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Impaired Driving Dangers and Prevention

Impaired Driving Dangers and Prevention

Impaired driving dangers are a serious reality that take precious lives each year.  They are time-sensitive emergencies that can be prevented.  Lives can be saved.  Let’s get to know about this topic and please help us create awareness to help save lives.  In an average year, 30 million Americans get behind the wheel of a car while drunk, while an estimated 10 million drive while under the influence of an illicit drug.

This year has been anything but average. This year more of us have turned to alcohol to help us cope with the pandemic’s challenges.

This surge in alcohol consumption is concerning because it increases the number of fatal accidents, especially during the Holiday Season.

The Real Cost of Impaired Driving in America

Aside from the $44 billion annual costs of alcohol-related crashes, the most significant loss is human lives.

An estimated 29 Americans die in motor vehicle crashes involving an impaired driver every day. This translates to one death every 50 minutes.  Due to these alarming statistics, we are bringing you the Impaired Driving Dangers and Prevention.  Together, we can prevent traffic accidents.

Never forget that under Texas Law, Insurance Companies Must Cover ER Trips Involving Traffic Accidents.

Impaired driving does not necessarily mean drunk driving; it also involves distracted driving and drugged driving. In fact, drugs, both legal and illegal, are involved in about 16% of car crashes.

Know Where to Go in Case of an Emergency.

Dangers of Impaired Driving

Get to know about the impaired driving dangers to help prevent a tragedy.  Any amount of alcohol or drugs can significantly impact our ability to drive. Here are several ways in which drugs and alcohol can influence our driving capabilities:

Slow Reaction Time

When we are under the influence or otherwise distracted while driving, our reaction time decreases. A slower response time makes it harder to avoid obstacles such as pedestrians crossing a street and breaking on time to avoid crashing into another car.

Lack of Coordination

Drinking alcohol or taking drugs affects our motor skills, specifically our eye, hand, and foot coordination. These motor skills are vital when driving. Without these crucial coordination skills, we may not be able to avoid harmful situations.

Reduced Concentration

Driving requires concentration. Anything that causes us to become distracted while driving, including alcohol and drug consumption, can significantly increase our risk of being involved in a serious car crash.

Slow Reaction Time

When we are under the influence or otherwise distracted while driving, our reaction time decreases. A slower response time makes it harder to avoid obstacles such as pedestrians crossing a street and breaking on time to avoid crashing into another car.

Lack of Coordination

Drinking alcohol or taking drugs affects our motor skills, specifically our eye, hand, and foot coordination. These motor skills are vital when driving. Without these crucial coordination skills, we may not be able to avoid harmful situations.

Reduced Concentration

Driving requires concentration. Anything that causes us to become distracted while driving, including alcohol and drug consumption, can significantly increase our risk of being involved in a serious car crash.

Decreased Vision

Alcohol impairs our vision. After a few drinks, you may notice your vision becomes a little blurred. Impaired vision affects our ability to judge the distance between our car and other vehicles or obstacles on the road.

Most Common Impaired Driving Injuries

Thankfully, not all impaired driving-related accidents are fatal; however, they can still cause severe injuries, including:

Spinal Cord Injuries

Spinal cord injuries can result in partial or complete paralysis. Recovery depends on many factors, such as the extent of the damage and how long it takes a patient to receive treatment. Unfortunately, for many patients, the outcome is permanent.

Traumatic Brain Injuries

Traumatic brain injury is widespread among crash victims. Severe trauma to the brain can have devastating effects on a person. Traumatic brain injuries can cause changes in a person’s memory, their ability to reason, and their emotional behavior. Additionally, they can result in loss of vision, hearing, and taste,

Severe traumatic brain injuries can result in life-long disabilities.

Internal Injuries

The force of impact can cause internal injuries, including organ damage that can be life-threatening and require immediate emergency medical care.

Organs such as the lungs, kidneys, liver, and spleen are the most common internal organs injured during a car crash.

Orthopedic Injuries

Broken bones are common injuries associated with impaired driving-related incidents. Injury severity varies; some patients will only require a cast while others may lose a limb.

Soft Tissue Injuries

The impact during a crash can cause damage to ligaments, tendons, and muscles. When the injury occurs in a victim’s neck, back, or shoulder, it can limit their ability to move and may result in long-term chronic pain.

Burns

Suppose the crash is severe enough to cause one or more of the vehicles to catch fire. In that case, victims may suffer severe burns that may result in permanent disfigurement and scarring. Burn victims also have an increased risk of infection while healing.

Prevention

The only way to prevent an impaired driving-related accident is not to drive while under the influence of alcohol or drugs.

If you plan to drink, make arrangements ahead of time. Either select a designated driver or choose to use a ride-sharing service instead of driving yourself.

Getting Prompt Medical Attention Can Help Save A Life

According to the CDC for every person killed in a road accident,

“8 were hospitalized, and 100 were treated and released from the Emergency Room.”

Anyone who is involved in a severe motor vehicle accident should be taken to the nearest Emergency Room for evaluation, given that some injuries can only be diagnosed with advanced imagining technology.

During a crash, victims might have suffered internal injuries or head trauma that if not treated promptly can lead to long-term disabilities or even death.

Some injuries are more time-sensitive than others, in these cases it is better to transfer the patient to a Free-Standing ER facility such as any of the Altus Emergency Centers where they can be treated by a licensed emergency physician right away, rather than transport them to a Hospital ER where their treatment might be delayed due to overcrowding issues.

It’s important to remember that insurance companies are obligated to offer emergency room coverage in their policies. If you are involved in a car accident and need to go to the emergency room, your insurance policy will cover your visit.

Altus Emergency Centers wishes everyone a Happy and Safe New Year. Stay home if you can, and please don’t drink and drive.

As always, we remain open during the New Year Celebration to help with any medical emergencies.

There’s No Time to Wait in an Emergency!

WHEN THERE’S NO TIME TO WASTE, TRY OUR ONLINE CHECK-IN

Check-In Online

Altus Emergency Centers Texas

is Here for You 24/7

Altus Emergency Centers are all open 24/7/365, with no lines. Our facilities are well-equipped to diagnose and treat everything from major to minor adult and pediatric emergencies. We are honored to be a part of our beautiful Texas communities and work hard each day to help see them grow and prosper!

