Crisis Response and Health Council Members Work on Several Community Projects

Health Council members tackled a lengthy agenda at a recent meeting. Discussions were held on a variety of topics such as school and community emergency preparedness. Board members pictured from left are Tina Kilgore, Kristin Roberts, Bettye Carver, Diana Samples, Leslie Scott, Dottie Ford, Kate Orem and Stella Melton

NEWPORT—This month’s health council meeting was attended by several organizations and staff members from various medical offices.

Moving forward in their crusade for community health outreach, Cocke County Coordinated School Health Coordinator Dottie Ford has been introducing anti-vaping education to the schools. She hopes to bring the health hazards associated with vaping to the forefront of the conversation.

“Our initial efforts have been lead by the kids which has been nice to see. They recently hosted an anti-vaping poster contest and the health department has offered prizes,” Ford said.

Ford asked fellow council members for ideas and input for conducting a community wide anti-vaping awareness event.

The event would take place sometime in the spring prior to school letting out for summer break.

Currently members are assisting the local Amedisys with a Senior Hygiene list needed for Christmas. Items needed are socks, washcloths, shampoo, toothbrushes, powder, mouth wash, peroxide, shaving cream and large boxes of Kleenex.

For the first time ever, Cocke County will be added to the list of the ALPS Adult Services 23rd Annual Holiday Home Tour with three historic homes in the area being eloquently decorated for the open house event. This year’s tour will feature four homes in Hamblen County as well.

The homes in Cocke County are The Ford Home, the Coggins Family Home Place and the Neas Family Home in Parrottsville. All proceeds from ticket sales will go to the Herbert Waller Scholarship Program which provides services to those in need.

The 23rd Annual Holiday Home Tour will take place Sunday, Dec. 1 from 12 p.m. to 4 p.m. Tickets are $20 per person and will be available at the door of each home or can be purchased at https://give.classy.org/alpshht2019.

Although located in Morristown, ALPS Social Director Tina Kilgore said many clients are transported from Cocke County by ETHRA. The adult day program is designed to assist the needs of adults with cognitive or physical impairments.

Clients are entertained with daily activities, group events and therapeutic exercise to help stimulate both mental and physical abilities.

One client comes for the sheer joy of social interaction.

“We have one client who comes just one day a week to interact with people. She said if she didn’t come there once a week, she would never see anyone,” Kilgore said.

Women’s Health Doctors Searching for Patients

Tennova Women’s Care located at the Newport Medical Center is actively seeking new patients for two new OB/GYN physicians.

Drs. Jeannette Toney and William Harris each come with years of experience and add a whole new focus to what hospital CEO Matt Littlejohn is pushing for the center in 2020.

“It’s been over 15 years since the hospital had an OB/GYN and we are pushing for the utmost care concerning women’s health in 2020,” said Littlejohn.

Both physicians offer a combined set of services that cumulate into an effective and all encompassing band of women’s health care. Besides routine exams and birth control counseling, there are services for menstrual issues, incontinence surgery, invasive gynecologic surgery and pelvic reconstruction.

Littlejohn encourages locals to take advantage of having access to “great care close to home”.

“Having specialist like this is very important to our community,” said Littlejohn.

Anyone wishing to make an appointment can call 423-415-3282.

School Emergency Training

The Crisis Response Committee met after the council meeting to discuss the upcoming training and programs that are being introduced to county school staff and administration next week.

DERT which is the District Emergency Response Team, provides crisis training to establish a strong emergency management practice in the event of a natural disaster or active shooter whether at the schools or in the community.

On a personal level, the Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs) program brings focus and training to help students who have experienced trauma in their life before the age of 18.

School administrators will decide if either training program will be implemented in the Cocke County School System.

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