December 8, 2004

Contact: Jennifer Riordan 272-0262 office, 220-0702 cell; Bridgid Isworth 272-1622

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

The Urogynecology/Pelvic Support division of the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology at the University of New Mexico Health Sciences Center (UNM HSC) has recently been nationally recognized with the 2004 National Continence Care Champion Award.

NAFC Executive Director Nancy Muller presented the award to Becky Rogers, M.D, director of the UNM HSC Women's Health Urogynecology Center, July 31 in San Diego, CA, during the joint scientific meeting of The American Urogynecologic Society (AUGS) and The Society of Gynecologic Surgeons (SGS).

According to the NAFC web site, since 2000, the NAFC has bestowed its Continence Care Champion Award to 23 highly deserving individuals throughout the United States. In 2003, NAFC initiated an award to a clinic or facility to acknowledge what it has achieved as a role model for others. The honor is based on contributions in the field of incontinence towards research, in patient education, and advances in the team's clinical practice, specifically, employing an interdisciplinary approach to healthcare. This national recognition, under the sponsorship of Indevus Pharmaceuticals, Inc., is accompanied by an unrestricted educational grant in the amount of $1,500 to the recipient.

"This facility takes limited resources like the famous biblical story of fishes and loaves and feeds the thousands," Muller said. "It is in a poor state whose citizens face overwhelming health care access issues, yet it pushes the envelope, plotting new strategies for outreach and community education."

The Women's Health Urogynecology Center of the University of New Mexico caters to a large rural population in a state offering a shortage of healthcare outside its two urban centers. It serves a highly diverse population; 40% of patients are Hispanic and 10% are Native American, two ethnicities often underserved in many cities across the nation. The clinic's outreach even includes Navajo interpreters for women who travel far distances to seek treatment.

The Center's team includes urogynecologists, obstetricians, geriatricians, family practice physicians, nurse specialists, physical therapists, nurse midwives, interpreters, and social workers. It staffs a full-day pessary clinic every week so that a broad range of options are available to its patients.

"Women's Health Urogynecology Center is a tremendous model for a multidiscipline team approach, and through the organizational skills of Dr. Rogers, there are many accomplishments and the program is getting national recognition as a good model to follow," commended Dr. William Rayburn, chair of the UNM Obstetrics and Gynecology Department. "There is a heightened awareness of a health issue more unique to women and very deserving of our recognition."

The Urogynecological/Pelvic Support Disorders division of the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology was also the recipient of the 2003 National Continence Care Center of Distinction Award, presented by the NAFC in 2003.

Research conducted by the department include:

·         Sexual function with pelvic floor disorders

·         Drug trials for incontinence disorders

·         Repair of lacerations after childbirth

·         Pelvic floor changes after childbirth

Areas of special interest include:

·         Urinary incontinence

·         Urodynamics

·         Anal incontinence

·         Uterine prolapse

·         Sexual dysfunction

·         Pessary placement

For more information about research or areas of special interest for the Urogynecological/ Pelvic support disorders division of the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, please contact the department at 1-888-UNM-PALS.