Health, Medicine & Nutrition
Quad City Health Initiative and Partners Bring Stand Up! Change Teen Statistics Prevention Theater Program to Local High Schools and Community PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Health, Medicine & Nutrition
Written by Nicole Carkner   
Monday, 22 October 2012 14:23

The QC Hearts and Minds Youth Workgroup of the Quad City Health Initiative (QCHI) is proud to be partnering with the Rock Island County Regional Office of Education and Scott County Kids to bring the Stand Up! Change Teen Statistics theater program to our local high schools.  Presented by the R.Ed.I. Arts and Education Foundation, Stand Up! Change Teen Statistics is a 50-minute live prevention theater show based on interviews with over 90 teens.  Stand Up! delivers important statistics and information in an engaging format thus helping to raise awareness, encourage healthy behaviors and provide resources to assist teens with issues they face during adolescence.  The show is unique for its ability to target issues on a peer to peer level in frank and clear "teen" language.  The show tackles challenging topics such as drug abuse, teen sex, depression, alcohol abuse, self worth, suicide and internet threats.  Additional information about the show is available at

During the week of October 22nd, the Stand Up! cast will give 11 performances to an estimated 3,400 high school students across our community.   Twelve high schools across multiple school districts have worked as partners to facilitate the Stand Up! performances for local audiences. 

"The QC Hearts and Minds Youth Workgroup seeks to identify and assist youth with mental and behavioral health concerns," says workgroup member Megan Heffernen.  "Performances of Stand Up! provide a great springboard for teens and adults to have open discussions about issues facing youth today." To facilitate this dialogue, the community is invited to attend a free performance of Stand Up! to be given at  4:30 p.m. on Tuesday, October 23rd in the Nighswander Junior Theater, 2815 Eastern Avenue, Davenport.  Community leaders, school personnel, parents, high school students and anyone interested in the well-being of today's youth are invited to attend.  (Due to mature themes, the show is not recommended for students below 8th grade.)

The R.Ed.I. Arts and Education Foundation has performed the Stand Up! show in many communities across the United States but this is the first time a community has orchestrated a week-long series of presentations across two states and multiple school districts.  "I applaud the tireless efforts of the partners to bring the STAND UP! Change Teen Statistics program to the schools and to the Quad City community as a whole," says Kimberly Farah, Executive Director for the R.Ed.I. Arts and Education Foundation.  "The coordinated effort has been awe-inspiring and we are proud to be part of this undertaking that will serve as a model for other communities across our nation."

Local funding for the Stand Up! performances was provided by Edgerton Women's Health Center, Quad City Bank & Trust, Rock Island County Probation Services, Scott County Regional Authority and United Way of the Quad Cities Area.  "Stand Up! highlights the need for more focus around youth mental health," says Dave Green, co-chair of United Way of the Quad Cities Health Council.  "United Way has brought experts around the table to examine how we can increase access to services for youth.  Stand Up! is a great first step in raising awareness of this issue in our community and encouraging Quad-City youth to talk about mental health issues."

The Quad City Health Initiative is a community partnership working to create a healthy community.  A 25-member community Board that was established in 1999 oversees the organization.  The Initiative seeks to be our community’s recognized leader for creating collaborative action on health and abides by the core values of commitment, collaboration and creativity.  The QC Hearts and Minds Team was created in 2008 to promote mental health as integral to our overall heath and well-being.  Major financial support of the Quad City Health Initiative is currently provided by the generous direct and in-kind investments of Genesis Health System and Trinity Regional Health System. In 2012, additional financial support is provided by St. Ambrose University, KJWW and Midland Information Resources.

For more information, please call 563-421-2815 or visit our website at

Does Your Hair Need an Intervention? PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Health, Medicine & Nutrition
Written by Ginny Grimsley   
Monday, 22 October 2012 14:15
Tips for an Easy 5-Step Rehab

Between blow-drying, teasing, flat-ironing, highlighting and lowlighting— there are many ways to change what Mother Nature gave us. But whether you’re regularly straightening curls, lightening darker hair or vice/versa, there may be a price to pay for rebelling.

