Lifestyle - Health & Wellness Articles

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Local hospitals mobilize in case virus comes to valley; officials reject rumors that deadly disease

By Greg Ruland

Some Mesa County residents are spreading false rumors about an imaginary patient at a local hospital who is quarantined with Ebola. But local hospitals are implementing federally recommended protocols to deal with the deadly disease, should it actually arrive in western Colorado. The dreaded disease killed thousands of West Africans so far and public fears are growing that it could also become a pandemic in the U.S. Sen. Mark Udall called late last week for the Transportation Security ...


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Zumba-themed dance card spices up cancer fundraiser

By Greg Ruland

To quote the rapper Pitbull: They’re going to “boogie, oogie, oogie, jiggle, wiggle and dance like a house on fire” at the Crossroads Fitness Party in Pink on Saturday. Pitbull’s “Fireball” will be just one of the high-powered Latin and world beat musical selections performed at the annual Zumbathon event that starts with registration at 
8:30 a.m. to raise money for the fight against breast cancer. Zumba is exercise in disguise, a mix of ...


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Fruita hospital’s name change reflects growth, vision

By Greg Ruland

The journey from Family Health West to Colorado Canyons Hospital and Medical Center could take months to complete, even though both institutions are located at the same address, 300 W. Ottley Ave., hospital officials said last week. Successfully transforming Family Health West into Colorado Canyons Hospital and Medical Center will require more than a one-time announcement. The process of changing the hospital’s brand will take a while to complete, said Angelina Salazar, director of ...


Health Briefs, Oct. 7, 2014

By Staff

Free dental services from students in training IntelliTec College is offering free dental work through its students in training. The hands-on experience benefits the college’s Dental Assisting students with practical experience on real dental patients, according to a news release. It also furthers community connections and builds professional confidence as students work with real patients. All dental services performed by students are supervised by dental ...


Health Briefs, Sept. 30, 2014

By Staff

Psychiatric staff added 
to mental health services Mind Springs Health, the largest Western Slope provider of mental health treatment, and West Springs Hospital, the only psychiatric hospital between Denver and Salt Lake City, are responding to the community need for added mental health services with increasing psychiatric staff and resources. Returning to Grand Junction after eight years in Mississippi, with both outpatient and inpatient responsibilities, is Dr. Mark Ramsey. ...


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Recruiting family medicine doctors to Western Slope remains priority

By Greg Ruland

Nearly 40 years ago, a small group of local physicians started thinking about ways to recruit doctors to the Western Slope so people could get more of their health care needs met close to home. Today, as the demand for primary care doctors continues to outpace the supply, the Family Medicine Residency Program that group created at St. Mary’s Hospital is now the region’s key to maintaining an adequate population of primary care doctors, hospital officials say. Colorado needs ...


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Lower health care costs main goal of Healthier Colorado

By Mike Wiggins

The executive director of a new health care advocacy group says his primary mission is to reduce health care costs and tackle the growing problem of childhood obesity, particularly among minority kids. Healthier Colorado Executive Director Jake Williams said the group believes it’s the first in the state to lobby solely for health care policy changes. He said the Colorado Health Foundation provided $10 million in seed funding for the nonpartisan, nonprofit group, recognizing, along ...


HEALTH BRIEFS FOR SEPT. 16, 2014

By Staff

Sepsis campaign spreads awareness about blood poisoning emergencies University of Colorado Hospital and the national nonprofit Sepsis Alliance have kicked off a campaign called Suspect Sepsis, Save Lives, a Colorado-focused public awareness movement to educate the public and health care providers about this deadly condition. “Every two minutes, someone in the United States dies from sepsis,” Tom Heymann, executive director of Sepsis Alliance, said in a news release. ...


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When diagnosis is cancer, where will you go for treatment?

By Greg Ruland

Not all cancer centers are created equal, but all routinely engage qualified specialists equipped to provide standard, front-line treatments for many types of the disease. With so many cancer care alternatives on the Western Slope, what criteria should a cancer patient consider when choosing a place to start? Cost comparisons would be helpful, but data are sparse and costs vary greatly based on the type of cancer and the place of treatment. The obvious first box to check is the ...


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Many baby boomers financially ill-prepared for long-term care

By Greg Ruland

olorado must make a better plan to deal with about 1 million baby boomers who will need publicly subsidized health care as they age out of the state’s workforce over the next 20 years, regional experts on aging said Monday. Unless state policy makers start making changes soon, roughly 930,000 of those Colorado baby boomers will find themselves with significant health problems but no way to pay the health care bills, several experts said during a Councils on Aging presentation about ...


