MMC blog header

Did you know? 

• 1 in 5 Americans will be diagnosed with skin cancer by the age of 70. 

• One blistering sunburn significantly increases a person’s risk for developing melanoma. 

• Tanning bed use (even once!) increases melanoma risk by 20%. 

Protect the skin you’re in! 

• Mineral sunscreen (zinc oxide, titanium dioxide) SPF30 or greater applied every 2 hours provides adequate protection for children and adults. 

• Long sleeves protect for a long time! Choose sun protective clothing and wide brimmed hats. 

• Keep children in shade to protect them from UV exposure. Play outdoors in the morning or evenings when the sunisn’t as bright. 

Free Skin Cancer Screenings 

May is nationally recognized as Skin Cancer Awareness month. For the past several years, MMC Dermatology has offered free skin cancer screenings for new patients in the month of May. And they are proud to provide that same offer again this year! New patients will be scheduled with Carolyn Goodman Henn, DNP/FNP-C, who recently joined the practice as Dr. Brad Bledsoe’s Nurse Practitioner in 2021. Any additional treatment or procedure recommended will be scheduled accordingly. For more than 25years MMC Dermatology has served our community by providing adults and children the very best in skin care. To schedule an appointment, call 615-867-8220 or

Your health is our mission. 

Posted by Murfreesboro Medical Clinic  | Category: News

Murfreesboro Medical Clinic & SurgiCenter is proud to announce the addition of Austin W. Mackens, M.D. to its Internal and Family Medicine Department.

Austin Mackens, M.D. is a board-certified, family medicine physician who is now practicing at Murfreesboro Medical Clinic (MMC). Originally from Murfreesboro, Dr. Mackens graduated cum laude from Maryville College in Maryville, Tennessee where he earned a B.A. in Biology with a minor in Biochemistry. He earned his medical degree from the University of Tennessee Health Science Center in 2010 and completed his residency in Family Medicine at the University of Tennessee, Jackson in 2013. 

Dr. Mackens is thrilled to be back home providing care for the patients of Rutherford County and the surrounding communities.

Joey Peay, MMC’s Chief Executive Officer, notes, “We are thankful to be able to add Dr. Mackens to our Internal/Family Medicine Department.  As Rutherford County and the surrounding areas continue to grow, it is critical that MMC adds quality physicians, like Dr. Mackens to help meet the increasing demands for primary care physicians in this community.  His experiences working in emergency medicine for a number of years will give him unique insight into ways to help his patients strive for and maintain a healthy lifestyle with good habits that will, hopefully, help them avoid ERs in the future.”

Dr. Mackens and his wife, Jessica Anderson Mackens (who is also a Murfreesboro native), have three children: Abigail, Maddie Kate, and Everett.  They attend Providence Christian Academy where Mrs. Mackens is also a high school math teacher. The family attends World Outreach Church in Murfreesboro. Dr. Mackens is an avid outdoorsman and loves to hunt, fish, and camp. He also loves sports and played rugby at the University of Tennessee and football at Maryville College. Dr. Mackens and his family are avid travel and adventure enthusiasts and plan to visit all 50 states before the children leave for college.

*Dr. Mackens will transition to the Northfield office this summer.

Posted by Murfreesboro Medical Clinic | Topic: New Physicians  | Category: New Physicians

Hunter Lampley, FNP-C (right) of MMC Gastroenterology speaks with a female patient (left) in an exam room

Recent studies have revealed an increase in incidence of colorectal cancer amongst people younger than age 50, which has led to updated screening recommendations.

This is why Murfreesboro Medical Clinic (MMC) Gastroenterology is educating their patients and community about the importance of routine screenings.  March is nationally recognized as Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month. The Gastroenterologists at MMC hopes to bring attention to recent developments in the field and to break stigmas associated with colorectal healthcare and colonoscopies.

The United States Preventive Services Task Force now recommends that adults begin screening for colorectal cancer at age 45. Because of this new guideline, both private insurers and Medicare will soon be required to cover the costs of your colorectal cancer screening when performed by an in-network provider starting at age 45. In fact, most insurances already are.