But most women don’t think twice about the hair habits they’ve had for years and years, says longtime hair-care advocate and health scientist Audrey Davis-Sivasothy.

“Lackluster, frazzled, overworked hair—that’s the price we pay for handling our hair like a pair of jeans. Hair is a fragile fiber that needs to be handled more like a silk blouse,” says Davis-Sivasothy, author of “Hair Care Rehab,” ( “Oftentimes, the style we feel the most comfortable with reinforces our bad habits. It’s a problem with all the earmarks of an addiction.”

Substances of choice include:

• Toxic chemicals (perms, relaxers & colors)

• Hair OCD (excessive combing, brushing & heat use)

• Environmental lifestyle (too much exposure to sun, surf, bad air and water)

• Nutritional/dietary (fad diets, smoking, low water consumption)

As with a drug addiction, once you’ve kicked your habit, you’ll liberate your bad hair, unlocking new dimensions of hair potential, says Davis-Sivasothy, who has also authored the popular “The Science of Black Hair” (

She offers a five-step rehab for damaged hair:

1. Chelating your hair: Products containing oils, conditioners, serums and pomades (or minerals), which make you feel better in the short term, can build up and actually prevent your hair’s ability to hydrate. That’s why the first step in detoxing hair is the use of chelating shampoo, which is typically clear and lifts stubborn buildup from products and hard water. While many chelating shampoos are sulfate-based, there are more sulfate-free products entering the market to accommodate sensitive scalps and hair. Clarifying shampoos are a good substitute when chelating shampoos cannot be found. Moisturizing shampoo should be used for general use after detoxing is complete.

2. Deep conditioning your hair: After chelating, deep condition for 10 to 15 minutes. This should be done every seven to 10 days using moisturizing conditioners such as instant and cream-rinse, deep conditioners, protein treatments or leave-in conditioners. To go the extra mile, consider an apple cider vinegar rinse to close the cuticle and enhance your hair’s shine.

3. Moisturizing your hair: This step adds a layer of leave-on protection. You can use either leave-in conditioner or a dedicated moisturizing product, or both. For thick, dry or curly hair, this step hydrates and adds “slip.” For fine or oily hair, these products should detangle strands while encouraging volume.

4. Sealing your hair: This is the last major step in your hair intervention. Sealing with an oil or butter product locks in moisture and solidifies the gains of rehab. It smoothes out the cuticle and keeps hair moisturized for a longer period. Always use sealant on slightly dampened or misted hair, or pair the product with a water-based moisturizer to maximize the benefits. If you have naturally oily hair, you can skip this step.

5. Styling your hair protectively: Imagine wearing a favorite sweater every day; washing, drying and ironing it several times a week – it would look pretty worn out after a few years! This is exactly what happens to hair that is bleached, colored, blown dry with artificial heat, ironed, weaved and on and on. Don’t do this anymore! There are several measures you can take to preserve the health of your hair, including wearing it up more often, cleansing it cautiously, detangling strands with a large-tooth comb, protectively using blow-dryer heat, reducing chemical use and not coloring your hair more than three shades lighter or darker than your natural color. In general, be gentle. Do not pull to hard or rapidly when styling it, too; be slow and steady.

About Audrey Davis-Sivasothy

Audrey Davis-Sivasothy is a Houston-based freelance writer, publisher and longtime, healthy hair care advocate and enthusiast. Sivasothy holds a degree in health science and has written extensively on the science of caring for hair at home.

The 47% and Healthcare Reform PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Health, Medicine & Nutrition
Written by Jane M. Orient, M.D.   
Monday, 22 October 2012 14:00

It may be unpopular to say so, but it is true: the U.S. is very close to, if not past, the tipping point at which the majority of the people are net beneficiaries of big government—or so they think. People who receive a check from the government may see voting for a smaller government as contrary to their best interest. If they don’t pay taxes, why should they care about a tax increase?

Perceptions are, however, deceiving.“Healthcare reform,” as the (Un)Affordable Care Act (ObamaCare) is billed, probably shows more clearly than anything else how most Americans, including Romney’s notorious 47%, are harmed by government “benefits.”

