Posted by: Duke Raleigh Hospital | September 6, 2017

Duke Raleigh Employees Help Build House for Coworker


Until yesterday, Camille Fletcher lived in a cramped apartment in Raleigh with her three kids and her mom. There weren’t enough bedrooms for them all – her mom shared a bunk bed with one of the kids – but the rent was too high to afford something larger.

But Tuesday marked a new chapter for Camille and her family, as they celebrated the dedication of their new home. The new house has enough bedrooms for them all, is energy-efficient, and has a lower mortgage than her previous rent.

For the last two years, since she happened to see an ad on the back of a truck for Habitat for Humanity, Camille has been working to fulfill the requirements of the Habitat program. After a period on the waiting list, she has taken classes to learn home maintenance, finance, and other aspects of homeownership.

“It was exciting to learn all of these new skills and meet new people,” says Camille, a Food and Nutrition Associate at Duke Raleigh Hospital.

Camille also had to put in at least 200 hours of “sweat equity” to help build the house. She wasn’t alone the last few months; her colleagues at Duke Raleigh Hospital pitched in and donated nearly 50 volunteer hours to help build her house. Duke Raleigh Hospital is proud to have partners like Habitat for Humanity of Wake County, who share our common goal of building healthy communities.

Volunteers are a big part of what makes Habitat for Humanity so successful, says Melanie Rankin, Development Director for Habitat for Humanity of Wake County. “One of the reasons our homes are so affordable is because they’re primarily built by our volunteers,” she says.

“What better way to demonstrate our commitment to one another than to actually help lay a foundation for a team member?” says Neal Seigler, Director of Environmental and Nutritional Services at Duke Raleigh Hospital. “Working with team members away from the job builds a connection that cannot be established in a controlled environment. I enjoyed this team building endeavor, and teaming up with my employees to support one of our own.”

Camille’s children have also been helping where they can. Her oldest daughter and mom have been helping build the house, and her younger children have been taking weekend DIY classes at Home Depot, making a flower pot and spice rack for the new house.

“It’s the American dream,” Camille says. “It’s a new beginning for my family, and now I can provide them with more stability and a better way of living.”

For more information about Habitat for Humanity of Wake County, visit

Posted by: Duke Raleigh Hospital | August 29, 2017

Duke Raleigh Hospital Offering Transition Program for Cancer Survivors

cancer transitionsDuke Raleigh Hospital is recruiting cancer survivors for the Cancer Transitions program, meant to help patients make the transition from active treatment to post-treatment care. This free program will provide participants with tips and resources for healthy eating, relaxation training, stress management and medical management, exercise, and more.

Cancer Transitions is a national program developed by The Wellness Community and the Lance Armstrong Foundation to bridge the gap between cancer treatment and life following cancer. Duke Raleigh Hospital began offering the program in 2016.

Participants will attend four, 2.5 hour wellness workshops this fall, which include a light dinner and instruction from expert panelists including fitness specialists, nutritionists, social workers and oncology clinicians. There is no cost to participants, and all sessions are held at the Duke Raleigh Hospital campus.

Sessions include:

  • Thursday, October 5: Get Back to Wellness: Take Control of Your Survivorship
  • Thursday, October 12: Emotional Health & Well-Being
  • Thursday, October 19: Medical Management Beyond Cancer
  • Thursday, October 26: Nutrition & Healthy Eating

If you are interested in participating or would like more information, please contact Julie McQueen, Oncology Nurse Navigator, at (919) 954-3042 or The registration deadline is September 26.

Posted by: Duke Raleigh Hospital | August 24, 2017

Annual Golf Tournament Raises Money for Duke Raleigh Cancer Center

Julie McQueen_Mitch CupFor the ninth year in a row, Jim Hourigan and Jerry Whalen made a trek to the Duke Raleigh Cancer Center with a check in hand. Every year since 2009, the pair has organized a golf tournament to honor Jerry’s late wife (“Midge”), and donated the proceeds to Duke Raleigh. To date, they have donated approximately $30,000 to help cancer patients like Midge.

