Health, Medicine & Nutrition
Governor Quinn Launches New Year’s Challenge: “Walk Across Illinois” PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Health, Medicine & Nutrition
Written by Nafia Khan   
Tuesday, 10 January 2012 14:40

Encourages Illinoisans to Walk 167 Miles in One Year for Better Health

CHICAGO – January 6, 2012. Governor Pat Quinn today announced the “Walk Across Illinois Challenge,” an initiative to help improve the health and wellness of Illinois residents. The Governor walked 167 miles across Illinois 10 years ago to advocate on behalf of decent healthcare for all people. Today the Governor called on state residents to walk 167 miles during 2012 to improve their own health.

“As the New Year gets underway, many Illinois residents are already making the commitment to get fit and live healthier,” Governor Quinn said. “Together, we can make 2012 a year of fitness by accepting the challenge to add a half-mile of walking to each day.”

Former Chicago Bears and Chicago Bulls players, schoolteachers and students joined Governor Quinn to launch the program, which is designed to help Illinois residents get healthier by adding a half-mile of walking to their daily routines, which is roughly the distance across Illinois from Rock Island on the Mississippi River to Chicago on Lake Michigan. Residents can accept the “Walk Across Illinois Challenge” by visiting www.WalkAcrossIllinois.org, where they can register and log their miles.

As part of his broader effort to improve the well-being of residents, Governor Quinn also announced the creation of the Governor’s Council on Health and Fitness to develop practical ideas to help residents embrace healthier lifestyles. Sandy Noel, a Golden Apple award-winning teacher and physical fitness instructor, will co-chair the Governor’s Council with former Chicago Bear and Super Bowl champion Otis Wilson.

“Adding a little exercise to your daily agenda can make a big difference in your quality of life,” Otis Wilson said. “I’m proud to stand with the Governor in encouraging Illinois residents to live healthier in 2012.”

Governor Quinn initially launched “Walk Across Illinois” 10 years ago to bring attention to the need for access to decent healthcare. The Governor has converted it into a fitness challenge for 2012 to bolster efforts to improve the health of Illinois residents. Participants who complete the challenge within the year will receive a certificate from the Governor honoring their achievement.

Obesity, high blood pressure and a lack of exercise are growing community health problems across the nation. Illinois came in as the 23rd most obese state in the country, according to a recent report from the Trust for America's Health (TFAH) and Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF).By encouraging Illinois residents to include just one half-mile of walking into their daily routines, the “Walk Across Illinois Challenge” can help boost the health, life expectancy and well-being of all Illinois residents, no matter whether they run, walk or use a wheelchair.

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When should you worry about “senior moments”?, from Harvard Medical School PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Health, Medicine & Nutrition
Written by Raquel Schott   
Tuesday, 10 January 2012 09:27

BOSTON—Everyone experiences occasional episodes of forgetfulness.  When an older loved one has a few episodes of forgetfulness, friends and family members may wonder whether those misplaced keys or trouble finding the right word in a conversation is the result of normal age-related changes in memory or an early sign of something more serious. As the Harvard Medical School Special Health Report A Guide to Alzheimer’s Disease reveals, the characteristics of these forgetful moments often offer clues as to whether Alzheimer’s disease or another dementia may be the underlying problem. For example:

Recognizing and discussing episodes of memory loss. If the person complains about memory loss and can provide details about the episode of forgetfulness, normal aging is more likely. With dementia, it’s common that the person affected will only complain about memory problems if she’s asked about them and won’t be able to recall specific instances.

Worry about memory loss. When dementia occurs, the person affected is often much less concerned about memory loss than her family members are. The reverse is true for normal age-related memory problems.

Losing the way. If your loved one doesn’t get lost in familiar surroundings but does sometimes pause momentarily to remember the way, normal aging is likely. But if she gets lost in familiar territory while walking or driving and takes hours to return, Alzheimer’s or dementia should be a concern.

Word-finding problems. Occasional trouble finding the right word probably isn’t worth worrying over, but frequent word-finding pauses and substitutions — for example, calling the telephone “the ringer” or “that thing I use to call you” — are typical of dementia.

