Health, Medicine & Nutrition
National Private Duty Association, and Its Iowa Chapter, Change Name to Home Care Association of America PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Health, Medicine & Nutrition
Written by Joni Williams   
Wednesday, 16 January 2013 13:41
Indianapolis, Ind. - The non-profit National Private Duty Association (NPDA), along with its Iowa chapter today announced that the organization has changed its name to the Home Care Association of America (HCAOA) to better reflect the organization’s role as an advocate for affordable and safe home care services.

Founded in 2002, the HCAOA is the nation's first and only association for private duty home care agencies. Members of the HCAOA are companies that provide private pay in-home care services for the elderly and disabled including home care aides, companion care, homemaker services and nursing care.
As an organization the HCAOA develops industry standards and best practices, creates core training and education programs for members, addresses legislative issues, and educates the public about the differences in private duty care models.
“There have been many changes in our industry as it continues to grow and evolve,” said Tim Purcey, president of the HCAOA. “Our organization continues to keep abreast of changes and make our members successful by helping them deliver affordable, quality services. We feel this name change allows us to better serve and support our membership, while continuing to educate the public and legislative leaders.”

The HCAOA, and its Iowa chapter, are the recognized resource for private duty home care practice, supported by a strong national membership of providers. HCAOA leads the industry that cares for people at home through education and advocacy. It currently represents nearly 1,400 home care agencies in 49 states and Puerto Rico.

HCAOA also launched a new website, Effective immediately, all future business will be conducted using the new name.

Blood donations are needed every day to respond to patient emergencies PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Health, Medicine & Nutrition
Written by Ben Corey   
Wednesday, 16 January 2013 13:34

PEORIA, Ill. (Jan. 16, 2013) — Like the emergency room of a hospital, the American Red Cross must be prepared to respond to patient emergencies with blood products 24 hours a day, seven days a week and 365 days a year. Through the dedication of blood donors, the Red Cross can be prepared day in and day out, no matter The need is when or where blood is needed.

Readily available blood helps save the lives of people like David Zien, who was on his way home on his motorcycle when the SUV in front of him lost control during a lane change and flipped onto its side, sending Zien nearly 350 feet. He was transported by helicopter to a hospital, where he received 32 pints of blood. Today, Zien says he attributes much of his survival to the generosity of blood donors.

All blood types are currently needed. For more information and to make an appointment, visit or call 1-800-RED CROSS.

Upcoming blood donation opportunities:

Carroll County
Feb. 9 from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. at United Methodist Church, 2100 Chicago Ave. in Savanna, Ill.

Henry County
Feb. 11 from 2:30-6 p.m. at Hooppole Community Center, 1404 Washington St. in Hooppole, Ill.
Feb. 13 from 1:15-5:15 p.m. at First Christian Church, 105 Dwight St. in Kewanee, Ill.

Whiteside County
Feb. 2 from 6 a.m. to 12 p.m. at CGH Medical Center, 100 E. LeFevre Road in Sterling, Ill.
Feb. 5 from 8-11 a.m. at River Bend Senior Center, 912 Fourth St. in Fulton, Ill.
Feb. 6 from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Fulton High School, 1207 12th St. in Fulton, Ill.
Feb. 6 from 2-6 p.m. at Rock Falls Blood Donation Center, 112 W. Second St. in Rock Falls, Ill.
Feb. 11 from 11:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. at Prophetstown-Lyndon-Tampico CUSD No. 3, 79 Grove St. in Prophetstown, Ill.
Feb. 12 from 1-5:15 p.m. at River Bend Senior Center, 912 Fourth St. in Fulton, Ill.
Feb. 13 from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Sterling High School, 1608 Fourth Ave. in Sterling, Ill.

Feb. 13 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Rock Falls Blood Donation Center, 112 W. Second St. in Rock Falls, Ill.

How to donate blood
Simply call 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767) or visit to make an
appointment or for more information. A blood donor card or driver’s license or two other forms
of identification are required at check-in. Individuals who are 17 years of age (16 with parental
consent in some states), weigh at least 110 pounds and are in generally good health may be
eligible to donate blood. High school students and other donors 18 years of age and younger also
have to meet certain height and weight requirements.

