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Breast cancer survivor urges women to get regular screenings and mammograms, thanks local non-profit ‘The Rose’

The first time Ediana Quijada found a lump in her breast, she was laughed off and told “it was happening because of her period and nothing to worry about.”

It was far from nothing. After a six-year battle with metastatic breast cancer, the cheerful Houston native is happy to share her story with other young women, advising regular breast exams, early detection having made a key difference in many cases.

In the fall of 2012, 29-year-old Ediana was finishing her construction management internship at the University of Houston.

The internship did not offer health insurance but UH hosts free mammography screenings in October in honor of Breast Cancer Awareness month. However, when she told the nurses about her lump, they assured her, with a cursory glance, that she was too young to worry about cancer. She was sent away without a mammogram.

Reassured and a little abashed about being paranoid, she busied herself with assignments as the stresses of the semester took over. The second of four siblings (two sisters, one little brother), Ediana said she had no reason to suspect the worst because there was no history of cancer in her family.

But the lump wouldn’t stay quiet.


“I started feeling that the little lump was getting bigger and bigger,” Ediana said. “I could measure it; it was an inch now. Or is it in my head? Then I would calculate, my period must be coming, that’s why the lump’s getting big … and my breast is turning pink.”

A visit with her mother’s doctor in December confirmed the devastating news — a large mass in her breast. Could be a tumor. Clearly, the cancer had made good use of the two-month delay.

“I didn’t have insurance, so my mother took me to a walk-in clinic,” Eidana said. “The doctor said, ‘oh my God, why didn’t you come before?’”

A few hours and one $100-ultrasound later, she was advised to do a biopsy.

“The biopsy cost over $2,000, I thought ‘I can’t do that right now,’ and he (the doctor) referred me to The Rose,” Ediana said.

That first encounter with The Rose marked the beginning of Ediana’s long, painful but ultimately successful battle with breast cancer. A Houston-based nonprofit group, The Rose provides breast cancer screenings and treatment regardless of patients’ ability to pay. They began Ediana’s treatment by conducting another ultrasound, this one costing only $10.

A little monster inside your breast.

Ediana was paired with a patient navigator who helped her through the system and set up her appointments.

“It turns out I was Stage 3, Type C, which is borderline Stage 4,” said Ediana. “Very aggressive and very bad. They said, ‘it looks like you have a little monster inside’.”

Given the tumor’s massive size, treatment had to begin immediately. When three painful rounds of chemo (each lasting around eight months), one round of radiation and one surgery failed to eliminate the cancer, her doctors put Ediana on an–at the time–experimental drug called T-DM1.

“This

Planet Fitness, Round1 will bring changes to local malls

MOORESTOWN – New tenants coming to South Jersey malls show the changing face of shopping centers.

Watch: Turnaround try at troubled mall

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A Planet Fitness gym will open Thursday at Moorestown Mall, occupying more than 22,000 square feet in a complex that’s lost several big retailers in recent years.

And Round1, a “family entertainment center” based in Japan, will debut Oct. 24 at Deptford Mall. The new arrival will offer 12 bowling lanes, five billiards tables and 250-plus arcade games — will occupy more than 50,000 square feet vacated by the struggling Sears chain.



a person walking down a street in front of a building: Shoppers pass Round1, a family entertainment center opening Oct. 24 at Deptford Mall.


© Jim Walsh, Courier-Post
Shoppers pass Round1, a family entertainment center opening Oct. 24 at Deptford Mall.

Mall operators say they’re eager to diversify their tenant mix in the face of a harsh retail environment, particularly for traditional brick-and-mortar chains.

More: Moorestown board approves mall redevelopment study

More: Plan proposes new use for parking lot at Grand Market Place in Willingboro

“Overall, what we’re doing is providing people with more reasons to visit our property,” said a statement from Macerich, a California firm that owns Deptford Mall.

It noted an interest in attracting “exciting entertainment concepts, immersive technology experiences (and) a variety of dining options.”

The statement also pointed to “international brands that are expanding in the U.S. market.”

Recent arrivals at Deptford Mall include two Australian retailers, Lovisa and Cotton On.

Lovisa is described as a “woman’s fast-fashion jewelry and accessories concept,” while Cotton On sells casual clothing, accessories and homewares.

PREIT, a Philadelphia-based firm that owns Moorestown Mall and other shopping centers, wants to attract “healthcare providers, food markets, fulfillment and logistics operators,” Joseph Coradino, the firm’s CEO, said earlier this year.

Both PREIT and Macerich also want to develop housing and hotels at some properties.

