Dear Friends and Neighbors,

CentraCare care givers have been working around the clock for more than 20 months to care for you, your families and friends during COVID. We are committed to caring for every Minnesotan who needs us, and nothing will prevent us from doing so – even during these never-seen-before times.

The challenge of providing this level of care is that our hospital beds are often full. ERs in all of our hospitals are packed. And our clinical teams are exhausted. Early in the pandemic, our community stepped up in amazing ways to help us. We ask that you again join us in fighting this pandemic together.

How can you help?

  • Please get your COVID vaccines and booster shots. They are proven safe and effective in reducing COVID illness, keeping people out of the hospital, and preventing death.
  • If your situation is not an emergency, please use other care options, including:
  • If this is a medical emergency, call 9-1-1, or visit the ER.

Together, we can do this. Thank you for your support.

Ken Holmen, MD
President and CEO

Todd's Story

Weight Management
“Losing weight has been the best thing — I only wish I would have done it sooner. ”

While being catapulted 140 feet in the air is more than most people can take, for Todd Driver of Foley, the ejection seat at the Minnesota State Fair was more than just a thrill. It was a milestone.

The journey to losing weight started off a bit bumpy. His initial lap band surgery in 2005, while it enabled him to drop weight, wasn’t the long-term solution he had hoped for. He started having reflux and the weight crept back on. Some fine tuning of the band didn’t help.

When the reflux continued, Todd was referred to weight loss surgeon Sayeed Ikramuddin, MD, in 2009. A University of Minnesota physician, Dr. Ikramuddin recently joined CentraCare Clinic.

In January 2010 Todd had his gallbladder and lapband removed. In June of that year, Dr. Ikramuddin performed gastric bypass surgery on Todd. This was the same surgery Todd’s wife, Cindy, had in 2008.

Traveling this road together has allowed the Drivers to support each other. They both can do things that many take for granted, such as fitting comfortably in a seat at a restaurant or on an airplane. Together they have lost almost 300 pounds.

“I can do things I never could before, like crawl around on the floor with my granddaughter,” Cindy said.

They both attend the St. Cloud Hospital weight loss support group to keep themselves accountable and be a support to others on their weight loss journey. They eat healthier and limit sugar. Cindy no longer needs cholesterol medication and her blood pressure is normal. The downside is the dog has gained weight.

“After my first surgery, I wasn’t good about going to follow up or support group. Now I am very faithful about going. It is so important,” Todd said. “Losing weight has been the best thing — I only wish I would have done it sooner.”