Health

Fight against cancer continues under gray skies at Relay for Life

By DAVID DUPONT BG Independent News Cancer hasn’t kept those involved in the Relay for Life down, so rain in the forecast certainly wasn’t going to scare them off. The annual Relay for Life for Southern Wood County was held Saturday from 11 to11 at the Wood County Fairgrounds. Liz Bostdorff, one of the chairpersons for the event, said that before the relay kicked off, it had already raised $50,000 toward its $80,000 goal. Fundraising continues through the summer. Speaking at noon she was expecting about 250 to participate. “Especially for the cancer-fighting community, this is a big event for us.” Julie Rehard, as a radiology therapist at the Maurer Family Cancer Center, is on the front lines of that fight. “This is another way to support my patients,” she said of her participation in the relay.  “It’s a way for the community to come together and show support for all the cancer survivors and those who have cancer.” Rehard said she’s been participating in Relays for Life since 1993 and in Bowling Green for three. She was on hand as a member of the Wonder Walkers, a team of people affiliated with the Wood County Hospital, both cancer survivors and hospital employees The team is organized by Cindy Rossow, who is both. She works as a medical coder. In 2005 she was diagnosed with multiple myeloma. On Saturday she was getting ready to serve the survivors luncheon. For her the relay is “a way to raise money to fight cancer.” Ann Avina is part of the BG Catholic Community team. A cancer survivor, she doesn’t know how many relays…

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Workshop offers strategies for communicating with the those with dementia

From THE OPTIMAL AGING INSTITUTE On April 20, at 5:30 p.m. at the Simpson Garden Community Center, “Communicating with Loved Ones Who Have Dementia: Practical Pointers” will offer simple strategies to help make communication easier and to provide stimulation and mental exercise for people with dementia. In partnership with the Optimal Aging Institute, this event is co-sponsored by Bowling Green Manor and Bowling Green Care Center, Brookdale Bowling Green, and Sincera Supportive Care and Symptom Relief. Brent Archer, Ph.D., assistant professor of communication sciences and disorders at BGSU, and his wife, Ramona Olvera, Ph.D., head of the Behavioral and Social Sciences Department at Owens Community College, will be presenting their professional expertise as well as their personal experiences with a family member with dementia. With a Ph.D. in Applied Languages and Speech Sciences, Dr. Archer specializes in aphasia, an inability to comprehend and formulate language because of damage to specific brain regions. He has worked in a professional capacity with people with degenerative brain diseases, such as Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias. He also has personal experience interacting with his mother in-law, who had dementia and lived with his family for two years. Throughout the program, Dr. Archer and Dr. Olvera will have an interactive discussion and give communication pointers, as Dr. Olvera was the primary caregiver for her mother. “Having dementia has a big impact on people’s [sense of] identity and who they are,” Dr. Archer said. “Some people don’t realize that, in the end, all [brain] functions can be affected.” Communicating with someone who has dementia can be difficult, and it gradually gets worse. According to Dr. Archer,…


Luckey cleanup could take $244 million and 12 years

By JAN LARSON McLAUGHLIN BG  Independent News   Cleaning up the contaminated beryllium site in Luckey is expected to cost $244 million and take up to 12 years to complete. “It will be one of the larger in the nation,” David Romano, deputy district engineer for the Army Corps of Engineers, said of the Luckey project. Removal of contaminated soil and possibly structures from the 40-acre site is expected to start late this year or next year. Representatives of the Army Corps of Engineers, which is in charge of the cleanup, met with the Wood County Commissioners on Tuesday. The cleanup of the site at the corner of Luckey Road and Ohio 582, is part of the federally funded Formerly Utilized Sites Remedial Action Program. Between 1949 and 1958, the Luckey site was operated as a beryllium production facility by the Brush Beryllium Company (later Brush Wellman) under contract to the Atomic Energy Commission. In 1951, the site received approximately 1,000 tons of radioactively contaminated scrap steel, to be used in proposed magnesium production at the site. The Corps of Engineers has identified beryllium, lead, radium, thorium, and uranium as problems in the soil. The cleanup calls for the excavation and off-site disposal of FUSRAP-contaminated materials. The excavated soils will be shipped off-site for disposal at a facility licensed to take such hazardous materials. Groundwater wells near the site are being sampled annually for beryllium, lead, uranium and gross alpha/beta until sampling results show a progressive trend that indicates safe drinking water standards have been met. During the site soils remedial action, more frequent monitoring will be conducted. The cost…


Free speech & hearing screenings offered at BGSU

From BGSU OFFICE OF MARKETING & COMMUNICATIONS The Bowling Green State University Speech and Hearing Clinic is celebrating Better Hearing and Speech Month early this year, in April instead of May. The clinic will provide free hearing screenings and speech/language screenings for children and adults of all ages. Screenings are available by appointment April 10, 12 and 14 at the BGSU Speech and Hearing Clinic in 200 Health and Human Services Building on Ridge Street. Call 419-372-2515 for an appointment. Everyone is invited to take advantage of this offer — faculty, staff, family and friends and both the on- and off-campus communities. The BGSU Speech and Hearing Clinic offers state-of-the-art diagnostic and therapeutic speech, language, and hearing services while acting as a training facility for master’s- and doctoral-level speech-language pathologists. Professionally experienced faculty and clinical staff are state licensed and nationally certified speech-language pathologists and audiologists. Under the supervision of these professionals, enthusiastic graduate students receive valuable academic and clinical experiences.


