March 27th

Local Health Improvement Coalition Weekly Digest

Dear Howard County LHIC Members –

We hope that you had a great week.  Please find below and attached this week’s LHIC digest and corresponding attachments.  Additionally we welcome you to submit any news or events that you would like to share with the group.  The deadline for submissions is Monday by 5:00pm to .  Again, we thank you for your continued support and participation as we work to achieve health equity in Howard County and to identify and reduce health disparities.  

New meeting schedule.  
Upcoming meetings:

Next LHIC meeting Monday, May 13th from 10:00am to 12:00pm.  Click here for calendar invitation.


Carol Beatty Named to 2013 List of Maryland’s Top 100 Women {new}
Carol A. Beatty, Executive Director of The Arc of Howard County, has been named to The Daily Record’s 2013 list of Maryland’s Top 100 Women and will be honored at the Meyerhof Symphony Hall in Baltimore on May 6. The Daily Record’s annual list of Maryland’s Top 100 Women was created to recognize outstanding achievement by women who have demonstrated significant professional accomplishments, outstanding community leadership and inspirational mentoring. For more information, click here.


Study Finds Most Major Restaurants Post Accurate Nutrition Info {new}
A new study from Consumer Reports found that most major chain restaurants post accurate nutritional information about their food. Shoppers purchased and tested 17 menu items from restaurants and fast-food chains, comparing the results for each item to the same items purchased at other restaurants in the chain. “We found that you can usually trust the figures you see,” said editor Leslie Ware. “On average, most of them were telling the truth.” The U.S. Food and Drug Administration is slated to release new regulations regarding nutrition labeling later this year. For full article, click here.

Breath Test May Identify People Prone to Obesity {new}
A breath test that measures bacterial overgrowth in the stomach could be used to determine whether a person will become overweight, according to a new study in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism. Researchers found that higher levels of methane and hydrogen from the bacteria Methanobrevibacter smithii were associated with higher BMIs and more body fat. The study's author Ruchi Mathur, MD, director of the outpatient diabetes treatment center at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles, said this could help identify people who would respond best to particular weight loss methods. For full article, click here. 

CDC: U.S. Kids Consume Nearly as Much Salt as U.S. Adults {new}
The average U.S. kid consumes about as much salt in a day as the average U.S. adult—which is to say far too much, according to a new study in the journal Pediatrics. Researchers at the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) found the average youth age 8 to 18 has a daily sodium intake of approximately 3,387 mg; the recommended daily limit is 2,300 mg. Processed foods are one of the biggest culprits. Excessive sodium is linked to a myriad of health issues. For full article, click here.
State Laws Needed to Help Reduce Sales of E-Cigarettes to Minors {new}
While twelve states currently have laws regulating sales of electronic cigarettes (known as e-cigarettes) to minors, a new post on the Network for Public Health Law blog calls on more states to restrict sales to minors while the Food and Drug Administration continues their review of the device. E-cigarettes contain nicotine, but no tobacco and often come in kid-alluring flavors such as chocolate and vanilla. According to the Network post, one small FDA study found carcinogens and toxins in e-cigarettes. Health experts are concerned that the electronic devices may also be a gateway tool for young adults to actual, cancer-causing, tobacco-filled cigarettes. For full article, click here. 
Media Coverage of Mass Shootings Harms Attitudes on Mental Illness {new}
Media coverage of mass shootings by people with mental illness can increase support for policies to reduce gun violence, but can also increase the stigmatization of people with mental illness and lessens the chance they will seek help, according to a new study in the American Journal of Psychiatry. According to study author Emma E. McGinty, MS, a PhD candidate with the Johns Hopkins Center for Gun Policy and Research, the public’s negative attitudes toward persons with serious mental illness are exacerbated by news media accounts of mass shootings involving a shooter with mental illness. For full article, click here.
Maryland Awarded $2.37 Million State Innovations Model Grant
In February, Maryland received a $2.37 million CMS State Innovation Models (SIM) grant to fund the planning phase of a "Community-Integrated Medical Home" (CIMH) initiative. The project will be broad based and focus on individuals enrolled in Medicare, Medicaid and the Children's Health Insurance Program (CHIP).  Health workers at local health departments will be able reach out and provide targeted resources to individuals with poor health status, assist them in finding a usual source of care, including linking them to Maryland's health insurance exchange, which launches in October 2013.  Click here for more information on the program.

