Gift bags donated for biopsy patients

Photo by Casey Dixon

Photo by Casey Dixon

ALBANY, Ga. -- Patients undergoing a biopsy at Phoebe Putney Memorial Hospital are overwhelmed enough with the idea of why they are in the hospital.

Whatever can be done to ease their anxiety is welcomed.

Every woman coming in for a biopsy at the hospital's Carlton Breast Health Center now receive a gift bag with items to help make the process more comfortable.

The Junior Woman's Club of Albany donated the funds for the items inside the bags. Within the kit is a water bottle, crackers, mints, a pair of fuzzy socks and an inspirational book.

"Our patients, when they come in for a biopsy, are very nervous," said Dorothy Dickey, a nurse at the center. "We are trying to make it comfortable for them.

"And the patients are always excited to get (the gift bags)."

The bags are insulated so they can be used later as a lunch bag. The bag also comes with a blanket that has the center's logo on it.

Part of the idea behind distributing the bags is to demonstrate that the hospital genuinely does care about its patients, Dickey said.

"We are continually reviewing what we are doing that makes patients feel comfortable," she said. "The Junior Woman's Club did this for us, and we decided to take their money."

An average of more than 400 breast biopsies a year are performed at the Carlton Breast Health Center. The center goes through roughly eight bags a week.

The bags have been going out to patients for about three months now. Biopsies are performed there one day a week, which comes out to roughly 30 bags in a month.

"We want this to be a good experience for them," Dickey said. "Most patients feel that we do care for them."

The center recently moved to a new location on the fourth floor of Medical Tower II. The new 10,000-square-foot space allows the center to expand its services and also brings its offices, diagnostics and services together under one roof.