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4th of July Fireworks Safety Guide

4th of July Fireworks Safety Guide

Each year we get together with our friends and family to celebrate the birth of our Nation with BBQ’s, parades, and of course fireworks.

But before we start our nationwide party and our fireworks safety guide, we should all take a few moments to reflect on how lucky we are to live in this great country.

We think a big part of what helps make this country great, are the brave men and women of our armed forces. 

They help safeguard our freedoms and way of life, risking everything for this amazing land. Today we ask that you join us to celebrate and thank our military for all that they do.

At Altus Emergency Centers, we are proud to be a TRICARE provider. Everyday our men and women in uniform go to work to defend us all, and we would like them to know that we are here for them and their loved ones in the event of a medical emergency.

Firework Injury Report

We all look forward to the fireworks display on the 4th of July but should never forget how dangerous fireworks can be.

The Consumer Product Safety Commission has just published its 2018 Fireworks Annual Report. 

 

Here are some of the findings that led us to spread awareness on fireworks safety:

  • There were 9,100 estimated ER treated firework-related injuries
  • An estimated 5,600 fireworks-related injuries (or 62 % fireworks-related injuries in 2018) were treated in U.S. emergency rooms between June 22 and July 22, 2018
  • More than 44% of firework-related injuries were burns
  • At least 5 people died from firework-related injuries in 2018
  • Roughly half of the ER treated injuries involved people younger than 20

 

Here is the break down of the most injured body parts:

28% Hands and Fingers

24% Legs

19% Eyes

15% Head, Face, and Ears

10% Trunks and Other

4% Arms

Help Us Prevent Fireworks-Related Injuries and Deaths

4th of July Fireworks Safety Tips:

You can help us reduce the amount of fireworks-related injuries and deaths with these simple 4th of July fireworks safety tips:

  • Never allow young children to handle fireworks, not even sparklers
  • Older children should only use them under close adult supervision
  • Never use fireworks while under the influence of drugs or alcohol
  • Wear protective eyewear while handling or standing near fireworks 
  • Never hold lighted fireworks in your hands
  • Never ignite them indoors
  • Keep fireworks away from people, houses and flammable materials
  • Never aim or throw fireworks at people or animals
  • Don’t place your body directly over the device when lighting the fuse
  • Only burn one device at a time and maintain a safe distance after lighting
  • Never ignite them in a container
  • Do not try to re-light or handle faulty fireworks
  • Soak spent and unused fireworks in water for a few hours before discarding
  • Have water nearby to fully extinguish fireworks that don’t go off or in case of fire
  • Don’t buy fireworks that are packaged in brown paper. These are usually made for professional displays, and they could be dangerous
  • Never use illegal fireworks

Know Where to Go in Case of an Emergency.

What to Do in Case of a Firework-Related Injury

If the unthinkable happens here is what you need to do:

  • Come to the nearest Altus Emergency Center to receive an injury evaluation and treatment
  • In case of an eye injury, don’t try to flush the wound with water or apply ointment. Instead, cover the eye and seek immediate medical attention at our nearest ER center
  • If the injury is a burn, remove the clothing surrounding the injured area and run cool, not cold water over the wound. Then head to our nearest ER center as fast as possible.

Firework-related injuries can be prevented, let’s do our best to keep our families safe during the 4th of July celebrations.

As always, all Altus Emergency Centers will be open during the holiday to treat any emergencies. Remember, we accept most private insurance and TRICARE patients.

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!

PROTECT YOUR RIGHTS to ER CARE!

DSHS Warns Texans to Avoid Naturally-Occurring Anthrax

DSHS Issues Texans an Anthrax Warning

Avoid Naturally-Occurring Anthrax
by Staying Away from Sick or Dead Wildlife

On June 27th, 2019, the DSHS warns Texans to please stay away from sick or dead wildlife to avoid Naturally-Occurring Anthrax.  The following is official message release:

“The Texas Department of State Health Services is sharing steps people can take to protect against naturally-occurring anthrax. Eighteen recent animal deaths in Uvalde County, including two confirmed anthrax cases, have prompted the advice.

Anthrax is caused by spore-forming bacteria commonly found in the soil in southern and southwestern Texas. Deer, sheep, goats, cattle, horses and other animals can contract anthrax when they swallow or inhale anthrax spores while grazing. Animals usually die within two days of showing signs of infection.

Anthrax in humans is rare, though people can contract it through handling a dead or sick animal infected with anthrax. Infection in humans usually occurs through the skin. The infection typically starts out itchy and resembles an insect bite that within two to six days progresses into a painless sore with a depressed black center. Infection can also occur when people consume meat from an infected animal.