“We think of our well-situated properties, like Deptford Mall, as ‘town centers’ for the wide range of activities people enjoy,” said Macerich.



a tree in front of a building: Planet Fitness plans to open Oct. 15 at the Moorestown Mall.


© Jim Walsh, Courier-Post
Planet Fitness plans to open Oct. 15 at the Moorestown Mall.

Similarly, Coradino has said PREIT’s properties could evolve into “commerce districts.”

The mall operators are attempting to ease financial strains that have worsened with the COVID-19 pandemic.

PREIT in August reported a net loss of $49 million for first-half 2020. That compared to a year-before deficit of $33.9 million for the firm, which also owns the Cherry Hill Mall and Cumberland Mall in Vineland.

Macerich had a first-half net loss of $17.6 million. It reported net income of $23.5 million a year earlier.

The Moorestown location is the first in a mall for Billy Olson, who operates 19 Planet Fitness gyms in South Jersey.

“The mall does provide advantages including space, parking, and visibility,” he said Tuesday. “We were able to build a state-of-the-art facility and not be confined by the amount of space to use.”

Planet Fitness occupies six former units at the Route 38 shopping center, which saw closings for a Lord + Taylor department store in January and a Sears store in

Amid rising Covid-19 cases and hospitalizations, local leaders and public health experts worry of a coming surge

With 33 states reporting a rise in new Covid-19 cases and a nationwide uptick in hospitalizations, local officials worry this could be the beginning of the coming surge experts have warned about.



a person standing in a parking lot: A medic prepares to transfer a patient on a stretcher from an ambulance outside of Emergency at Coral Gables Hospital where Coronavirus patients are treated in Coral Gables near Miami, on July 30, 2020. - Florida has emerged as a major new epicenter of the US battle against the disease, with confirmed cases recently surpassing New York and now second only to California. The state toll has leapt over the past week and more than 6,500 people have died from the disease there, according to health officials. More than 460,000 people have been infected with the virus in Florida, which has a population of 21 million, and a quarter of the state's cases are in Miami. The US has tallied a total of 151,826 deaths from COVID-19, making it the hardest-hit country in the world. (Photo by CHANDAN KHANNA / AFP) (Photo by CHANDAN KHANNA/AFP via Getty Images)


© CHANDAN KHANNA/AFP/Getty Images
A medic prepares to transfer a patient on a stretcher from an ambulance outside of Emergency at Coral Gables Hospital where Coronavirus patients are treated in Coral Gables near Miami, on July 30, 2020. – Florida has emerged as a major new epicenter of the US battle against the disease, with confirmed cases recently surpassing New York and now second only to California. The state toll has leapt over the past week and more than 6,500 people have died from the disease there, according to health officials. More than 460,000 people have been infected with the virus in Florida, which has a population of 21 million, and a quarter of the state’s cases are in Miami. The US has tallied a total of 151,826 deaths from COVID-19, making it the hardest-hit country in the world. (Photo by CHANDAN KHANNA / AFP) (Photo by CHANDAN KHANNA/AFP via Getty Images)

In Colorado, Denver Mayor Michael Hancock said Covid-19 cases are rising at a “concerning rate,” while the city’s seven-day average daily case rates are as “high right now as they were at the height of the pandemic back in May.”

The seven-day average of hospitalizations also rose about 37% in a little more than a week, he said during a Monday news conference, and warned residents could soon see tighter Covid-19 restrictions if the city’s numbers continue to trend in the wrong direction.

Officials across the country warn of similar patterns. White House coronavirus task force coordinator Dr. Deborah Birx last week warned the Northeast was seeing “early surggestions” of alarming trends. Kentucky’s governor said recently the state is seeing a third major escalation in infections. In Wisconsin, a field hospital is opening this week in response to a surge of Covid-19 patients — days after the state reported record-high numbers of Covid-19 cases, hospitalizations and daily deaths.

The US is now averaging more than 49,000 new infections daily — up 14% from the previous week, according to data from Johns Hopkins University. And last week, the nation recorded more than 50,000 new cases for at least four days in a row. The last time that happened was in early August.

“I think we’re facing a whole lot of trouble,” Dr. Anthony Fauci told CNBC on Monday. “We’ve got to turn this around.”

That doesn’t have to mean another lockdown, the infectious disease expert has previously said. Instead, it means more people heeding to safety guidelines like wearing masks and social distancing.

Otherwise, the US could be in for a devastating winter. Researchers from the University of Washington’s Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation project more than 135,000 Americans could die within the next three months.