Sustainable Communities State Designation Opens Funding Opportunities for Community Health
A new State-led neighborhood revitalization designation called Sustainable Communities provides a planning framework and funding for local governments and other community stakeholders to improve community health.  "Sustainable Communities" are eligible to apply for competitive grants and loans toward capital projects, tax credits, and other benefits. For more information on the designation, consult the Sustainable Communities website or click here to e-mail Mary Kendall. To see if you are located in a Sustainable Community, click here.
Sharpened focus on Mental Health First Aid 
Interest in Mental Health First Aid was heightened this month with its inclusion in the President’s comprehensive plan to protect communities from gun violence. Launched nearly two years ago, Mental Health First Aid is an evidence-based interactive 12-hour course designed to teach people a five-step process to assess a situation, select and implement appropriate interventions and help a person in crisis or who may be developing the signs and symptoms of mental illness. There's also a Youth Course for those working with teens. Click here for more information.

HCC is Approved IRS Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) Site {new}
HCC is partnering with the IRS to offer income tax assistance to individuals with income under $51,000. This free service is available to anyone, including HCC employees and students. There are trained volunteers available who will assist in your tax preparation. For more information, click here.

Network of Care for Behavioral Health
Network of Care for Behavioral Health is an online information place for individuals, families, and agencies concerned with mental and emotional wellness, substance abuse and developmental disabilities. This online community provides critical information, communication, and advocacy tools with a single point of entry. It ensures there is "No Wrong Door" for those navigating the system of behavioral health services, those working to avoid the need for formal services, and those ready to transition out of the behavioral health system.
For more information, click here.

Howard County Health Department Tobacco Treatment Program and Volunteer Opportunities 
Wednesdays, 6:00pm – 7:00pm {free}
Quit Smoking Today!  FREE Tobacco Treatment Program open to anyone who lives or works in Howard County.  This is a 4 week program, 1 session per week.  A physician evaluation for medication support will be offered from 5:00pm -8:00pm, by appointment only.  Walk-in clinics for a one-on-one counseling session with a Tobacco Treatment Specialist, offered in English and Spanish will be offered on Thursdays, 1:00pm - 4:00pm.  For more information, click here.

Office on Aging Information - MAP and SHIP 
Maryland Access Point (MAP)
MAP is Howard County’s Aging and Disability Resource Center (ADRC). We help identify a person’s strengths, needs, situations and preferences and help them make informed decisions through a service known as Options Counseling. In addition to our telephone assistance, we can make home visits or meet a person in an alternate location such as a senior center or library.  To contact MAP call 410-313-5980 Monday through Friday 8:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. or visit the statewide searchable database at
Senior Health Insurance Assistance Program (SHIP) 

SHIP offers one-on-one counseling and assistance to people with Medicare of any age and their families. Counseling is a free service and assistance is given via telephone and face-to-face interactive sessions, public education presentations and programs, and media activities. To contact SHIP call 410-313-7392 Monday through Friday 8:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.

Healthcare Howard Website Launch
Healthy Howard, Inc. and the Howard County Health Department have come together to create the Healthcare Howard website at   For the most up-to-date information, we encourage you to "like" us on Facebook (Healthcare-Howard), follow us on Twitter (@HealthcareHoCo), and sign up to receive email updates on the website.

Join a Walking Club to Aid Your Weight Loss Plan 
Now that the holidays are over and you have started your weight loss plan, why not join a walking club to help trim off those pounds?  Delta Sigma Theta Sorority has moved their walking clubs inside for the winter months.  For more information contact:  Tonia Smith/  or   Arleen Tate/

Hunger-Free Howard Program 
Did you know that the Howard County Food Bank served more than 20,000 individuals last year?  Community Action Council of Howard County (CAC) is looking for community groups -churches, schools, girl/boy scout troops, fraternal organizations, clubs, offices, or athletic associations- that would like to help create a Hunger-free Howard by collecting 1 high-need item for the Food Bank each month.  High need items include peanut butter, cereal, pasta and pasta sauce, soup, cooking oils, and personal care items.  For more information, or to become a Hunger-free Howard Partner, contact Lisa Clossin at or410-313-0703.

