Health, Medicine & Nutrition
Scott County Continues Prescription Drug Discount Program PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Health, Medicine & Nutrition
Written by Chris Berge   
Tuesday, 10 April 2012 14:30
County Residents Take Advantage Of Free Discount Cards To Save Money On Prescription Drugs

April 12, 2012 — The NACO program has changed with an option for a $1 per transaction
revenue sharing fee for participating counties. Scott County has decided not to participate
in the transaction revenue sharing fee and pass the savings onto our citizens. Last year, the
Scott County free prescription drug discount program, saved Scott County residents $349,481.
Chairman Tom Sunderbruch announced that 34,183 prescriptions were filled with the card last
year at discounts averaging 28.3% or $10.05 per prescription.

Scott County launched the program in September of 2007 to help consumers cope with the
high price of prescription drugs. The county is making the free prescription drug discount cards
available under a program sponsored by the National Association of Counties (NACo) that offers
average savings of 24 percent off the retail price of commonly prescribed drugs.

Best of all, there is no cost to county taxpayers for NACo and Scott County to make these money
saving cards available to our residents.

The cards may be used by all county residents, regardless of age, income, or existing health
coverage, and are accepted at all the major pharmacies in Scott County. A national network
of more than 59,000 participating retail pharmacies also honors the Scott County Prescription
Discount Card.

Cards are available at County offices and participating pharmacies. County residents can call
the County Administration Office at 563-326-8604 or visit for
information on where to pick up the card. For assistance with the program, please contact your
pharmacy or

“Using the NACo prescription discount card is easy,” said Chairman Sunderbruch. “Simply
present it at a participating pharmacy. There is no enrollment form, no membership fee and no
restrictions or limits on frequency of use. Cardholders and their family members may use the card
any time their prescriptions are not covered by insurance.”

Growth in Telemedicine PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Health, Medicine & Nutrition
Written by Ginny Grimsley   
Tuesday, 10 April 2012 11:49
In Need of a House Call?
Telemedicine is Growing with Advances in Video Conferencing

Fans of the Fox TV drama “House,” now in its final season, may wonder why New Jersey isn’t known as The Mysterious Medical Maladies State -- it seems everyone who lives there has one.

Fortunately, they also have the fictional Dr. Gregory House, who makes up in diagnostic acumen what he lacks in charm and bedside manner.

Hugh Laurie’s acting talent isn’t the only reason the 2012 Guinness Book of Records ranks “House” the world’s most popular TV show. It’s as much because the premise is all too real, says Sean Belanger, CEO of CSDVRS, a national video relay services provider for the deaf and hard-of-hearing.

“Many illnesses defy diagnosis and ingenious specialists are few and far between,” he says. “Which is why recent technological advances in video conferencing are so exciting. Telemedicine is not just about more convenient meetings – it’s about saving lives.”

Belanger’s corporation launched Stratus Video ( last year to focus on honing that technology. He understands the life-changing potential of high-quality, on-demand video conferencing – his company provides video-relayed deaf interpreting services to government agencies and businesses across the country, including the Social Security Administration, Boeing Corp. and Wal-Mart.

“On-demand, high-definition mobile video conferencing solves life-or-death problems, like the hospital patient in Georgia who needs to be seen by the specialist at the Mayo Clinic – fast,” Belanger says. "To that end, we support video technology today for American Sign Language and Spanish, and provide language interpretation access for more than 180 spoken languages, all on a mobile device."

Telemedicine is also used to bring doctors to far-flung rural communities; save travel time and money on consultations and team problem-solving; and even to have more experienced medical professionals offering guidance and instruction during procedures.

Observation and reliable connections are critical when video conferencing is used in these ways, Belanger notes. So continuing to refine and improve the tools will have far-reaching – and very personal – effects.

“Think about what happens when you go to the doctor. He or she looks down your throat, into your eyes and ears. What they see there gives them information about what’s wrong with you,” he says. “The better the video relay system, the more reliable and trusted telemedicine becomes and, who knows?, that could even lead to lower health insurance premiums.”

At the least, it ensures patients get all the medical whiz genius of a Gregory House – without the snark.

“Hey, with video conferencing,” Belanger says, “just hang up on him.”

About Sean Belanger

Sean Belanger is the chief executive officer of CSDVRS, the parent company of Stratus Video. A graduate of Virginia Technology, he has 30 years’ experience in the technology industry. He previously served as CEO of the Paradyne Networks and general manager of 3Coms’ network service provider division.