Lower wage earners, who produce real goods or provide a service their fellow Americans value, pay for those benefits even if they’re not liable for federal income tax. Fifteen percent is taken right off the top of their earnings for the Social Security/Medicare tax. This is 100% a tax, and 0% an investment. It is 100% spent, immediately, on other people’s entitlements, with a politician’s promise that the workers may get an entitlement someday, paid for by future workers—if they and the program survive long enough.

All Americans, including the working poor, will, as early as 2013, be hit with the medical device tax and the rest of some 18 ObamaCare-related tax hikes amounting to perhaps $500 billion. Starting in 2014 is the ObamaTax proper, the individual and employer mandate. Most Americans will have a choice of one tax (a “penalty”) or else a much higher tax equivalent (a “premium”) for an ObamaCare compliant health plan. Even if the employer continues to offer insurance, the employee has to earn all the money that the employer uses to pay for it. The premium has to cover all the ObamaCare mandates that the worker may not need or want, or to which he objects.

All Americans also have to pay the hidden regulatory taxes. ObamaCare will have tens of thousands of pages of rules. Compliance will be so costly that most independent physicians may close their doors.

Beyond tax increases, expensive employer mandates, or simple uncertainty about what the rules will be, will cost untold numbers of jobs. As more people are forced onto Medicaid, access to care will worsen. Obama’s “accountable care organizations” will incentivize “providers” to cut services to Medicare beneficiaries. So even the current beneficiaries of entitlement programs, a big chunk of the 47%, will be harmed by ObamaCare.

So who are the true beneficiaries of big government, who should most dread the budget hawks and vote to maintain the current regime? They are members of the affluent, privileged class, many of whom live inside the Beltway. They make more than $100,000 per year, and of course they pay income taxes. Or so it seems.

Actually, the money that goes back to the Treasury from their paychecks came from the Treasury in the first place—that is, from the earnings of those who toil in the private sector. If taxes go up, those whose money comes from government, whether directly or indirectly, might or might not have fewer dollars to take home, but while they may gain less from taxpayers, they still lose nothing of their own creation.

Republicans need to explain why they will repeal ObamaCare. Besides lower taxes for almost everyone, even those who don’t pay federal income taxes, more people would be able to keep their current insurance, their doctor—and their job.

Some people are government dependents because of misfortunes beyond their control. But to have 47% of the population in such a situation is a disaster for everyone except for the 0.0001% super-elite who aim for absolute control.

We need politicians who can help people gain the ability and desire to work, rather than cling to an overburdened government wagon pulled by declining numbers of the “rich.” Healthcare reform is an ideal opportunity to educate people about the dangers of that wagon.

Once they understand the situation, most Americans, not just 53%, should be on the side of limited government.


About the author/contributor:

Jane M. Orient, M.D., Executive Director of Association of American Physicians and Surgeons, has been in solo practice of general internal medicine since 1981 and is a clinical lecturer in medicine at the University Of Arizona College Of Medicine. She received her undergraduate degrees in chemistry and mathematics from the University of Arizona, and her M.D. from Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons. She is the author of Sapira’s Art and Science of Bedside Diagnosis; the fourth edition has just been published by Lippincott, Williams & Wilkins. She also authored YOUR Doctor Is Not In: Healthy Skepticism about National Health Care, published by Crown. She is the executive director of the Association of American Physicians and Surgeons, a voice for patients’ and physicians’ independence since 1943. Additional information on health-related issues: and

Dr. Orient’s position on Obama’s healthcare reform: “The Obama plan will increase individual health insurance costs, and if the federal government puts price controls on the premiums, the companies will simply have to go out of business. The plan will deliver higher costs, more hassles, fewer choices, less innovation, and less patient care.”

Misrepresentation of provision to make 2010 health care law apply to Congress PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Health, Medicine & Nutrition
Written by Grassley Press   
Monday, 22 October 2012 13:41
Friday, October 19, 2012


Senator Chuck Grassley issued the comment below following a New York Times story today that a provision in the 2010 health care law is being distorted in fall campaign ads.