24 Hour ER Services – Best in Texas

Looking for the best quality 24 hour ER services?

We offer the best freestanding 24 hour ER services in Texas. We have top of the line medical technology and highly experienced ER healthcare experts prepped and ready to come to your aid in Baytown, Lake Jackson, Lumberton, and Waxahachie.

Each ER team is highly efficient in treating chest and abdominal pains, pediatric emergencies, flu symptoms, sports injuries, bone breaks, and fractures, as well as all other major and minor injuries. All services are available 24/7, including weekends and holidays with little to no wait times. After You Receive Quality ER Care, our Patient Advocate will help ensure Hassle-Free Billing.

Our Promise is to Always Help Find the Best Solutions in Benefit of our Patients from the time you walk-in without having to wait in line and when you are personally assisted with the billing process. We are here to help you get well and stay well!

Christmas Lighting Safety Tips

Christmas Lighting Safety Tips

The holidays are here, and it’s time to deck our homes, which means putting on your incredible Christmas lights display.

But before you let your holiday cheer take control, remember safety should always come first. Falls, fires, electrocution, and other mishaps can occur and ruin your Christmas if you’re not careful.

According to The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, as many as 200 decorating-related injuries happen daily during the holiday season, half of which are accidents involving falls.

Additionally, holiday decorating-related injuries send about 17,500 Americans to the ER every year. So, before you climb that latter with a tangle of lights on one hand, please read our suggested safety tips.

Christmas Lighting Safety Tips

Inspect the Lights Before You Hang Them

Carefully inspect each light string for cracked or frayed cords. Replace any missing, damaged, or burnt-out bulbs.

Make sure your lights are safe for outdoor use. Look for the Underwriters Laboratory (UL) red stamp that certifies your decorations are safe for outdoor use.

 

Throw away any damaged strands.

Detangle the strands while on the ground so you won’t have to do it while balancing on a ladder.

 

Clean Your Gutters and Downspouts

Clogged gutters and downspouts can cause water to overflow onto your Christmas lights, creating an electrical hazard.

 

Secure Your Ladder

Secure your ladder and make sure it’s on level ground before you climb it. Always have someone help you by holding the ladder to help keep it stable and minimize the risk of falling.

Place your later in a location that is far away from power lines to avoid electrocution.

Avoid Walking on The Roof

Angled or high-pitched roofs and slippery shingles can turn your holiday decoration installation into a real hazard. Suppose you want to add decorations to your roof. In that case, the best way to go about it is to hire a professional who has the proper tools, equipment, and experience to do it for you.

 

Use Plastic Safety Clips

Plastic safety clips are inexpensive and easy to use. They are also safer than using tacks or nails to secure hanging lights on the outside of your home. Staples and nails can damage the wires creating a fire hazard.

 

Use the Right Extension Cords

Only use heavy-duty extension cords that are certified for outdoor use. To avoid overloading your extension cords, don’t exceed more than three sets of lights per extension cord.

Make sure to keep cords out of walkways and secure cables with heavy tape to prevent tripping hazards.

 

Use ground fault circuit interrupters (GFCIs)

To help prevent electric shock, plug your outdoor lights into circuits protected by ground fault circuit interrupters (GFCI).

 

Use a Timer

Placing your lights on a timer can help lower your electrical bill and prevent your decorations from overheating.

Turn your lights off when you go to bed or leave the house. Never leave your Christmas decorations on while you are not home.

Christmas Lighting Safety Tips

At Altus Emergency Centers, we want you to stay safe and avoid getting this holiday season.

Should the unexpected happen, don’t worry; we will be here to help get you back to health. Our doctors and nurses will have you feeling better in no time so that you can enjoy the holidays at home with your family.

Thanksgiving Safety Tips 2020

Thanksgiving Safety Tips 2020

Turkey Day is Here! It’s time to be thankful and to continue to stay safe.  This year has been quite unusual as it has impacted the whole world.  Never before have we felt the impact of how the planet earth is truly the home for all and what happens on one part of our world can impact us as a whole.  However, it has also revealed the incredible capacity of our communities to pull together and do our best to prevail.  As we approach Thanksgiving, it’s time to reflect on why we have so many reasons to be thankful this year.  After all, we’ve made it this far and we have survived!  As we are all in this together, let’s do our best to stay safe.  Please keep in mind the following Thanksgiving Safety Tips 2020 to enjoy the holiday the safest way possible.

CDC Recommended Thanksgiving Safety Tips 2020

This year, many have been frustrated due to social isolation.  It is because of this that we are all truly looking forward to our Thanksgiving gatherings to spend those memorable moments with our beloved friends and family.  The CDC is recommending safety tips to ensure that we safeguard our most vulnerable loved ones to keep them safe.

  • Virtual celebrations are recommended for our most vulnerable family members
  • In-person celebrations should take place with the members of your direct household.
  • People who are not of the direct household should be considered to pose a risk.
  • Individuals coming from a community with a high level of COVID-19 will pose a higher risk.
  • The travel factor should be considered to alter the amount of risk.
  • Indoor gatherings will pose a higher risk than outdoor ones.
  • Larger groups tend to pose a higher risk than smaller ones.
  • Individuals of different households are recommended to “stay 6 feet (2 arm lengths) apart, wear masks, wash hands, and follow state, local, territorial, or tribal health and safety laws, rules, and regulations.”
  • Please keep in mind that the behavior of each individual will ultimately post a lower or higher risk depending on whether or not they are adhering to safety measures such as mask-wearing, social distancing, proper handwashing & the use of drugs or alcohol.
  • If you currently have been diagnosed, have been exposed within the last 14 days, have symptoms, or are waiting for COVID-19 viral results, please consider participating during the Thanksgiving celebration by virtual means.

