The Herald Bulletin

March 28, 2012

Small practices important for many patients

By Michael D. Doyle
For The Herald Bulletin

— Proximity to medical care can be a major concern for anyone. That holds even more true for senior citizens, who often lack the ability or means to travel longer distances.

It is one of the reason Karen Trennepohl does what she does. Trennepohl is a nurse practitioner with the peripheral vascular line of CorVasc, affiliated with St. John’s-St. Vincent Health System. CorVasc treats patients with cardiac and vascular disease. With her working from an office in St. John’s Anderson means that most of

Trennepohl’s patients do not have to travel to Indianapolis for appointments.

The practice opened in July of 2011 and is located in the Roby Building. “Our goal when starting this was to provide service for Madison County residents,” she said. “It’s a specialty practice for patients with vascular disease and since most of the people we see are older it becomes very important that they can stay closer to home. We’re proud

that we can provide this service right at our patients’ backdoor.”

About one in three people over the age of 70 have vascular disease, which also affects nearly five percent of the population over 50 — or about 10 million people in the United States.

Since vascular disease is largely incurable, patients must work to manage their symptoms. Trennepohl pointed out that being close to the facility makes a big difference when it comes to preventative care.

“Since this disease just doesn’t go away, we are seeing most of our patients on a long-term basis,” she said. “There’s a lot of patient education involved. We have to be there for them all the time. And if we’re close to them, our patients are going to be more likely to adhere to their diets, keep their appointments and come to us if they need to.”

Trennepohl’s hope is that smaller specialty practices become more common in the area to more effectively serve those in need of care. A similar practice is also present at St. Vincent Mercy in Elwood.

“Our patients seem very appreciative that we’re close for them,” she said. “I’ve had many people tell me that if we weren’t here they wouldn’t be able to make their appointments. That makes a big difference.”