Screening with Colonoscopy

Although there are many screenings that can help find colorectal cancer, MMC Gastroenterologist Brian D. Smith, M.D. says that none is better than a colonoscopy.

“Early stages of colorectal cancer usually present with no symptoms. A colonoscopy is the only test to prevent colorectal cancer, with the unique ability to remove polyps before they turn into cancer,” said Dr. Smith. “It is the only screening test recommended at 10-year intervals, because it’s by far the best test at finding precancerous polyps.”

With four gastroenterologists, four advanced practice providers and an in-house, accredited SurgiCenter, MMC is well-equipped to perform safe and reliable colonoscopies. Preparations have improved, and are generally easier to tolerate than in the past. The procedure is performed with the patient sedated, and generally there is no pain during or after the procedure. Most patients will feel well upon leaving the SurgiCenter, get back to a regular diet that day and resume regular activities, such as work, the day after.

Breaking the Stigma

According to the Center for Disease Control (CDC), colorectal cancer is the third leading cause of cancer-related deaths in the U.S. The American Cancer Society estimates that there will be about 150,000 new cases of colorectal cancer in the U.S. in 2022, leading to an estimated 52,580 deaths. Even with these startling statistics, the CDC says that only about 7 out of 10 U.S. adults aged 50 to 75 are up-to-date with colorectal cancer screening.

“My suspicion is that people do not want to have the test mostly out of embarrassment,” said MMC Gastroenterologist Robert Knox, M.D. “But talking to the patient directly will usually alleviate their angst about going thru the procedure. Knowing where you stand regarding your colon health is incredibly valuable.”

To learn more about colonoscopies and to see if screening is recommended for you, please click here.

If have questions or concerns about getting a colonoscopy, talk to your doctor. If you would like to schedule a colonoscopy, please click here or call 615-867-8070.

More About Colonoscopies

Murfreesboro Medical Clinic and SurgiCenter (MMC) announced that applications are now being accepted for the ‘Drs. David and Yolando Chatman Scholarship’. The scholarship will be awarded to a local college junior, senior or graduate student who is advancing to medical school and is also a member of an ethnic minority group that is often underrepresented in medicine.

MMC named the scholarship after two of its physicians, each known for their impact on the culture, diversity and overall success of Murfreesboro Medical Clinic in their 25+ years with the clinic.

Yolando McGriff-Chatman, M.D. joined Murfreesboro Medical Clinic in 1996 as an Obstetrician and Gynecologist and later practiced Gynecology only. David Chatman, M.D., a Vascular Surgeon, joined MMC a couple of years later as a member of its Surgery Department. Through the years, they have mentored many students on their paths to medical school. The couple plans to retire from the practice of medicine and MMC in May and move to Ohio to be closer to their daughter as she begins her medical career.

“Both David and Yolando have dedicated their careers to providing their patients and this community with the highest levels of care,” said Joey Peay, MMC’s Chief Executive Officer. “As we considered what to name our scholarship, it made sense to honor those two individuals who have served as important role models in our Clinic and in the overall medical community.  Their compassion and their commitment to helping develop the skills of other physicians, especially minority physicians, should be an example for all of us to follow.  We, as an organization, are thankful for their leadership, and they will be missed at MMC and in the Murfreesboro medical community.”

What inspired the scholarship?

In 2020, the physicians at Murfreesboro Medical Clinic and SurgiCenter established The MMC Foundation (a 501(c)(3) charitable foundation) to advance its mission to foster continuous improvement in the community’s health. The MMC Foundation partnered with MMC’s Diversity Committee, led by Dr. David Chatman for the past 3 years, to develop a scholarship for local students who are advancing to medical school and who are also members of ethnic groups that are underrepresented in the medical profession.

The scholarship was inspired by Rutherford County’s own Martin Luther King, Jr. Scholarship Fund (created by the late Dr. George Smith and Mary Scales), which was created in 1984 to help address concerns regarding the African American achievement gap in the local community.

