Lifestyle - Health & Wellness Articles

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Colorado West gets new medical director

By Emily Shockley

Dr. Roy Sanford Kiser Jr. has waited years to return to the Rocky Mountains. He fell in love with the Rockies as a student at the Air Force Academy near Colorado Springs. That love lingered even after he moved to Texas to complete his undergraduate education in math and chemistry at Abilene Christian College and his psychiatric residency at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical School in Dallas. After working as a faculty member at the medical school, researching brain functions ...


Health Briefs, March 12, 2013

By Staff

Blood drive to benefit Kids Aid The Mesa County Medical Alliance will donate up to $800 to the Kids Aid Backpack Program for each person who donates blood during a blood drive from 7:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Thursday at St. Mary’s Regional Blood Center, 750 Wellington Ave. Anyone 18 or older who weighs at least 112 pounds, is in generally good health and has not given blood within the last eight weeks can donate blood. Thursday’s blood drive is being hosted in honor of ...


Local group to host suicide awareness meeting

By Emily Shockley

The rate of suicides in Mesa County is three times higher than the national average. It’s a trend leaders of the Western Slope chapter of the National Alliance on Mental Illness hope to stem, in part through a suicide and mental health education seminar March 16. The education session will take place from 2:30 to 4:30 p.m. at the Mesa County Health Department, 510 29 1/2 Road. The local chapter of NAMI has been planning the seminar since last fall. Western Slope NAMI Education ...


Autism services expand at Strive

By Emily Shockley

Strive, formerly Mesa Developmental Services, is expanding its offerings for people with autism. The organization has offered some autism services before, but its new Skills program attempts to roll those services and others deemed to be “best practices” into one curriculum. That curriculum includes work on language development, developing age-appropriate play and motor skills, improving cognitive functions, teaching appropriate social skills, and working on self-awareness and ...


Colorado West Mental Health offers group for bipolar/depression

By Emily Shockley

Wesley Fisher was a 12-year-old growing up near the Utah border in Evanston, Wyo., when he developed depression. With fewer than 13,000 residents in his town and the number of depressed people there a secret to him, he didn’t know who to talk to, so he kept his depression to himself. Six months ago, he had what he calls his “most epic crisis to date” and ended up at Colorado West Mental Health. There, he met people like him and started to see a new way to live. ...


Western Slope counties among grant recipients

By Staff

Nine Colorado counties — most of them on the Western Slope — will receive grants from the Colorado Children’s Campaign to help improve health access in those areas. The nonprofit children’s research and advocacy group, with support from The Colorado Trust, will award a total or more than $13,000 to the nine grant recipients. All recipient communities are part of the campaign’s “It’s About Kids” network, which is a statewide, volunteer ...


Health and Wellness Briefs, Feb. 19, 2013

By Staff

3 named to Family Health West board Jerry Hamilton, Tom Oliver and Ken Palmer are the newest members of the Family Health West Board of Directors. Hamilton works at Home Loan Investment Co. and previously served on the board from 2004 to 2009. Oliver is an Alpine Bank branch manager in Fruita. Palmer runs Palmer Tax & Consulting in Fruita. The trio join fellow board members Thomas Motz, Stacey Mascarenas, Mark Francis, Jason McCormick, Kristi Pollard, Kurtis Holmes, Michael ...


Mental health first aid class offered next week

By Emily Shockley

In an effort to help people spot and address the signs of mental crisis, Colorado West will host a course on mental health first aid certification from 5:30 to 9:30 p.m. Feb. 19-21 in the hospital’s Building A Training Lab at 515 28 3/4 Road. The three-day training will help participants spot and understand symptoms of mental illness and follow a five-step plan to help people in mental crisis. Those steps include assessing the risk of a mentally ill person in crisis committing ...


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Budding therapy dog calming presence in dementia wing

By Emily Shockley

They may not remember the names or faces of their loved ones. But the residents of Hilltop’s Memory Care Wing at The Commons all know Rez. The scruffy, apricot-colored canine who first scampered into the wing five months ago makes herself at home during the eight to nine hours she spends Monday through Friday in the wing’s common areas and bedrooms. She hops up on the couch next to residents to watch TV with them, curls up in the crook of their legs when they’re sick in ...


Health Briefs, Feb. 5, 2013

By Staff

Free flu shot clinic Monday The Good Samaritan Clinic at 2470 Patterson Road will host a free flu shot clinic from 4 to 6 p.m. Monday at the clinic. The clinic has a goal to administer 90 flu shots during the clinic. Visit http://www.goodsamaritangj.com for more information. Caregiver support group to meet Feb. 12   Caregiver Connections, a support group for people who are caring for loved ones directly or indirectly or who anticipate becoming caregivers, will begin meeting ...


