The Learn to Live program of the Department of Health has a new healthful eating kit that features a free cookbook and tips that will help you select foods high in fiber and low in fat and sodium. Recipes are also quick, easy and economical. Information: visit http://www.LearntoLiveHealthy.org or call 410-222-7979.
Tobacco sales compliance
The health department's Learn to Live program offers to retailers a tobacco sales compliance kit. The kit includes a training guide that explains Maryland's tobacco laws. It's illegal to sell tobacco products to anyone under the age of 18 in the State of Maryland. The free kit is available by calling the Learn to Live Line at 410-222-7979 or visiting http://www.aahealth.org/ltl_pdf/compliancekit.pdf.
Holiday food safety
Reduce the risk of food-borne illness with suggestions from the Department of Health when preparing seasonal meals. The national Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that 48 million Americans get sick from spoiled foods. Infants and the elderly are at the greatest risk. Information: 410-222-7239 or go to "holiday tips for handling food safely" under Hot Topics at http://www.aahealth.org.
Free flu vaccine clinics
The Department of Health provides free seasonal flu vaccine at walk-in clinics in Annapolis and Glen Burnie. Both the injectable and nasal spray vaccines are available. For details, call the flu information line at 410-222-7343 or visit http://www.aahealth.org.
Guide to school health
The Department of Health website, http://www.aahealth.org, offers information on school health services for the 2011-2012 school year. The page provides information on bullying, keeping kids smoke-free, flu prevention, treatment of head lice and communicable diseases, and more.
Health report card
The Department of Health has announced its annual report card of community health indicators. The report highlights progress in lowering death rates from stroke, diabetes and breast cancer. County residents have met nationally set goals for getting screened for cholesterol levels, breast cancer and colorectal cancer. Lung cancer and melanoma mortality rates were higher in Anne Arundel County than in Maryland as a whole. Information: aahealth.org or 410-222-7202.
Health email alerts
The Department of Health has a community health email alert system to provide timely notices about department services and community health issues. Also, a recreational water-quality email alert system has been in effect since 2006. It alerts subscribers when a closure or advisory is issued for a county waterway. For information about the alert services, visit aahealth.org. Click on "sign-up" to receive health alerts; or call the public information office at 410-222-4508.
Patient disability pamphlet
The county Commission on Disability Issues offers a pamphlet, "Doctors' Offices and Patients with Disabilities Working Together," that offers suggestions for doctors to make visits go more smoothly, including information on training staff, obtaining equipment for the disabled and accommodating service animals. To obtain a copy, contact the Americans with Disabilities Act Office at 410-222-4464, ext. 3056; or http://www.aacounty.org/Aging/disabledAdults/CommDis.cfm and click on "Doctor's Office Brochure."
Lunch and health seminars The Northern Anne Arundel County Chamber of Commerce health care and wellness committee has teamed up with ShopRite of Glen Burnie to offer a free health seminars from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. on the third Tuesday of every month at the ShopRite community meeting room, 6716 Ritchie Highway. ShopRite's corporate dietitian, Natalie Menza, will coordinate all lunches. Registration required. Information: 410-766-8282 or visit http://www.naaccc.com.
The Joslin Circle A diabetes support group discusses issues regarding management of the disease. The group meets 5:30 p.m. to 7 p.m. the third Wednesday of every month in the Joslin Diabetes Center, Suite 223, Baltimore Washington Medical Center, 301 Hospital Drive, Glen Burnie. Information: 410-787-4940.
Man-to-Man prostate cancer Offers information about diagnosis, treatment and management. The group meets 6:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. on the third Monday of every month in the Tate Center, Baltimore Washington Medical Center, 305 Hospital Drive, Glen Burnie. Information: 410-787-4367.
Stroke A support group meets to discuss stroke recovery and prevention from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. on the second Tuesday of every month in the Dr. Constantine Padussis Conference Center, Baltimore Washington Medical Center, 301 Hospital Drive, Glen Burnie. Information: 410-787-4457.
Caregivers A group provides information, respite and support to people who give care to family and friends. The group meets 1 p.m. to 2:30 p.m. on the third Tuesday of every month at the Heritage Office Complex in the Department of Aging and Disabilities office, fourth floor, 2666 Riva Road, Annapolis.
Diabetes For diabetics and their families, the group meets 5:30 p.m. to 7 p.m. on the third Wednesday of every month in the Center for Diabetes and Endocrinology at the Baltimore Washington Medical Center, 300 Hospital Drive, Suite 223, Glen Burnie. Information: 410-787-4940.
Joint School A free session on the preparation, recovery and benefits of hip- and knee-replacement surgery will be held at 4 p.m. on the third Wednesday of every other month; the next meeting will be Nov. 16 at Baltimore Washington Medical Center, 300 Hospital Drive, Glen Burnie. Information and reservations: 410-553-8282.