Thanksgiving Travel Safety Tips 2020

This year the American Automobile Association (AAA), anticipates that for the first time since 2008, fewer US citizens will be traveling, in fact a potential 10% drop due to the pandemic & unemployment rate.  However, many will still seize this opportunity to visit family members.  For all who will be traveling, please keep in mind the following Thanksgiving Safety Travel Tips:

  • Plan ahead and find out about state and local restrictions as they will vary.  See the AAA’s COVID-19 Travel Restrictions Map .
  • Try to pack water and snacks to reduce the stops along the route, to help reduce the risk of exposure.
  • Check the weather along your route, make sure to subscribe to a service that can provide updates, and drive around storms never through.
  • Make sure everyone in the car is wearing their seat belts.
  • Follow all proper child seat and booster seat guidelines according to their age, height and weight.
  • Don’t drink and drive.
  • Don’t drive if you are extremely tired, it is better if you stop and rest for a bit, or have one of your companions take the wheel while you rest.
  • Do not text while you are driving, it is deadly and illegal.
  • Respect the speed limit, road signs, and general rules of the road.
  • Keep your distance from other vehicles.
  • Make sure your windshield is clean, and headlights, taillights, and signal lights are all working properly.
  • Turn your headlights on at dusk, or if it is raining.

Thanksgiving Cooking Safety Tips

Thanksgiving Safety Tips are particularly important to keep in mind when cooking. For those of you hosting Thanksgiving dinner this year, safety should be your number one priority, there are many to consider:

Common Sense Food Safety Tips

  • Only people in good health illness-free should prepare the meal as viruses can spread to the guests.
  • Wash your hands before any food preparation.
  • Wash your cutting boards, dishes, utensils, countertops & stove thoroughly before and after food preparation.
  • Keep in mind any food allergies that guests may have when selecting the recipes.
  • Separate raw meat from other foods.
  • Throw away any perishable foods that have been out at room temperature for 2 hours or more.
  • Store leftovers safely by labeling containers with the contents and dates.

Turkey Safety

This is the star of the evening, and therefore it should be handled with extreme care when you are preparing it.

  • If you are buying a fresh turkey, wait until the last possible moment and certainly no more than 2 days before cooking it, keep it in the refrigerator at a 40°F or less.
  • If your turkey is frozen, the USDA recommends you thaw it in the fridge, alternately you could use cold water or the microwave if you are running short on time.
  • Wash your hands with soap and water before handling any food to prevent the spread of infection and other illnesses.
  • Do not wash the turkey, this only serves to spread viruses and bacteria onto kitchen surfaces.
  • Keep the uncooked turkey separated from other foods to avoid contamination.
  • Cook the turkey until it reaches a temperature of 165°F, fully cooking the bird is the only way to ensure any bacteria that cause foodborne illnesses has been eliminated.

Cooking Safety

Sadly, Thanksgiving is the leading day for home cooking fires.  The good news is that with a little preparation and some simple Thanksgiving Safety Tips as guidelines, these can easily be avoided.

  • Avoid wearing loose-fitting clothing and long dangling sleeves when cooking, to avoid your clothing catching fire.
  • Never leave the stove unattended.
  • Keep children and pets at least 3 feet away from the stove or oven as steam or splashing from hot liquids can cause severe burns.
  • Keep children away from knives and other sharp kitchen utensils.
  • Make sure your smoke and carbon monoxide detectors are working properly.
  • Keep items like kitchen towels, pot holders, oven mitts, and wooden utensils away from heat sources as they could catch fire.
  • Keep your kitchen clean, grease build-up can easily start a fire.
  • Before going to bed check the oven and stove top to ensure everything is turned off.
  • Store leftovers properly in the fridge.

Have a Safe & Blessed Thanksgiving Weekend From All of Us!

Altus and its staff are thankful for our communities, for demonstrating that together we can do anything; we are honored and humbled for the trust and loyalty you have shown us, and we are thankful for the opportunity to be here to help you and your loved ones during a medical emergency.

We want everyone to have a happy and most of all safe Thanksgiving this year, so please follow and share our Thanksgiving safety tips with others.  After all, llness and injury prevention is always the best policy.

 

It’s important to keep these Thanksgiving Safety Tips 2020 to help prevent illnesses and accidents from happening.  However, it’s good to always have a plan in case that they do occur.  Please keep in mind that at Altus we are safe and open 24 hours throughout the Thanksgiving Holiday. If you happen to seriously injure yourself or someone that’s with you gets hurt or get ill, we offer free medical screening, accept Medicare and have COVID-19 testing.

Have a Happy Thanksgiving Weekend from all of us at Altus Emergency Centers!

Emotional Well-being in 2020

Tips for Your Emotional Well-being During the Pandemic

We all react differently to stressful situations. Many of us are so good at forging ahead in the face of adversity that we may not recognize the warning signs that our emotional well-being is compromised.

Emotional well-being is vital to people of all age groups. The year 2020, has been a particularly challenging time for everyone’s emotional well-being as it has been the year of much controversy.  Now is the perfect time to stop and examine this year’s impact on our lives and find ways to improve our emotional health.

Emotional Well-being and How It Relates to Your Health

Being in good health doesn’t only refer to our physical health. Being in good health also involves our emotional and mental well-being.

 

But what is emotional well-being?

 

Simply put, it’s our ability to manage our feelings, both the happy, pleasant ones and the sad, angry, or worrisome ones.

Our emotions can impact our lives in unexpected ways. Some are good and some not so good. Research shows that when we are in a balanced emotional state, learning becomes easier. We are more creative, our productivity increases, and our relationships improve.

Our stress and anxiety levels increase when we are unable to control our emotions. When we are emotionally unbalanced, we are more likely to make bad decisions regarding our health and well-being.

Additionally, emotional stress can weaken our immune system making us more susceptible to viral and bacterial infections and developing chronic illnesses.

That is why learning to deal with emotional stress is so important during these challenging times.

Tips for Improving Our Emotional Well-Being

We live in unprecedented times, and we need to put extra effort into managing our emotions well. Now, emotional well-being doesn’t mean ignoring or avoiding unpleasant or negative feelings. It’s normal to experience feelings of anxiety and sadness, but learning to manage these feelings will help us stay healthy.

 

Manage Your Expectations

 

Disappointment is a fact of life. We’ve all experienced times when a situation didn’t live up to what we imagined.

Many of us set unrealistic expectations on how we would manage our time during the lockdown. Working or studying from home doesn’t mean the day has more than 24 hours, so if you didn’t learn a new language, mastered a musical instrument, or read all the books on your nightstand, that’s fine.

 

Proactively Manage Your Stress

 

It’s normal to have trouble concentrating and keeping ourselves motivated during stressful times, but this can make us feel anxious. Taking control of small things can help us regain a sense of normalcy and manage our stress.

