HEALTH & HUMAN SERVICES COMMITTEE
From the Chair – April 2019
From our last meeting:
Speaker: Sarah Haught, Founder – Beauty From Ashes Ranch & Valerie Pinon, Marketing Mgr. Bayada Home Health Care Gave a presentation about the exploitation of vulnerable children in our state of Arizona, our Country and Our World. One of the most sickening of segments of child exploitation is sex trafficking. Available is a six panel two-page brochure that gives you statistics and explains what a small handful of dedicated and concerned Southern Arizona community members are doing to help the victims. Both victimized children and families are in desperate need to be helped and transitioned from a horrible life of slavery by the greed of the unscrupulous predators. If you think our area is safe, think again. There are recruiters filming young children in preparation for kidnaping in Greater Tucson which also includes the Santa Cruz Valley area.
I was so moved by this presentation, and angry, not only at the predators, but disappointed in myself for not realizing how horrific this crime is and for how it can so easily destroy young lives and families. My wife Sally and I immediately wrote checks and sent them with the hope that our small contributions will help this courageous movement to build and grow. We encourage you to consider doing the same.
New Business: Our Committee Chairperson Diane Murrieta is out of state taking care of urgent family matters. Andrea and Paul will be planning and conducting the future H&HS Committee meetings until Diane is able to return. Some participants have asked about continuing our H&HS meetings through the summer. The decision was made by GVC management that we would convert to a twelve-month meeting schedule. For June, July & August the meetings will be held in the GVC office meeting room next door to the Salvation Army meeting room.
Highlights & Comments: Attendees representing local healthcare providers and volunteer-based organizations report ever increasing activity in the community. The scheduling of meaningful healthcare events and increased participation in events by community members continues to be a strong indication that our country’s economy is growing. With economic prosperity usually comes increased enthusiasm and marketplace/community activity as is indicated by the attendance here today. Recent increased participation and traffic at community events and many more announced today, represent a combination of organizations in all phases of commerce and community services strongly indicate a thriving economy. Home and business construction and sales indicates that our Santa Cruz Valley population is growing, and business is thriving.
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.