Obesity is Now a Problem for Unborn Babies PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Health, Medicine & Nutrition
Written by Ginny Grimsley   
Tuesday, 10 April 2012 11:45
Author Lampoons Western Medicine, Examines Foreign Longevity

Obesity isn’t just an American problem; in Britain, doctors have begun administering the diabetes drug metformin to the unborn babies of morbidly obese mothers-to-be to reduce the fetuses’ weight.

The reason: dangerously overweight pregnant women create excessive amounts of insulin, which results in “sumo babies” weighing 11 pounds or more. These extra-large newborns have twice the chance of becoming obese adults, and their numbers have risen by 50 percent in the past four years. Obese pregnant women are at a higher risk of dying while pregnant, and their babies are more likely to be stillborn.

“I don’t know how many more signs we need in Western society before we really get serious about our health,” says Gordon Filepas, author of Lean And Healthy To 100 (, a guide for achieving optimal health based on studying cultures where long lives are the norm.

“Are we really treating unborn babies for obesity?”

In his research, Filepas found many common practices and characteristics in especially healthy cultures. They include:

• Calories: It’s not necessary to count calories; people in healthy cultures don’t! Once you give your body what it needs, you’ll naturally consume fewer calories. This puts significantly less stress on the digestive system and reduces the potential of ingesting toxins.

• Heavy on nutrients: Human beings evolved as hunters and gatherers who took every opportunity for caloric intake. In the process, a wide spectrum of nutrients became the norm, and that is what bodies still crave today.

• Focus on whole and unprocessed foods, fats, and oils: Examples include fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds, beans and grains. Meat, which is usually the main dish in Western culture, is often treated as a side dish in the cultures Filepas studied.

• Limited toxins: This includes few, if any, pollutants from processed food, water and other beverages, medicine and air.

• A sense of purpose: Individuals from these cultures feel like they are making a difference beyond earning money, and tend to work long days, six days a week.

• Innate exercise: Virtually no additional form of exercise is needed beyond their daily activity.

• Alcohol: Every culture has alcohol. Healthy populations drink regularly, but in moderation. And, they take a greater sense of responsibility for their health.

• Traditional cooking methods: This means low-tech methods, absent of microwaves.

Finding a lifestyle that naturally promotes excellent health became an obsession for Filepas after the deaths of his father and brother in a three-month time span. He wanted to ensure he and his wife and three sons would be together for years to come.

“I tell my friends, family and anyone who will listen: Whatever you hear about health in America, do the exact opposite and you’ll be much healthier than the average American,” he says. “Americans are bombarded with confusion and misinformation about health; it’s a life-or-death situation.”

About Gordon Filepas

Gordon Filepas spent 20 years researching Lean And Healthy To 100, interviewing physicians, attending seminars, and reading medical journals and other health-related literature. He is the founder of TGM Partners, a consulting and investment firm. Filepas says he was motivated to learn more about the requirements for optimal health following the deaths of his father and brother within three months of each other. He hopes to ensure the good health of his family, including his wife of 25 years and three sons.

Yoga: Avoid Beginner’s Mistakes While Attaining a Well of Happiness PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Health, Medicine & Nutrition
Written by Ginny Grimsley   
Tuesday, 10 April 2012 09:19
Expert Says Too Many Overlook Vital Mind-Body Connection

Yoga has become a popular option for alternative health management. Research has shown the practice can significantly reduce mental and physical stress, improve mood, and slow the aging process.

But some yogis believe many of the estimated 20 million U.S. students are missing the best part of the discipline – the inner happiness attainable through a healthy mind-body connection. They also worry about injuries that result when beginners tackle poses and exercises without proper guidance.

“There are several disciplines of yoga, and with its rich history, the beginner can easily get lost – or worse – injured,” says Mary Jo Ricketson, an experienced yoga practitioner and healthcare specialist, and author of Moving Meditation ( A registered nurse, she also holds a master’s degree in education from Northwestern University.

“What I detail in my book is a comprehensive approach for both mind and body. This reciprocal relationship maximizes health benefits, and has exponentially positive consequences beyond the individual.”

People have been practicing yoga for thousands of years, she says. In the West, the practice has integrated with our culture leading to variations including “extreme” yoga. Ricketson warns this sort of exercise can alienate beginners, who may not be ready to “jump in the deep end first.” Without the proper training and guidance, she adds, beginners risk injuring their neck, lower back, knees and shoulders.

The most important step is getting started, Ricketson says. Here are seven things beginners – and anyone practicing yoga – should know to maximize their benefits:

1. Cardiovascular (aerobic) training: As with meditation, focused breathing is a cornerstone of mind-body training. Aerobic means “with oxygen” and aerobic movement increases the flow of oxygen-rich blood throughout the body, including the brain. Cardiovascular training is the single most important aspect of the physical training because it keeps the heart open and strong.