Wood County health ranks 8th of Ohio’s 88 counties

By JAN LARSON McLAUGHLIN BG Independent News   The good news is Wood County’s health ranking is 8 among Ohio’s 88 counties. But the bad news is Ohio’s ranking is 46 out of the 50 states. That means Ohioans as a whole are living less healthy lives and spending more on health care than people in most other states. The Health Value Dashboard examines each state’s health outcomes, spending, change over time, and inequities. Ohio’s challenges include high numbers of adults smoking, drug overdose deaths, infant mortality, food insecurity and average monthly marketplace premiums. Ohio’s strengths include fewer adults without health care because of cost, fewer heart failure readmissions, less youth tobacco and marijuana use, and lower unemployment rate. The health rankings, by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, look at individual counties. The following factors were noted for Wood County: Ranks 5th in Ohio for length of life. Ranks 11th in Ohio for quality of life. Ranks 8th for health behaviors such as smoking, obesity, physical inactivity, access to exercise opportunities, excessive drinking, alcohol-impaired driving deaths, sexually transmitted infections and teen births. Ranks 62nd for physical environment, with the primary factor being drinking water violations. Ranks 21st for clinical care. While the number of uninsured citizens in Wood County is lower than Ohio’s average, the number of preventable hospital stays is greater. Wood County has fewer primary care physicians and mental health providers per person than most Ohio counties. Most notable is the number of dentists, with the state averaging one for every 1,690 citizens, but Wood County having one for every 2,880 residents. Ranks 9th for social and economic…


5K event aims to E-Race the Stigma of mental illness

ALYSSA ALFANO BG Independent Contributor Three organizations on Bowling Green State University’s campus will be combining fitness, education, and a lot of color to raise awareness about mental illness and to get rid of stigmas and stereotypes related to this issue. Active Minds, Undergraduate Psychology Association and National Alliance on Mental Illness BG are three student organizations that worked together to plan a 5K color run to raise money for an organization called Behavioral Connections. “Mental illness is so common, one out of five Americans have one. Mental illness affects many college students, but the stigma associated with mental illness is so great that they do not want to get help,” said Rena Onady, one of those involved with putting on this event. Last year, there was about 60 participants and around $1,000 dollars was raised. The money was donated to YouthMOVE, NAMI Wood County, and Behavioral Connections. This year, the race will be held on the BGSU campus and will be starting in the Union Oval at noon on April 2. The goal of this event, in addition to raising money for Behavioral Connection, is to raise awareness about mental illness. Despite the commonness of mental illnesses, there are still a lot of myths and stereotypes about these issues. In order to educate participants and others involved in the 5K, there will be signs containing facts about mental illnesses throughout the course. Participants will be able to view these to learn some truths about these issues. Onady said: “We chose to do a 5k because we agreed that this would be the easiest way we could get the students and…


Local citizens fight to hang onto Affordable Care Act

By JAN LARSON McLAUGHLIN BG Independent News   Minutes after news broke Thursday that the vote on a new health plan for the nation had been put on hold, local residents were celebrating the seventh birthday of the Affordable Care Act. Wearing birthday hats, holding balloons and blowing noise makers, the citizens presented birthday cards and decorated cupcakes to staff at U.S. Rep. Bob Latta’s office in Bowling Green. Others stood along North Main Street, bearing signs like the one stating, “Trump Care Doesn’t Care….it’s tax credits for the rich.” As cars drove, they sang “Happy Birthday,” with some following the last stanza with an optimistic “and many more.” One of the birthday party organizers, Sean Elliott of Bowling Green, said he was “relieved” that the Republican health care bill failed to advance on Thursday, though he realized the delay was likely to be brief. “It seems really unacceptable,” considering the millions of people it would leave uninsured. For Elloitt, it’s not just a matter of public policy. It’s personal. “It’s not just a statistic,” he said. Elliott’s 4-year-old son, Jacoby, has a rare chromosome disorder that has delayed his motor skills. He is unable to walk or to talk. The Affordable Care Act has helped with Jacoby’s medical bills – but the replacement bill could halt that coverage. “To see that program gutted would be devastating,” Elliott said. Inside Latta’s office, citizens asked Andy Lorenz, the representative’s district director, where Latta stands on the Republican health care bill.  Lorenz said his boss supported the bill when it came out of committee, but he wasn’t sure of his stance since…