While people are susceptible to anthrax infection, no human cases have been reported in Texas this year. Basic precautions can effectively reduce the risk of people contracting anthrax and other diseases from livestock and game animals.”

Texans Warned by Health Authorites to Avoid Naturally-Occurring Anthrax

Know Where to Go in Case of an Emergency.

Tips to Avoid Naturally-Ocurring Anthrax

The following tips were also included in the release by DSHS Authorities:

 

  • Avoid direct contact with dead animals, including their bones, horns or antlers.
  • Keep pets and children away from dead animals.
  • Do not harvest animals that appear ill or are acting abnormally.
  • Wear long-sleeved garments and gloves when handling, dressing and processing game.
  • Wash hands with soap and water and launder clothes immediately after animal exposure.
  • Minimize contact with animal fluids, brain and spinal tissues.
  • Cook all meat until well done before consuming.

What To Do If You Believe That There is a Possibilty of Exposure?

DSHS also describes the signs of contamination and that you should seek immediate medical care.

“People should contact a doctor if they develop an unusual-looking sore on the hands, arms or other exposed skin. Although it is very rare to contract skin anthrax, this infection requires treatment with antibiotics prescribed by a physician.”

Altus Physicians Group

Dangers of Leaving Anthrax Exposure Untreated

If you see the signs of possible contamination, it’s best to get immediate medical care.  Please keep in mind that Altus Emergency is Open 24/7 and you will not have to wait in line before being seen by an ER Physician.

According to the CDC:

“Without treatment, up to 20% of people with cutaneous anthrax may die. However, with proper treatment, almost all patients with cutaneous anthrax survive.”

Also please keep in mind that anthrax is not contagious person-to-person as the flu would be transmitted.  However, the sooner you get medical care, the faster will be the chances of a full recovery and avoid the possibility of long-term effects.  Heed the warning to avoid naturally-occurring anthrax.

Altus Emergency Centers Texas

is Here for You 24/7

Remember if you or someone you know is showing the signs and symptoms of naturally-occurring anthrax, you have the option of coming to the nearest Altus Emergency Centers. You may just walk-in or use our online check-in form, and our staff of qualified physicians will be waiting for you at the door.

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!

PROTECT YOUR RIGHTS to ER CARE!

Preventing Heat-Related Illnesses

Preventing Heat-Related Illnesses

We all look forward to the long, hot days of summer. But there is a darker side of summer, heat-related illnesses, that most of us don’t know about.

Every year there are approximate 658 extreme-heat related deaths in the United States. Sadly, all these deaths could have been prevented with proper care and prevention.

What Are Heat-Related Illnesses?

Heat-related illnesses are medical conditions that occur when we are exposed to extreme or prolonged hot temperatures. Heat-related illness range from minor illnesses to life-threatening medical emergencies. 

There are several heat-related illnesses, including:

  • Heat Stroke
  • Heat Exhaustion 
  • Heat Cramps 
  • Heat rash
  • Dehydration

What Causes Heat-Related Illnesses?

The human body has a built-in temperature regulating system known as thermoregulation. The way our bodies primarily adjust temperatures is through sweat. When the sweat evaporates, our body cools down. 

However, in situations when air temperatures are above 95°F, or there is high humidity, the natural cooling mechanism becomes less efficient, and our bodies can’t cool down fast enough. This is dangerous because very high body temperatures can damage the brain and other internal organs.

Warning Signs and Symptoms of Heat-Related Illnesses

Recognizing the signs and symptoms of heat-related illness and knowing what to do can help save lives.

The following chart was published by the CDC and shows the typical symptoms of the most common heat-related illnesses and how to treat them.

Warning Signs and Symptoms of Dehydration

Dehydration occurs when more fluids leave our body than enter it. Symptoms vary depending on how severely dehydrated we are.

 

The first symptoms of dehydration include:

  • Thirst
  • Darker Urine
  • Decreased Urine Production

 

With moderate dehydration, more symptoms develop such as:

  • Dry Mouth
  • Lethargy
  • Muscle Weakness
  • Headache
  • Dizziness

 

When we lose 10-15% of our body’s water, we become severely dehydrated. In these cases, we experience extreme versions of the symptoms listed above as well as:

  • Lack of Sweating
  • Sunken Eyes
  • Shriveled and Dry Skin
  • Low Blood Pressure
  • Increased Heart Rate
  • Fever
  • Delirium
  • Unconsciousness

Know Where to Go in Case of an Emergency.

