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Atlanta Legal Nurse Consultant Applauds The J.M. Still Burn Centers


Atlanta, GA – Atlanta legal nurse consultant Liz Buddenhagen, registered nurse, attended the 2011 Joseph M. Still Burn Symposium “Circle of Care,” at Chateau Elan in North Atlanta on March 7.

“It’s a pleasure to attend this educational event,” said Buddenhagen. “The one thing that comes through the most is the pure heart of the burn center.”

About Joseph M. Still:

The story goes that Dr. Still had a burn victim patient who he was unable to locate a burn center to transfer the patient to - due to the patient’s lack of insurance. He decided to learn how take care of burn victims himself.

As the founder of the Joseph M. Still Burn Center at Doctor’s Hospital in Augusta, Georgia in 1978, he built what has progressed into one of the world’s leading treatment facilities for burn victims.

About the Symposium:

Symposium sessions are presented by leading experts:

Donald Hanson, RN, EMT-P, delineated treatment, stabilization, and transfer of the burn victim in the field, and emergency department.

Dr. Raphael Lee, surgeon, and biomedical engineer from Chicago discussed radiation injuries, and explained the Chernobyl event of 1986, lessons learned from it, and described the massive effort the Soviet government mounted which reduced radiation deaths far below what was expected, and the subsequent collapse of the Soviet Union.

Dr. Fred Mullins, current director of the burn programs, continued with “unusual burn injuries.” He commented on the 2005 Graniteville, SC, train wreck chlorine exposure, and the 2008 Port Wentworth, GA Imperial Sugar Refinery fire. Sugar can produce a “dust fire” under certain enclosed conditions.

Psychologist JoAnn Defide, PhD worked with patients with post traumatic stress disorder, and discussed “Virtual Reality to Enhance Exposure Therapy.” Psychologists have been able to achieve remarkable results using computerized videos to recreate environments in which traumatic stress victims can relive the events repeatedly under safe conditions, and de-program the stress response to the environmental cues, such as sound, smell, and similar circumstances.

Her team has worked with 9/11 victims, Iraq war vets, public speakers, and is now developing a burn victim program. Georgia Tech and Emory University are concurrently working with virtual reality therapy.

Reg Richard, a physical therapist from the U.S. Army Burn Center in San Antonio, Texas, discussed the importance of involving physical therapy in skin care from the very beginning of treatment to prevent burn scar contractures.

Kim Linticum, advanced critical care nurse practice nurse from the Augusta burn center, described complications found typically, and some unusual, with the burn patients cared for at the center.

Dennis Gardin was burned over seventy percent of his body at age fourteen (forty years ago), and is the Executive Director of the Georgia Firefighter’s Burn Foundation. He spoke from the heart about his experiences being burned, surviving a three week coma, eight month hospital stay, four dozen surgeries, and years of painful therapy, and rehabilitation.

About Liz Buddenhagen:

The Atlanta legal nurse consultant has a thirty year clinical background in nursing, including critical care, and has assisted Atlanta attorneys for 5 years with their medically related cases. For more information view, email, or call 770-725-2997.


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