Abigail Morgan’s mama and daddy knew early on she’d need heart surgery to repair life-threatening defects.
But when the 2-year-old was wheeled into surgery Nov. 10 at the University of Mississippi Medical Center’s Batson Children’s Hospital, what would normally be a terrifying experience for Michelle and Seth Morgan was much less traumatic. That’s because their only child’s chest would not be opened by sawing through the sternum, standard procedure for closing a hole between the collecting chambers (atria) in a child’s heart and repairing her mitral valve.
Every day at South Delta Middle School in Anguilla, Tammy Fordham Bell tries to fill the gap in health-care services and education in a rural Delta county where there are no pediatricians.
The Leland native drives from campus to campus in the South Delta school district to provide hands-on care to about 1,100 Sharkey County children. On any given day, Bell circulates among four campuses to provide abstinence education and give sports physicals. She counsels teens who are pregnant and ensures they get car seats if they can’t afford them.
She teaches personal hygiene, and directs medical and nursing students in delivering hands-on health care to children in need of services.
Two of the nation’s biggest health issues – obesity and dementia – are the target of the latest investigation to come from the University of Mississippi Medical Center. Specifically, Dr. Gwen Windham is looking for evidence of obesity as a potential risk factor for developing dementia later in life.