The Southeast Permanente Medical Group

The Southeast Permanente Medical Group is an integral part of Kaiser Permanente. Our physicians can coordinate virtually every aspect of patient care - from referrals to laboratory tests to medications. With everything under one umbrella, our patients receive the highest continuity of care.

Stephen Feren, MD, joins the new TSPMG Sleep Medicine Department

The Southeast Permanente Medical Group is happy to announce that Stephen Feren, MD, has joined our new Sleep Medicine department. The department, which will be internalized in May 2016 at the Kaiser Permanente Cumberland Medical Office, focuses on obstructive sleep apnea, existing CPAP patient follow-ups, and excessive daytime somnolence/sleepiness. Along with Dr. Feren, Sleep Medicine services will be provided by Lisa Billars, MD, TSPMG Chief of Neurology.

Dr. Feren received his medical degree from the Medical College of Georgia and competed his internal medicine residency at the University of Virginia Roanoke-Salem. He also completed a residency in Adult Neurology at Washington University Barnes-Jewish Hospital, as well as fellowships in Neurophysiology at St. Louis University Hospital and Sleep Medicine at the Sleep Medicine & Research Center in Chesterfield, MO. Dr. Billars and Dr. Feren are each Board certified in Sleep Medicine.

Dr. Feren will be an excellent addition to our new Sleep Medicine department.




Scott Cutro, MD, Named Lead Physician, Infectious Diseases

The Southeast Permanente Medical Group (TSPMG) is pleased to announce that Scott Cutro, MD, has been named Lead Physician for our Department of Infectious Diseases. He assumes this responsibility from Wink Weinberg, MD, who previously served in the position and is now focusing on his clinical role.

Since joining TSPMG in 2013, Dr. Cutro has been a true advocate of integrated care. He is well respected clinically and is very enthusiastic about his department and Kaiser Permanente.  He received his medical degree from the UMDNJ-New Jersey Medical

School and completed his residency in Internal Medicine at Emory University and a fellowship in Infectious Disease at the New York University School of Medicine. He is Board certified in both internal medicine and infectious disease.

Please join us in thanking Dr. Weinberg for his leadership and welcoming Dr. Cutro to his new role.


David Jones, MD, Named Chief of Pediatrics

The Southeast Permanente Medical Group is pleased to announce that David Jones, MD has accepted the role of Chief of Pediatrics, effective immediately. He has served as the Interim Chief since Catherine Dragstedt, MD, stepped down from the Chief role last fall to dedicate more time to her clinical work.

Dr. Jones has done a great job as interim chief, working to help the department function more efficiently and making some difficult decisions. He is enthusiastic about his role and we look forward to working with him as he develops and institutes his vision for the department.

Dr. Jones received his medical degree from the Medical College of Virginia School of Medicine and completed his residency in Pediatrics at Children’s Hospital of Los Angeles. He has held several leadership roles since joining TSPMG in 2001, including managing physician for Panola & Stonecrest and as Regional Co-Lead for UBTs.

Please join us in welcoming David to his new role and wishing him all the best.

Ken Aden, MD, Named TSPMG Associate Chief of Otolaryngology

TSPMG is pleased to announce that Ken Aden, MD has been named Associate Chief of Otolaryngology. In this newly created position, he will work with the Chief of the department, Jim Lucarini, MD, who also serves as the Physician Director of Surgical Specialties.

Dr. Aden is a strong advocate for TSPMG. He clearly has passion about our medical group and a strong desire to help make us successful. As co-lead of the department's UBT, he demonstrated leadership and an ability to work with his coworkers and accomplish goals.

Dr. Aden received his medical degree from the University of Nebraska Medical Center. He completed a surgical internship at St. Joseph's Hospital in Denver and his residency training in Otolaryngology at the University of Minnesota. He joined TSPMG in 1992.

Please join us in congratulating Ken on his new role and thanking him for his dedication to the department.


February 28, 2011

From Baby Boomers to Senior Boomers: 10 Tips to Keep You Healthy and Fit

What do Sylvester Stallone, Cher, Diane Keaton and George W. Bush have in common other than fame? They’re among the first wave of baby boomers, who turn 65 years old this year, to become “senior boomers” and Medicare-eligible. Starting January 2011, more than 10,000 baby boomers a day will turn 65 – that’s one every eight seconds, a pattern expected to continue for the next 19 years1.

