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Health and Fitness

Health and Fitness

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Group Promotes Environmentally Responsible Lawns

A new Westport group is promoting environmentally responsible lawns and gardens.WestportNow.com Image

The GreenScapes Action Project will be on hand at Saturday’s Green Earth Fair at Westport’s Earthplace, The Nature Discovery Center, from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. to launch its “GreenScapes Challenge.”

The challenge involves residents “committing to a more responsible path,” the group said, and those participating will receive a lawn medallion declaring their commitment to environmental responsibility.

“If you’re interested, we’ll use ‘before’ and ‘after’ photos of your lawn or garden to acknowledge your efforts in the fall,” the group said in a news release.

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04/21/09 03:07 PM Comments (8) • PermalinkEmail Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Commentary: Lawn Pesticides’ Danger to Children

By Marty Yellin

The purpose of this article is not to necessarily alarm you but instead to make you aware of collective evidence from the National Research Council, the National Academy of Sciences, the EPA, the American Journal of Epidemiology, and other respected medical sources.

They all document evidence linking commonly used lawn products to increased odds of childhood leukemia, non-Hodgkins Lymphoma, brain cancer, and soft tissue sarcomas of the colorectum and testes among children living in households where pesticides are used.

A study in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute found that home and garden use of pesticides can increase the risk of childhood leukemia by almost seven times.

Herbicides and pesticides applied to lawns are tracked into the house where they remain for months in carpets, toys and house dust. Everyone in the house, especially children and pets continues to be exposed.

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02/22/09 02:18 AM Comments (3) • PermalinkEmail Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Westport Environmental Summit

WestportNow.com Image
Members of several dozen Westport organizations with interest in the environment met at Westport Town Hall tonight for what was billed as an “environmental summit.” Conservation Department Director Alicia Mozian (r) greeted the attendees and said the meeting was aimed at better coordination and eliminating duplicating efforts among the groups in improving the environment. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com

11/18/08 03:08 AM Comments (0) • PermalinkEmail Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon

Friday, November 14, 2008

Flu Shots: No Pain at the Train

WestportNow.com Image
The Westport Weston Health District offered flu shots at the Westport (Saugatuck) train station tonight. The mobile clinic also served as a drill—joined by other area health districts at other Metro-North stations—to test the ability to rapidly inoculate large numbers of train travelers in a health emergency. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) WestportNow.com photo

11/14/08 12:58 AM Comments (0) • PermalinkEmail Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Learning Life-Saving Techniques

WestportNow.com Image
Isabel Blair and Nancy Toll, Westport Volunteer Emergency Medical Service members, conducted an infant and child Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR) class today at Westport police headquarters. Pictured is Toll (r. foreground) as she gave instructions to class participants. The next classes are scheduled for Dec. 2 from 10 a.m. to noon for adult CPR training and on Dec. 3 from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. for child and infant CPR training. The classes are free to Westport residents while nonresidents are welcome at a fee of $20. Call 341-6030 for information or to register. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com

11/12/08 06:22 PM Comments (0) • PermalinkEmail Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon

Saturday, November 08, 2008

Train Station Flu Shots Set for Thursday as Part of Drill

The Westport Weston Health District will conduct a flu vaccination clinic on Thursday from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. at Westport’s Saugatuck train station that will also serve as a drill by area health authorities to rapidly inoculate large numbers of train travelers.

The clinic will be located on the New Haven-bound side. Those planning to attend may complete their registration form ahead of time by downloading a copy of the flu vaccination consent form from the Westport Weston Health District Web site.

The cost is $35, but there is no cost to Medicare Part B participants who must bring their Medicare cards for billing purposes. Checks made out to WWHD or cash payments will be accepted.

The event is also serving as a drill testing the capacity of the region’s public health system to collaboratively work across town boundaries to rapidly dispense medicine in a coordinated effort to the tens of thousands who commute via train each day. 

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11/08/08 12:38 PM Comments (0) • PermalinkEmail Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon

Thursday, October 09, 2008

Westport Weston Health District Names New Director

The first selectman of Southbury, Mark A. R. Cooper, today was named public health director for the Westport Weston Health District.WestportNow.com Image
Mark A. R. Cooper: First Selectman of Southbury has health background. File photo

The District’s board’s appointment of Cooper, effective next month, is subject to approval by the state Department of Public Health.

