Briefs: Local Health February 17, 2009

Autism board asks for local comment

• The Colorado Autism Commission is holding public hearings on the Western Slope to educate residents about the commission’s work and to hear stories about Coloradans affected by autism.
The first hearing is from 6:30–8:30 p.m. Monday in the Glenn Gallegos Board Room at Mesa State College. The second hearing is from 6:30–8:30 p.m. March 2 in the Delta-Montrose Electric Association’s board room in Montrose.
Anyone who wants to share testimony at the hearings must submit those concerns or thoughts in writing, even if verbal testimony is presented at the hearing.
People may download a written testimony form or submit an online testimony at The testimony forms can be found at the “Testimony” link.
People with questions or problems can e-mail .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) or call 241-3409.

Grief support group meets each Thur.

•  Hospice & Palliative Care of Western Colorado offers free community grief support through its program Mending Hearts.
The adult grief support group meets from 2–3:30 p.m. every Thursday at the Miller Homestead, 3090 N. 12th St.
Participants can join at any time. Pre-registration is not required.
Mending Hearts provides education on the grief process and provides support in a group setting.
For more information, call 254-0891.

Pneumonia vaccine suggested for seniors

•  The Mesa County Health Department encourages adults ages 65 and older to get a pneumonia vaccine.
Any adult 19 and older who smokes, has asthma, diabetes, cardiovascular disease, pulmonary disease or liver disease also is encouraged to get the vaccine.
If an adult received the pneumonia vaccine prior to age 65, the same adult can get another vaccine as long as five years have lapsed since the last shot.
Pneumococcal disease kills more Americans annually than all other vaccine-preventable diseases combined, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
The vaccine protects against 23 types of pneumococcal bacteria.
The vaccine costs $46 per dose. The Health Department can bill Rocky Mountain Health Plans or Medicare.
Call 248-6900 to schedule an appointment.
For information, call 248-6900 or visit

Chronic pain support group offers help

•  An ongoing educational and support group to help people living with chronic pain is held at the Counseling and Education Center, 2708 Patterson Road.
Cost is $10 per session and includes materials.
Scholarships are available to attend the counseling sessions, which are open to people 18 and older only.
For information, including times and dates, call 243-9539.

Health Dept. has answers about radon

•  The Mesa County Health Department’s Indoor Air Quality Program is hosting three open houses to distribute radon test kits and answer questions about radon.

The open houses are at the following dates and times:

•  Today , 4–6 p.m., Collbran Branch of Mesa County Libraries, 111 Main St., Collbran.

• Thursday , 10:30 a.m. to noon, Fruita Branch of Mesa County Libraries, 325 East Aspen, send floor, in Fruita.
•  Feb. 26–27, 3–7 p.m. at the De Beque Branch of Mesa County Libraries, 730 Minter Ave., in De Beque.

Radon is a naturally occurring, invisible, odorless and tasteless gas that is dispersed in the outdoors, but can reach harmful levels when trapped indoors. Radon is the second leading cause of lung cancer in the United States, according to the Health Department.

For information or to get a test kit, call Anna Maylett Rice at 683-6647 or visit


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