Healthcare professionals ‘deeply afraid’

Hospitalizations nationwide are also on the rise. At least 10 states have recorded record-high hospitalization

Boris Johnson Unveils Three-Tier Lockdowns To Slow Outbreak Despite Local Allies’ Pushback

KEY POINTS

  • Boris Johnson has announced a three-tiered system of lockdowns to combat the resurgent pandemic
  • Under the system, Liverpool would close pubs and ban gatherings. Manchester, another outbreak hotspot, has not agreed to the measures
  • Other countries in Europe and the United States also face a second wave, threatening to overwhelm hospitals and intensive care units

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson on Monday announced a new three-tiered lockdown plan as COVID-19 surges once more across Europe and the United States. Under the plan, virus hotspots like Liverpool and Greater Manchester would close pubs and also ban gatherings. Greater Manchester has not yet agreed to the measure, and local leaders in Liverpool and across the U.K. have voiced objections to the implementation of the measures.

West Midlands Mayor Andy Street said in a statement that the restrictions were “not something regional leaders supported, nor what I believed would be happening following extensive conversations over recent days”

Labour Party leader Keir Starmer told parliament that he doubted the government’s ability to contain the spread of the virus even with new regulations.

“I’m now deeply skeptical the government has actually got a plan to get control of this virus,” Starmer said. 

The U.K. has over 603,000 cases and nearly 43,000 deaths from COVID, according to Johns Hopkins University.

Johnson himself had previously said he wanted to avoid further lockdowns, but rising infection numbers have forced his hand. Previously unused hospitals built to manage the initial COVID-19 outbreak are being employed to deal with patient overflow. 

In April, Johnson tested positive for COVID and later recovered.

BBC News reported on Oct. 5 that some speculation has lingered over whether he fully recovered. Johnson has stated that he was “as fit as several butchers’ dogs.”

Almost 14,000 new coronavirus cases were reported across the UK on Monday Almost 14,000 new coronavirus cases were reported across the UK on Monday Photo: AFP / Paul ELLIS

Britain isn’t the only country in Europe dealing with the resurgent virus. German Chancellor Angela Merkel met with cabinet members Monday to discuss new measures against the virus and has a more significant meeting Wednesday with the various state Premiers. 

French intensive care units are being pushed to capacity after youth populations sheltered the virus, reexposing more vulnerable demographics. Their hospitals are understaffed, and it could be months before new personnel can finish training.

The United States is dealing with its own second wave. Daily new cases spent four days over 50,000, fuelled by both populations and governments unwilling to follow prevention guidelines. The disease isn’t distributed evenly across either the U.S. or U.K.: low infection rates in New York City and London have officials moving forward with plans for an air corridor ahead of the holiday tourism season. 

A stateside vaccine is likely months away. The exact trends that threw France back into the thick of the pandemic have also played out across the U.S.

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OCCHD, OU Medicine to host COVID-19 testing site at local high school

OKLAHOMA CITY (KFOR) – Health officials say that residents in some areas of Oklahoma City will be able to get tested for COVID-19 at mobile testing sites.

The Oklahoma City-County Health Department and OU Medicine will continue their joint effort providing mobile testing in zip codes that are experiencing high COVID-19 positivity rates in Oklahoma County.

On Saturday, Oct. 10, testing will be done at Western Heights High School, located at 8201 S.W. 44th St.

“We are eager to work with OCCHD to expand testing in Oklahoma City, specifically in those areas we know are the hardest hit,” said Erin Walker, assistant vice president of Operations at The Children’s Hospital at OU Medicine. “Testing is a great first step in reducing the spreadof this disease, so we encourage the community to participate.”

Health officials say testing is critical to identify the impact of the virus in the community.

“We’re excited to partner with OU Medicine to reach vulnerable populations and to make tests more availablewith Saturday scheduling,” said LT Knighten, public information officer for OCCHD. “We encourage individuals who are experiencing symptoms, or who think they’ve been in contact with a confirmed positive case, to be tested,” Knighten added. 

Testing will be available for the following people:

  • People who have symptoms of COVID-19
  • People who have had close contact (within six feet of an infected person for at least 15 minutes) with someone with confirmed COVID-19
  • People who have been asked or referred to get testing by their healthcare provider, local or state health department.

In addition to the mobile testing, individuals needing a test in Oklahoma County can schedule a test through OCCHD’s Crush the Curve website at testokc.com. 

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Oakland County Rescinds Local Emergency Order Citing State Order

OAKLAND COUNTY, MI — The Oakland County Health Division is rescinding local emergency order 2020-12, which required people in the county to wear facial coverings when outside their home.

Michigan Department of Health and Human Services Director Robert Gordon on Monday issued an order restricting gathering sizes, requiring face coverings in public spaces and places limitations on bars and other venues. Oakland County officials said the state order covers what was initially held up by the local order.