Cooper succeeds Sue Jacozzi, who has served in the post since August 2005. (See WestportNow Aug. 29, 2005)

At today’s board of directors meeting, Westport First Selectman Gordon F. Joseloff praised Jacozzi for her service to the District and said he looked forward to working with Cooper.

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10/09/08 09:01 PM Comments (0) • PermalinkEmail Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon

Monday, October 06, 2008

Health District Offers Flu Shots for Homebound

The Westport Weston Health District today announced it is offering flu shots for the homebound.

Homebound is defined as someone who no longer drives and is unable to obtain needed services outside of the home without experiencing undue physical or emotional hardship, an announcement said.

A nurse will visit a homebound resident to administer the flu shot as long as they have Medicare as their primary insurance, the District said.

For spouses and caregivers of the homebound, the cost of the flu shot is $35; no cash will be accepted. To make an appointment, call Loren Pace at (203) 227-9571 ext. 231.

10/06/08 10:09 PM Comments (0) • PermalinkEmail Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon

Thursday, July 31, 2008

Hot Peas ‘N Butter Cook Up Bi-Lingual Sound at Levitt

WestportNow.com Image
Performing at Westport’s Levitt Pavilion for the first time tonight, Hot Peas ‘N Butter, a multi-cultural bilingual five-piece band and dancer, entertained a large audience of all ages. Their entertaining lyrics comprised of interchangeable Spanish and English encourage youngsters to become familiar with bilingual sounds and vocabulary. The group, which appears regularly on the Noggin TV network catering to preschoolers, was founded in 2000 by the Latino duo of Bronx-raised Frank Cotto (l) and Brooklynite Danny Lapidus (c). They met at the LaGuardia High School of Music and Arts in Manhattan. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com

07/31/08 03:20 AM Comments (0) • PermalinkEmail Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon

Sunday, March 02, 2008

Spinning for a Good Cause

WestportNow.com Image
More than 400 riders from throughout Fairfield County, including many from Westport, took part today in the Ninth Annual SpinOdyssey to raise money for the American Cancer Society’s breast cancer research. The event at Fitness & Tennis Club in Norwalk hoped to exceed last year’s total of more than $500,000. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) WestportNow.com photo

03/02/08 03:03 PM Comments (0) • PermalinkEmail Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon

Ready to Spin

WestportNow.com Image
A team from the Westport Weston Family Y posed for a group photo today before joining hundreds of other cyclists at the Ninth Annual SpinOdyssey to raise money for breast cancer research. The event was held at the Fitness & Tennis Club in Norwalk. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) WestportNow.com photo

03/02/08 02:55 PM Comments (0) • PermalinkEmail Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon

Monday, November 05, 2007

Plastic Surgeon Offers “Westport Face Lift”

WestportNow.com Image
Joel Singer: new procedure reduces recovery time. Contributed photo
In one of the more bizarre attempts to commercialize Westport’s notoriety and cachet, a Westport plastic surgeon said today he has begun to offer what he calls the “Westport Face Lift.”

The minimally invasive face lift offers women and men the opportunity to make lasting improvements in their facial appearance without a long recovery period, according to Dr. Joel Singer, founder of Imperial Plastic Surgery on Imperial Avenue.

Unlike “weekend face lifts” that usually involve tightening and sculpting the jaw line, the Westport Face Lift instead focuses on tightening the skin on the cheeks, he said.

“Most local residents considering cosmetic procedures to improve the appearance of their mid face area are only given the option of a full face lift or temporary improvement with injectable fillers,” Singer said. “With Westport Face Lift, I offer a better choice for many patients.”

11/05/07 11:06 PM Comments (1) • PermalinkEmail Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon

Friday, September 28, 2007

Health District Rejects “Demand” to Limit or Close Turf Fields

The director of the Westport Weston Health District has rejected a “demand” by two Westport residents that play on Westport’s synthetic turf fields be limited or eliminated while tests for health risks are conducted on the fields’ rubber infill.

“In the absence of data about the fields, and given the widespread use of this type of turf worldwide without an issue, it would be presumptuous of us to limit their use based on the very limited data available to us,” wrote Susan Jacozzi in a letter dated Tuesday and made public today.