“Representation matters,” said Dr. Chatman. “There are physical, educational, social, and economic barriers which serve to dissuade diverse students from seeking leadership opportunities and membership within dissimilar communities. Diversity in representation helps to break these barriers down, and helps to normalize and realize the American dream for all Americans.” 

Criteria for the scholarship can be found online at Applications must be submitted by March 1, 2022 to be considered.

Posted by Murfreesboro Medical Clinic | Topic: News  | Category: News

The department joins an elite group of practices across the country that have been recognized for their commitment to continuous quality improvement and a patient-centered approach to care.

Murfreesboro Medical Clinic’s (MMC) OBGYN department, which provides the full spectrum in obstetrical and gynecological care to women in Middle Tennessee, has been recognized by the National Committee for Quality Assurance (NCQA) as a Patient-Centered Specialty Practice (PCSP). 

Following an intensive vetting process based on industry-leading best practices, the department was notified that it had achieved this status which recognizes its commitment to continuous quality improvement and a patient-centered approach to care. With this announcement, MMC OBGYN becomes not only the first obstetrical and gynecological practice, but the first specialty practice in the state of Tennessee to earn this prestigious recognition.

“This is a huge accomplishment and one that we are all very proud of,” said Denise Flanagan, MMC’s Chief Operating Officer. “It demonstrates our physicians’ and staff’s commitment to excellence and the patients that we serve.”

What is a Patient-Centered Specialty Practice?

Practices that become recognized under Patient-Centered Specialty Practice Recognition have demonstrated commitment to patient-centered care and clinical quality through: streamlined referral processes and care coordination with referring clinicians, timely patient and caregiver-focused care management and continuous clinical quality.

“NCQA Patient-Centered Specialty Practice Recognition distinguishes practices that communicate, collaborate and integrate care in ways that patients want and that improve quality,” said NCQA President Margaret E. O’Kane. “I commend the team at Murfreesboro Medical Clinic Obstetrics and Gynecology for its achievement, and for its commitment to continuous improvement.”

Earning NCQA Patient-Centered Specialty Practice Recognition shows consumers, private payers and government agencies that the practice has undergone a rigorous review of its capabilities and is committed to sharing information and coordinating care. Recognition also signals to primary care practices that the specialty practice is ready to be an effective partner in caring for patients. 

“The OBGYN department has done an excellent job transforming their practice into a Patient Centered Specialty Practice,” said Collette Thomas, MMC’s Quality Coordinator. “The strain of the pandemic has not made this an easy process. Revising existing workflows and implementing new processes that ensure coordinated care took a great deal of teamwork and collaboration. I’m thrilled to see it all come together.”

“I am very proud of this accomplishment,” added Jason Pollock, M.D. of MMC OBGYN. “In a year as trying as this one, these victories should be celebrated. It is not often you are apart of a group that is the ‘first and only.’ I’d like to thank our Office Manager Christy Kinslow and our Quality Coordinator Collette Thomas for their leadership navigating this accreditation process.”

MMC’s OBGYN department joins a distinguished group of fewer than 400 other specialty care practices from across the United States that have also earned PCSP Recognition.

Learn More:

To learn more about the NCQA’s Patient-Centered Specialty Practice Recognition program, please visit the committee’s website.

To learn more about MMC’s OBGYN physicians and services, visit the department’s website.

4 Basic Steps for Food Safety

November 4th, 2021

Each year millions of people get sick from food illnesses which can cause you to feel like you have the flu. Food illnesses can also cause serious health problems, even death. Follow these four steps to help keep you and your family safe.

1. Clean

Always wash your food, hands, counters, and cooking tools.

  • Wash hands in warm soapy water for at least 20 seconds. Do this before and after touching food.
  • Wash your cutting boards, dishes, forks, spoons, knives, and counter tops with hot soapy water. Do this after working with each food item.
  • Rinse fruits and veggies.
  • Do not wash meat, poultry, fish, or eggs. If water splashes from the sink in the process of washing, it can spread bacteria.
  • Clean the lids on canned goods before opening.

