Dietitian Joins PCH/FMC Staff

  • Category: News
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  • Written By: Horizon Health

Paris Community Hospital/Family Medical Center welcomes Kara Wilcoxon, registered dietitian and nutritionist, to its staff of healthcare professionals.

Wilcoxon serves as the organization’s nutritional services manager, providing nutrition counseling for both outpatients and hospitalized patients.

Wilcoxon earned a bachelor’s of science degree in family and consumer sciences with an emphasis in dietetics from Eastern Illinois University (EIU). She also has a master’s degree in nutrition and dietetics from EIU. Prior to joining PCH/FMC, Wilcoxon completed a dietetic internship with Sarah Bush Lincoln Health System.

“I wanted to go into the clinical side of dietetics and always liked the idea of using nutrition to prevent disease,” Wilcoxon said. “I wanted to stay local and this is a great opportunity for growth in my field. I like the small-town atmosphere.”

Wilcoxon is currently developing a “diabetes-friendly” food menu for hospital patients with input from Dr. Edward Rico, endocrinologist, and Dr. Reid Sutton, hospitalist. She also is performing a nutritional analysis of food options offered in the hospital’s cafeteria, which serves patients, visitors, and PCH/FMC staff.

At the hospital, Wilcoxon performs rounding activities where she visits patients and conducts follow-up visits regarding their diet and nutrition needs.

“When I visit patients I address nutritional concerns that I have for them, as well as concerns patients have about themselves,” she said.

In her office in the Paris Family Medical Center, Wilcoxon provides nutritional counseling to patients who are referred to her by healthcare providers. She also provides individual nutrition counseling by appointment. Some of the biggest health concerns affecting a person’s diet restrictions today are obesity, diabetes, and cardiovascular issues, including high blood pressure and heart attacks, Wilcoxon said.

Wilcoxon is a member of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics and president-elect of the Eastern Illinois Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. She also is a member of Bee Well of Edgar County.

She is originally from Rantoul and currently resides in Charleston. In her spare time, Wilcoxon enjoys spending time with friends and family, exercising, reading, and hiking.