Posts made in July, 2013

Volunteer Opportunities Make a Difference in Berkeley

Posted on Jul 26, 2013

Looking to make a difference in someone’s life?

Volunteer as a greeter and patient navigator at the Alta Bates Summit Medical Center’s Comprehensive Cancer Center (Herrick Campus) in Berkeley.

Volunteer opportunities in Berkeley at the Herrick Campus

As a volunteer, you’ll greet patients as they arrive and escort them to various departments for services. You’ll also provide them with helpful information about our programs.

To learn more, please go to “Volunteering at the Comprehensive Cancer Center”  or contact our Alta Bates Summit Volunteer Department programs:

Collegiate Volunteer Program
Phone: 510-204-2032

Adult Volunteer Program
Phone: 510-204-1695

For a list of a wide variety of volunteer opportunities, please go to the ABSMC Volunteer Opportunity List  or visit the Alta Bates Summit Volunteer Department webpage.


The A,B,C’s of Kids’ Nutrition for Busy Parents in Oakland

Posted on Jul 22, 2013

Young boy with a baseball hat playing on a fence near a flower garden in Oakland. Do you know how much nutrition a child his age needs?Vitamins are essential to growing bodies, especially your child’s. But do you know what nutrition they need for a well-balanced diet?

Nutrition tips from Alta Bates Summit in Oakland

The USDA recommends that children receive the following amounts of vitamins and minerals.

  • Kids need 6 ounces of whole grains every day; check the label of brown breads because not all are made from whole grains.
  • Fruit and veggies are important! Make sure your kids get 2.5 cups of veggies and 1.5 cups of fruit every day. Be careful when giving fruit juice instead of whole fruit—some fruit juice doesn’t contain enough real fruit.
  • Kids need at least 3 cups of milk per day. Look for low-fat milk. Yogurt and cheese are also great sources of calcium.
  • Five ounces of protein per day will help your kids get their protein allotment. Chicken, beef, turkey and fish are wonderful protein sources. Nuts, beans and peas are good vegetarian protein choices.

Read more at  Sutter Health’s,  “Kids Need Their Nutrients

What You Need to Know About Prostate Cancer Screenings

Posted on Jul 19, 2013

Man carrying a woman on his back while walking on the beach

Each year more than 230,000 men will be diagnosed with prostate cancer. Early detection is important for better treatment outcomes.

Free prostate cancer screenings in Oakland

Getting screened early can help, especially if you are at high risk.

If you are over the age of 50 with a family history of prostate cancer or with significant symptoms, such as frequency of urination and decreased urine stream, talk with your doctor about prostate cancer testing.

Alta Bates Summit Medical Center offers free prostate cancer screenings in Oakland through its Markstein Cancer Services. For more information, please call 510-869-8833.

Who’s at risk?

The prostate-specific antigen (PSA) test is a common screening test. For men, a PSA test measures the blood level of prostate-specific antigen, which is a protein produced by a small organ in the male reproductive system called the prostate.

While cancer cells may produce PSA in higher amounts than normal cells, there are other diseases that can increase the PSA level.
Men at high risk should talk with their doctors about the pros and cons of the PSA test. High-risk factors include:

  • Having two or more first degree relatives (e.g., a father, brother or son) diagnosed with prostate cancer at a young age
  • Ethnic background—African-American men are at higher risk for prostate cancer

Advanced treatment technology

Alta Bates Summit Medical Center offers the latest treatments for prostate cancer through the Calypso® System. To find out more, visit State-of-the-Art Technology: The Calypso System.


Alta Bates Summit Designated Aetna Institute of Quality®

Posted on Jul 17, 2013

Alta Bates Summit Medical Center has been designated an Aetna Institute of Quality® Orthopedic Care Facility Institue of Quality sealfor total joint replacement and spine surgery.

Aetna makes information about the quality and cost of health care services available to its members to help them make informed decisions about their health care needs. In line with this goal, Aetna recognizes hospitals and facilities in its network that offer specialized clinical services for certain health conditions. Facilities are selected for consistently delivering evidence-based, safe care.

This valued recognition from Aetna, comes quick on the heels of extremely high praise during Alta Bates Summit’s Hip and Knee Surgery Certification from the Joint Commission and an “A” rating from Leapfrog Hospital Safety Score, placing Alta Bates Summit among a select group of hospitals to achieve the highest measures of patient safety.

“This is a true reflection of the high-quality patient care provided at the medical center and our commitment to continuous improvement,” said Ike Mmeje, Administrative Director, Clinical and Research Services. “These recognitions would not be possible without the demonstration of individual and team commitment to delivering the best possible care to our patients and community.”

Alta Bates Summit Medical Center is part of Sutter Health, one of the nation’s leading not-for-profit networks of community-based health care providers, delivering high quality care throughout Northern California. With more than 100 years of commitment to the communities it serves, Alta Bates Summit Medical Center is the East Bay’s largest private, not-for-profit medical center. With over 1,000 beds, 4,000 employees and 1,000 physicians, this multi-campus regional, tertiary care medical center includes Samuel Merritt University. Alta Bates Summit is honored as one of the foremost hospitals in the country for clinical excellence, quality outcomes and patient safety. Nationally recognized services include: Regional Stroke Center, Regional Rehabilitation Center and Chemical Dependency, with Centers of Excellence in Women and Infants (including a Level III Newborn ICU), Cardiovascular, Orthopedics, Oncology and Behavioral Health.

For more information on Alta Bates Summit’s services and programs: .

Chill Out for Better Nutrition in the East Bay

Posted on Jul 16, 2013

Family of four enjoying a barbeque
Warm weather is great for your outdoor adventures, but it’s not so great for your BBQ and picnic food.

Don’t invite unwanted guests to your summer feast by letting bacteria spoil your food.

Food nutrition and safety in the East Bay

Every year about 1 in 6 Americans—that’s around 48 million people—gets sick and 128,000 are hospitalized because of food borne diseases, according to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC).

Here are a few food safety tips from the CDC:

CHILL OUT: Be sure to keep your refrigerator below 40 degrees Fahrenheit. Refrigerate foods properly—that means putting them in the refrigerator within two hours and within one hour during the warmer summer months.

CLEAN: Wash, wash, wash! Wash your hands often before and after handling food. Clean places where you prepare food, such as cutting boards and utensils.

DON’T CROSS CONTAMINATE: You can still spread germs—no matter how clean your hands are—if you mix ready-to-eat food with raw food, like seafood, poultry, eggs and meat. Keep them separate.

COOK: Use a food thermometer to check food to make sure it’s safe to eat. Here are the ideal internal temperatures for cooked meat:

  • 145°F for whole meats
  • 160°F for ground meats
  • 165°F for all poultry

Brought to you by Alta Bates Summit Medical Center.