Anne Arundel County health briefs

Food safety for the holidays

The county Health Department offers suggestions to reduce the risk of food-borne illnesses to infants and the elderly. Information: Call the Housing and Food Protection Program at 410-222-7239 or go to Hot Topics on line at http://www.aahealth.org.

Care for cancer patients

The Wellness House of Annapolis, an organization that offers services and programs to assist those living with cancer and their relatives, including children, has twice-a-week walk-in hours from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Tuesdays and 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. Wednesdays. All classes and services are free and open to cancer patients, caregivers and families. Pre-registration is required. The Wellness House is at 2625 Mas-Que Farm Road. Appointments: 410-990-0941 or wellnesshouse@comcast.net.

Patient disability pamphlet

The Anne Arundel County Commission on Disability Issues offers a pamphlet, "Doctors' Offices and Patients With Disabilities Working Together." The pamphlet contains suggestions for doctors that will make visits go more smoothly, from training staff to obtaining equipment for the disabled and welcoming service animals accompanying a disabled person. To obtain a copy, call the Americans With Disabilities Act office at the county's Department of Aging and Disabilities, 410-222-4464, ext. 3056, or go to http://www.aacounty.org/Aging/disabledAdults/CommDis.cfm and click on Doctors Office Brochure.

Calendar

Living in the Land of Oz The national family caregiver support program at the Anne Arundel County Department of Aging and Disabilities will present a dementia workshop series from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. Monday, Dec. 20 at the Pasadena Senior Activity Center, 4103 Mountain Road, Pasadena. Registration: 410-222-4464 ext. 3043 or http://www.aacounty.org/aging.

Healthy living: nutrition and exercise A diabetes educator will discuss and offer suggestions on how to achieve weight loss, lower blood pressure, lower cholesterol and prevent diabetes, 5 p.m. to 6 p.m. Jan. 5. Information and registration: 410-787-4940. This class will also be offered 9 a.m. to 10 a.m. Jan. 14 and is sponsored by the Baltimore Washington Medical Center.

Weight management A free weight-loss education seminar sponsored by the University of Maryland Center for Weight Management and Wellness and the Baltimore Washington Medical Center will be held at 6 p.m. Jan. 26. Registration: 410-328-8940 or http://www.umm.edu/weightloss.

Liver disease Join Baltimore Washington Medical Center Chief of Surgical Oncology, Dr. Cherif Boutros to discuss prevention, early diagnosis and effective treatment options, 6:30 p.m. Jan. 17. Registration and information: 410-787-4367.

Support groups

The Joslin Circle Diabetes support group will discuss current issues regarding diabetes management. The group meets 5:30 p.m. to 7 p.m. the third Wednesday of every month in the Joslin Diabetes Center, 300 Hospital Drive, Suite 223. Information: 410-787-4940.

Man-to-Man prostate cancer support group Learn about diagnosis, treatment and management. The group meets 6:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. the third Monday of every month in the Tate Center, Baltimore Washington Medical Center, 305 Hospital Drive. Information: 410-787-4367.

Stroke support group Meets to discuss stroke recovery and prevention from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. the second Tuesday of every month in the Dr. Constantine Padussis Conference Center, Baltimore Washington Medical Center, 305 Hospital Drive. Information: 410-787-4732.

Caregivers support group Provides information, respite and support to people who give care to family and friends meets 1 p.m. to 2:30 p.m. 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 support group For diabetics and their families meets 5:30 p.m. to 7 p.m. the third Wednesday of every month in the Center for Diabetes and Endocrinology at BWMC, 300 Hospital Drive, Suite 223, Glen Burnie.

Joint School A free session on the preparation, recovery and benefits of hip and knee replacement surgery sponsored by the Baltimore Washington Medical Center will be held 4 p.m. meets the third Wednesday of every month at BWMC, 305 Hospital Drive, Glen Burnie. Information and reservations: 410-553-8282.

Screenings

•The county Health Department provides free breast exams, mammograms, pap tests and cervical cancer screenings to eligible female county residents 40 and older. Information: 410-222-6180.

•Colorectal screenings and informational kits available through the county 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, 410-222-7979, or LearnToLiveHealthy.org.

Blood pressure screenings sponsored by the Baltimore Washington Medical Center, will be held 8:30 a.m. to noon, Wednesday, Dec. 22 and Jan. 12 and 26 at Harundale Presbyterian Church, Eastway and Guilford Road, Glen Burnie. Information: 410-787-4367 or go to http://www.mybwmc.org.

Continuing services

The Anne Arundel County Department of Health offers:

•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 of http://www.aahealth.org.

•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 kits about car safety for babies and toddlers are available from the Anne Arundel Healthy Babies Coalition. The kits also contain useful information for pregnant women, parents and caregivers. Go to aahealthybabies.org. For additional information about car seats and a list of inspection locations, call Maryland Kids In Safety Seats: 800-370-7328.

Free healthy pregnancy or baby care kits. To take the online "Taking Care of a Baby" class, go to aahealthybabies.org.

The WIC supplemental nutrition program provides free nutritious foods, nutrition education, breast-feeding support and resource referrals. To qualify, county residents must meet income guidelines. Information: 410-222-6797 or 410-222-0139 (Spanish).

•Free quit-smoking classes and kits are offered to county residents 18 and older. Contact the Learn to Live Line at 410-222-7979 or LearnToLiveHealthy.org.

•HIV/AIDS services include free confidential testing and counseling. Call for an appointment: Annapolis, 410-222-7493; Glen Burnie, 410-222-6633; or Parole, 410-222-7248. Information: 410-222-7108.

• Substance abuse treatment services are available through Community Treatment Services. Information: 410-222-0117. Methadone and Suboxone maintenance services are available 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.

•Prescription discount program is available to all county residents. For information or to apply: 410-222-4531 and mention Group No. 586, or scriptsave.com and log in using Group No. 586.

•The Medical Assistance for Families/MCHP program offers comprehensive medical coverage to income-eligible families, children and pregnant women through managed-care organizations (MCOs). Applications: 410-222-4792.

•Maryland birth certificates are available through the Health Department. Information: aahealth.org/about_vitalrec.asp 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 REACH health care program for uninsured adults is provided by the county Health Department in partnership with the county's medical society. REACH offers county residents low-cost doctor visits, checkups, prescription medicine, lab work and tests, radiology services and dental services. Information: 410-222-4531.

•Medical assistance transportation services are available to clients with a valid Maryland Medical Assistance/Health Choice Card with no means of public or private transportation to and from medical appointments. Information: 410-222-7152.

Water quality e-mail alerts from the Recreational Water Quality Email Alert System provide subscribers with information on recreation waterway closures and advisories throughout the county. To sign up for this free service, go online to http://www.aahealth.org/wqemail.asp.

Parent's guide to school health services for the 2010-2011 school year. Information on bullying, keeping kids smoke-free, flu prevention and more is included. Go to aahealth.org; click on parent's guide to school health under hot topics.

Healthy recipes for diabetic, meatless and low-sodium diets. Visit LearnToLiveHealthy.org, click on healthy meals and snacks under food and fitness.

Storms and floods and other emergencies. Online assistance is also available in Spanish. Information includes preparedness and recovery, water and food safety, portable generator hazards and mold. Visit aahealth.org, click on storms and floods under environmental health.

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