Age Group

Recommended Daily Fluid Intake

Toddlers 1-3 4 cups
Children 4-8 5 cups
Boys 9-13 8 cups
Boys 14-18 11 cups
Girls 9-13 7 cups
Girls 14-18 8 cups
Adult Men (19 and over) 13 cups
Adult Women (19 and over) 9 cups
Pregnant Women 10 cups
Lactating Women 13 cups

How to Prevent Heat-Related Illnesses

The following tips are essential to help protect your health when temperatures are extremely high.

 

Drink Plenty of Fluids

Follow the guidelines from the chart above.

 

Replace Salts and Minerals 

Sweat removes vital minerals and salts from the body, and therefore need to be replaced. The safest way to do this is through diet, so try eating more fruits and vegetables. You can also drink a sports beverage while exercising or working in the heat.

 

Wear Appropriate Clothing and Sunscreen

Choose lightweight, light-colored, loose-fitting clothing. While out in the sun, wear a wide-brimmed hat which can provide shade and keep the head cool.

Sunburn affects the body’s ability to cool itself and causes a loss of body fluids, so apply sunscreen 20-30 minutes before you go in the sun and reapply every 2-hours.

 

Pace Yourself

If you are not used to exercising or working in high temperatures, start slowly and pick up the pace gradually.

If outdoor activities in the heat make your heart pound and leave you gasping for breath, STOP what you are doing. Get into a cool or shaded area, and rest, especially if you become lightheaded, weak, or faint.

 

Stay Indoors When Possible

The best way to avoid heat-related illnesses is to stay in cool places as much as possible. Avoid being outside for long periods during the hottest times of the day between 10 am and 4 pm.

Remember if you or someone you know is showing the signs and symptoms of heat stroke or heat exhaustion, you need to come into the nearest Altus Emergency Centers. Use our online check-in form, and our staff of qualified physicians will be waiting for you at the door.

Both heat stroke and heat exhaustion are dangerous conditions and need immediate medical attention to avoid long term injury or death.

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!

PROTECT YOUR RIGHTS to ER CARE!

There’s No Time to Wait in an Emergency!

There’s No Time to Wait in an Emergency!

We Agree 100%.

Emergencies can happen when you least expect them. When an emergency happens to a loved one, there is only one thing in our minds, get them the help they need, fast!

The problem is that wait times at hospital ER’s are long because of staffing issues and overcrowding. This also affects the quality of service received. The more patients’ doctors must treat, the less time they have, to spend with each of them.

At Altus Emergency Centers, we have always put patients first, and our response times have consistently been faster than the state average. And today, with our new online check-in system, we can guarantee a no wait time for every patient.

By filling out our simple check-in form while in route to one of our centers, our staff will be waiting for you at the door when you arrive.

When is it an Emergency?

Not every illness or injury requires a visit to our ER, but these symptoms certainly do:

  • Chocking
  • Trouble Breathing
  • Head Injuries
  • Injury to Neck or Spine
  • Electric Shock or Lightning Strike
  • Severe Burns
  • Severe Chest Pains or Pressure in the Chest Area
  • Seizures
  • Fainting
  • Pain in the Arm, or Jaw
  • Severe Headaches
  • Suddenly not Being Able to Speak, See, Walk or Move
  • Sudden Weakness or Drooping on One Side of the Body
  • Inhaled Smoke or Poisonous Fumes
  • Sudden Confusion
  • Heavy Bleeding that Won’t Stop
  • Broken Bones
  • Deep Wounds
  • Severe Allergic Reactions with Trouble Breathing, Swelling, Hives
  • High Fever with Headache and Stiff Neck
  • Poisoning
  • Drug or Alcohol Overdose

Time Sensitive Conditions

 

Many of the symptoms listed above could indicate you are having a stroke or a heart attack. Both conditions require prompt treatment to improve the survival rate.

For instance, following a stroke, patients must receive clot-busting drugs within three hours for the best chance at avoiding long-term cerebral or physical damages.

In the case of a heart attack, patients must receive treatment to unblock clogged coronary arteries no more than 90 minutes after a heart attack.

What’s more, specialized care, including cooling therapy and cardiac catheterization, given after cardiac arrest, has been shown to improve survival.

Know Where to Go in Case of an Emergency.

How Altus Emergency Centers Compares to State and National Averages

Overcrowding and understaffing issues in hospital emergency departments have created a state and national crisis.

Because of emergency room delays, many patients develop complications and require longer recovery times. This can take a toll not only on the health of the patient but also on their family finances.

At Altus Emergency Centers, we continue to work to provide our patients with the best care, delivered immediately, and at an affordable price.  

As you can see, our efforts have paid off!

