Clothing Drive August 23, 2017
The Charles Ludwig VFW Post 7362, 755 Rancks Church Road, New Holland, is seeking donations of clothing for its second annual clothing drive for veterans at the Coatesville Veterans Affairs (VA) Medical Center.
Organizer and post commander Norman E. Brower Jr. noted that clothing for both men and women veterans, such as pants, shirts, dresses, skirts, blouses, and new stockings, will be accepted, as well as items such as carry-on bags and suitcases.
Interested individuals may schedule an appointment to deliver items to VFW Post 7362 by calling Brower at 717-824-2343.
According to Brower, many times veterans will arrive at the Coatesville VA Medical Center with only the clothing they are wearing. After receiving help through the center's programs and services, the veterans are able to leave the center to find employement and go on to lead a successful life.
VFW Post 7362 offers many programs and services to the community, including an American flag retirement program as regulated by the flag code, services to veterans and their families through the VA administration, and donations of hospital equipment.
School Bus Law Reminder Posted August 23, 2017
This school year, more than 1.5 million children will be transported an estimated 400,000-plus miles on school buses. The Pennsylvania School Bus Association is asking motorists to pay extra attention as school buses ride their daily routes.
Pennsylvania law requires motorists stop at least 10 feet away from school buses when their red lights are flashing and their stop arm is extended.
Motorists following or traveling alongside a school bus must also stop until the red lights have stopped flashing and the stop arm is withdrawn. Vehicles cannot proceed until all the children have reached a place of safety. Penalties for failure to obey school bus safety laws can result in a $250 fine, five points on a driving record, and a 60-day license suspension.
Parents are reminded to ensure that their children are at the bus stop early to avoid rushing. Students should stay where the bus driver can see them while boarding or exiting the bus.
For more information and tips for school bus safety, readers may visit www.penndot.gov and click on Safety under Travel in PA, scroll down to Traffic Safety and Driver Topics, and click on School Bus Safety.
Concussion Tips Posted August 23, 2017
With many student-athletes back at school for fall sports practice, it is a good time for students, parents, and coaches to be vigilant at preventing, recognizing, and managing concussions. A concussion is a type of traumatic brain injury caused by a bump, blow, or jolt to the head or from a fall or blow to the body that causes the head and brain to move quickly back and forth.
Concussions can have serious short-term and long-term impacts, especially on young people whose brains are still developing. In 2011, the Safety in Youth Sports Act was signed into law in Pennsylvania, requiring all school entities to develop return-to-play policies for student-athletes with concussions, as well as requiring related training for coaches.
Readers may visit the Department of Health's website at www.health.pa.gov and search for Traumatic Brain Injury for approved curricula for coaches and other school personnel, along with frequently asked questions about the law and many other state-related resources. Most importantly, if a parent thinks their child has a concussion, they should seek medical attention, discuss the injury with the coach, and do not allow the athlete to return to play without permission from a health care professional.
Website Provides Vaccine Information August 23, 2017
The Chester County Immunization Coalition, a county-wide organization promoting recommended vaccines across people's lifespans, invites the public to use a website that helps adults determine what vaccines they need, and where they can find them
The website, www.vaccinefinder.org, provides information about availability of vaccine clinics in each ZIP code across the nation. It also includes a simple quiz that asks a number of questions to determine what vaccines are recommended for individuals based on their age, health condition, job, lifestyle and travel habits. Individual answers will lead to a list of vaccinations that could include pneumonia, shingles, meningitis, hepatitis A and hepatitis B, chickenpox, HPV or measles, mumps and rubella.
With flu season approaching, the Chester County Immunization Coalition reminds all adults of the need for a yearly flu vaccine. Adults also need a tetanus vaccine every 10 years. One tetanus vaccine should also contain pertussis, or whooping cough, protection, and this vaccine is needed by pregnant women during each pregnancy.
Most health insurance plans cover recommended vaccines, and the Vaccine Finder website will indicate if vaccine providers accept insurance. County residents who do not have health insurance may follow up with their local health department for assistance.
For more information about vaccine services at the Chester County Health Department, readers may call 610-344-6252 or visit www.chesco.org/health. Information about the Chester County Immunization Coalition is available by calling Laura Harbage at 610-344-5565.