Grassley comment:


“Remember, it was Republicans who made this law apply to Congress, not the Democrats who wrote the law.   The Democrats were perfectly fine with applying Obamacare to the entire economy but leaving themselves out.  Despite passage of my amendment, Democrats still carved out exemptions for high-level staff, despite Republican efforts to undo the carve-outs, and Democrats refused to make Obamacare apply to the White House itself.”


Background information:


The provision in question stemmed from an amendment Grassley authored and for which he won Finance Committee approval in September 2009.  The Grassley amendment said that members of Congress and their staff must get their health insurance coverage from the exchanges that would be established in the health care overhaul.  This congressional coverage initiative built on many years of work by Senator Grassley to have Congress live under the laws it passes for the rest of the country.  In 1995, legislation authored by Grassley to apply 12 civil rights, labor and employment laws to Congress for the first time.


The story in today’s New York Times reports that TV commercials being run on behalf of Democratic candidates for Congress assert that members of Congress who voted to repeal the 2010 health care law have voted to give themselves taxpayer-funded health care for life.”  Senator Grassley said his provision, even in the final form it took in the law that was enacted makes no changes to the employer contribution to federal employee health care coverage and no changes to federal retiree health care.


New York Times story:


Democrats Use Health Law to Assail Republicans


Published: October 18, 2012

WASHINGTON — A little-noticed provision of the new health care law is causing big headaches for some members of Congress in this year’s elections. And it is likely to cause even bigger headaches for lawmakers next year.


The provision, written into the law at the behest of a Republican senator, says members of Congress must get their health benefits through new insurance exchanges being established in every state.

Republicans have voted repeatedly to repeal the whole law. Now, in a barrage of television ads, Democrats are roasting those Republicans, saying they voted to give themselves “taxpayer-funded health care for life.”

The accuracy of the commercials, judged even by the loose standards that often apply to political advertising, is open to question.

Democrats say the commercials are accurate. Under the law, they say, members of Congress would be removed from the federal program that provides health insurance to most federal employees and retirees. Repealing the law, they say, would restore that coverage.

Republicans say that the attacks are unfounded, and that the Democrats are misrepresenting the effect of the law on coverage for retired members of Congress.

In any event, the criticism, if it sticks, could be politically damaging. Lawmakers of both parties have often said their goal is to provide all Americans with health insurance as good as what Congress has.

In a typical ad, the campaign of Ann McLane Kuster, the Democratic candidate for Congress in the Second District of New Hampshire, says that Representative Charles Bass, the incumbent Republican, “voted to cut Medicare for you while voting himself taxpayer-funded health care for life.” In upstate New York, Dan Maffei, a Democrat, assails the Republican, Representative Ann Marie Buerkle, saying she tried to privatize Medicare while “voting herself a tax-subsidized health care plan that she will be eligible for even after she retires.”

Similar television advertisements have been run in California by Democrats trying to unseat Representatives Brian P. Bilbray and Mary Bono Mack, both Republicans.

In Michigan, the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee is running an advertisement that says Representative Dan Benishek, a Republican, “voted to give members of Congress taxpayer-funded health care for life.”

In another commercial, the committee says that Representative Tom Latham, Republican of Iowa, “voted himself taxpayer-funded health care for life,” but “wanted to gut Medicare, basically do away with it,” for older Americans.

House Majority PAC, a leading Democratic “super PAC,” has run advertisements saying that Representative Chip Cravaack, a freshman Republican from Minnesota, “voted to give members of Congress taxpayer-subsidized health care for life,” even as he tried to make older Americans pay more for their health care.

In an interview, Mr. Cravaack said the attack was based on “a deceitful stretch of the imagination,” and he asked: “How can you possibly think that repealing Obamacare would provide me with health care for life? I do not understand the correlation.”

However, Andy Stone, a spokesman for House Majority PAC, defended the commercials.

“The ads show the hypocrisy of Republicans who want to protect their health insurance while eliminating protections for people with pre-existing conditions and for children who want to stay on their parents’ insurance to age 26,” Mr. Stone said.

Jesse F. Ferguson, a spokesman for the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, said, “It’s no surprise Republicans don’t like us pointing out the truth — that their vote to repeal the Affordable Care Act would reinstate the perk of taxpayer-funded government health care for members of Congress.”