Percentage of Patients Who Leave the ER Without Being Seen by a Doctor

(Lower Percentages are Better)

Altus ER

0%

Texas Average

2%

National Average

2%

Percentage of patients who came to the emergency department with stroke symptoms who received brain scan results within 45 minutes of arrival

(Higher percentages are better)

Altus ER

100%

Texas Average

72%

National Average

73%

Average (median) time patients spent in the emergency department before they were seen by a healthcare professional

(A lower number of minutes is better)

Altus ER

0 minutes

Texas Average

25 minutes

National Average

18 minutes

Texas and National Averages were Obtained from the Medicare site.

Why waste time and risk the life of a loved one while waiting at a hospital ER, when our team of top rated physicians and nurses can be waiting for you at the door to give you or your loved ones the lifesaving treatment they need.

There’s No Time to Wait in an Emergency!

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

How Does the Online Check-In Work?

Watch Reagan explain how to use our Quick & Easy Online Check-In System.  It comes in handy to know there’s a great solution as we know there’s no time to wait in an emergency!  Here, he is explaining how it works for Lumberton but you can find it right on our home page, Altus Emergency or just scroll below!

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!

PROTECT YOUR RIGHTS to ER CARE!

Common Contact Sports-Related Head Injuries

Contact Sports-Related Head Injuries

We often hear about tragic stories of professional athletes suffering traumatic contact sports-related head injuries.

Unfortunately, sports-related head injuries are not exclusive to elite pro athletes; they can happen to anyone, including kids who play contact sports at school.

A paper from the Journal of Neurosurgery, states there are approximately 500,000 emergency room visits and 60,000 hospitalization every year due to traumatic brain injuries in children ages 0-17.

Traumatic Brain Injuries

Any injury that occurs on your skull, scalp, or brain is considered a head injury.

Head injuries could be something as innocent as a bump or bruise on your head to something as life-threatening as a skull fracture.

The more severe types of head injuries are known as traumatic brain injuries (TBI). A traumatic brain injury happens when we receive a blow or jolt to the head or when an object pierces the skull and enters brain tissue.

Traumatic brain injuries are so severe they that disrupts the normal function of the brain and can cause life-long physical or mental disabilities or even death.

sports-related head injuries CT Scan

Concussions in Young Athletes

One of the most common contact sports-related head injuries are concussions.  Whether your child plays football, soccer, baseball, or hockey, getting a concussion is a serious risk to young athletes.

Parents and coaches of children who play sports, especially contact sports need to educate young athletes on how to recognize the symptoms of a concussion.

If your kids get injured and they don’t know what to look for they could keep on playing, which will put them at risk of a more significant injury.

Symptoms young athletes should look out for:

 

  • Headache or “pressure” in head
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Balance problems or dizziness
  • Double or blurry vision
  • Sensitivity to light
  • Sensitivity to noise
  • Feeling sluggish, hazy, foggy, or groggy
  • Concentration or memory problems
  • Confusion
  • Does not “feel right” or is “feeling down”

Coaches and trainers should be on the lookout for the following symptoms:

  • The child appears dazed or stunned
  • Is confused about assignment or position
  • Forgets an instruction
  • Is unsure of game, score, or opponent
  • Moves clumsily
  • Answers questions slowly
  • Loses consciousness (even briefly)
  • Shows mood, behavior, or personality changes
  • Can’t recall events before the hit or fall
  • Can’t recall events after hit or fall

Parents should also be on the lookout for possible concussion symptoms as these could show hours after the incident. If your teen shows any of the symptoms above, they likely have a concussion, and you should seek immediate medical attention.

Know Where to Go in Case of an Emergency.

When to Go to The ER for a Head Injury

Not all head injuries require a trip to our ER. However, you should bring your child for evaluation in the following cases:

  • The injury won’t stop bleeding
  • Your child lost consciousness or is confused/disoriented
  • Is vomiting or feels nauseated
  • Have trouble balancing or walking
  • Has difficulty remembering stuff
  • Has a seizure

You should monitor your kids for a few days after they sustained the injury to make sure they don’t develop symptoms.

 

If you notice any of the following, you need to bring them to the ER immediately:

  • They have a headache that won’t go away
  • Show unusual behavior, experience mood swings or have trouble concentrating
  • Have trouble reading, writing or slur their speech
  • Feel numbness, dizziness or weakness in any body part
  • Have difficulty falling asleep or waking up
  • Have difficulty moving their eyes or notice changes in their eyesight

It’s Better to Be Safe

If you are not sure if your child has a traumatic brain injury, the best thing to do is to bring them to the nearest Altus Emergency Center. It’s better to be safe and have our doctors examine them.

Remember, Altus Emergency Centers are open 24/7 every day of the year; we will always be here for you and your family in times of need.

At Altus Emergency Centers, we are always open to treat any emergency. Remember if you use our online check-in form, we will be waiting for you at the door.

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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