"A Matter Of Balance" Classes Set August 22, 2017
The York County Area Agency on Aging will host "A Matter of Balance" classes at Providence Place, 3377 Fox Run Road, Dover, from 9 to 11 a.m. on Mondays and Wednesdays, Sept. 6 to Oct. 2.
"A Matter of Balance" is designed for people who have concerns about falling, have fallen in the past, have restricted their activities because of falling concerns or are interested in improving balance, flexibility and strength.
The program emphasizes practical strategies to manage falls. Participants will learn to view falls as controllable, set goals for increasing activity, make changes to reduce fall risks at home and exercise to increase strength and balance.
Participation is free, but preregistration is required, as class size is limited. To register, call Megan Craley at 717-852-4902, ext. 1017, or 800-632-9073.
HealthyWoman Program Posted August 21, 2017
Women who are uninsured or underinsured can receive free cervical cancer screenings and mammograms under the Pennsylvania HealthyWoman Program. The program is funded by the Department of Health and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
The program is open to women ages 40 to 64 who are Pennsylvania residents and have a gross household income below 250 percent of the federal poverty annual guideline, about $61,500 for a family of four. If breast or cervical cancer is detected through the HealthyWoman Program, the individual may be eligible for free treatment through the Department of Human Services' Breast and Cervical Cancer Prevention and Treatment Program.
For more information, readers may call 800-215-7494 or visit www.health.pa.gov and search for "HealthyWoman."
Health Screening Posted August 21, 2017
The Manheim Lions Club will hold an Omega Health Screening, performed by Quest Diagnostics, on Saturday, Nov. 5, from 7 to 9:30 a.m. at St Paul's United Church of Christ, 50 N. Main St., Manheim.
The personal health screening includes tests for anemia, diabetes, heart disease, gout, and liver and kidney diseases.Optional tests that can be added include PSA (prostate specific antigen, for males), TSH (thyroid-stimulating hormone), and Vitamin D.
Individuals must not eat or drink for 10 hours before testing, but they may have water and medication.
There is a cost for the screening. To preregister, readers may call 800-776-6342.
Seminars To Focus On Medicare August 16, 2017
The York County Area Agency on Aging's APPRISE Program will present free Medicare Facts for New or Pre-Retirees seminars at local venues. APPRISE is the state health insurance counseling program for all Medicare beneficiaries in Pennsylvania. Individuals who are recently retired or are considering retirement are encouraged to attend.
Seminars have been set for Thursday, Aug. 24, from 6 to 9 p.m. at Windy Hill on the Campus, 1472 Roth's Church Road, Suite 103 in Spring Grove, as well as Thursday, Sept. 28, from 6 to 9 p.m. in meeting room 1 of the Penn State Extension Offices, located in the York County Annex, 112 Pleasant Acres Road in Springettsbury Township.
Topics to be covered include a review of Medicare benefits, Original Medicare and Medicare Advantage Plan options, Medicare prescription drug coverage and the Drug Plan Finder, Medicare savings programs, Medicare preventive services, and supplemental insurance Medigap plans.
Seating is limited, and preregistration is required. Readers may call 717-771-9008 or 800-632-9073 to register and for more information.
Parkinson's Support Group To Meet August 16, 2017
The monthly meeting of the Parkinson's Support Group at Garden Spot Village will take place on Monday, Aug. 28, from 2 to 3 p.m. in the Village Square Theater at Garden Spot Village, 433 S. Kinzer Ave., New Holland. Special guest speaker Dr. Sol De Jesus, assistant professor in the Department of Neurology at Penn State Milton Hershey, will speak on how a specialist can be helpful to someone with Parkinson's disease.
Free resources from the National Parkinson's Foundation are available at the monthly meetings. The support group is open to all persons with Parkinson's and their caregivers, family, and friends.
For more information, contact Sherilyn Lapp at 717-355-6264 or email@example.com.
Immunization News Update August 9, 2017
The Pennsylvania Department of Health has revised Pennsylvania's school immunization requirements for the 2017-18 school year. The new rules require parents to get their children fully immunized prior to the fifth day of school or the students will be excluded from school.
Previously, parents had eight months to meet school immunization requirements. If a student is in the middle of an immunization series, and it is too soon for the next dose, the parents must provide the school nurse with a written plan, signed by their health care provider, within the first five days of school.