About the American Red Cross
The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides emotional support to victims of disasters;
supplies about 40 percent of the nation’s blood; teaches skills that save lives; provides
international humanitarian aid; and supports military members and their families. The Red
Cross is a not-for-profit organization that depends on volunteers and the generosity of the
American public to perform its mission. For more information, please visit or join
our blog at

The need is constant. The gratification is instant. Give blood.™


Governor Quinn Encourages Protection Against Flu Epidemic Sweeping Illinois and the Nation PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Health, Medicine & Nutrition
Written by Ryan C. Woods   
Monday, 14 January 2013 15:29

Reminds Public It’s Not Too Late to Get a Flu Shot

CHICAGO – January 14, 2013. With Illinois and the nation facing a severe flu season and hospitals treating a surge of patients, Governor Pat Quinn and public health officials today urged the public to obtain a vaccination shot, the best protection against the seasonal flu.

“We are facing a very serious flu season both in Illinois and across the country,” Governor Quinn said. “We want everyone to take precautions to protect themselves and their families, friends and co-workers. We know that more than 60 percent of the public fails to take the important step of getting a flu shot. If you have not had a flu shot this season, now’s the time.”

The Governor also reminded Illinois residents that hygiene is also essential to fighting the flu. By washing your hands frequently and covering up when you cough, you can help protect yourself and those around you. And, when you do catch the flu, stay home and let it run its course.

Illinois is one of 24 states that are now reporting higher than normal flu activity this season. The number of flu-related intensive care unit (ICU) hospitalizations so far this year is 368, with 27 flu-related ICU deaths.  The majority of hospitalizations and deaths are of people in their 50s and older. The Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) expects to see an increase in the number of hospitalizations and deaths as more health care providers report cases from previous weeks as well as current cases.

Public health officials note that the flu season imposes a financial cost each year across the nation. CDC projects the total economic burden of each flu season to be $87.1 billion – which includes direct medical costs of $10.4 billion and lost income due to illness or death estimated at $16.3 billion each year. While hospitalization costs are important contributors, lost productivity from missed work days and lost lives comprise the bulk of the economic burden of influenza.

“We are definitely experiencing a severe flu season,” said IDPH Director Dr. LaMar Hasbrouck. “However, we have seen severe flu seasons before. IDPH and health care professionals around the state are doing everything in our power to raise awareness and reduce the number of people who become ill.

The strain of flu that is predominately circulating in Illinois and the country has historically been a more severe strain causing more hospitalizations and deaths.

Common symptoms of flu include sore throat, high fever, cough, body aches and fatigue. The IDPH recommends contacting a health professional before going to an emergency department if you are experiencing flu symptoms. The majority of people suffering from the flu simply need to stay home, rest, use over-the-counter remedies as needed and let the flu run its course. Several hospital emergency departments have recently had to refer patients with such symptoms to other hospitals as they were at capacity. Typically, only people with severe respiratory illness who have trouble breathing need to visit a hospital emergency department.

For those who still need to obtain a flu shot, you can visit and enter your zip code in the Flu Vaccine Finder. Although flu vaccine is still widely available, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) says that some doctors’ offices and pharmacies are facing shortages. Be sure to call ahead before going to get a vaccination.  Currently manufacturers project producing 135 million doses of flu vaccine this season. At this time, the CDC is indicating there are no known issues with the production of antivirals, such as Tamiflu. However, some areas across the country may experience a shortage because of high demand and pharmacies reordering at the same time.

The vaccine is recommended for everyone six months and older. The flu season normally runs through March and sometimes later. The estimated effectiveness of the vaccine is 62 percent. If you have been vaccinated, but still get the flu, the vaccine can reduce the amount of time you’re sick and the severity of symptoms. By getting vaccinated, you can also help protect infants, the elderly and those with chronic diseases who are at greatest risk for complications due to the flu.

For more information about the seasonal flu shot, visit,, or



Mental Health in America: Has Society Become a Madhouse? PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Health, Medicine & Nutrition
Written by Ginny Grimsley   
Wednesday, 09 January 2013 13:23
Parallels Between Mental Institutions & ‘Normal Life’ Keep Adding Up,
Says Former State Hospital Doctor

“Insane” has a clear meaning when we can look at it next to “sane” in the real world. Unfortunately, that has become more and more difficult to do, says Mike Bartos, former chief of staff at a state psychiatric hospital for the criminally insane.

“It’s not just because the media rely so much now on bizarre behavior to entertain their audiences,” says Bartos, author of “BASH” – Bay Area State Hospital – (, a fast-paced tongue-in-cheek novel that stems from his decades of experience as a mental health-care professional.

“Take a look at what have become the ‘normal’ problems in modern America – some of them could be textbook examples of psychological dysfunction.”