2. Separate (Keep Apart)

Keep raw foods to themselves. Germs can spread from one food to another.
  • Keep raw meat, poultry, seafood, and eggs away from other foods. Do this in your shopping cart, bags, and fridge.
  • Do not reuse marinades used on raw foods unless you bring them to a boil first.
  • Use a special cutting board or plate for raw foods only.

3. Cook

Foods need to get hot and stay hot. Heat kills germs.
  • Cook to safe temperatures:
  • Beef, Pork, Lamb 145 °F
  • Fish 145 °F
  • Ground Beef, Pork, Lamb 160 °F
  • Turkey, Chicken, Duck 165 °F
  • Use a food thermometer to make sure that food is done. You can’t always tell by looking.
4. Chill

Put food in the fridge right away.

  • 2-Hour Rule: Put foods in the fridge or freezer within 2 hours after cooking or buying from the store. Do this within 1 hour if it is 90 degrees or hotter outside.
  • Never thaw food by simply taking it out of the fridge. Thaw food:
  • In the fridge
  • Under cold water
  • In the microwave
  • Marinate foods in the fridge.
  • Think you have a food illness?
  • Call your doctor and get medical care right away.

Think you have a food illness?

Call your doctor and get medical care right away.

  • Save the food package, can, or carton. Then report the problem.
  • Call USDA at 1-888-674-6854 if you think the illness was caused by meat, poultry, or eggs.
  • Call FDA at 1-866-300-4374 for all other foods.
  • Call your local health department if you think you got sick from food you ate in a restaurant or other food seller.
Who is at risk?

Anyone can get sick from eating spoiled food. Some people are more likely to get sick from food illnesses.

  • Pregnant women
  • Older Adults
  • People with certain health conditions like cancer, HIV/AIDS, diabetes, and kidney disease

Some foods are more risky for these people. Talk to your doctor or other health provider about which foods are safe for you to eat.

Posted by Murfreesboro Medical Clinic | Topic: News  | Category: WLW

For the Love of Our Patients

October 19th, 2021

2021 Crystal Scholarship Recipients

Suzy Dotson | Haylee Ferguson | Hope Marrero | Blake Preston | Alan Rodriguez | Kristin Schuler | Anna Truitt | Tyler Vanderheyden | Aubrey Wilkinson

Every year, the physicians at the Murfreesboro Medical Clinic (MMC) Comprehensive Breast Center care for the medical needs of hundreds of women diagnosed with breast cancer. From detection to restoration, patients are guided on a unique journey toward recovery. But in 2019, MMC decided to extend care beyond its facilities to honor the families of breast cancer patients.

The Crystal Scholarship was created to assist children of MMC’s breast cancer patients in continuing their education beyond high school.

“As a mom myself, I know that the people I would worry about most, should I ever develop a life-threatening condition, are my children,” said Dr. Lisa White, a provider at MMC’s Comprehensive Breast Center. “This scholarship is our way of showing our patients that we care about not only them, but those individuals who are dearest to them.”

The name of the ‘Crystal’ Scholarship was inspired by MMC patient, Crystal Brown. Crystal cared deeply about her 3 boys, Michael, Matthew and Mason and her husband, Jeff. Her oldest son Michael received the inaugural scholarship in May 2019. Since the scholarship’s inception in 2019, almost $20,000 of funding has been provided to high school seniors graduating from schools all over the state. These students have then gone on to pursue careers ranging from nursing to marine biology to international law. In May 2021, the Crystal Scholarship was awarded to 9 high school seniors.

To learn more about the Crystal Scholarship or how to make a contribution, call the MMC Comprehensive Breast Center at 615-867-8040.

Posted by Murfreesboro Medical Clinic | Topic: News  | Category: News

On Friday, October 22, Murfreesboro Medical Clinic & SurgiCenter (MMC) and TrustPoint Hospital will be partnering with the Prevention Coalition for Success, the Rutherford County Sheriff's Office and the Murfreesboro Police Department to provide a safe place for you to dispose of your unused medications.