For more information, readers may contact their health care provider, visit www.health.pa.gov, or call 877-PA-HEALTH.
Hunger Free America News August 8, 2017
The nonprofit group Hunger Free America is ramping up its efforts to publicize the USDA National Hunger Hotline - which can be reached at 866-3-HUNGRY or 877-8-HAMBRE (for Spanish) - through which callers can locate summer meals sites for children, food pantries, or soup kitchens for families, and/or other government and private meals programs near them.
Even though children need just as much, if not more, nutrition during the summer months, in Pennsylvania, only 14.5 percent of children who receive free and reduced school meals receive summer meals. Raising awareness about the program is the single greatest barrier to participation. Summer meals are available to all children age 18 and under, and no identification is required. The hunger hotline can immediately help connect families with food providers in their area.
Hunger Free America also just launched www.hungervolunteer.org, a state-of-the-art volunteer matching portal to make it easier to mobilize the unique talents and skills of each individual volunteer in order to take the biggest bite out of hunger.
Behavioral Health Center Opens August 3, 2017
After an extensive physician search and the renovation of a new facility, the CHI St. Joseph Children's Health Behavioral Health Center was slated to open to patients and families on Aug. 7 at 1929 Lincoln Highway East, Suite 100, in East Lampeter Township.
The new Behavioral Health Center is led by a team of dedicated mental health professionals and delivers a program focused on working with and supporting families to treat and prevent behavioral health and psychiatric challenges faced by children throughout the community of Lancaster. Dr. Thomas Foley, a board-certified child and adolescent psychiatrist, and Mary Jo Hanley, a psychiatric nurse practitioner, lead the center's behavioral health team.
The Behavioral Health Center's family-focused approach will incorporate family functioning, as well as the health and well-being of parents and caregivers, into the child's treatment strategy. Together, the team of providers will work with each child's family to make modifications and changes to their daily lives to improve the health and well-being of the child and of the entire family.
To further assist the community, CHI St. Joseph Children's Health's new Behavioral Health Center has begun partnering with Lampeter-Strasburg, Penn Manor and Pequea Valley school districts to provide assessments and treatment strategies for children and families based on school referrals. The Behavioral Health Center anticipates that it will develop additional partnerships as well.
Behavioral health services are available to children up to age 26. Although CHIP, Medicaid and private insurance will be accepted, the new Behavioral Health Center will provide mental and behavioral health services for children in Lancaster County regardless of insurance. In addition, a discount program based upon household income is available to uninsured families.
For more information, readers may call 844-837-9285 or 717-947-6535 or visit www.chistjosephchildrenshealth.org.
Police Taxi Message Posted August 2, 2017
The DUI Council of Lancaster County recently unveiled its Police Taxi billboard in Lancaster County, located along the westbound side of Route 462 in Mountville. The Police Taxi is a mobile message board reminding observers that there are other options available instead of driving while under the influence.
One way it accomplishes this goal is by listing the cost of one ride compared to the other ride. A DUI (a term commonly used to reference driving under the influence of alcohol) or a DUI-D (a term used to reference driving under the influence of a drug, other than alcohol) will result in a ride in a police car and will cost upwards of $10,500 when considering legal fees, court costs, insurance increases, etc.
On the other hand, a responsible drinker would choose to ride in a taxi that would cost them, on average, $20. The total average costs of a DUI/DUI-D are listed on the hood of the vehicle. The Police Taxi is available to attend any event, activity, social gathering, training, etc. free of charge. A member of the DUI Council of Lancaster County can deliver it to an activity where it can serve its purpose.
Council membership is free and open to anyone from the private or public sector. The council meets the second Wednesday of each month at 8:30 a.m. at Compass Mark, 630 Janet Ave., Lancaster.
Water Cleanup Efforts Posted August 2, 2017
Keep Pennsylvania Beautiful welcomes all Pennsylvania boating facilities, boating groups, sailors, fishermen, and water enthusiasts to protect aquatic ecosystems by holding a marina or boating facility cleanup. The Ocean Conservancy will provide a cleanup toolkit to get people started on their way to keeping trash from reaching the oceans. Cleanups on the water, underwater, or on foot are welcome.