Case – or rather, cases – in point:

• Obesity epidemic: Denial, compulsion, addiction and sublimation are just a few mechanisms at work in the psychology of a largely obese population. Sublimation is the mature defense activity perpetrated when socially unacceptable impulses, such as sexuality, are redirected, in this case to the consumption of salty, fatty and sugary food. With more than two thirds of the U.S. population either overweight or obese, there is nothing sane about this health crisis.

• Banking: The financial crisis that changed the world in 2008 can be largely owed to a cluster of “too big to fail” U.S. banks and their employees who thought they could continuously repackage terrible debt loans. Meanwhile, unqualified customers snatched up properties they couldn’t afford. This was an undiagnosed mega-scale gambling addiction. Many in the financial world knew it simply could not be sustained but the players continued to ante up.

• Climate change: Denial, denial, denial. The raw data from objective scientists overwhelmingly tells us man is largely responsible for warming global temperatures, yet we continue to use fossil fuels and to fill landfills with methane-producing waste. It’s a classic case; we completely ignore symptoms and evidence to maintain the status quo.

• A drugged nation: Marijuana, a natural relaxant, is outlawed in most states while tobacco and alcohol – responsible for incalculable violence and sickness, as well as tens of thousands of accidents and deaths each year – are lucrative and legal vice industries.  Meanwhile, some pharmaceutical companies and physicians encourage substance abuse and chemical dependency by promoting pills to ease the inevitable emotional and physical pains that come with life.

“Many of my psychiatric patients suffered from addiction to both legal and illegal drugs. Sometimes it was hard to tell which came first, the addiction or the other mental health issues,” Bartos says. “The legal or illegal status of certain drugs seems to be completely arbitrary -- much like the behavior of a patient suffering psychosis,” he says.

• Spoiled-brat adults: Narcissistic Personality Disorder isn’t only now accepted in society, it’s widely encouraged and celebrated, Bartos says. Reckless driving and road-rage are just two examples in which individuals are so self-absorbed, they believe their time and sense of entitlement are more important than the lives and safety of others. Throw on top of that our obsession with plastic surgery, need for constant attention on social media, and pre-occupation with consumer brands and we have pandemic megalomania.

• War: America has been at war for 10 years now, and leaders cannot say with any precision what we are doing with our current campaign in Afghanistan, nor what we accomplished with our last one in Iraq. It’s as if government leaders have a masochistic, sociopathic relationship with one percent of the U.S. population – the military, and their families. Young men are shipped off in the prime of their health, and often return physically or mentally damaged, if they come back at all. “Is this sane?” Bartos asks.

About Mike Bartos

Mike Bartos is currently in private psychiatric practice in the San Francisco Bay Area where he lives with his wife Jody.  He has several decades of experience in the mental health field, including serving as chief of staff at a state hospital for mentally ill patients convicted of violent crimes, where he focused on forensic psychiatry. Bartos is a former radio show host and newspaper columnist. While practicing in Charleston, S.C., he served as a city councilman for the nearby community of Isle of Palms.

New Year, New Session PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Health, Medicine & Nutrition
Written by Cassie Furlong - Iowa Advocacy Team   
Wednesday, 09 January 2013 09:44

ACS CAN General Email Header

The start of the next legislative session is fast upon us.  Monday, January 16, marks the beginning of the 85th General Assembly, and we are already working hard on our 2013 legislative priorities. Please take a look at the issues we will be advocating for this session.

Some important dates to keep in mind:

  • January 16 from 7:30am-9:00am: Iowa’s Legislative Breakfast in the Capitol Legislative Dining Room. Join fellow volunteers and staff for a light breakfast, in an informal setting, while meeting with legislators to discuss how we can decrease the cancer burden in Iowa.
  • February 26 from 7:30am to 3:00pm: ACS CAN Day at the Capitol, online registration is available now. Look for more information about Day at the Capitol in the coming weeks.

We are going to need your help to meet our collective goal of reducing Iowa’s cancer burden. Here’s how you can make sure our legislators know cancer issues matter:

  • Read our email updates to keep yourself informed
  • Respond to action alerts – it takes less than five minutes and has a huge impact
  • Sign on to letters to the editor for your local paper
  • Join us at local legislative forums to make the voices of cancer patients, survivors and their families heard

If you’re interested in getting involved in one of these ways, please contact Cassandra Furlong at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or 515-727-0057.

We know that with your help we can make great strides this legislative session in the fight against cancer.


Your Iowa Government Relations Team

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