HEALTH BRIEFS FOR SEPT. 11, 2014

By Staff

Bladeless cataract removal offered Matthew Ehrlich of Eye Center of the Rockies is the first surgeon on the Western Slope to begin offering a bladeless laser cataract removal procedure for his patients exclusively at Grand River Health in Rifle, according to a news release. This computer-controlled laser platform, combined with the most technologically advanced diagnostics, allows Ehrlich to “plan and perform each cataract surgery to exacting, individualized ...


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Specialists taking place of family physicians at hospital

By Greg Ruland

The days when family doctors make rounds at the hospital are drawing to a close, especially at St. Mary’s Hospital, where a highly trained group of specialists known as hospitalists is taking over 90 percent of a patient’s primary care needs upon admission. Members of the fastest growing medical specialty in the U.S., hospitalists streamline stays for patients, coordinate specialty care and medications and work on site 24 hours a day, seven days a week. They share primary ...


Health briefs, Sept. 2, 2014

By Staff

Community Hospital plans new cancer center Community Hospital announced Friday that Dr. Joanne Virgilio, a medical oncologist, Dr. Ruth Higdon, a gynecological/oncology surgeon, and Michael Appel, an oncology pharmacist, will join Community Hospital in December, in conjunction with the hospital’s plan to develop a new cancer program. Community Hospital has also signed a letter of intent with the University of Utah and the Huntsman Cancer Institute to explore partnership ...


HW BRIEFS FOR AUG. 26, 2104

By Staff

Two new staffers hired at Rimrock Chiropractic Dr. Greg C. Haitz and staff at Rimrock Chiropractic: A Creating Wellness Center, 2695 Patterson Road, recently welcomed Allie Unrast and Taelour Wagler to their practice. Unrast is joining the team as a chiropractic assistant and receptionist who has several years of experience and “possesses exceptional customer service skills,” Haitz said. Wagler joined the office as the new massage therapist. She is a graduate of ...


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Full-body workouts

By Greg Ruland

Fitness junkies could labor an hour or so at most Grand Valley ranches to sculpt the same sets of muscles a functional training workout strengthens, but without the medicine balls, kettlebells or intimidating trainer pushing them to pick up the pace. Instead of being paid to rope, throw and brand cattle, however, many local office workers pay $80 a month or more to whack giant ropes against an exercise mat, heave weighted objects into the air and row a machine 500 strokes in one minute on ...


HEALTH BRIEFS FOR AUG. 19, 2014

By Staff

Health summit today for small businesses The Grand Junction Area Chamber of Commerce will sponsor a Health Care Summit for area employers today at Mesa County Workforce Center, 512 
29 1/2 Road. Breakfast begins at 7 a.m., and the program starts at 7:30 a.m. The purpose of the summit is to assist small businesses as they look at how best to help their employees manage their health care in the new environment created by the Affordable Care Act.  The first year of operation ...


Health Briefs, Aug. 12, 2014

By Staff

Gentiva ‘harvesting’ at clinics for food banks Staff members from Gentiva Home Health will distribute food collection bags and gather donations for Food Bank of the Rockies as part of the company’s 10th annual food drive, company officials said in a news release. Gentiva employees are placing the food collection bags at various health care facilities in Grand Junction and elsewhere across the country. They will collect their “harvest” during the month of ...


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Debate rages over benefits, drawbacks of e-cigarettes

By Greg Ruland

Anti-smoking crusaders concede electronic cigarettes deliver less tar and other damaging chemicals than the traditional nicotine delivery devices, which use paper and tobacco. They agree, even though no published studies yet prove it. It’s just common sense, local vendors of the products argue.  Electronic cigarettes don’t burn chemically infused tobacco. Instead, they heat a concoction of flavored water and propylene glycol into a vapor that can be inhaled, said Judah ...


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Maj. Philip Latteier treats Dominican patients for free while serving in reserves

By Greg Ruland

Maj. Philip Latteier cut a gallant figure in black and white camouflage during a June deployment to the Dominican Republic, but it was the U.S. Army reservist’s successful humanitarian mission there that drew the most attention. A husband and father, the 37-year-old Latteier practices dentistry at Crested Oak Dentistry, 2532 Patterson Road. In one photo, Latteier smiles for the camera in khakis, boots and helmet despite the perspiration he said sometimes poured down the back of his ...


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Strive, behavior analyst Patti Hoffman offer a tool kit for parenting

By Greg Ruland

Behaviorists see the common thread that ties all negative behaviors of children together. Extreme negative behaviors, like threatening Dad with a knife, are inspired by the same ideas that lead to routine negative behaviors, like arguing with Mom about doing the dishes. Though different by degree, all negative behaviors are rooted in one of four basic human motivations, said Patti Hoffman, board-certified behavior analyst, citing 50 years of scientific study. “They want ...


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