It all starts by taking better care of yourself. Prioritize sleep, eat well, limit junk food, alcohol, and other indulgences, and stay physically active. Also, remember to reach out to family and friends by calling or video chatting with them often.

Getting enough rest and focusing on our physical well-being will help us clear our minds of negative thoughts and balance our emotions.

 

Learn to Identify Your Red Flags

 

Learning to identify the thoughts, physical sensations, and feelings that accompany stress and anxiety is vital.

 

When you feel stressed, take note of your:

 

  • Thoughts (I can’t concentrate, I am not good at this, nothing will ever change)
  • Feelings (sadness, worry, frustration),
  • Physical sensations (upset stomach, tension, or jitters)
  • Actions (emotional eating or drinking too much alcohol)

 

When you can identify these red flags, you can actively change your thoughts, control your physical sensations with breathing techniques, and stop yourself from overindulging.

The CDC provides a list of resources and contacts to help you cope with stress and anxiety. Don’t be afraid to reach out; help is available.

Know Where to Go in Case of an Emergency.

Plan for an Emergency

One thing that weighs heavily on our minds these days is our health and that of our loved ones. Knowing you have access to quality emergency care close to home and at an affordable price gives you peace of mind.

That is the mission of Altus Emergency Centers to provide the best care at the best price. We are here for you when you need us most. We work under strict safety and hygienic protocols. Our centers are conveniently located, so you don’t have to travel far to get the medical attention you need.

There’s No Time to Wait in an Emergency!

WHEN THERE’S NO TIME TO WASTE, TRY OUR ONLINE CHECK-IN

Check-In Online

Altus Emergency Centers Texas

is Here for You 24/7

Altus Emergency Centers are all open 24/7/365, with no lines. Our facilities are well-equipped to diagnose and treat everything from major to minor adult and pediatric emergencies. We are honored to be a part of our beautiful Texas communities and work hard each day to help see them grow and prosper!

24 Hour ER Services – Best in Texas

Looking for the best quality 24 hour ER services?

We offer the best freestanding 24 hour ER services in Texas. We have top of the line medical technology and highly experienced ER healthcare experts prepped and ready to come to your aid in Baytown, Lake Jackson, Lumberton, and Waxahachie.

Each ER team is highly efficient in treating chest and abdominal pains, pediatric emergencies, flu symptoms, sports injuries, bone breaks, and fractures, as well as all other major and minor injuries. All services are available 24/7, including weekends and holidays with little to no wait times. After You Receive Quality ER Care, our Patient Advocate will help ensure Hassle-Free Billing.

Our Promise is to Always Help Find the Best Solutions in Benefit of our Patients from the time you walk-in without having to wait in line and when you are personally assisted with the billing process. We are here to help you get well and stay well!

Wearing a Mask During Your Workout

Wearing a Mask During Your Workout

Back in September, gyms were allowed to reopen at 75% capacity. This announcement made a lot of us who were eager to start exercising very happy.

However, the reopening measures included the required use of face masks during workouts.  This action raised many concerns among gym members.

Is wearing a mask during your workout a good idea?

Here we will address some of the most frequently asked questions regarding the use of face masks during your workout.

Why Wearing a Mask is Necessary?

Breathing heavier while exercising is almost inevitable. Yet this action increases the risk of viruses aerosolizing and spreading to others more quickly.

Therefore, using a mask is an effective way to slow the spread of infectious diseases, including COVID-19 and the flu.

Is It Safe to Wear a Mask While Exercising?

Yes, it is. However, experts recommend keeping your workout intensity at low to moderate and avoid vigorous exercise while wearing a mask.

The reason is that face masks decrease airflow, affecting your breathing and your body’s natural ability to regulate its temperature.

Suppose you have a preexisting condition and plan to train regularly at a gym. In that case, we recommend you speak to your doctor. Your physician can make recommendations for your specific condition and health history.

What Type of Mask Is Best?

Masks made of moisture-wicking materials such as cotton or polyester blends are best for exercising as they can absorb the sweat. Make sure your mask material is not more than two layers thick.

Avoid using paper or surgical masks as they can quickly breakdown due to the sweat or heavy breathing during exercise.

The CDC guidelines discourage the use of masks with exhalation valves or vents as these don’t prevent the spread of the virus

Additionally, N95 masks are not suitable for exercise routines as they can increase heat and humidity levels and increase breath resistance and overall discomfort in athletes.

It’s a good idea to carry spare masks with you so you can change them once they become damp.

Is It Necessary to Wear a Face Mask If You Are Exercising Outdoors?

Wearing a face mask while you exercise out in the open is unnecessary if you can maintain a safe physical distance from other people who don’t live with you.

However, if you are training with a team or running in a crowded street or park, then yes, we recommend you wear a mask to help prevent the spread of viruses.

What to Expect

While face masks help reduce the chances of spreading viral illnesses, they also affect how our bodies react to exercise.

Most people report experiencing an increase in heart rate while exercising with a mask. This increase in heart rate can increase the exertion rate and decrease performance during aerobic exercise and resistance training.

Know Where to Go in Case of an Emergency.

When to Seek Medical Attention

When exercising with a mask, beware of these warning signs:

  • Dizziness
  • Drowsiness
  • Extreme or Unusual Fatigue
  • Shortness of Breath That Does Not Improve During Rest Periods
  • Headache
  • Muscular Weakness
  • Overall Discomfort

If you experience any of the above symptoms, try taking a break. If you notice the symptoms don’t subside or worsen, come to the nearest Altus Emergency Centers immediately for an evaluation.

 

Altus Emergency Centers encourages everyone to maintain a healthy lifestyle that includes regular exercise. However, during these challenging times, adjustments are required.

We urge everyone to adhere to health officials’ recommendations, including using a mask while exercising and maintaining physical distance when possible.

There’s No Time to Wait in an Emergency!

WHEN THERE’S NO TIME TO WASTE, TRY OUR ONLINE CHECK-IN

Check-In Online

Altus Emergency Centers Texas

is Here for You 24/7

Altus Emergency Centers are all open 24/7/365, with no lines. Our facilities are well-equipped to diagnose and treat everything from major to minor adult and pediatric emergencies. We are honored to be a part of our beautiful Texas communities and work hard each day to help see them grow and prosper!