Senator Charles E. Grassley, Republican of Iowa, proposed the original requirement for lawmakers to get coverage through insurance exchanges. He has long said that “Congress should live under the same laws it passes for the rest of the country.”

The television ads are based on two premises: that members of Congress now have taxpayer-financed coverage for life, and that the 2010 health care law will eliminate it.

The facts are more complicated than the ads.

Members of Congress and retired members are eligible for insurance coverage under the same system as other federal employees. This system, the Federal Employees Health Benefits Program, covers eight million federal workers, retirees and dependents.

The 2010 health care law says that the only health plans available to members of Congress, as a benefit of their employment, are health plans created under the law or offered through insurance exchanges.

The nonpartisan Congressional Research Service, an arm of the Library of Congress, says this section of the law implies that members of Congress “will no longer be eligible to enroll” in the Federal Employees Health Benefits Program.

That raises vexing questions for lawmakers. Under the program for federal employees, the government pays a hefty share of the premiums: 72 percent, on average. Will this money still be available to help pay premiums when members of Congress get coverage through the exchanges, starting in 2014?

The government contribution averages more than $10,000 a year for family coverage and more than $4,500 for individual coverage.

In writing the legislation, members of Congress apparently assumed that the federal contribution to their premiums would continue, but the law is silent on the question.

Though the law generally requires members of Congress and certain Congressional aides to get their coverage through insurance exchanges, it says nothing about retiree health benefits.

How the new law affects retiree benefits is unclear, say lawyers at the Congressional Research Service and at the Committee on House Administration, which is responsible for bills affecting lawmakers’ pay and benefits.

Federal employees can often keep their coverage in retirement if they have been continuously enrolled in the federal employees health program for five years immediately before retiring.

Without getting into the fine points of health policy, Democrats are unleashing more ads. One says that Representative Sean P. Duffy, Republican of Wisconsin, voted to “give Congress taxpayer-funded health care for life.”

Justin Richards, the manager of the Duffy campaign, said: “Sean Duffy doesn’t get health care for life, not even close. His health care is the same as any federal employee from the F.B.I. agent to the park ranger.”

A version of this article appeared in print on October 19, 2012, on page A18 of The New York Times


Description of Grassley effort to apply health care law to Congress:

For Immediate Release

Wednesday, January 26, 2011


Grassley re-introduces bill to apply health care reforms

to White House and administration leaders, and equitably in Congress


WASHINGTON – Senator Chuck Grassley today renewed his effort to apply the health care reform law to the President, Vice President, cabinet members, top White House staff, and the congressional staff who worked for passage of the massive overhaul enacted in March 2010.


Previous legislative initiatives by Grassley to establish accountability in Congress and the administration were rebuffed, both in 2009 and 2010, by the Democratic Majority Leader in the Senate.  “As a result, the health care reforms driven by President Obama and Senator Reid do not apply to President Obama and top administration officials or to the powerful congressional leadership staff who helped to make the overhaul the law of the land,” Grassley said.  “The message to grassroots America is that health care reform is good enough for you, but not for us.”


Grassley said that now that a new Congress has started, Senate leaders have another chance to make things right and should act immediately to pass his Health Reform Accountability Act.  “Until the health care overhaul is repealed and replaced with reforms that have broad-based support, the majority leadership in the Senate and the administration ought to make sure they are required to live under the health care law they put on the books.”


Grassley started his accountability effort in September 2009, when the Finance Committee, where he served as Ranking Member, was acting on its reform proposal.  Committee members approved a Grassley amendment to have members of Congress and all congressional staff obtain their health insurance through the same health insurance exchanges where health plans for the general public would be available.  After the bill left committee and during the closed-door reworking of the legislation in the Senate Majority Leader’s office, Senate committee and leadership staffs were exempted from the requirement.