Changes in abilities and social skills. While it isn’t uncommon for an older adult to be unwilling to operate new devices or to fumble a bit with their cell phone or DVR, it’s a warning sign if the person has trouble operating common appliances like the dishwasher or has trouble using even simple new devices. Also, if the person has lost interest in social activities or if his or her social skills are in decline, it’s worth noting.

Of course, while these tips can help distinguish between normal age-related memory changes and dementia, concerns about memory problems should be brought to the attention of a doctor.

A Guide to Alzheimer’s Disease includes more information on recognizing and managing Alzheimer’s disease.

Also in this report:

  • Alzheimer’s disease and changes in the brain
  • Medications for managing symptoms
  • Planning ahead on legal and financial issues, as well as residential care
  • Help for caregivers

A Guide to Alzheimer’s Disease is available for $18 from Harvard Health Publications, the publishing division of Harvard Medical School. Order it online at www.health.harvard.edu/Alzheimers0112 or by calling 877–649–9457 (toll-free).

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January is National Radon Action Month: Test for Dangerous Radon Gas PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Health, Medicine & Nutrition
Written by Chelsey Derks   
Tuesday, 10 January 2012 09:07

(Kansas City, Kan., January 5, 2012) - The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Region 7 is encouraging people to take simple and affordable steps to test their homes for harmful levels of radon gas as part of National Radon Action Month.  Radon is an invisible, odorless, tasteless radioactive gas that comes from the natural breakdown of uranium in soil, rock, and water.  It causes no immediate symptoms but is the number one cause of lung cancer among non-smokers and kills more than 21,000 each year in the United States.

 

"Radon is a dangerous health threat to our families and communities that can be easily avoided through simple testing," said Karl Brooks, EPA Region 7 Administrator. "This month, I urge everyone to test their homes."

 

Nearly one of every 15 homes in the U.S. is estimated to have elevated radon levels. Simple steps to prevent this health hazard can be taken:

 

  • Test: EPA and the U.S. Surgeon General recommend that all homes, both with and without basements, be tested for radon. Affordable do-it-yourself radon test kits are available at home improvement and hardware stores and online. A qualified radon tester can also be hired by contacting your state radon office.
  • Fix: EPA recommends taking action to fix radon levels above 4 Picocuries per Liter (pCi/L). Addressing high radon levels often costs the same as other minor home repairs.
  • Save a Life: By testing and fixing elevated levels of radon in your home, you can help prevent lung cancer and create a healthier home and community.

 

Radon can enter a home through cracks in the foundation or other openings, such as holes or pipes. Although radon can enter a home through the water supply, entry through the soil is a much larger risk. Radon in a home’s water system is more likely when the home has a ground water source – such as a private well or public water supply system that uses ground water.

 

In addition to testing for radon, there now are safer and healthier radon-resistant construction techniques that home buyers can discuss with builders to prevent this health hazard.

 

In 2011, EPA announced the Federal Radon Action Plan, along with General Services Administration and the departments of Agriculture; Defense; Energy; Health and Human Services; Housing and Urban Development; Interior; and Veterans Affairs. This action plan will demonstrate the importance of radon risk reduction, address finance and incentive issues to drive testing and mitigation, and build demand for services from industry professionals.

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Pioneer® Surgical Announces First Human Use of nanOss® Bioactive 3D PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Health, Medicine & Nutrition
Written by Nicole Young   
Tuesday, 10 January 2012 08:40

Pioneer Surgical Technology, Inc of Raleigh, NC and Marquette, MI today announces the first clinical use of nanOss Bioactive 3D, a three-dimensionally shaped addition to its flagship biologic bone graft product line, nanOss Bioactive.  The new nanOss Bioactive 3D bone graft utilizes proprietary nanocrystalline hydroxyapatite as well as a collagen-based biopolymer to promote bone growth in the posterolateral spine.

Regarding Pioneer’s latest product introduction, Mr. Shane Ray, General Manager – Biologics for Pioneer stated, “We are extremely excited to start the clinical phase of nanOss Bioactive 3D. Three-dimensional shapes are popular in spine surgery and with this addition, we now have one of the most extensive biologic portfolios on the market.”