24 Hour ER Services – Best in Texas

Looking for the best quality 24 hour ER services?

We offer the best freestanding 24 hour ER services in Texas. We have top of the line medical technology and highly experienced ER healthcare experts prepped and ready to come to your aid in Baytown, Lake Jackson, Lumberton, and Waxahachie.

Each ER team is highly efficient in treating chest and abdominal pains, pediatric emergencies, flu symptoms, sports injuries, bone breaks, and fractures, as well as all other major and minor injuries. All services are available 24/7, including weekends and holidays with little to no wait times. After You Receive Quality ER Care, our Patient Advocate will help ensure Hassle-Free Billing.

Our Promise is to Always Help Find the Best Solutions in Benefit of our Patients from the time you walk-in without having to wait in line and when you are personally assisted with the billing process. We are here to help you get well and stay well!

Tips for a Safe Halloween in 2020

Tips for a Safe Halloween During COVID-19

Our lives have changed in many ways since the pandemic’s start putting our coping mechanism to the test.

Perhaps one of the most radical changes brought on by COVID-19 is the way we socialize. Physical distancing is one of the most effective ways to prevent the spread of the novel coronavirus.

So how can we celebrate Halloween safely?

Tips for a Safe Halloween

In the last few days, some counties have banned door-to-door trick or treating over safety concerns. Others are strongly recommending you skip the activity this year.

So, the first thing you should do is check the recommendations of your local health officials.

Trick-or-treating is an outdoor activity and, therefore, safer as you have some control when it comes to physical distancing. An added plus is you can work in a fun face mask into your child’s costume.

If you decide to trick or treat this year, here are some tips to protect your family from COVID-19

  1. Don’t replace your face covering with a Halloween mask. Specially made fabric or surgical masks work better at preventing the spread of the virus. Most of the materials used in Halloween masks are not be enough to prevent viral transmission.
  2. Parents should line their children and only have one child at the door at a time. By avoiding gatherings at your neighbor’s door, you can help keep everyone safe
  3. Local health authorities recommend you stay close to home and keep your trick or treating party small. You should avoid going to neighborhoods where you are not sure how the virus is spreading
  4. Encourage children to bring hand sanitizer and use it frequently as they are more likely to touch their face while adjusting their costume
  5. Once you arrive home, the first thing to do is have everyone wash their hands with soap and water
  6. Don’t let your children eat any of the treats before you get home. Their hands may be dirty, and this increased their risk of getting sick not only with COVID-19 but also with the flu or stomach

Know Where to Go in Case of an Emergency.

General Safety Tips for Trick Or Treating

If your child has an allergic reaction, please don’t hesitate, bring them to the nearest Altus Emergency Center as soon as possible.

Halloween is a fun time for everyone in the family. Even though we may need to celebrate differently this year, Halloween can still be a joyous occasion if we follow the safety recommendations.

Although COVID-19 is on everyone’s mind these days, it is not the only health concern this time of year. Flu season is about to start, and if not treated, it could cause severe illness and complications.

If you or your child are not feeling well, it’s best to stay home. If you notice symptoms are getting worse, visit the nearest Altus Emergency Center, so our doctors can evaluate your symptoms and help you recover.

Tips for a Safe Halloween

If your child has an allergic reaction, please don’t hesitate, bring them to the nearest Altus Emergency Center as soon as possible.

Halloween is a fun time for everyone in the family. Even though we may need to celebrate differently this year, Halloween can still be a joyous occasion if we follow the safety recommendations.

Although COVID-19 is on everyone’s mind these days, it is not the only health concern this time of year. Flu season is about to start, and if not treated, it could cause severe illness and complications.

If you or your child are not feeling well, it’s best to stay home. If you notice symptoms are getting worse, visit the nearest Altus Emergency Center, so our doctors can evaluate your symptoms and help you recover.

Safe Alternative for Halloween!

If you are looking for a safe alternative for trick-or-treating in 2020?  We welcome you to come to our FREE Trick-Or-Treat Drive Through Events!  It’s a great opportunity to get free candy safely by Halloween personalities. Just Drive Through with your car or broomstick, no need to even get out!

We encourage that you fly off to tell your friends! The more, the scarier!

There’s No Time to Wait in an Emergency!

WHEN THERE’S NO TIME TO WASTE, TRY OUR ONLINE CHECK-IN

Check-In Online

Altus Emergency Centers Texas

is Here for You 24/7

Altus Emergency Centers are all open 24/7/365, with no lines. Our facilities are well-equipped to diagnose and treat everything from major to minor adult and pediatric emergencies. We are honored to be a part of our beautiful Texas communities and work hard each day to help see them grow and prosper!

24 Hour ER Services – Best in Texas

Looking for the best quality 24 hour ER services?

We offer the best freestanding 24 hour ER services in Texas. We have top of the line medical technology and highly experienced ER healthcare experts prepped and ready to come to your aid in Baytown, Lake Jackson, Lumberton, and Waxahachie.

Each ER team is highly efficient in treating chest and abdominal pains, pediatric emergencies, flu symptoms, sports injuries, bone breaks, and fractures, as well as all other major and minor injuries. All services are available 24/7, including weekends and holidays with little to no wait times. After You Receive Quality ER Care, our Patient Advocate will help ensure Hassle-Free Billing.

Our Promise is to Always Help Find the Best Solutions in Benefit of our Patients from the time you walk-in without having to wait in line and when you are personally assisted with the billing process. We are here to help you get well and stay well!

National Medicine Abuse Awareness Month

National Medicine Abuse Awareness Month

October is National Medicine Abuse Awareness Month (NMAAM). This annual campaign aims to raise the public’s awareness of the dangers of prescription and over-the-counter drug abuse.

Most of us know of the growing drug problem in our communities. But most of us aren’t aware that the fastest-growing drug problem in America isn’t heroin, cocaine, or methamphetamines, its prescription and over-the-counter drugs.

How Big is The Problem?

Most people take prescription medication responsibly; however, there is a growing trend, especially among adolescents and young adults that are misusing prescription drugs.