Suicide support group for age 18 and older meets monthly on Tuesdays from 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. at the Life Center, 445 Defense Highway in Annapolis. Registration is required. Information: 410-987-2129.
'Stepping Stones,' a support group for children ages 8-13 who are grieving the loss of a loved one, meets from 10 a.m. to noon monthly on Saturdays at the Life Center, 445 Defense Highway in Annapolis. Registration is required. Information: 410-987-2129.
•The county health department provides free breast exams, mammograms, pap tests and cervical cancer screenings to eligible county residents 40 and older. Information: 410-222-6180.
•Colorectal screenings and informational kits are available through the Health Department's Learn to Live program. Screenings are free to county residents ages 50 to 64 who are uninsured and income-eligible. To order a free kit: Learn to Live Line, 410-222-6640 or learntolivehealthy.org.
•The Department of Health offers free, confidential testing and counseling for HIV, the virus that causes AIDS. For appointments: Annapolis 410-222-7493; Glen Burnie 410-222-6633; Parole 410-222-7248. For personal and confidential HIV case management services, call 410-222-7108.
The Department of Health provides in-school vision and hearing screenings to children in preschool, kindergarten, first and eighth grade at the following schools and programs in December.
•Four Seasons Elementary, Shady Side Elementary, Monday, Dec. 19 and Tuesday, Dec. 20.
•Edgewater Elementary, Mayo Elementary, Wednesday, Dec. 21.
For additional information contact Kim Roussey, vision and hearing technician supervisor, 410-222-6838.
The county Health Department offers:
The Administration Care Coordination unit (ACCU) provides services to clients who are enrolled in or may be eligible for medical assistance and HealthChoice, to help them access health care. Information: ACCU at 410-222-7541 or 410-222-4380.
•Children's immunization shots at 2 months, 4 months, 6 months, 12 months, 15 months and 18 months. Information: 410-222-4896 or the community health section at aahealth.org/immunizations.
•Back-to-school immunizations at area health centers. Information: 410-222-4896 or visit aahealth.org/immunizations.
•Family planning services with free pregnancy tests, counseling, low-cost exams, lab tests and low-cost birth control supplies to women younger than 25. For an appointment: 410-222-7144.
•Free healthy-pregnancy and baby-care kits from the Anne Arundel Healthy Babies Coalition. The kits contain information for pregnant women, parents, grandparents and caregivers of children from birth to 5 years old. Information: http://www.aahealthybabies.org or call 410-222-7223. For information about car seats and a list of inspection locations, call Maryland Kids in Safety Seats: 800-370-7328. To take the online "Taking Care of a Baby" class, which includes information on safe sleeping and how to calm a crying baby, go to aahealthybabies.org.
•Substance abuse treatment services through Community Treatment Services. Information: 410-222-0117. Methadone and suboxone maintenance services through the Health Department's adult addictions clinic: 410-222-0100.
•Education and outreach programs for adolescents and parents. Topics for discussion include benefits of abstinence, responsible decision-making, pregnancy prevention and prevention of sexually transmitted diseases. Information: Healthy Teens and Young Adults, 410-222-4468.
•The REACH health care program offers low-cost doctor visits, checkups, prescription medicine, lab work and tests, radiology services and dental services to uninsured county residents. Information: 410-222-4531.
•Comprehensive medical coverage to income-eligible families, children and pregnant women through managed-care organizations via the Medical Assistance for Families/MCHP program. Applications: 410-222-4792.
•Maryland birth certificates. Information: aahealth.org or 410-222-4462.
•Behavioral health services for children ages 5 to 18 and their families. For mental health services and referrals: 410-222-6785. For substance-abuse services: 410-222-6725 from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. weekdays.
The WIC supplemental nutrition program provides free nutritious foods, education, breastfeeding support and resource referrals to pregnant, breastfeeding and postpartum women and children up to age 5. To qualify, call 410-222-6797 or 410-222-0139 (Spanish).
•The Learn to Live program offers a free archive of more than 650 recipes low in saturated and trans fats and high in fiber. Many are suited for diabetic, meatless and low-sodium diets. Visit learntolivehealthy.org, click on "Healthy Recipes Search" under "Food And Fitness."
•A free booklet, "Don't Let Us Get Hooked on Tobacco," is available to parents who want to dissuade children and teens from smoking. The booklet is sponsored by the Learn to Live program and can be ordered or downloaded online at http://www.learntolivehealthy.org. Information: 410-222-7979.
•The Prescription Discount Program is available to all county residents of any age and income. Information: 410-222-4531 or visit http://www.scriptsave.com and log in using Group #586.
•The Learn to Live program offers an annual newsletter for child care providers and parents. The newsletter includes healthy eating tips, advice on when to keep ill children home, facts on pertussis (whooping cough), and approaches to prevent temper tantrums. In additions to Building Blocks, Learn to Live offers many publications for parents and child care providers that can be ordered from the Learn to Live Line, 410-222-7979, or on the website http://www.learntolivehealthy.org.