In an effort to reduce the amount of potentially dangerous medications in Rutherford County while also increasing awareness about substance abuse, the groups will operate a drive-thru drop-off booth in the South parking lot of MMC’s Garrison Drive location to collect unwanted, unused or expired medications.

The groups hope to match the success that they had at a similar takeback event in late April, where they collected a record 350 pounds of medications from hundreds of community members over the course of just a few hours. 

“The success of this program is evident in the significant quantities of medications that were collected,” stated Joey Peay, CEO of MMC. “If just one life can be saved or improved by keeping these potentially dangerous medications out of the hands of a child or off the streets, then the time and effort put into these types of programs are worth it!”

From 8 a.m. to 2 p.m., volunteers, representatives and law enforcement officers will be collecting tablets, capsules and other solid forms of medications. Liquids (including intravenous solutions), illegal drugs, syringes and other sharps will not be accepted.

“It is our goal to link with our community partners to escalate knowledge, resources and safe practices for the families in our community,” said Beth Goodner, CEO of TrustPoint Hospital.

With improper storage at home, many medications can easily be purposefully or accidentally misused. In an effort to reduce misuse and make safe storage more possible for the community, the Prevention Coalition for Success will be offering free home lock boxes at this event as well.

Posted by Murfreesboro Medical Clinic | Topic: Events  | Category: Events

Murfreesboro Medical Clinic & SurgiCenter is proud to announce the addition of Justin Miller, D.O. to its Radiology Department.

Justin Miller, D.O. is a skilled board-certified radiologist who is now practicing at Murfreesboro Medical Clinic (MMC). He is originally from Maryland, but he has spent time practicing in Tennessee for many years now.

Following his father's footsteps, Dr. Miller attended Salisbury University and graduated in 2003 with highest honors. In 2007, he received his medical degree from Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine before completing a transitional internship at Walter Reed Army Medical Center in 2008. He then completed his radiology residency at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center at the top of his class in 2012 before being assigned to Ft. Campbell for active duty. Dr. Miller attributes much of his success as a civilian radiologist to his experience at Ft. Campbell’s Blanchfield Army Community Hospital, where he provided a full surge of diagnostic imaging for military service men and women.

Dr. Miller is very involved in the Catholic community, and in his free time he enjoys many athletic activities including soccer, rock climbing, jujitsu and natural movement.

Dr. Miller and his wife, Heather,  have 3 children. They are extremely excited to be back in Middle Tennessee.

For more information about Dr. Miller or to make an appointment with MMC Radiology, visit or call 615-867-8150.

Posted by Murfreesboro Medical Clinic | Topic: New Physicians  | Category: New Physicians

Murfreesboro Medical Clinic & SurgiCenter is proud to announce the addition of J. Brett Farmer, M.D. to its Ophthalmology Department.

J. Brett Farmer, M.D. is a board-eligible ophthalmologist who is now practicing at Murfreesboro Medical Clinic. Dr. Farmer, a Murfreesboro native, says he is excited to have the opportunity to care for patients of his hometown.

Dr. Farmer received his undergraduate degree from Middle Tennessee State University before attending East Tennessee State University for his medical degree. He then went on to attend the University of Kentucky for his residency in Ophthalmology.

Dr. Farmer is skilled in comprehensive ophthalmology services, but he takes a special interest in the treatment of glaucoma.

He and his wife, Jennifer, live in Murfreesboro with their two children. 

Outside of work, he enjoys spending time with his family and volunteering at his church. He enjoys many different outdoor activities including golf, archery, hiking, and fishing.

For more information about Dr. Farmer or to make an appointment, visit his physician page or call 615-867-8050.

Posted by Murfreesboro Medical Clinic | Topic: New Physicians  | Category: New Physicians

Murfreesboro Medical Clinic | 615-893-4480 | see all locations
pixel image