According to estimates from The National Institute on Drug Abuse:

  • 18 million people have misused prescription medications at least once in the last 12 months
  • 2 million Americans misused prescription pain relievers for the first time within the past year
  • More than 1 million misused prescription stimulants
  • Some 1.5 million misused tranquilizers
  • 271,000 misused sedatives
  • In 2018, 46,802 individuals died from prescription opioids overdose
  • 10,734 Americans died from antidepressant overdose
National Medicine Abuse Awareness Month

Why Is National Medicine Abuse Awareness Month So Important This Year?

The reasons why people misuse or abuse prescription and over-the-counter medication vary. In most cases, easy access to these medications topped the list of reasons.

Other reasons include misinformation on how addictive opioid medications are and the perception that prescription medications are safer and less harmful or addictive than illegal drugs.

The challenges we’ve had to face this year due to the public health care crisis mean many of us are suffering from the effects of extreme stress and anxiety.

Prolonged stress affects every aspect of our lives, from our emotions, behaviors, how we think, and of course, our physical health.

Stress can contribute to the misuse of prescription and over-the-counter medications to try and eliminate or decrease the severity of symptoms such as insomnia, depression, anxiety, and pain.

That is why at Altus Emergency Centers, we are working to raise awareness of the dangers of medicine abuse.

Know Where to Go in Case of an Emergency.

Preventing Medicine Abuse

These are some ways we can help prevent accidental or deliberate prescription drug overdoses in our home.

 

Don’t Hoard Medications and Keep Them Out of Children’s Reach

Many of us are guilty of saving unused medications in our medicine cabinet, yet this habit can have dire consequences.

Hoarding medications at home increases the risk of taking expired medications, which can have serious side effects.

Prescription drug addiction among children is growing. Make sure you speak to your kids about the dangers of taking drugs, even prescription drugs for non-medical purposes.

It would be best if you disposed of your unused medicines through drug take-back programs. Ask your pharmacist if they have such a plan in place.

 

Only Take Medication as Prescribed and Never Self-Medicate

It’s critical to adhere to your doctor’s instructions when taking prescription medications. For over-the-counter medicines, you should always follow the indications of the manufacturer.

The one thing you should avoid is self-medicating. If you feel unwell, call your doctor, visit our ER, or speak to your pharmacist or another trained medical professional. Don’t take medications based on friends or family’s suggestions and avoid miracle cures advertised on websites.

 

Look for Alternatives When Possible

If you feel stressed, anxious, or experiencing pain, rather than reach for the medicine cabinet several times a day, try to find alternative ways to deal with your situation.

Join a support group at your local church or speak to a friend about how you feel. Try getting a massage or do stretching exercises every day to help ease your pain.

National Medicine Abuse Awareness Month

What to Do In Case of an Accidental Overdose

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, accidental overdoses are a leading cause of death among people between 35 and 54.

A drug overdose occurs when we take too much over-the-counter medicine or prescription medication. It can also happen if we take several prescription or over-the-counter drugs at the same time or if we combine them with alcohol.

Symptoms of an overdose can range from mild to life-threatening. Mild symptoms include slurred speech, drowsiness, and unsteadiness.

Severe and life-threatening symptoms require immediate medical attention. Call 911 and ask to be taken to the nearest Altus Emergency Center if you notice the following symptoms:

  • Breathing problems
  • Hallucinations
  • Delusions
  • Seizures
  • Tremors
  • Vomiting
  • Unconsciousness

 

Altus Emergency Centers is here to help you overcome any medical emergency, including drug overdose. When you visit us, we will treat you like family because, to us, you are. We care about your well-being. If you are struggling with stress, anxiety, or drug addiction, we urge you to please reach out and seek help.

There’s No Time to Wait in an Emergency!

WHEN THERE’S NO TIME TO WASTE, TRY OUR ONLINE CHECK-IN

Check-In Online

Altus Emergency Centers Texas

is Here for You 24/7

Altus Emergency Centers are all open 24/7/365, with no lines. Our facilities are well-equipped to diagnose and treat everything from major to minor adult and pediatric emergencies. We are honored to be a part of our beautiful Texas communities and work hard each day to help see them grow and prosper!

24 Hour ER Services – Best in Texas

Looking for the best quality 24 hour ER services?

We offer the best freestanding 24 hour ER services in Texas. We have top of the line medical technology and highly experienced ER healthcare experts prepped and ready to come to your aid in Baytown, Lake Jackson, Lumberton, and Waxahachie.

Each ER team is highly efficient in treating chest and abdominal pains, pediatric emergencies, flu symptoms, sports injuries, bone breaks, and fractures, as well as all other major and minor injuries. All services are available 24/7, including weekends and holidays with little to no wait times. After You Receive Quality ER Care, our Patient Advocate will help ensure Hassle-Free Billing.

Our Promise is to Always Help Find the Best Solutions in Benefit of our Patients from the time you walk-in without having to wait in line and when you are personally assisted with the billing process. We are here to help you get well and stay well!

Pumpkin Carving Safety Tips for Halloween

Pumpkin Carving Safety Tips

Fall is here, y’all! That means it’s pumpkin carving season!

Pumpkin carving is a favorite family fall tradition for many of us. From going out to the pumpkin patch, to selecting the perfect orange spheres.  Then, on to picking the scariest faces to carve into them.  Creating a unique Jack O’Lantern to light up your porch is a fun activity for everyone in your family!

However, this fun family activity can be hazardous; after all, you need to use sharp objects to make these spooky creations.

The Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) reported 4,500 Halloween-related injuries treated in the ER in 2018. Of these, 27% included lacerations, ingestions, and other wounds associated with pumpkins, decorations, or costumes.

44% of Halloween-related injuries are from pumpkin carving.

Most of the injuries we see from pumpkin carving related accidents are stab wounds to the hand either in the fingers or the palm. Some stab wounds are severe enough to cause damage to tendons, nerves, or puncture an artery. We also see many cuts that require stitches.

To avoid getting hurt and having to pay us an unscheduled visit, we’ve put together a list of simple safety tips for you and your family.

Use a Pumpkin Carving Kit

Purchase a pumpkin carving kit at your local convenience store or purchase one online. They are relatively inexpensive and much safer than using a regular kitchen knife.

One of the biggest problems with using a sharp knife is that it often gets stuck in the thick skin of the pumpkin, and it requires force to remove it, which increases the chances of the knife slipping or cutting through to the other side where your hand might be holding the pumpkin.