Cancer Prevention Study-3 Comes to Howard County
Help the American Cancer Society create a world with less cancer!
The American Cancer Society is seeking cancer fighters in Howard County to participate in Cancer Prevention Study-3 (CPS-3), a historic, nationwide study to help researchers better understand the genetic, environmental and lifestyle factors that cause or prevent cancer, which will ultimately save lives.

2-1-1 Maryland
2-1-1 Maryland is a toll-free, 24-hour hotline that provides information on local and national health and human service resources. We serve the entire state of Maryland and are available simply by dialing 2-1-1 or 800-492-0618. The hotline is staffed by trained and nationally certified Information and Referral Specialists who assess callers' needs and then link them with appropriate resources and services. Many of you are already included in our database but others may not be included. Please use the following contact information to update current forms or submit new program forms.  Kate Schulz, Information and Referral Specialist and Howard County Outreach Coordinator.  Contact number: 410-895-1452.  Brandi Nieland, Database Administrator 

Powerpoint Presentation
2-1-1 Maryland Fact Sheet
2-1-1 MD Inclusion Exclusion Guidelines
New Program Form


The ABCs of Adult Blindness {free}
Wednesday, March 27, 7:00-8:30 p.m.
Age-related Macular Degeneration, Blepharoptosis (drooping eyelids), Cataracts and more. Are you always the last one in the car to read the road signs? Wondering why you can't read the newspaper anymore? Join us as we explore common reasons for vision impairment and find out what can be done to improve your eyesight. Presented by Vanessa Lima, M.D. Howard County General Hospital, Johns Hopkins Medicine Wellness Center. 10710 Charter Drive.
For more information or to register, click here.

Hands-Only CPR {new}
Thursday, March 28, 7:00 p.m.
Brad Tanner, from Howard County Department of Fire and Rescue Services, comes to the Glenwood Branch to teach the basics of adult CPR and the warning signs for sudden cardiac arrest. He also discusses the functions of an automated external defibrillator (AED). Participants are required to practice the Hands-Only CPR method on the provided mannequins as they are assisted by the instructor. This course is intended for all ages and recommended for individuals who wish to learn the basics of CPR. This is a basic course and is designed to be performed without a CPR card. As a result, a CPR card is not issued upon course completionRegistration required. To register online, click here or call (410) 313-5577,

Living with Breast Cancer {free}
Thursday, March 28, 7-8:30 p.m
This group is designed to meet the needs of breast cancer patients with a Stage IV diagnosis. This safe, welcoming group provides encouragement, support and education and meets on the 4th Thursday of each month. . HCGH Claudia Mayer Cancer Resource Center. Call 410 964-9100 x5 for more information and to register.

HC DrugFree presents “Senior Week: Staying Safe in Ocean City”
Monday April 8th 7:00 pm - 8:30 pm
If your teen is going to Senior Week, this is your final opportunity for you and your teen to attend this must see/must hear program. Location: Mt. Hebron High School Auditorium, 9440 Old Frederick Road (Route 99), Ellicott City, MD 21042.  HC DrugFree and Mount Hebron High School PTSA are partnering to invite teens and their parents to attend “Senior Week: Staying Safe in Ocean City”.  For more information, contact Joan Webb Scornaienchi, Executive Director, HC DrugFree at or 443-325-0040 or visit

Maryland Forum on Health Care Reform
Tuesday, April 16, 12:00 PM to 4:00 PM at Ten Oaks Ballroom in Clarksville, MD
Join panelists from the Governor's Office of Health Care Reform, Maryland Health Benefits Exchange and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services for an event that will offer an update on Maryland's implementation of health care reform under the Affordable Care Act. This forum will provide an opportunity to discuss Maryland's Health Care Reform implementation, recognize important accomplishments, highlight current initiatives, and future plans. Discussion will include expanding affordable coverage and access, controlling costs, improving quality, and reaching diverse populations. The audience will include members of the aging and disability network and health care professionals.  
here to register.  