2. Core and strength training: This includes the students’ abdomen and buttocks, and the lower back region, which extends to the base of the skull. Here is where strength, stability and balance originate.

3. Flexibility training (yoga postures): Stretching simply feels good, and it reminds students to not only be more flexible in one’s body, but also one’s mind. This step allows us to move (and live) with greater ease.

4. Adequate rest: Sleep is a necessary part of life, and sufficient rest is needed for energy and equilibrium.

5. Life-giving nutrition: Making the right choices in food allows yoga students to achieve an optimal, balanced state. This includes nutritional foods consumed in moderation.

6. Family/community/church: From Epicurus to modern science, study and observation show that we find greater happiness with access to friends and family.

7. Written goals and a plan of action: Goals and stated intention act as a road map to achieving balanced well-being.

Ricketson says the above steps are just the beginning. She says tapping in to the mind-body connection also helps memory loss, attention deficit disorders, public violence – including in schools – as well as an unknown amount of needless human suffering.

“We all have within us a potential to experience optimal well-being in mind and body,” she says. “This potential, the Good Within, can be realized through the work of mind-body training. Our training is a moving meditation – a daily practice of exercises that awaken all that is Good Within.”

About Mary Jo Ricketson

Mary Jo Ricketson has studied human health and well-being for decades, earning a Bachelor of Science in nursing and a master’s in education. In 1999, she opened the Center for Mind-Body Training, which offers classes, seminars, and personal training. Yoga training is done in her studio, in schools, and in corporate settings. She lives in the Boston area with her husband and two children.

4 Things People Should Know About Biology and Weight Loss PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Health, Medicine & Nutrition
Written by Ginny Grimsley   
Friday, 06 April 2012 08:54

Obesity has become such an epidemic in the United States, the FDA is considering approving a new prescription weight-loss drug – despite safety concerns about it.

It seems the health effects of being overweight override officials’ concerns about Qnexa, a drug the FDA rejected two years ago.

That shocks weight-loss expert Don Ochs, who says neither diets nor drugs are effective, long-lasting solutions.

“When you understand the biology behind burning off fat versus packing it on, the whole notion of starving yourself on a low-calorie diet is absurd,” says Ochs, developer of the physician-recommended Mobanu Integrated Weight Loss Solution ( “And certainly taking a drug that can damage your heart is out of the question.”

Here’s what people should know about biology and weight loss, Ochs says.

Your body was designed to temporarily store fat because food was not consistently available to our ancestors. They relied on that stored fat to get them through famines, winters and dry seasons. That worked very well until we made huge advances in agriculture and food supplies became abundant and consistently available.

When food is plentiful, your body will quickly burn fat deposits – those bulges you want to get rid of – for energy. When food is scarce, it burns fat more slowly, to help ensure your survival. That’s why simply eating less is not the best way to lose weight. A low-calorie diet actually tells your body to store fat because food is in short supply.

You can control whether or not your body stores fat for survival or dumps it for an upcoming time of plenty by sending it the right signals. The types of food you eat, and how much you eat of them, send biologically ingrained messages to your body about whether to store fat or burn it – just like flipping a switch.

Your body is very efficient at converting certain types of food to fat. These were the foods with natural carbohydrates that were available to our ancestors before a dry season or another winter, such as apples, which ripen in the fall. If you eat these foods, your body interprets it as a signal that lean times are coming so guess what? It starts stocking up on the stored fat.

To address his own weight problem, Ochs spent years studying the biology of fat burning versus fat storing based on research conducted at The Mayo Clinic and the National Institutes of Health. From that perspective he figured out how to recognize when the foods he ate were signaling his body to produce a lot of insulin, which results in storing fat instead of burning it off.

“When you feel very sleepy after a meal, or when you’re full and yet you still crave food, those are signals that you’ve flipped the switch and turned on your insulin production,” he says. “How many carbohydrates flip that switch is different for every person based on genetics.

Losing weight by working with biology and your own individual, genetically encoded insulin triggers is natural and a prescription for long-term success. It doesn’t mean you can eat whatever you want and never exercise, but it does mean you’ll feel full and satisfied and have lots of energy. And keep the weight off.

About Donald Ochs

Donald Ochs is a Colorado entrepreneur, the president and CEO of Ochs Development Co. and M4 Group, an inventor and sports enthusiast. He developed the Mobanu weight loss system based on research conducted at The Mayo Clinic and the National Institutes of Health. The program is endorsed by physicians, nutritionists and exercise experts.

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