December 11, 2009

VUMC opens maternal/fetal clinic in Clarksville

VUMC opens maternal/fetal clinic in Clarksville

Vanderbilt University Medical Center's Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology has opened a Maternal/Fetal Medicine Clinic in Clarksville.

The Vanderbilt at Clarksville clinic, which debuted Dec. 7 at Gateway Medical Center's Medical Office Building, will be open Mondays to allow Clarksville women, who would have been referred to Vanderbilt for high risk obstetrical care, to be seen in their own community.

Vanderbilt, which staffs a similar clinic at Cool Springs in Williamson County, already has a presence in Clarksville, with the Monroe Carell Jr. Children's Hospital at Vanderbilt managing the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit at Gateway.

“We know that women want to stay in their own communities,” said Frank Boehm, M.D., professor and vice chair of Obstetrics and Gynecology.

“There are approximately 2,000 deliveries each year in Clarksville, and there is the need for high risk obstetrical care. We see a lot of patients from Clarksville, and it will be so much easier for them to drive to Gateway instead of having to drive to Nashville.”

Every mother anticipates having a healthy pregnancy and normal delivery of a healthy infant, but for some women there are challenges that need to be addressed before pregnancy or once they are expecting — challenges including health disorders like diabetes or hypertension in the expectant mother, multiple fetuses and congenital anomalies, Boehm said.

The clinic will be staffed by Lavenia Carpenter, M.D., assistant professor of Medicine and interim director of Maternal/Fetal Medicine, Boehm, a nurse, receptionist, genetic counselor and ultrasonographer.

It is expected to draw patients from Clarksville, nearby Fort Campbell and from Hopkinsville, Ky.

“This is a win/win for everyone — for the patients who will be seen in Clarksville, and for us, increasing our base of referrals,” Boehm said, adding that talks are under way to staff other regional clinics.

There will be a grand opening/open house for area referring physicians and faculty and staff on Feb. 8, 2010.

For more information about the clinic, call 875-0665.