Carving kits, on the other hand, have specially designed tools that can saw through the tough skin, poke holes, and scoop out the seeds. What is unique about these tools is that although they get the job done, they are not razor-sharp.

Leave The Top on While Carving

Most of us make the mistake of removing the top of the pumpkin along with the seeds before we start carving.

However, this can be dangerous as you will be tempted to place your hand inside the pumpkin to hold it while cutting out the face features. With your hand inside, if your tool slips you run the risk of cutting yourself.

Instead of removing the top, try cutting out the bottom of the pumpkin and scoop out the seeds. This way you can later place the Jack O’Lanter on top of the battery-operated light to illuminate it.

Know Where to Go in Case of an Emergency.

Don’t Let Kids Carve

You can include the smallest members of your household by having them help scoop out the innards and select the Jack O’Lantern stencil design, or have them draw the face themselves.

The one thing you should never allow is for kids to handle sharp objects. If you have adolescents and you want to teach them how to carve, make sure there is always an adult closely supervising their work.

Always Cut Away From Your Hands

Proper cutting techniques may seem obvious, but when you are trying to get your carving done fast you may forget to check where your hands are.

Remember knives, and other carving tools are bound to slip at some point, and if you are not careful your fingers might be in the way, and you could get seriously hurt.

If You Get Hurt, Come to Altus Emergency Centers ASAP!

Even when you try to be careful, pumpkin carving accidents can still happen. If you get hurt and your wound is deep, or you can’t get it to stop bleeding you need medical attention.

Deep wounds need to be thoroughly cleaned by a medical professional, and you will probably require antibiotics to prevent infections.

At Altus Emergency Centers, we are all about family traditions, and pumpkin carving is at the heart of the fall season. This Halloween season make sure your pumpkin carving activities are fun and safe for everyone.

There’s No Time to Wait in an Emergency!

WHEN THERE’S NO TIME TO WASTE, TRY OUR ONLINE CHECK-IN

Check-In Online

Altus Emergency Centers Texas

is Here for You 24/7

Altus Emergency Centers are all open 24/7/365, with no lines. Our facilities are well-equipped to diagnose and treat everything from major to minor adult and pediatric emergencies. We are honored to be a part of our beautiful Texas communities and work hard each day to help see them grow and prosper!

24 Hour ER Services – Best in Texas

Looking for the best quality 24 hour ER services?

We offer the best freestanding 24 hour ER services in Texas. We have top of the line medical technology and highly experienced ER healthcare experts prepped and ready to come to your aid in Baytown, Lake Jackson, Lumberton, and Waxahachie.

Each ER team is highly efficient in treating chest and abdominal pains, pediatric emergencies, flu symptoms, sports injuries, bone breaks, and fractures, as well as all other major and minor injuries. All services are available 24/7, including weekends and holidays with little to no wait times. After You Receive Quality ER Care, our Patient Advocate will help ensure Hassle-Free Billing.

Our Promise is to Always Help Find the Best Solutions in Benefit of our Patients from the time you walk-in without having to wait in line and when you are personally assisted with the billing process. We are here to help you get well and stay well!

Weathering Any Storm 24/7

Weathering Any Storm 24/7

We are Open 24/7 Before, During and After the Storm

Altus is Committed to Stand By the Community Through Thick and Thin

Through the years, the Altus Community Family has evolved.  Altus Baytown ER has become the preferred ER of Altus Hospital in Baytown, Altus Lumberton has become Altus Lumberton Hospital and Altus Emergency Centers in Waxahachie and Lake Jackson have become CIHQ accredited and now temporarily accept Medicare due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

One thing that has not changed through the years is that all of the Altus facilities are a safe haven for their communities, especially during our harsh hurricane season.  Fortunately, all Altus facilities are ready for each, weathering any storm 24/7.  Our Altus Lumberton Hospital Administrator and Risk Manager, Richelle Blackburn, couldn’t summarize it better:

“We go to great lengths to ensure that our patients and staff are safe. We are prepared and open 24/7 before, during, and after any potential emergency including natural disasters.” – Richelle Blackburn.

She and the rest of the brave staff at Altus Lumberton Hospital were positioned directly in the middle of the area strongest hit by Hurricane Harvey.  With Beaumont hospitals shutting down due to the flooding, the facility was almost a “Noah’s Ark” for communities North and South from Lumberton.

Why We Get Prepared During Hurricane Season

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) is predicting we will have an above-normal hurricane season this year.

During an average hurricane season, we will have 12 named storms, six of which become hurricanes with winds of 74 mph or higher. Out of those six, three turn into major hurricanes with winds of 111 mph or higher.

This year, NOAA predicts we will likely have between 13 and 19 named storms. Up to 10 of these storms will become hurricanes, and between 3 to 6 could become major hurricanes.

Our VP of Clinical Services, Amir Bashiri reflected upon our response to this potential threat:

“With full knowledge of the potential wreck that our storms, floods and hurricanes can have on our communities, Altus always plans ahead so if all other medical facilities close, we can remain open 24/7, fully functional with medical supplies, technology, ER physicians and back up generators.  Basically, we get ready for the worst and expect the best.” – Amir Bashiri RN, BSN, MBA

The Hurricane COMMAND CENTER

Whenever a tropical storm is forming, from experience, we know that these can result in a life-threatening hurricane.  For this reason, we set up command centers in each of our facilities to ensure that our staff and our patients are fully equipped to weather out the storm.  Last month, hurricane Laura came by and, fortunately, did not escalate.  Still, we were ready for a Harvey or worse.  The following are images of our Hurricane Command Center.

Helping You Plan Ahead

We have been fortunate so far this year as far as hurricanes go, however, there is no room to let our guard down.

According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) this year, we will potentially have a:

“Busy Atlantic hurricane season for 2020”

If you throw COVID-19 into the mix, it’s the recipe for a genuinely challenging time if a damaging storm hits.  We recommend that you check out our free guide on:

How to Prepare for Hurricane Season During COVID-19

This includes:

  • How to Prepare Your Home Emergency Supply Kit
  • How to Create Your Disaster Plan
  • How to Stay Safe During the COVID-19 Pandemic

A Look Back at Hurricane Harvey

We could not be prouder of our dedicated staff, who put aside their personal needs during emergencies such as Hurricane Harvey to offer much needed medical attention to patients who otherwise would not have received any attention.  We saved lives in the process and that is ultimately our mission.

