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Published on July 31, 2012

State-Of-The-Art Neurosciences Center Opens At University Hospital

COLUMBIA, Mo. ― The new Missouri Neurosciences Center at University Hospital will offer patients with complex neurological disorders access to a state-of-the art diagnostic and treatment center.

The 18,119-square-foot new center, which opens this week at University Hospital, offers 28 private patient rooms, all equipped with automated hospital “smart room” technology.

N. Scott Litofsky, M.D., chief of the Division of Neurosurgery in the MU School of Medicine and director of neuro-oncology and radiosurgery at University of Missouri Health Care, noted that the center will be home to the region’s largest team of physicians specializing in neurosurgery and neurology.

“University neurosurgeons are experts at procedures such as deep brain stimulation for the treatment of movement disorders, surgeries for the treatment of epilepsy and seizures, neurological oncology procedures for treating brain and spinal tumors, and surgical care for back pain and spine injuries,” Litofsky said.

“With nationally recognized stroke and epilepsy programs, we wanted a facility that would offer our team, and our patients, an equally impressive clinical facility,” said Pradeep Sahota, M.D., chair of the medical school’s Department of Neurology and director of MU Health Care’s sleep disorders program.

Each patient room features automated technology for collection of patient data such as heart rate and vital signs, and automatic uploading of the data into the electronic medical record, where it is accessible to the patient’s team of caregivers. A bar code scanning system helps ensure the correct medication is provided at the right time, and in the right dose.

“The room really becomes part of the patient’s care so the nurse can add that human touch,” said Joanne Burns, chief information officer at MU Health Care. “The information is right there at the caregivers’ fingertips so that they spend more time with their patients and less time working with equipment to get that data.”

The new neurosciences center features four patient rooms specially equipped for epilepsy monitoring. When a patient in one of those rooms begins to have a seizure, multiple systems are instantly activated to collect data for diagnosis and treatment. The technology includes video and audio recording devices, and electroencephalography, or EEG.

“The room itself captures the data,” Burns said. “This can be triggered by the patient, if he feels a seizure is starting, or by epilepsy monitoring technology, if the patient should fail to know that a seizure is about to occur.”

In addition to the state-of-the-art technology, the Missouri Neurosciences Center was also designed with function and comfort in mind. The private patient rooms are spacious to allow room for a patient’s family and friends. The rooms are equipped with a large-screen monitor that doubles as both a television and a vehicle for viewing patient data.

University physicians on the neurosciences team specialize in Alzheimer’s disease and dementia, epilepsy and seizure surgery, movement disorders and deep brain stimulation, multiple sclerosis, neurological oncology surgery for brain and spinal tumors, neuromuscular diseases and peripheral nerve surgery, pediatric neurology and neurosurgery, sleep disorders, stroke and surgical or endovascular care of brain aneurysms and other vascular malformations, back pain and spinal surgery, and head and spinal trauma.

University of Missouri Health Care was the only hospital in Columbia or central Missouri recognized in July as “high performing” in neurology and neurosurgery, as well as “Most Connected” for being a leader in the implementation of electronic medical records, by U.S. News & World Report. The health system was also recently recognized for the second consecutive year as one of the nation’s Most Wired health systems according the American Hospital Association’s “Hospitals & Health Networks” magazine.

University Hospital’s Missouri Epilepsy Program was designated a Level 4 epilepsy center in 2012 by the National Association of Epilepsy Centers. The hospital’s Missouri Stroke Program received the Stroke Gold Plus Performance Achievement Award in 2011, the highest distinction possible from Get With The Guidelines®, a hospital-based quality improvement program developed by the American Heart Association and the American Stroke Association.