Delta pioneer in miner x-rays

By Staff

Delta County Memorial Hospital is one of the first community hospitals in the United States approved to provide digital chest X-rays for coal miners. Miners need the X-rays in order to start or continue work, according to a news release from the hospital. Many hospitals stopped performing chest X-rays for coal miners as they upgraded to digital X-ray equipment because miner X-rays had to rely on older technology per federal guidelines because of concerns about patient privacy if X-rays ...


Health Briefs, Jan. 22, 2013

By Staff

Grand Valley Health Fair to go local The annual Grand Valley Health Fair is breaking its ties with the 9health Organization and becoming an entirely local event. Each spring, the 9health Organization offers health fairs across Colorado. The Grand Valley Health Fair beginning this year will take place in the fall and use the services of community organizations. St. Mary’s Hospital will perform blood screening analysis for the local health fair. Information about the health fair ...


Western Slope’s ‘Mammo Mamas’ offer mammogram info

By Emily Shockley

If you get called back for a second mammogram to check for breast cancer, Joanna Atencio recommends taking a deep breath, then going to mammomamas.com. Atencio launched the site with friend and fellow radiologic technologist Melanie Cruise in September. The two Durango women have performed mammograms all over the Four Corners area for two decades and have seen plenty of patients panic about breast screenings, lumps and abnormal results. Atencio and Cruise wanted to take some of the fear ...


In 25 years, Marillac Clinic grows from 3 employees to 60

By Emily Shockley

Marillac Clinic opened in May 1988 with three employees, a small office south of St. Mary’s Hospital and a mission to offer affordable health care to uninsured Mesa County residents. Twenty-five years later, the clinic’s mission is one of the few things that remains the same. Marillac now has 60 employees, a slew of volunteers and more than 140 specialists who will care for Marillac patients in their offices for little or no fee. The clinic moved to its current spot at 2333 N. ...


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Rocky Mountain Health Plans among top wellness employers

By Emily Shockley

Rocky Mountain Health Plans is one of 10 worksites in the United States to receive the 2012 Platinum Well Workplace Award. The platinum award is the highest honor bestowed by The Wellness Councils of America, an Omaha, Neb.-based nonprofit focused on wellness promotion. The councils start by awarding companies that apply a bronze award for meeting baseline criteria for developing workplace-based wellness programing. As companies grow their wellness programs and show measurable results for ...


Health Briefs, Jan. 15, 2013

By Staff

Hospice seeks 100 volunteers Hospice & Palliative Care of Western Colorado is looking for 100 new volunteers in 2013. Those interested in volunteering for the organization can attend a volunteer information session from noon to 1 p.m. Jan. 22 in Conference Room 101 at Hospice Care Center, 3090 N. 12th St., Unit B. Patient and family support volunteers can help by visiting with patients, sharing hobbies and stories, reading to a patient, running errands, providing transportation, or ...


Palisade 8-year-old, dad have same rare condition

By Emily Shockley

Tim Gray of Palisade was diagnosed with the rare brain condition Chiari Malformation seven years ago when he was living in Oregon. On Nov. 30, 2012, his son, 8-year-old Zane Gray, was diagnosed with the same condition. Chiari is not strictly passed on through genetics but researchers have found a hereditary link in some families, according to the American Syringomyelia & Chiari Alliance Project. The cerebellum, located at the bottom of the brain near the back of the head, dips lower ...


Health Briefs, Jan. 8, 2013

By Staff

Project Cure founder in GJ today Dr. James Jackson, founder of Project C.U.R.E. (Commission on Urgent Relief and Equipment), will be in Grand Junction today to attend a luncheon with volunteers and go to an open house from 2 to 3:30 p.m. at the local Project CURE warehouse, 559 Sand Hill Lane, Door 41/42. The open house is open to the public. Project C.U.R.E. is an organization that ships medical supplies overseas. Grand Junction residents have been involved in Project C.U.R.E. ...


Health Briefs, Jan. 1, 2013

By Staff

Delta picks new chief clinical officer Jody Roeber, the director of cost and quality improvement for Delta County Memorial Hospital, has accepted a position as the hospital’s new chief clinical officer. Roeber served as health services coordinator for Delta County School District 50 from 1987 to 2005 and has 31 years of nursing experience. She became the director of nursing education at Delta-Montrose Technical College in 2005 and has served as Delta County Memorial ...


Gluten Free group going in the valley

By Emily Shockley

Whether it’s a lifestyle choice or a medical necessity, Angela Wetzel wants to meet people who are going gluten free. Wetzel founded the group Gluten Free Grand Valley for people like her who don’t eat gluten, a protein found in wheat and other grains. Wetzel can’t eat gluten because she has an autoimmune condition called Celiac disease that does not allow her body to digest gluten properly. People who have a gluten intolerance or Celiac disease are welcome to the ...


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