HEALTH & HUMAN SERVICES COMMITTEE
From the Chair
Attendees representing local healthcare providers and volunteer based organizations report on-going and lively activity in the community. The scheduling of meaningful healthcare events and increased participation in events by community members continues to be strong. Increased participation and traffic at community events and many more announced today is encouraging.
Recent Guest Speakers: Emil Annabi, M.D., founder and principle of Pima Pain Center and Mary J. Arefieg, Outreach & Provider Relations Director, Pima Pain Center. “The treatment of pain today must be much more procedure driven utilizing finely turned techniques and much less administering of prescription pain medications. Pima Pain Center’s clinic at our Green Valley Hospital Campus is currently open five days a week and staffed by a team of medical professionals trained and experienced in Pain Management.” Dr. Annabi, who regularly sees patients and performs procedures at this location.
We encourage you to recognize the value in the concept and potential usefulness of the Green Valley Council – Health & Human Services Committee monthly meetings. You are invited to attend so that you can hear contributors describe and discuss healthcare issues in real time.
– Christi Bermudez, HHS Chair
February 20, 2018
The Health & Human Services Committee members, who live and work in our community, are proud to serve Green Valley by monitoring, reporting, educating, training and discussing the healthcare service resources available to all Green Valley residents. Our members, service providers, and interested visitors meet monthly from October through May. This year, the members have set four goals to help better represent and inform the community about health resources in Green Valley:
- Recruit committee members for the next two years and then rotate the members from a list of all interested parties.
- Collect a list of medical providers to incorporate into the Health Care Directory for our community
- Promote health care and wellness through seminars and other venues for community members.
- Continue to participate with all healthcare activities to educate the community.
|Leading the News
Falls the leading cause of injury among older adults, CDC says
The CBS News (9/22, Marcus) website reports that “falls are the number one cause of fatal and nonfatal injuries among adults over 65,” researchers concluded in a report published in the CDC’s Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report. The report found that “in 2014, older Americans fell 29 million times, leading to seven million injuries” that sometimes landed people in the emergency department. Unfortunately, “more than 27,000 falls led to death.” In a press statement, CDC Director Tom Frieden, MD, MPH, said, “Older adult falls are increasing and, sadly, often herald the end of independence.” Dr. Frieden went on to emphasize that falls can be prevented.
Safety and Health in Motion (SHiM) Program
Falls are a huge threat to our independence. One in three adults, age 65 or older experience a fall. Those who fall once are two to three times more likely to fall again. Many seniors are unaware of the health and environmental conditions that put them at risk for a fall. Good news: most falls can be prevented! SHiM® is available in our community to help prevent these falls.
Valley Assistance Services, a local community-based organization initiated a fall prevention program in 2011 with local partners Green Valley Fire Corps Volunteers, and the Green Valley Council’s Volunteer Clearinghouse. Our program called SHiM® (Safety and Health in Motion) has helped over 450 seniors who called or were referred by caregivers, health professionals, family members and Green Valley Fire Department referrals.
An RN healthcare professional, and Green Valley Fire Corps volunteers provide home visits to review both physical/environmental and health factors to help seniors take the first steps to reduce their fear of falling. A volunteer handy person provides assistance with minor home improvements and safety items available (reach stick, night lights, bath tub treads), while supplies last.
Valley Assistance Services is now proud to announce a new collaborative partnership with the University of Arizona, Colleges of Nursing, Medicine, Public Health and the Arizona Center on Aging in our SHiM® Program. Call Valley Assistance Services today at 625-5966 to set-up your in-home visit. Because YOU are part of your own wellness!
Updates on Influenza Vaccines 2016-17
As reported in Medscape.com by:
Lisa Grohskopf, from CDC’s Influenza Division. on Medscape. I will be highlighting for you the most pertinent information related to 2016-2017 influenza vaccines and CDC’s vaccination recommendations. [Read More]
Do you or someone you love have diabetes? Everyone with Diabetes Counts is a program that encourages small lifestyle changes while learning about your diabetes and the way it affects your health. Have fun with friends and family while learning how to manage diabetes through better nutrition and physical activity. Enjoy the benefits of a healthier, more energetic lifestyle by signing up today! [Click here to learn more.]
Urgent Care Update
Recognizing the national shortage of primary care physicians, many medical facilities are relying more on Nurse Practitioners (NPs) and Physician Assistants (PAs). In urgent care facilities in Green Valley, NPs and PAs are working with physicians as a team. They are able to assess and provide care for many acute problems that may not necessarily require the immediate attention of a primary care physician.
Visits to the Green Valley Hospital Emergency Department can then be and should be reserved for more serious and potentially life threatening conditions.
The Committee meets with the urgent care and other types of medical facilities to maintain updated information on the accessibility of these important services to the community of Green Valley and surrounding area. Some of these facilities appear below and more are listed in the Health Care Directory, which is constantly updated as information becomes available.
What is a Nurse Practitioner (NP) ? What is a Physician Assistant (PA) ?
Both of these professionals are health care specialists. These health care careers originated in the 1960s in response to a growing need for more medical practitioners. They should not be confused with medical assistants who usually organize the work flow in the office and provide logistical support to the physician.
A Nurse Practitioner is a nurse (RN) who has completed, at a minimum, a master’s degree in advanced nursing. They can diagnose and treat without the supervision of a doctor.
PAs usually have a background as an emergency medical technician (EMT), a nurse, a lab technician, an acupuncturist, a midwife, etc. The PA programs offer a range of certifications and degrees (i.e., certificate, associate, bachelor and master degrees). However, most of the PA programs are graduate, master’s programs, and all PAs have to pass the Physician Assistant National Certifying exam (PANCE). PAs always have to report to a physician, but their degree of autonomy can vary, depending upon the physician’s level of confidence in the PA and the state in which they practice.
It should not matter whether you are seen by a NP or PA. Both are trained to know when a patient’s condition is beyond their capabilities or understanding. They know whether to refer you to a physician or specialist, and they know how to consult with other practitioners in order to ensure that you receive the proper care.