The toolkit provides trash bags, trash data cards, blue mesh boaters' trash bags that can be hooked onto a boat or kayak, Good Mate boating resources such as brochures, posters, and a manual, "What Will You Find?" ocean trash poster, and educational materials. Additional mesh boaters' trash bags are available to participants who report their cleanup information within 60 days of their cleanup.
Readers may visit www.oceanconservancy.org/marinacleanup to sign up and add a marina or waterway to the map. When registering an event, the number of volunteers expected should be included, and the Ocean Conservancy and North American Marine Environment Protection Association (NAMEPA) will send a Marina Cleanup Toolkit to get the job done.
For more information, readers may contact Sarah Kollar at firstname.lastname@example.org. To learn more about Keep Pennsylvania Beautiful, readers may visit www.keeppabeautiful.org.
Children's Eye Health News August 2, 2017
Prevent Blindness declares August as Children's Eye Health and Safety Awareness Month to educate the public on the importance of healthy vision for children. As children in most parts of the country head back to school, Prevent Blindness asks all parents and caregivers to set their child on a path to success in the classroom with a certified vision screening or eye exam.
More than one in 20 preschool-aged children and one in four school-aged children have a vision disorder. The National Center for Children's Vision and Eye Health at Prevent Blindness (NCCVEH) issued a comprehensive report, "Children's Vision and Eye Health: A Snapshot of Current National Issues," detailing the link between healthy vision and the impact it may have on learning.
Visual functioning is a strong predictor of academic performance in school-age children. Uncorrected refractive errors in infants and preschool-aged children are associated with developmental delays, as well as with clinically identified deficits in cognitive and visual-motor functions that may in turn affect school readiness. Vision disorders of childhood may continue to affect health and well-being throughout the adult years.
Prevent Blindness has declared August as Children's Eye Health and Safety Awareness month to inspire parents to make their child's vision health a priority. Prevent Blindness recommends a continuum of eye care for children to include both vision screening and comprehensive eye examinations.
All children, even those with no signs of trouble, should have their eyes checked at regular intervals. Any child who experiences vision problems or shows symptoms of eye trouble should receive a comprehensive eye examination by an optometrist or an ophthalmologist.
Children generally do not complain about problems with their vision. These problems may range from common refractive errors, such as nearsightedness (myopia) and farsightedness (hyperopia), to serious eye conditions including amblyopia or "lazy eye," strabismus or "crossed eyes," and astigmatism.
Amblyopia has many causes. Most often, it results from either a misalignment of a child's eyes, such as crossed eyes, or a difference in image quality between the two eyes, such as one eye focusing better than the other. In both cases, one eye becomes stronger, suppressing the image of the other eye. If this condition persists, vision from the weaker eye may become useless. Amblyopia is found in about two percent of 6- to 72-month-old children and is the most common cause of vision loss in children.
Strabismus is a condition where eyes are misaligned or do not line up with each other. This problem is caused when the muscles do not work together. Between two and four percent of children under age 6 have strabismus. Strabismus may eventually lead to amblyopia.
Astigmatism is an irregularity in the shape of the cornea or lens that causes blurry vision at all distances if not corrected. Between 15 and 28 percent of children ages 5 to 17 have astigmatism, depending on the diagnostic threshold used. Children who have myopia or hyperopia are more likely to have astigmatism.
Many vision problems in children can be treated successfully, if detected early. Prevent Blindness provides free information on a variety of vision health topics for children, and partners with many programs that provide free exams and glasses for those who qualify.
For more information on children's eye health and safety, the NCCVEH, or financial assistance programs, readers may call Prevent Blindness at 800-331-2020 or visit www.preventblindness.org. To support children's vision programs, OCuSOFT Inc. has agreed to donate 10 percent of all online sales to Prevent Blindness during August's Children's Eye Health and Safety Awareness Month.
School District Posts Vaccination Information July 28, 2017
The Columbia Borough School District has announced school vaccination information for parents and guardians to note.
Beginning with the 2017-18 school year, the Department of Health is requiring all students to be fully immunized by the first day of school. There is no longer an eight-month provisional enrollment period. In addition, all students entering grade 12 will be required to have their second meningococcal vaccine booster by the first day of school.
For more information, readers may visit www.columbiabsd.org/files/2017/07/Immunization-School-Brochure-1d0sah2.pdf.