“We must remain vigilant with wearing a face covering, social distancing and other protection measures to not regress in our fight against COVID-19, Oakland County Health Officers Leigh-Anne Stafford said.

Don’t miss important updates from health and government officials on the impact of the coronavirus in Michigan. Sign up for Patch’s daily newsletters and email alerts.

Oakland County Executive David Coulter said it is the government’s job to keep residents safe, adding that is what his administration has tried to do at the local level amid the coronavirus pandemic.

“It is vital that we maintain the measures that are critical to limiting the spread of the virus and allowing businesses to stay open, schools to re-open and our hospitals to operate safely,” Coulter said. “I support the actions taken by the Governor throughout the pandemic and agree that our State and Local health departments have independent authority – and must now use it – to protect the health of all Michigan residents.”

As of Tuesday morning, more than 17,000 cases of the coronavirus had been reported in Oakland County. County health data reports that more than 1,100 people in the county have died from the virus, while over 14,000 people have recovered from it.

This article originally appeared on the Troy Patch

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Local dentist practice offering free dental work to military and veterans on Freedom Day

MADISON, Ala. – This Thursday is National Freedom Day, where businesses offer their services to military personnel and veterans for free as a “Thank you for your service.”

Divine Expressions Family Dentistry in Madison is offering free dental services for veterans all day Thursday.

They ask that you call to make an appointment in advance by calling 256-837-1200.

Doctor Laurentis Barnett says this is the fourth year they have participated, and it’s their way to say “thank you.”

“What they live with PTSD and all the things that they go through, the emotional health that they need is often forgotten. So when I go in with an exam with any patient, I don’t just work on their teeth. You know I do a health check, to make sure they’re doing ok mentally physically emotionally, and spiritually. It’s about working on the total patient so with the veterans, it’s making sure we remember their mental physical spiritual, and their dental health as well

He says in past years they’ve seen many veterans who really needed the care, and hope that those who need it will come again on Thursday.

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Pairing service dogs with disabled veterans is goal of fitness challenge event this month | Local News

Hi! My name is Zero Suit Samus (or Samus for short), and I’m an energetic pitbull mix who needs some love. And I really mean that. I need a family who will cuddle with me because your penalty for not giving me cuddles is to hear the cry of my people. My foster dad says that based on my crying, I must have descended from pterodactyls, but that’s silly because pterodactyls don’t even like peanut butter. And I looove peanut butter. And treats. And strawberries. And watermelon. And anything, really. Honestly kid, if you give me your salad, I’ll eat it. Don’t want your broccoli? I’ll take care of your problem. See that toy? It’s in my stomach now. See that puke? Well, you can have your toy back.

Like all superdogs, I have an origin story: I ran across the highway and caused a 4-car pileup that I ended up underneath. It wasn’t my best choice, but it’s still a better love story than “Twilight.” I have to take daily medication now, or else I have pretty severe seizures. But I like to think of my epilepsy as my unbridled superpower that the world just isn’t ready for yet.

I’m a Tulsa native, but I’m still not a fan of the Bermuda grass around here – I get allergies in the summer, so that’s something you should know. Despite this, I still love running and rolling in the grass, and if you toss me a ball, I can jump and catch it in mid-air even when it’s 6-feet high. I’m not exaggerating. (Pterodactyl dogs never exaggerate.) And would you mind spraying me with a hose once in a while? I love playing in water, especially when it’s coming out of a tiny hose at jet-like speeds.

But if you have another dog in the home, then forget about it because I’m a single-dog dog. A lone wolf. A rebel. I will not share my toys, I will not share my food, and I will not share my family. I do just fine around other dogs in general, but once you introduce toys or food, then I get very territorial. Can we agree that I’ll be your only one?

By the way, I love kids. I don’t have these problems with other humans, so don’t worry about bringing me home to your young ones. I am loyal to the bone. Don’t believe me? Try going for a jog with me. I will keep pace with you the entire time, just running by your hip. Need me to lick the sweat off your face after an especially hot run? Baby, that’s what I’m about. I’m a good dog. My foster family says so, too. I will take care of you if you let me. I’m eager to learn, I don’t catch coronaviruses, and I’m housebroken. I won’t poop in your Cheerios. Unless that’s one of your commands, but why would it be? Don’t want your Cheerios? Just let me have them

Local doctor named Texas Dentist of the Year

HARLINGEN — Early on, Dr. Gary M. Schwarz was originally inspired to become a farmer like his father.

However, after his parents recommended he become a doctor or a dentist because of his love for biology, he became inspired to pursue a career in dentistry and oral surgery.

