WESTON — In collaboration with Mon Health Medical Center, Mon Health Stonewall Jackson Memorial Hospital now has a sonographer on staff with new echocardiogram equipment.
Lewis County resident Cassandra Hinzman graduated in Exercise Science from Fairmont State University and has been employed in the Mon Health Stonewall Jackson Memorial Hospital cardiopulmonary department since 2016. In May 2020, she began on-the-job training at Mon Health Medical Center as a sonographer – a technician performing ultrasounds of the heart. Under the tutelage of Steven Cross and Charlotte Hart of Mon Health Medical Center, she completed her training in December and will sit for her boards in the future. She is excited to start a new stage in her career.
“I really learned so much from the staff at Mon Health Medical Center. I was fortunate to have had a four-year degree so that I could take the opportunity to do the training. We did not have a sonographer here in Weston so I was so happy to use my knowledge to provide the service in our community,” explained Cassandra. “This availability is important for our patients and their treatment.”
Cassandra’s accomplishment will be celebrated during a Healthy Heart Fair and reception on Thursday, February 3, from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Mon Health Stonewall Jackson Memorial Hospital. The public is invited to have free screenings and visit a variety of vendors during the event.
An echocardiogram is a transthoracic machine which entails attaching electrodes on the patient’s chest. It is not invasive and takes less than an hour to complete the test. There are several reasons for the procedure, including the ability to monitor existing heart disease, tumors, or blood clots, analyze symptoms such as chest pain, discover non-functioning heart valves, assess tissue damage, or overall activity after a heart attack.
Adding to the tools in the fight against heart disease is important for the community. West Virginia ranks first highest in the nation in the prevalence of heart attack (7.5%) and coronary heart disease (8.0%). The state ranks seventh highest in the nation in the prevalence of stroke (4.4%) and the overall cardiovascular disease prevalence is highest in the nation according to the WV Department of Health and Human Resources.
The availability of this procedure along with having the award-winning Mon Health Heart and Vascular Center in North Central WV is important for the heart health of the community. The Center offers patients the expertise and comfort they deserve, close to home. From diagnostics to surgery, the Mon Health physicians use a comprehensive approach focused on individualized care and exceptional outcomes.
To learn more about the Heart and Vascular Center, visit MonHealth.com/Heart.