Group Posts Tips For Dentist Visits July 26, 2017
CHI St. Joseph Children's Health Dental Center has posted tips for helping children through a back-to-school dental checkup.
The American Dental Association reports that dental disease causes children to miss more than 51 million school hours each year, and according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, approximately one in five children ages 5 to 11 have at least one untreated, decayed tooth. As back to school season approaches, some children may be apprehensive about visiting the dentist.
To help students feel more comfortable at a dental checkup, parents may schedule back-to-back dental visits for siblings and allow the more experienced child to go first. Older children who are more comfortable seeing the dentist can help alleviate fears and apprehensions of younger siblings by serving as role models.
Parents might want to plan a special post-dentist reward for a child. Preplanning a special reward - such as a favorite lunch, a family movie night, or a special experience like cooking a meal with mom or dad - will give the child something to look forward to after a successful dental checkup.
Caregivers might consider asking the dentist check a child's mouth guard to prepare for sports seasons. Dentists can make sure a mouth guard is in good shape and is the right type for the child's mouth.
Parents are encouraged to make sure a child is well-rested and has had a light nutritious meal or snack before a dental visit. Parents should pay special attention to their child's bedtime and eating habits prior to the dental checkup since summer schedules often mean later bedtimes and extra treats. A tired and hungry child usually means a more frustrating experience for everyone.
Parents may use books and videos to reassure children who are nervous. Going to the dentist may cause anxiety for a child even if they have been there before. Parents may obtain books and videos that talk about what the child will experience at the dentist to remind them there is nothing to fear.
CHI St. Joseph Children's Health provides services for children across the Lancaster community in Pennsylvania regardless of insurance or ability to pay. The organization operates a Dental Center at 401 Locust St., Columbia, and in 2017, it will open a second Dental Center and its first Behavioral Health Center at 1929 Lincoln Highway East, Lancaster. For more information, readers may call 717-684-0221 or visit www.CHIDentalCenter.org.
Northwest Regional Police To Host National Night Out July 24, 2017
The Northwest Regional Police Department (NWRPD) will host its fifth annual National Night Out (NNO) event from 6 to 9 p.m. on Tuesday, Aug. 1, at the West Donegal Township building and grounds, located at 1 Municipal Drive, Elizabethtown. Area residents are invited to stop by to meet and interact with local police, firefighters, emergency medical services (EMS) personnel, and neighbors. The free event will take place rain or shine.
In addition to NWRPD, participants will include Rheems Fire Department, Elizabethtown Fire Department, and Northwest EMS. Police cars, fire trucks, and ambulances will be on display.
"We just want to have as many residents as possible come out to meet us and the fire and EMS personnel on a not-so-emergency basis," explained NWRPD officer Mike Shetter, who has organized the event for the past several years. "This is a time they can look at the cars and trucks and talk to us. It's more personable."
Local nonprofit organizations and community groups will host booths that will offer information about the variety of services they provide, and there will be an assortment of activities for children, such as pony rides, a bounce house, a reptile show, and an obstacle course. Several costumed characters and mascots will be strolling the premises and interacting with attendees.
A variety of food and beverages will be available for purchase, including snow cones and milkshakes.
Shetter said that last year, NWRPD's event drew approximately 1,500 to 2,000 individuals. "Every year it's getting bigger and bigger, because now people know about it," remarked Shetter. "The feedback we get every year is amazing. People are coming up to us and thanking us for what we do and telling us the event's a success for their kids and they love it."
The evening will conclude with a fireworks display.
NNO is an annual community-building event held in thousands of towns across the United States on the first Tuesday in August. According to natw.org, the campaign promotes police-community partnerships and neighborhood camaraderie to make neighborhoods safer, more caring places to live. Aside from that, the events offer an opportunity to bring police, firefighters, and EMS personnel and residents together under positive circumstances.
Class To Focus On Stress Management July 20, 2017
Lancaster General Health will offer an Understanding and Managing Stress class on Thursday, Aug. 3, from 6 to 7 p.m. in the Community Room at Willow Lakes, 212 Willow Valley Lakes Drive, Willow Street. The topics will be as follows: what stress is, warning signs of too much stress, why one should manage his or her stress, the relaxation response, and changing one's thinking patterns.
The class is free, but registration is required. To register, readers may call 717-544-4636 or visit www.LGHealth.org/Wellness.