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Posts made in November, 2011

Reflections on Special Occasions and Connection

Most holidays can be traced back to an important transition in the seasons, or life. Birth (spring), harvest/success (fall), coming of age (summer), and death (winter).

We live with the same rhythm: The coming of morning, daytime, evening, night, and this rhythm provides structure and support, as well as connection with others.

We all need that connection – just look at the social networking boom. We tend to look for people who are similar to us, experiencing something with us, who have kids the same age as ours,  or who enjoy the same things we do. I cannot help wondering if this search for connection is a consequence of not focusing on the most obvious things (the rhythm) we share with everyone on this planet.

Feeling connected lends itself to appreciating others and ritualizing their role in our lives — this includes special occasions. When possible, it’s nice for special occasions to include each member of the family contributing something to the food, music, and an activity focused on whatever is being celebrated. A special meal, greens or flowers from the yard, a house filled with a favorite music, and kind words make each person feel special, and most importantly, appreciated.

This blog post is contributed by Nancy Brown, Ph.D.,  a nationally-recognized health educator and adolescent development expert at the Palo Alto Medical Foundation (PAMF).

Local Advocate, Patient Says PAMF Doctors Make Health Care Personal


As executive director of Familia Center, a family resource center for Latino families located in Santa Cruz, Yolanda Henry works every day advocating for people who often cannot speak for themselves. That’s why she takes her 84-year-old mother to the same Palo Alto Medical Foundation doctors she herself has trusted for the last 30 years. Henry knows that at PAMF, her mom’s doctors will take the time to carefully explain her mother’s medical condition and options to her in simple, unhurried terms she can understand, and often in her native Spanish.
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$600K Donation Celebrates a Life, Inspires Cancer Center Campaign

Rendering of new PAMF Sunnyvale Center being built at Old San Francisco Road.

A life defined by “conscience, compassion and competence” has been honored in an extraordinary way.  Mike and Linda Markkula of Woodside, California, have donated $600,000 to the Palo Alto Medical Foundation (PAMF) in honor of their friend Fr. Paul L. Locatelli. Their gift is also a challenge gift to inspire others to donate toward the construction of PAMF’s new Cancer Center in  Sunnyvale, located at 301 Old San Francisco Road, and to name the entire center after Paul Locatelli, S.J.

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PAMF Parents Save Time, Complete Well-Child Forms Online

If you are a PAMF parent or guardian of children ages 0 – 11, you can now complete and submit all well-child forms online prior to your visit through My Health Online‘s child proxy access feature.  To access the questionnaire, check the inbox of your child’s My Health Online account the week prior to the visit.

If you haven’t already registered for proxy access for your children, now is a great time to sign up. Simply log into your My Health Online account, click on the “Health Record” link on the left menu, then click “Request Proxy Access.”

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Do We Really Need Eight Glasses of Water a Day?

In this blog post, Dr. Arnold Aigen, a urologist at the Palo Alto Medical Foundation’s Mountain View Center, addresses the common rule-of-thumb that we all need to drink eight glasses of water every day. He’s a surgical subspecialist who treats a variety of urological medical problems from infections to cancer and kidney stones.

“A day rarely goes by without me seeing a patient who is experiencing the discomfort of needing to urinate too often,” Dr. Aigen says. “While many medical issues, such as prostate or bladder problems, can cause this disorder, I also always ask my patients about their fluid intake.”

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