South Nashville hospital opens After Breast Cancer program - WKRN News 2

South Nashville hospital opens After Breast Cancer program

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NASHVILLE, Tenn. -

Southern Hills Medical Center (SHMC) is celebrating a new chapter for not only the hospital, but patients, too.

On Wednesday, the TriStar hospital will cut the ribbon on its After Breast Cancer (ABC) program.

The ABC Program offers comprehensive nutrition, exercise, and wellness services at the Southern Hills YMCA located on the hospital campus.

Participants meet one-on-one with trainers and dieticians for a custom health plan, and then receive full access to the Y.

"We get going with their cardio, warm up. We do light weights with bicep work, tricep work, back work," said Pink Ribbon Trainer Jacinda Funderburk. "And just really overall getting their strength and their stamina up where they can go on with their daily activities."

"It effects your everyday life (like) doing dishes (and) washing your hair," said Pink Ribbon Trainer Courtney Nutt. "Sometimes it's painful. Other times, when they see the improvements, they really want to keep going with it."

"You nourish your body as much as you can, in your hands, (with) the exercise and the eating, so that you don't get the breast cancer again," added Dietician Noor Brifkani.

Because breast cancer patients are at risk for lymphedema, a buildup of fluid that causes swelling in the body, the program also includes physical therapy from a lymphedema specialist.

In addition to the program benefits, SHMC hosts a monthly breast cancer support group.

The 16-week program is free to breast cancer patients and survivors.

"Our unique partnership with the YMCA has enabled us to offer this important program to our patients and members of the community," CEO Thomas Ozburn said in a press release in June. "With our clinical resources at the hospital and the expertise of the YMCA staff, this collaboration will offer a crucial resource in the South Nashville community."

The ABC Program is available at other YMCA locations, including Bellevue, Clarksville, Cool Springs, and Maryland Farms.

Family YMCA facilities in Maury, Putnam, Robertson, and Rutherford Counties also offer benefits to breast cancer patients and survivors.

The entire program has received the American College of Radiology Breast Cancer of Excellence Accreditation.

According to Jessica Fain, Senior Vice President of Marketing for YMCA of Middle Tennessee, "The proximity of this program is an advantage for physicians who will be able to refer patients to the program for recovery support in the same location where they're receiving treatment."

SHMC opened the on-campus YMCA in June 2012. The Y offers cardiac rehab, in addition to general wellness and the new ABC Program.

Currently 13 breast cancer patients and survivors are enrolled in the ABC Program at SHMC.

An official ribbon-cutting is scheduled for 11:30 a.m. Wednesday.  Attendees should gather outside the Southern Hills YMCA on the SHMC campus at 391 Wallace Road.

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