She was responding to a Sept. 14 letter from Westport residents Patricia Taylor and Stacy Prince in which they said they were lodging a “formal complaint” about four fields on Westport town property.

The women cited a May study issued by New Haven-based Environment and Human Health Inc. and subsequent comments by David Brown, a Westporter who serves as the group’s public health toxicologist, that children should be kept off the fields as a precautionary measure.

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09/28/07 02:09 AM Comments (0) • PermalinkEmail Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon

Monday, September 24, 2007

Westport Weston Health District Sets Flu Clinics

The Westport Weston Health District said today it has received its shipment of ample flu vaccine supply for the season and scheduled two clinics for October.

The first flu clinic will take place on Saturday Oct. 20 from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Bedford Middle School, 88 North Ave. The second Flu clinic will take place on Wednesday, Oct. 24 from 1:30 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. at Northfield Church, Northfield Road, Weston.

The clinics are open to anyone 9 or older wishing to be vaccinated. There are no appointments necessary. The cost of the vaccine is to be announced at a later date. Call the WWHD flu hotline (203)227-9571 Ext. 239 for more information.

There is no cost to Medicare Part B participants. Medicare B participants must bring their Medicare cards to the clinic for billing purposes.

09/24/07 10:04 PM Comments (0) • PermalinkEmail Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon

Tuesday, September 04, 2007

Parks & Rec. Dept. Affirms Continued Turf Field Use

The Westport Parks and Recreation Department said today that continued use of synthetic athletic turf fields in Westport is warranted despite concerns expressed by some that they may adversely affect the health of users.

In a statement, Parks and Recreation Director Stuart McCarthy said: “The Westport Parks and Recreation Department continues to support the installation of synthetic athletic turf as a safe alternative to grass playing fields.

“While we are constantly reviewing all available information on this subject we have seen no evidence that playing on these fields is unsafe. There is ample evidence that these fields perform well, use fewer pesticides and improve playing conditions and athlete safety over the current over-used grass fields.”

McCarthy said the department encourages continued testing of these products to assure the safety of users of these playing fields.

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09/04/07 08:47 PM Comments (11) • PermalinkEmail Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Hall-Brooke Names Stewart Levine Chief Medical Officer

Westport’s Hall-Brooke Behavioral Health Services has named Westporter Stewart Levine as chief medical officer of the facility at 47 Long Lots Road and chairman of psychiatry for St. Vincent’s Medical Center in Bridgeport.

Prior to being appointed to the position by Susan L. Davis, president and CEO of St. Vincent’s Health Services, Levine served as clinical director of Hall-Brooke and vice chairman of psychiatry at St. Vincent’s Medical Center.

Levine joined Hall-Brooke in 2004 after serving as director of inpatient psychiatry at Beth Israel Medical Center in Manhattan where he also spent periods as assistant unit chief and unit chief.

07/18/07 07:52 PM Comments (0) • PermalinkEmail Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon

Friday, June 29, 2007

Westport “Well Prepared” for Bird Flu Pandemic

By Ed Kiersh

They hope it will never happen, but Westport officials are refining their plans for an Avian influenza or bird flu pandemic.WestportNow.com Image
Westport Weston Health District Director Sue Jacozzi, pictured at the District today, says Westport is constantly studying how to be a step ahead in pandemic flu preparations. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Ed Kiersh for WestportNow.com

After attending a regional meeting Thursday of police, fire, and emergency care givers at Fairfield University, Westport Weston Health District Director Susan M.Jacozzi said today the town is well prepared.

“Westport’s local plan is very good,” she said. “We have doctors advising us and we have a very good relationship with first-responders.”

Jacozzi, who has served in her post for almost two years, said, “It’s a worry that we don’t have anti-virals or a vaccine. Yet we are constantly thinking of what could happen, and trying to be a step ahead.”

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06/29/07 10:17 PM Comments (8) • PermalinkEmail Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Aquasize at Longshore

Westport Aquatics
The first session of the Aquasize class for Westport seniors started with a lovely warm day at Westport’s Longshore Pool today. Ruth Sherman leads the hour-long class in water exercises every Tuesday and Thursday at 11:35 a.m. Westport seniors are welcome. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Phyllis Groner for WestportNow.com

06/26/07 09:25 PM Comments (0) • PermalinkEmail Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon

Tuesday, May 01, 2007

Westport Health Center Looks to Upgrade

By Jennifer Connic

Westport Health Care Center is planning upgrades to its building to address changes in the long-term health care field, and the Zoning Board of Appeals is the first stop for those changes.