How times have changed! Aging is different now than it was for our parents and grandparents. Today, there are more people living longer than at any other time in history. In fact, boomers will number 78 million by 20302. “Our generation is associated with social change, and we need to become activists in promoting healthful behaviors,” says baby boomer Carole Gardner, MD, a geriatrician and chief of elder care for Kaiser Permanente Georgia. “Adopting a healthy and active lifestyle is especially important for seniors with chronic medical conditions. Physical activity can be an effective treatment for some.  However, you should consult a physician before starting an exercise regimen.”

Dr. Gardner recommends 10 easy tips to help baby boomers live long and thrive!

1)Keep active

Do something to keep fit each day—something you enjoy that maintains strength, balance, flexibility, and promotes cardiovascular health. Physical activity helps you stay at a healthy weight, prevent or control illness, sleep better, reduce stress, avoid falls, and look and feel better too.

2)Eat well

Combined with physical activity, eating nutritious foods in the right amounts can help keep you healthy. Many illnesses—such as heart disease, obesity, high blood pressure, type 2 diabetes and osteoporosis—can be prevented or controlled with dietary changes and exercise. Calcium and vitamin D supplements can help women prevent osteoporosis.

3)Maintain a healthy weight

Extra weight increases your risk for heart disease, diabetes and high blood pressure. Use our BMI (body mass index) calculator to find out what you should weigh for your height. Get to your healthy weight and stay there by eating right and keeping active. Replace sugary drinks with water. Water is calorie free!

4)If you smoke, quit

Take this critical step to improve your health and combat aging. Smoking kills by causing cancer, strokes and heart failure. Smoking can lead to dysfunction in men due to atherosclerosis and to excessive wrinkling by attacking skin elasticity. Many resources are available to help you quit.

5)Prevent falls

We become vulnerable to falls as we age. Prevent falls and injury by removing loose carpet or throw rugs. Keep paths clear of electrical cords and clutter, and use night-lights in hallways and bathrooms. Wear shoes with good support to reduce the risk of falling.

6)Stay up-to-date on immunizations and other health screenings

By age 50, women should begin mammography screening for breast cancer. Men can be checked for prostate cancer. Many preventative screenings are available. Those who are new to Medicare can schedule a “Welcome to Medicare” visit, and all Medicare members should have an annual wellness visit. Use these visits to discuss which preventative screenings and vaccinations are right for you.

7)Prevent skin cancer

As we age, our skin grows thinner; it becomes drier, and less elastic. Wrinkles appear, and cuts and bruises take longer to heal. Be sure to protect your skin from the sun. Too much sun and ultra violet rays can cause skin cancer. Use a sunscreen with a SPF of 15 or more and re-apply every 2-3 hours while out.

8)Get regular check-ups

Check-ups for older men and women

  • Vision. Every year get your eyes checked for glaucoma and other age-related eye problems.
  • Osteoporosis. Ask your doctor if you need a bone density test to find out if you have thinning or brittle bones. Also ask your doctor about calcium and vitamin D supplements to help your bones.
  • Colon cancer tests. Get checked for colon cancer as often as your doctor recommends. Ask your doctor which test is best for you.
  • Skin cancer. Do a skin self-exam every three months, to look for any changes in your skin.

Check-ups for women only

  • Pap test and pelvic exam. Ask your doctor how often you should have a Pap test. As you get older, you may not need to have a Pap test as often.
  • Breast exam and mammogram. Have a doctor check your breasts every year. Ask how often you should have a mammogram, which is an X-ray of your breasts. A mammogram can spot breast cancer before it can be felt and when it is easier to treat.

Check-ups for men only

  • Prostate exam. Talk to your doctor about whether you should have a blood test (called a PSA test) for prostate cancer. Talk about the benefits and risks of the test with your doctor.
  • Abdominal aortic aneurysm. Ask your doctor if you need a test to check for an aneurysm. An abdominal aortic aneurysm is the bulging or ballooning of the large artery in your stomach. It is caused by weakening of the artery’s walls. You may need a test if you ever smoked or if your parent, brother, sister, or child has had an aneurysm.

9)Manage stress

Try exercise or relaxation techniques – perhaps meditation or yoga – as a means of coping. Make time for friends and social contacts and fun. Successful coping can affect our health and how we feel. Learn the role of positive thinking.

10)Fan the flame – sexual intimacy and aging

Age is no reason to limit your sexual enjoyment. Learn about physical changes that come with aging and get suggestions to help you adjust to them, if necessary.


Click links for more info:

1. Lifestyle choices: how to live a long and healthy life

2. Medicare: peace of mind