Midge was diagnosed with lung cancer in 2007, and received treatment at Duke Raleigh.

“They were very good to me, my wife, and my family,” Jerry says. “When my children came to visit the staff would let them see their mother at all hours. They really went the extra mile, and I didn’t meet anybody who worked there that wasn’t happy.”

When his wife passed away in 2008, his friends in the Eagle Ridge Community helped him put together a golf tournament in her honor. The first tournament  was small, with only 32 players, but “it just evolved,” Jim says. The tournament has since been extended to two-days, and participation has doubled. The $11,000 they raised this year was donated to the Duke Raleigh Cancer Center and Transitions Hospice.

“We’re proud of it and know the money is going to good use,” Jerry says. “Golf is a wonderful game of camaraderie, and it’s great to see everybody coming together for this cause.”

Thank you to Jim and Jerry, and all the participants in the Midge Cup event, for their generous contributions to Duke Raleigh!

Photo: Jim Hourigan, Cancer Center Navigator Julie McQueen, and Jerry Whalen

Posted by: Duke Raleigh Hospital | August 8, 2017

Duke Urology Men’s Health Center

“Men are encouraged to be fearless and strong, but that means there’s a tendency to avoid seeking care even when it affects their overall wellness,” says Aaron Lentz, MD, FACS, a Urologist at Duke Urology Men’s Health Center.

One-third of adult men do not see a doctor regularly, and they are 70% less likely to seek medical treatment compared to their female counterparts, according to the US Department of Health and Human Services.

Duke Health opened Duke Urology Men’s Health Center last year to offer comprehensive care in all aspects of men’s health and wellness. The multi-disciplinary center provides diagnostic evaluation and expert treatments, and can also connect men to the primary or specialty care they need.

“As a urologist, I deal with the sensitive issues that are most likely to bring a man to the doctor,” Lentz says, like sexual dysfunction, incontinence, or an enlarged prostate. “But men’s health is not a single system issue, and the reality is that everything’s connected.”

Male sexual health concerns can sometimes be symptoms of chronic conditions such as heart disease and diabetes, or psychological problems such as depression. The center’s specialists screen for these and other underlying health problems. The center hopes to simplify the health care experience so that the first point of contact becomes the gateway for access to all-inclusive specialty care, Lentz explains.

“This is not just a place to go when you’re too embarrassed to go to your own doctor,” says Lentz. “We want to build relationships with patients and inform, educate and empower men about all of their health care choices.”

Learn more about the Duke Urology Men’s Health Center.

Posted by: Duke Raleigh Hospital | May 3, 2017

Pre-Op Class Helps Patient Navigate First-Time Surgery, Hip Replacement

For years, Susie lived with hip pain. “It changed my whole persona,” she says, and she was beginning to suffer from depression as a result. Susie was referred her to Donald O’Malley, MD, Joint Replacement Orthopaedic Surgeon at Duke Raleigh Hospital, who recommended a hip replacement.

Duke Raleigh Hospital offers orthopaedic surgery patients the option to complete a pre-operative class with patient navigator Ashley Barry, MSN, RN. The class helps patients prepare for surgery, and know what to expect afterwards, including setting pain management expectations, explaining how they’ll work with Case Management, and helping them locate equipment for physical therapy.

“The class gives patients a chance to ask questions and feel comfortable with their plan of care,” Barry says. “Helping them understand what to expect allows them focus on doing their best in the recovery phase.”

“I’d never had surgery before, so the class was extremely beneficial,” Susie says. “All of my questions were answered, and it made me look forward even more to the surgery. I was very comfortable, very relaxed, and very ready!”

After Susie had her surgery in February, she quickly progressed in physical therapy and no longer has hip pain. “I knew it would be better but I never thought it would be this great,” Susie Anthony-Diaz says enthusiastically. “I’d forgotten how it felt to be living without pain. The surgery truly changed my life for the better.”

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