The ZBA recently held a hearing that will continue on May 8 for changes to the 120-bed facility at 1 Burr Road opposite Kings Highway Elementary School. If variances are approved, the plans will move on to the Planning and Zoning Commission.

“The framework of today’s long-term care environment is comprised of advanced rehabilitation techniques and accompanying equipment in addition to evolved systems of caring for and making comfortable prototypical age-related illness and disease,” said a document from the center filed in the Planning and Zoning Department.

“In conjunction with these advances in treatment and therapies is both a federal and state focus to make the long-term care setting less institutional and more of a friendly residential environment.”

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05/01/07 10:21 PM Comments (0) • PermalinkEmail Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon

Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Flu Vaccines Available at Health District

The Westport-Weston Health District has flu vaccines available to those who may not have received one yet this year.

The vaccine is available by making an appointment by calling Loren Pace at (203) 227-9571 x231.

There are no residency restrictions to receive the vaccine, which costs $32 in a cash payment.

There is no cost to Medicare Part B participants, and they must bring their Medicare cards for billing purposes when receiving the vaccination.

Health officials said vaccination in December and later can still provide protection because during most years, the flu season does not peak until February or later.

12/20/06 08:43 PM Comments (0) • PermalinkEmail Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon

Friday, May 19, 2006

Sunrise Rotary Hears Emotional Story of Heart Transplant

WestportNow.com Image
The Westport Sunrise Rotary Club today heard the emotional story of Kerry Keenan and her heart transplant. Kerry, who grew up in Westport and is the daughter of longtime Westporters Sheila and Todd Keenan, was stricken with a virus that led to the transplant in September 2004. She received the heart of a 15-year-old girl from Old Lyme, Conn. “It’s a very difficult process that someone had to die to save my life,” she said. She urged everyone to sign up to become organ donors. “You could be responsible for saving as many as 50 lives,” she said.  (CLICK TO ENLARGE) WestportNow.com photo

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Sunday, March 12, 2006

Westport’s Hall-Brooke Opens 16-Bed Women’s Unit

A new 16-bed inpatient unit specifically dedicated to women’s treatment has opened at Hall-Brooke Behavioral Health Services, 47 Long Lots Road, Westport.WestportNow.com Image
Bishop William E. Lori of the Diocese of Bridgeport offered blessings on the newly opened 16-bed Women’s Unit of Westport’s Hall-Brooke Behavioral Health Services. With Lori are (l-r): Dr. Thomas E. Smith, Hall-Brooke’s medical director, and Jennifer L’Herbette, MSW. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Contributed photo

The advanced design 10,000-square-foot Woman’s Unit is staffed by clinical experts versed in the particular needs of women’s mental health and well-being, according to Thomas E. Smith, M.D., Hall-Brooke’s medical director.

The specific gender focus of the new unit “puts Hall-Brooke in the vanguard of mental health treatment centers which recognize the importance of biological and social factors on the mental health of women,” Smith said.  “There are very few comprehensive programs tailored to women available in the entire country.”

The unit’s specially trained staff understands the mental health needs of women and recognizes the influence of hormones and premenstrual symptoms, reactions to infertility or pregnancy loss, and emotional distress related to life changes, he said.

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Thursday, December 29, 2005

Connecticut Reports First Flu Cases

State health department officials said today that four confirmed cases of influenza have been reported in Connecticut – two in Fairfield County.

State Public Health Commissioner J. Robert Galvin said the confirmation by the state Public Health Laboratory means that that the influenza season has officially begun in Connecticut.

Gov. M. Jodi Rell and Galvin urged Connecticut residents to talk to their doctor about getting a flu shot.

“If you have been waiting to get a flu shot, please don’t wait any longer — flu is here and there is still vaccine available in the state,” Rell said in a statement.