In December 2010, when the carve-out was discovered, Grassley and Senator Tom Coburn offered an amendment to restore the requirement for all congressional staff and also to statutorily require the President, the Vice President, top White House staff and cabinet members to get their health insurance through the newly created exchanges.  The amendment did not apply to federal employees in the civil service.  The Grassley-Coburn amendment was never brought up for a vote.  The legislative fix also was not included in the final manager’s amendment, controlled by the Senate Majority Leader, on Christmas Eve, when the Senate passed the legislation that ultimately became law.  Grassley made another attempt to have the special carve-out removed during Senate consideration of the health-care reconciliation bill in March 2010.  Again, he was rebuffed.  Grassley filed the same free-standing legislation introduced today immediately following final passage, but it has never been brought up by the Senate Majority Leader, who controls the calendar and Senate business.


Grassley said the motivation for his initiative is simple:  public officials who make the laws or lead efforts to have laws changed should live under those laws.  “It’s the same principle that motivated me to pursue legislation over 20 years ago to apply civil rights, labor and employment laws to Congress,” Grassley said.


That previous Grassley crusade met success in 1995, when President Clinton signed into law Grassley’s Congressional Accountability Act.  Before then, Congress had routinely exempted itself from major laws, including the Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967, the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the Employee Polygraph Protection Act of 1988, the Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938, the Family and Medical Leave Act of 1993, the Federal Service Labor-Management Relations Statute, the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970, the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, the Veteran’s Employment and Reemployment Rights at Chapter 43 of Title 38 of the U.S. Code, and the Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification Act of 1989.  All 12 of those laws now apply to Congress, thanks to Grassley’s reform legislation.


Today, Grassley also is working to make sure Congress lives up to the same standards it imposes on others with legislation such as his Congressional Whistleblower Protection Act.


As far as the health care law, as it stands today, because of the amendment Grassley included in the Finance Committee bill, at least members of Congress and their personal office staffs will be required to obtain their health insurance coverage through the newly created health care exchanges, when the law takes full effect in 2014, instead of the Federal Employees Health Benefit Program.


In March 2010, the White House announced that the President planned to participate in the health insurance exchanges in 2014.  Grassley said at the time that the move effectively endorsed his legislation.  “I appreciate it, but the principle of living under the law shouldn’t be voluntary for political leaders.”


The companion bill to the legislation filed today by Grassley was introduced last week in the House of Representatives by Representative Michael Burgess of Texas.  It’s H.R.360.



Quad City Health Initiative Elects New Board Member PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Health, Medicine & Nutrition
Written by Nicole Carkner   
Friday, 19 October 2012 07:03
The Quad City Health Initiative (QCHI) is proud to announce that Dr. Joe Rives, vice president of Western
Illinois University Quad Cities and Planning, has been elected to serve on the QCHI Board.

"QCHI works to create a healthy community by developing cross-sector collaborative partnerships and
Joe's selection as a Board Member provides a critical link between our healthy communities work and the
higher education sector," says Denise Bulat, QCHI Board Chair. "Joe is known for his dedication to
community improvement and his collaborative spirit. His expertise in planning and fundraising will be a
tremendous asset to our Board."

Rives oversees Western's Quad Cities campus and University planning for both campuses. He joined
Western's administration in 2005 after serving at Illinois State University since 1990. Rives is the
University's point of contact for Quad Cities economic development issues; provides leadership for
University-wide planning; and is responsible for institutional accreditation for the Higher Learning
Commission-North Central Association of Colleges and Schools.

"I'm honored to be asked to serve on this community board," Rives says. "Our community's vitality
depends upon securing the health and well-being of its community members. QCHI's collaborative
infrastructure sustains work across organizational and geographic boundaries. Together, we can make
great improvements in our community's health status and quality of life."

The Quad City Health Initiative is a community partnership working to create a healthy community. A 25-
member community Board that was established in 1999 oversees the organization. The Initiative seeks
to be our community’s recognized leader for creating collaborative action on health and abides by the
core values of commitment, collaboration and creativity. Major financial support of the Quad City Health
Initiative is currently provided by the generous direct and in-kind investments of Genesis Health System
and Trinity Regional Health System. In 2012, additional financial support is provided by St. Ambrose
University, KJWW and Midland Information Resources.

For more information, please call 563-421-2815 or visit our website at


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