical Center.

Cape Gastroenterology Specialists provides comprehensive GI care for a full range of GI conditions, including inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), such as Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis; gastric reflux disease; peptic ulcer disease; and colon cancer, among others. Preventive screenings are also available, including screenings for colon cancer and education on colon cancer prevention. In addition, specialists offer wellness and nutrition education as an important part of treating many GI disorders.

A full range of diagnostic services, including gastroscopy and colonoscopy, are available on-site at Cape Gastroenterology Specialists. Patients with inflammatory bowel disease can also receive infusion therapy on-site, making care convenient for all patients by centralizing services in one location.

Cape Gastroenterology Specialists takes a holistic approach to patient care, treating the whole patient, not just his or her GI symptoms. Through its partnership with Saint Francis, patients will have access to a complete continuum of care to address any medical condition that may be manifesting itself in the GI tract.

Michael R. Freeman, MD, gastroenterologist, has joined Saint Francis and will be heading Cape Gastroenterology Specialists. He is seeing patients immediately. Cape Gastroenterology Specialists is located at 18 Doctors Park, Cape Girardeau, Mo. and can be contacted by telephone at 573-331-3350 or by fax at 573-331-3351.

Freeman is board certified in internal medicine, with a gastroenterology subspecialty. He has more than 20 years of experience practicing GI medicine locally. Freeman received his medical degree from The University of Tennessee at Martin, Martin, Tenn.

There is no medical cure for IBD, a chronic condition, and patients with IBD require a lifetime of care. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), colon cancer is the second leading cause of cancer death in the United States, but if more patients were screened for the disease, up to 60 percent of deaths could be prevented.

Saint Francis Medical Center has created powerful partnerships with highly trained physician practices to meet the special healthcare needs of residents throughout the five-state region. Employed physician practices include Thoracic & Cardiovascular Surgery, Cape Cardiology, Cape Medical Oncology, Cape Perinatology Services, Cape Gynecologic Oncology, and Cape Diabetes and Endocrinology, in addition to the specialties of neonatology, occupational medicine, emergency and trauma, medical-pediatric and hospitalist services.

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