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Tuesday, December 20, 2005

Y Offers Aquatics Classes

WestportNow.com Image
The Westport-Weston Family Y aquatics staff will be offering free “Aquatic Fusion” clinics this week. They will be held Wednesday and Friday at 8:45-9:45 a.m. on Wednesday and Friday in the 90-degree pool at the YMCA. Pictured are (l-r) Audrey Thompson, Aquatic Fitness Director Patty Kondub, and Shelly Goldman (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Contributed photo

12/20/05 03:06 AM Comments (0) • PermalinkEmail Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon

Thursday, November 10, 2005

Avian Flu Health District Focus

To address concerns over what has been called a possible pandemic and to explore ways to protect oneself, the Westport Weston Health District (WWHD) has scheduled an avian flu information program for Monday, Nov. 21 at 7:30 p.m. in Room 109 at Westport Town Hall.

Dr. Stuart Steinman, the health district’s medical advisor, plans to discuss the nature of avian influenza, “how to protect yourself and loved ones and learn what your country is doing to protect you,” health district officials say.

According to the WWHD, avian Influenza, or bird flu, is a contagious disease of animals caused by viruses that normally infect poultry, waterfowl, and other birds. While it is unusual for humans to acquire influenza virus infections directly from birds, the health district reports that human infections and deaths have occurred in Cambodia, Indonesia, Thailand, and Vietnam.

Citing research from Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the WWHD reports that the widespread persistence of avian influenza in poultry poses two main risks for human health. The first is the risk of direct infection when the virus passes from poultry to humans, resulting in very severe disease. The second is that the virus can change into a form that is highly infectious for humans and spreads easily or pandemic.

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Sunday, October 23, 2005

Westport EMS Sets CPR Courses

The Westport Volunteer Emergency Medical Service is sponsoring two cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) courses next month.

Both will be held in the police classroom, 50 Jesup Road.

An infant and child heart-saver CPR class will be given Thursday, Nov. 3, from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. A fee of $25 will be charged and. registration is required. Certification will be given upon successful completion.

A full healthcare provider CPR course will be given Tuesday, Nov. 8 and continue on Thursday, Nov. 10 from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. A fee of $65 will be charged and registration is required. Certification will be given upon successful completion.

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Monday, October 17, 2005

Looking for a Few Good Men and Women

WestportNow.com Image
Westport’s Volunteer Emergency Medical Service is looking for volunteers for its next EMT class. Applications must be submitted by Friday. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Contributed graphic

10/17/05 07:17 PM Comments (0) • PermalinkEmail Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon

Tuesday, September 27, 2005

EMT Course Offered

The Westport Volunteer EMS will be offering an EMT training course for those who want to join the corps.

An information session will be held at 7 p.m. on Oct. 25 at police headquarters, and applications are due by Oct. 21.

Class tuition is $500, and it may be refunded later based on volunteer service.

Classes start Nov. 1 and continue through May. Classes are held Tuesday and Thursday evenings 7-10 p.m. and the first Saturday of each month at 8 a.m. to 2 p.m.

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Thursday, September 22, 2005

Hall-Brooke Offers Free Depression Screening Oct. 6

As a community service, Westport’s Hall-Brooke Behavioral Health Services will do free screening for depression from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m., Thursday, Oct. 6 at 47 Long Lots Road.

The screening is also available from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m., at The Center, operated by Hall-Brooke, at 2400 Main St., Bridgeport, and is provided by both English and Spanish speakers.

Hall-Brooke’s services are part of the National Depression Screening Day which makes available the free opportunity for diagnosis to persons throughout the United States who may be suffering from depression or bipolar disease, an announcement said.

09/22/05 09:28 PM Comments (0) • PermalinkEmail Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon

Tuesday, September 13, 2005

Info Sessions Set on Long Island Sound No Discharge Proposal

The state Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) is taking steps to preserve the quality of coastal waters in Long Island Sound by seeking to ban discharge of sewage from boats in local waters.

It has set up information sessions on the proposal Wednesday and Thursday in Bridgeport, Norwalk and Stamford.

The DEP plans to ask the federal Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to approve designation of the waters from the eastern border of Branford to the western border of Greenwich as a No Discharge Area.

The area would include the Quinnipiac River from North Haven and the Housatonic River from Derby Dam in Derby to the coastal waters of Long Island Sound, according to an announcement.

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