Schwarz grew up in the Rio Grande Valley and now has offices in Brownsville, Harlingen, Weslaco and McAllen.

To him, being a dentist and oral surgeon is a very rewarding career that helps make a difference in people’s lives.

On Sept. 17, Schwarz was selected as the 2020 Texas Dentist of the Year at the Texas Academy Awards celebration.

“Upon being announced the 2020 Texas Dentist of the Year, I am so shocked and I am so touched,” Schwarz stated. “I want to extend my thanks to the Rio Grande Valley Dental Society, Rio Grande Valley AGD, Rio Grande Valley Study Club and the Academy of General Dentistry. Most importantly, thank you to my staff, my beautiful wife and thank God. God is good.”

According to a news release from the Texas Academy of General Dentistry (AGD), this award is considered the most prestigious honor a Texas dentist can earn.

He was nominated by the Rio Grande Valley AGD and chosen from among 14 nominees by a panel of judges.

Nominations are received from local components of the Texas AGD and district dental societies from all areas of Texas.

The winner is determined based on contributions to dentistry, service to the community, dedication to principles of continuing education and other activities that indicate character and excellence.

The Texas AGD selects a dentist every year to honor as the Texas Dentist of the Year.

According to the release, judges believed two dentists were deserving of the award this year and presented it to both Schwarz and Dr. C. Roger Macias of San Antonio.

“Schwarz has been deeply involved in organized dentistry for as long as he has been in practice and has served on all levels — local, statewide and national,” the release states.

Schwarz received his Doctor of Dental Surgery degree from the Texas A&M Health Science Center Baylor College of Dentistry in 1978.

Early in his career, Schwarz met and studied with Dr. P.I. Brannemark.

The release further states that this opportunity allowed Schwarz to open an implant center and begin mentoring dentists by providing a platform for regular and frequent continuing education programs.

“From the time he first started his practice, Schwarz’s mission has always been to take good care of anyone who came through the door,” the release states.

According to the press release, Schwarz has been profoundly influenced by his mentor, Dr. D. Lamar Byrd who believed oral surgery was an essential service to the community, and with that came added responsibility.

“To this day, I believe it was sage advice and I have always conducted my practice with this core ethic in mind,” Schwarz stated.

Most recently, he served as president of the Rio Grande Valley AGD

Local dentist pleads guilty to asbestos-related charges, sentenced to probation | Local News

CHEYENNE – A local dentist has pleaded guilty to federal charges of negligently causing the release of asbestos.

Richard Cutler, who owns New Image Dental in downtown Cheyenne, will serve three years of supervised probation and perform at least 120 hours of community service. He will also pay $25,000 in fines, $2,225 in restitution and a $25 special assessment, according to a news release issued Tuesday by the office of Wyoming’s U.S. attorney, Mark Klaassen.

The sentence stems from charges related to the renovation of the building now occupied by New Image Dental.

In 2013, Cutler bought the building at 2100 Pioneer Ave., which previously housed the Cheyenne Board of Public Utilities offices, with the intention of using the space for his dental practice.

But an early inspection of the building revealed the presence of asbestos.

According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, asbestos is a mineral fiber that was used for insulation and as a fire retardant in some building projects through much of the 20th century. Exposure to asbestos can increase someone’s risk of lung disease, mesothelioma and asbestosis. People are most at risk to asbestos during construction work.

According to previous reporting by the Wyoming Tribune Eagle, any building found to have more than 1% asbestos must adhere to federal, state and city regulations.

In Wyoming, that requires, among other things, notifying the state Department of Environmental Quality at least 10 working days prior to distribution of asbestos-riddled material.

Despite the known presence of asbestos at 2100 Pioneer Ave., Cutler’s contractor, Jacob Lee Davis, started renovation work at the building in 2015 without adhering to federal and state regulations.

An EPA investigation later found that several workers were exposed or potentially exposed to asbestos during the project, according to the memo from Klaassen’s office.

In addition to Cutler’s guilty plea, Davis pleaded guilty to knowingly violating and causing others to violate asbestos work practice standards earlier this year. A federal judge sentenced Davis to three years of supervised probation, a $9,000 fine and a $100 special assessment. Davis has also agreed to pay $2,225 in restitution.

“The defendants in these cases caused asbestos to be released, which presented a serious health threat to workers,” said Lance Ehrig, assistant special agent in charge of EPA’s Criminal Investigation Division, Denver Area Office.

“The prosecutions in these cases further demonstrate EPA’s commitment to the protection of human health and the environment.”

Kathryn Palmer is the Wyoming Tribune Eagle’s education reporter. She can be reached at [email protected] or 307-633-3167. Follow her on Twitter at @kathrynbpalmer.

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