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At the Hospitals: Aug. 10, 2014

Grant to Help APD Address Adult Dental Care

Lebanon — Upper Valley Smiles, a community health program operated by Alice Peck Day Memorial Hospital, has received a $12,000 grant from Granite United Way to begin addressing the lack of access to dental care for low-income adults in the Upper Valley.

The program provides oral health care for both children and adults. The children’s component provides oral health care, including education on oral health and nutrition, free dental screenings and preventive treatments, in elementary schools in Canaan, Enfield, Hartford, Lebanon and Newport.

The grant will enable APD to provide vouchers for dental care to uninsured adults with who come to the hospital emergency room for urgent dental needs, including pain, abscesses and infection.

“Each week in our emergency room, APD sees approximately three adult patients who have a primary diagnosis of dental pain and cannot afford to seek private dental treatment,” said Nancy DuMont, director of community health at APD. “Thanks to the local community volunteers who make the grant decisions at Granite United Way, we now have a way to start addressing their needs.”

Access to both preventive and restorative dental care for low income Upper Valley residents has been a documented “unmeet community health need” for over a decade, most recently in the 2012 Community Health Needs Assessment. A national 2013 American Dental Association study indicated that nearly 1 in 5 low-income adults reported that they or a family member sought treatment in an emergency room for dental pain

“One of our three focus areas of impact is health and this program works collaboratively to provide access to critical dental care in this community,” said Suzanne Stofflet, senior director of regional impact for Granite United Way.

‘Wellness Connection’ Launched In Lake Sunapee Region

Sunapee — A new health initiative aims to improve personal wellness in the Lake Sunapee region .

The idea for The Wellness Connection was sparked by an anonymous donation of $700,000 to New London Hospital in 2012. The donor requested the funds be used to improve the health of the community and the patients served by the hospital. A strategic planning committee of 15 community leaders worked to develop the initiative. The committee includes representatives of local businesses and nonprofits, government agencies, and the education and health care fields.

The mission of The Wellness Connection: For a Healthy Lake Sunapee Region is to provide the region with “a sustainable and collaborative long-term plan that measurably improves health and wellness,” the hospital said in a recent news release. Its goals include increasing the effectiveness of regional employer wellness programs; increasing participation in personal behaviors that improve “health outcomes”; and enhancing existing efforts to promote healthy eating and active lifestyles.

The program continues to be guided by an executive steering committee and hospital staff members, including Lauren Conkey, wellness program director.

“Although the hospital is excited to lead the way, it is our hope that this will become a community-driven effort,” Conkey said in a recent news release. “We are starting small and hope to grow our initiative over time, creating a culture of wellness in the Lake Sunapee Region.”

For more information, contact Lauren Conkey at 603-526-5227 or wellnessconnection@newlondonhospital.org, or go to www.newlondonhospital.org/wellnessconnection.

New Healthier Living Workshop Begins in Randolph

Randolph — A new Healthier Living Workshop series will take place Thursdays, from Aug. 21 to Sept. 25, from 1-3:30 p.m., at Gifford Medical Center. The free workshop is offered by Gifford’s Blueprint Community Health Team.

Healthier Living Workshops are six-week classes offered through Vermont Blueprint for Health for people with chronic conditions. Led by trained facilitators, they are designed to improve participants’ strength, flexibility and endurance, and provide tips for managing medications, eating healthier and improving communications with family and friends. They also include strategies for managing chronic health conditions and dealing with the frustration, fatigue and pain that can accompany a chronic disease.

For more information, or to sign up, call Gifford’s Blueprint team at the Kingwood Health Center at 802-728-7710.

HCRS Tournament Raises $17,000

Springfield, Vt. — Health Care and Rehabilitation Services’ seventh annual golf tournament raised more than $17,000.

The event, held in June at the Woodstock Country Club, benefited HCRS’ Kindle Farm School in Newfane, Vt., an alternative school for boys in grades 2-12 who have not been successful in the traditional classroom setting.

The Black River Produce team — Steve Birge, Rick Marasa, and Tim Reynolds — took first in the tournament. The SoVerNet Team — Jay Bellows, Starr Barnam, and Marino Bartaloney — took second. Third place went to Jason Gramling, Jason Paronto, Kyle Goulde and Kalem Taft. Winners of the longest drive were Natalie Audette and Seth Lockerby; Cathy Coonan and Scott Gordon-Macey were awarded the closest to the pin prizes.

— Compiled by Aimee Caruso