MCG brings expert heart care to South Georgia - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

MCG brings expert heart care to South Georgia

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March 2, 2006

Valdosta - Today, Brandon Faircloth is an extremely active three-year-old. He loves Bob the Builder and going to McDonalds, but when he was born, the doctors didn’t know if Brandon would survive. "He had no true pulmonary arteries, the main arteries that connect to the lungs to oxygenate the blood," said Jaime Faircloth.

After undergoing heart surgery, Brandon is now as good as new. He still has to get routine checkups, but instead of driving to Augusta to see his doctors, they’re bringing the care he needs to South Georgia. "Kids don’t do well in a car for five hours if they’re sick and its nice to be able to do that closer to home," said Dr. Bill Lutin.

Kids can now get specialty care that’s usually only offered in big cities right here at South Georgia Medical Center. Doctors from the Medical College of Georgia are offering pediatric cardiology clinics. "We see children from fetuses up to young adulthood," said Lutin.

The clinics are held at Convenient Care of Valdosta every other month. The doctors don’t actually perform heart surgery here, but the kids can get important tests and check ups. "The doctors from Augusta who come here, I wouldn’t want anybody else to treat my child," said Faircloth.

The clinics help parents save valuable time and money. "When I have to take off work, that takes money away and it costs an average of $300 to $400 to do a day or two trip, they come down here and it just costs us gas from our house to here," said Faircloth.

It’s a convenient way to give kids like little Brandon the life-saving treatment they need.

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