Pioneer Surgical Biologics now offers a full line of synthetic bone grafts as well as human tissue products including machined lateral, traditional lumbar and cervical allograft, human demineralized bone matrix (DBM) bone grafts, as well as bone graft delivery accessories. For more information regarding Pioneer’s Biologics Product offerings, including nanOss Bioactive 3D, please visit the Pioneer Surgical website at www.pioneersurgical.com.

About Pioneer Surgical Technology, Inc.
Pioneer Surgical Technology, Inc. is a dynamic medical device firm founded in 1992. Pioneer’s focus on innovation has resulted in over 120 U.S. and foreign patents, with numerous patents pending. The company has a comprehensive portfolio of orthopedic, spine and biologic systems. Pioneer entered the orthobiologics market with two acquisitions in 2007. Our Orthopedic, Spine, and Biologics divisions produce state of the art, cost-effective solutions for surgical procedures that have proven difficult or problematic for both surgeons and patients. For more information on Pioneer and its products, visit www.pioneersurgical.com.

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Help Make a Difference during National Blood Donor Month PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Health, Medicine & Nutrition
Written by Karen Stecher   
Wednesday, 04 January 2012 14:08

January is National Blood Donor Month and above all other times of the year, it is the month that presents the most challenges for blood collection. Changing weather, busy holiday schedules, increased cold and flu symptoms and even the winter blues can keep the most dedicated blood donors from making or keeping an appointment to give.

This January is no exception with the local Red Cross in need of blood donations. First-time and regular donors are encouraged to make a difference in their communities by scheduling an appointment to give blood every January, and regularly thereafter. Remember, just one pint of blood can help save multiple lives.

How to Donate Blood

Simply call 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767) or visit redcrossblood.org to make an appointment or for more information. All blood types are needed to ensure a reliable supply for patients. 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 permission 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

Governed by volunteers and supported by giving individuals and communities, the American Red Cross is the single largest supplier of blood products to hospitals throughout the United States. While local hospital needs are always met first, the Red Cross also helps ensure no patient goes without blood no matter where or when they need it. In addition to providing nearly half of the nation’s blood supply, the Red Cross provides relief to victims of disaster, trains millions in lifesaving skills, serves as a communication link between U.S. military members and their families, and assists victims of international disasters or conflicts.

 

Blood Donation Opportunities

CLINTON COUNTY

1/23/2012, 2:30 pm- 6:30 pm, Northeast Elementary School, 1450 370th Avenue, Goose Lake

1/26/2012, 1:00 pm- 6:00 pm, United Methodist Church, 621 South 3rd Street, Clinton

 

HENRY COUNTY

1/17/2012, 1:00 pm- 6:00 pm, First United Methodist Church, 214 N. W. Second Ave, Galva

1/25/2012, 2:00 pm- 6:00 pm, First Christian Church, 105 Dwight St., Kewanee

 

MERCER COUNTY

1/17/2012, 12:00 pm- 6:00 pm, VFW Hall, 106 SW 3rd Ave., Aledo

1/24/2012, 10:00 am- 2:00 pm, Mercer County Hospital, 409 North West 9th Avenue, Aledo

 

WHITESIDE COUNTY

1/17/2012, 1:00 pm- 5:15 pm, Old Fulton Fire Station, 912 4th Street, Fulton

1/17/2012, 12:00 pm- 6:00 pm, United Methodist Church, 200 West Lincolnway, Morrison

1/18/2012, 2:00 pm- 6:00 pm, Rock Falls Blood Donation Center, 112 W. Second St., Rock Falls

1/24/2012, 1:00 pm- 5:15 pm, Old Fulton Fire Station, 912 4th Street, Fulton

1/25/2012, 10:00 am- 2:00 pm, Rock Falls Blood Donation Center, 112 W. Second St., Rock Falls

1/27/2012, 10:00 am- 2:00 pm, Halo Branded Solutions, 1980 Industrial Drive, Sterling

1/28/2012, 6:00 am-12:00 pm, CGH Main Clinic, 101 E. Miller Road, Sterling

1/28/2012, 7:00 am-11:00 am, Rock Falls Blood Donation Center, 112 W. Second St., Rock Falls

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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