Powerful Images in Drone Photos

Harvey Flooding from an Aerial Perspective.

Through it All, We Remain Open & Ready to Help

We are Always Open and Prepared.

The entire Altus ER Team is proud to be of service to our communities Weathering Any Storm 24/7.

Our expertly trained staff is available 24/7. We are here for you in the event of a medical emergency: before, during and after any storm.

Find an Altus ER Near You.

There’s No Time to Wait in an Emergency!

WHEN THERE’S NO TIME TO WASTE, TRY OUR ONLINE CHECK-IN

Check-In Online

Altus Emergency Centers Texas

is Here for You 24/7

Altus Emergency Centers are all open 24/7/365, with no lines. Our facilities are well-equipped to diagnose and treat everything from major to minor adult and pediatric emergencies. We are honored to be a part of our beautiful Texas communities and work hard each day to help see them grow and prosper!

24 Hour ER Services – Best in Texas

Looking for the best quality 24 hour ER services?

We offer the best freestanding 24 hour ER services in Texas. We have top of the line medical technology and highly experienced ER healthcare experts prepped and ready to come to your aid in Baytown, Lake Jackson, Lumberton, and Waxahachie.

Each ER team is highly efficient in treating chest and abdominal pains, pediatric emergencies, flu symptoms, sports injuries, bone breaks, and fractures, as well as all other major and minor injuries. All services are available 24/7, including weekends and holidays with little to no wait times. After You Receive Quality ER Care, our Patient Advocate will help ensure Hassle-Free Billing.

Our Promise is to Always Help Find the Best Solutions in Benefit of our Patients from the time you walk-in without having to wait in line and when you are personally assisted with the billing process. We are here to help you get well and stay well!

Child Passenger Safety Week

Child Passenger Safety Week

Every day, parents and caregivers drive young children to and from school, daycare, the store, doctor’s appointments, and around town in car seats and boosters.

What you probably don’t realize is that nearly half of all car seats are incorrectly installed. This means your child may not be traveling as safely as possible.

That is why observing Child Passenger Safety Week is so important.

Danger on the Road

According to the United States Department of Transportation, in 2018, every 32 seconds, a child under the age of 13 traveling as a passenger in a vehicle was involved in a crash.

Furthermore, between 2013 and 2017, 3,313 children under 13 killed were killed while riding in passenger vehicles. In 2018 the death toll reached 636.

These alarming statistics help explain why traffic accidents are a leading cause of death for children in our country.

Child Passenger Safety Week

Reducing the Risk

Car and booster seats, when installed correctly, are proven to help keep children safe while riding in the car. Studies show that car seats can reduce the risk of fatal injury for infants by 71% and 54% for toddlers.

Unfortunately, many of us don’t know how to install a car seat correctly. Thankfully there are ways we can help improve our children’s safety.

Get a Professional to Check Your Car Seat

The best way to know if you’ve installed your car seat correctly is to have a Certified Child Passenger Safety Technician check it.

These professionals can also answer questions for you this way; you can be confident you are using the car seat correctly.

If you don’t know a certified child passenger safety technician, you use this simple search tool to locate one nearby.

Child Passenger Safety Week

Don’t Forget to Register Your Car Seat

When you purchase a car seat or a booster seat, make sure you register it with the manufacturer. All seats come with a postage-paid registration card for you to mail, or you can also register your purchase online.

Doing so will ensure the manufacturer will notify you if they find a manufacturing defect. This way, you can either get your seat repaired or replaced.

Know Where to Go in Case of an Emergency.

Use the Right Seat

Finding the right seat for your child is extremely important. As children grow, they will need to transition to a more size appropriate seat.

If you are not sure, check to make sure you’re using the right car seat, booster seat for your growing child.

What to Do If Your Child is in a Car Accident

Even minor car accidents can cause severe injuries in young children. Therefore, even if you don’t see any visible trauma, it’s best to visit the nearest Altus Emergency Center.

The impact could cause concussions and sprains that could go undetected and possibly cause complications later on.

For your peace of mind, all our locations have pediatric examining rooms and specially trained physicians and nurses to help take care of your child. Our staff will care for your child as if it were their own because, at Altus, you are family.

 

Did you know that Insurance Companies Must Cover ER Trips Involving Traffic Accidents?

 

Yes!  It’s important to remember that insurance companies are obligated to offer emergency room coverage in their policies. If you are involved in a car accident and need to go to the emergency room, your insurance policy will cover your visit.

Some injuries are more time-sensitive than others, in these cases it is better to transfer the patient to a ER facility such as any of the Altus Emergency Centers where they can be treated by a licensed emergency physician right away, rather than transport them to a Hospital ER where their treatment might be delayed due to overcrowding issues.

There’s No Time to Wait in an Emergency!

WHEN THERE’S NO TIME TO WASTE, TRY OUR ONLINE CHECK-IN

Check-In Online

Altus Emergency Centers Texas

is Here for You 24/7

Altus Emergency Centers are all open 24/7/365, with no lines. Our facilities are well-equipped to diagnose and treat everything from major to minor adult and pediatric emergencies. We are honored to be a part of our beautiful Texas communities and work hard each day to help see them grow and prosper!

24 Hour ER Services – Best in Texas

Looking for the best quality 24 hour ER services?

We offer the best freestanding 24 hour ER services in Texas. We have top of the line medical technology and highly experienced ER healthcare experts prepped and ready to come to your aid in Baytown, Lake Jackson, Lumberton, and Waxahachie.

Each ER team is highly efficient in treating chest and abdominal pains, pediatric emergencies, flu symptoms, sports injuries, bone breaks, and fractures, as well as all other major and minor injuries. All services are available 24/7, including weekends and holidays with little to no wait times. After You Receive Quality ER Care, our Patient Advocate will help ensure Hassle-Free Billing.

Our Promise is to Always Help Find the Best Solutions in Benefit of our Patients from the time you walk-in without having to wait in line and when you are personally assisted with the billing process. We are here to help you get well and stay well!

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Oct. 31st, 6:30pm - 8:30pm 137@ N Lhs Dr, Lumberton