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Today’s Email Announcements

Operation Medicine Drop Aims to Prevent Poisonings

Safely dispose of unneeded medications at events statewide

Insurance Commissioner Mike Causey encourages North Carolinians to safely dispose of unused or expired medications during NationalPoison Prevention Week, March 19-25, 2017, at one of the Operation Medicine Drop events around the state.

“I am happy to partner with various law enforcement and Safe Kids coalitions across North Carolina to keep medicines and prescription drugs out of the wrong hands,” said Causey. “Medications should always be locked out of reach of children, and when medicines are no longer needed, they should be disposed of in a safe way.”

Medications are the leading cause of child poisoning, with more than 64,000 children going to an emergency room for medicine poisoning each year, according to a study by Safe Kids Worldwide. That’s one child every eight minutes.

During Operation Medicine Drop events, people can drop off over-the-counter drugs, prescriptions, samples and pet medications with no questions asked. Law enforcement partners will help dispose of the medications in the same secure way they dispose of other drug items. Drugs should not be flushed or thrown away in the garbage because they may contaminate water sources.

A partnership of the N.C. Department of Insurance’s Safe Kids North Carolina program, the State Bureau of Investigation, Riverkeepers Alliance and other agencies, Operation Medicine Drop events have retrieved and destroyed approximately 89 million doses of medications at 2,000 events since 2010.

To help prevent poisonings when taking care of children, follow these tips:

  • Store and lock all medicines and household cleaning products in cabinets out of the reach and sight of children.
  • Keep children where you can see them at all times, even when you go to answer the door or telephone. Never leave young children alone.
  • Do not leave poisons on a counter or in an unlocked cabinet.
  • Never carry something that can be poisonous, such as a medicine, in a purse where children may find it.
  • Place safety latches on drawers or cabinets, and child-resistant caps on bottles, to keep poisons out of the hands of children.
  • Clean out your medicine cabinets of all unused and expired medications, and bring them to an Operation Medicine Drop event or permanent drop box near you for proper disposal.

To find an Operation Medicine Drop event or permanent medication drop box near you, go to www.ncsafekids.org.

Counterpunch: Community Provides $3,640 in Scholarships for Parkinson’s Boxing Program at Wellness Center

The Paul H. Broyhill Wellness Center recently raised $3,640 to support patient scholarships for the Parkinson’s Boxing Program in an initiative known as “10 for 20.” In December of 2016, just in time for the holidays, members of the community purchased 10 guest passes for $20 with all of the proceeds benefiting the program.

Last year, collaboration between The Wellness Center and The Rehabilitation Center of Appalachian Regional Healthcare System resulted in a new clinically supervised boxing program to “fight back” against the deteriorating effects of Parkinson’s disease.
“I love to witness the progression each patient makes in terms of their boxing, overall health and confidence,” said Martin Hubner, boxing coach and personal trainer at The Wellness Center. “In a small way, this program has allowed participants to take their lives back.”
The one-hour program, which is offered four days a week to improve patient mobility, encourages participants to rotate through a variety of clinically modified boxing drills. Between each interval, Hubner provides coaching and explains the “why” behind each exercise.
“Historically, patients with Parkinson’s disease were forced to fend for themselves due to a lack of available support groups,” said Katherine Graham, a physical therapist at The Rehabilitation Center, who also serves as a clinical consultant for the boxing program. “I am very excited that this program recognizes the needs and potential of persons with neurological conditions.”
According to Graham, program participants have noticed significant improvement in the areas of strength, endurance, mobility and psychological health. In addition, she notes that in many instances a closer bond has formed between patients and their spouses as a result of the program.
The Parkinson’s Boxing Program does require a physician referral, which can be granted by your primary care provider or neurologist. The program costs $60 per month for Wellness Center members and $85 per month for non-members.

To learn more about the Parkinson’s Boxing Program or available scholarship opportunities contact the Paul H. Broyhill Wellness Center at 828-266-1060 or visitwellness.apprhs.org. For more information about The Rehabilitation Center call 828-268-9043 or visit apprhs.org.

Free Advance Care Planning Workshop at Watauga Medical Center, Apr. 8

In honor of National Healthcare Decision Day, Appalachian Regional Healthcare System will partner with the Watauga County Bar Association to offer a free Advance Care Planning Workshop on April 8, 2017 in the Watauga Medical Center auditorium from 10 am to 1 pm.

This workshop will provide information and tools for the public to talk about their wishes with family, friends and health care providers and to execute written advance directives (Health Care Power of Attorney and living will) in accordance with North Carolina state laws.

Attorneys and healthcare professionals will be available to answer questions and notarize the completed advance directives. Additionally, Carolina Donor Services will be on-site to provide attendees with an opportunity to become organ donors.

Participants should bring their driver’s license or another form of photo identification, as well as the name, address and telephone number for the person they wish to designate as healthcare power of attorney.

Consultations will be first come, first served, so please plan accordingly. For more information about the Advance Care Planning Workshop, please contact Melanie Childers at 828-266-1178.

To learn more about Appalachian Regional Healthcare System visit www.apprhs.org. For more information about National Healthcare Decision Day visit www.nhdd.org/.

Annual Easter Egg Hunt to Take Place in Banner Elk on Saturday, Apr. 8

Mark your calendars for fun in Banner Elk on Saturday, April 8th at the Annual Easter Egg Hunt.  The Egg Hunt will be held on the green at the Historic Banner Elk School. There will be music provided by Welter Entertainment, Meet the Easter Bunny and face painting starting at 10:30am.

The Banner Elk Cafe will have egg coloring from 9:30am to 10:30 and the Banner Elk Book Exchange will have Story Time at 10:30am.

The Egg Hunt will begin at 11am.  Bring your baskets and your cameras! For more information call the Banner Elk Chamber at 828-898-8395 or visit bannerelk.org