Ask the Doctor: Children & Adolescents Living with Mental Illness {free}
April 17, 2013
7:00— 9: 00 PM at NAMI Metro Baltimore
With Dr. Marc Fishman (Johns Hopkins Hospital) & the Maryland Coalition of Families for Children’s Mental Health. For more information or to register, click here.
Shouldering the Burden {free}
Tuesday, April 23, 6:00-8:00 p.m. 
Having difficulty raising your arm or lifting things? Common shoulder injuries, such as rotator cuff and labrum tears, as well as degenerative conditions like arthritis can cause joint pain and limit motion. Johns Hopkins orthopedic surgeon Dr. Uma Srikumaran will discuss surgical and other options to lighten your load. Howard County General Hospital, Johns Hopkins Medicine Wellness Center. 10710 Charter Drive.
For more information or to register, click here.

WomenfestAn Interactive Day To Inspire Healthier, Fuller Lives {free}
Saturday, April 27, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m
The Howard County Department of Citizen Services’ Office on Aging is pleased to present their 5th annual WomenFest, a wellness event for women at the Gary J. Arthur Community Center, 2400 Route 97 in Cooksville.  WomenFest is an interactive day that focuses on health, wellness, fashion and beauty, and is designed to inspire women to live more balanced, healthier and fuller lives.  Keynote to be given by Glamour magazine contributing beauty editor, Andrea Pomerantz Lustig.  For more information click here.

Baltimore City Resource Sharing Event!{free}
Tuesday, May 14th, 2013 from 1:00-3:00pm
Paul C. Wohlman Assembly Hall, War Memorial Building, 101 North Gay Street, First Floor, Baltimore, MD 21202
This event is sponsored by the Maryland Community Services Locator (MDCSL) Project at the University of Maryland, College Park and the Baltimore City Department of Social Services (BCDSS).  It will feature a presentation on how to use the MDCSL (, and a presentation on BCDSS programs.  We invite your agency to bring information to share at this event.  
 For information about parking  and registration for the event as an organization or attendee, click here.

2013 Mid-Atlantic Behavioral Health Conference
May 15-17, 2013 in Downtown Annapolis, MD
The Mid-Atlantic Behavioral Health Conference has become the premier event in the region for behavioral health care and somatic health care professionals including substance abuse counselors, mental health practitioners, physicians, nurses, licensed professional counselors, physician's assistants, justice system personnel, teachers, school counselors, and nurse practitioners.  Click
here for more information and to register. 

Anxiety  {free}
May 15, 2013
7:00 — 9:00 PM at NAMI Metro Baltimore
This event will be conducted by Linda Kohler, Executive Director of NAMI MB. For more information or to register, click here.
WomenFest {new} {free}
Saturday, April 27, 2013, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.
WomenFest is an interactive day focusing on health, wellness, fashion, and beauty, featuring 90+ vendors and exhibitors, engaging seminars and free health screenings. Admission is free.  A keynote address at 1:30 p.m. will feature Glamour Magazine Beauty Editor Andrea Pomerantz Lustig, author of How to Look Expensive  (click on the title for more information).  Free tickets for the keynote address will be distributed at the event, while quantities last. For more information, click here.
2013 NAMIWalk Maryland {new}
Saturday May 18, 2013 at Baltimore Inner Harbor - Rash Field
Check-in: 10:00 am
Start Time: 11:00 am
NAMIWalks is the largest mental health education and fundraising effort in America. NAMIWalks brings together thousands of individuals and supporters to celebrate mental illness recovery, to honor those who have lost their lives to mental illness and to help raise funds, combat stigma and promote awareness. Join the thousands of people across Maryland to help raise awareness about mental illness and to raise money for the free vital support programs that NAMI offers to individuals with mental illness and their families. All the funds collected by Walkers will be used to fund NAMI’s programs here in Maryland. For information about this event, click here.
Free Tax Prep!

January 19th to April 13th. {free}
Mondays and Wednesdays 4pm - 8 pm, Saturdays 10am - 3 pm
Making CHANGE will offer free tax preparation to most taxpayers who earned less than $49,000 in 2012 at the new 2013 VITA site, which opened Saturday, Jan 19.  The site will offer e-filing, savings bonds and the option to receive refunds via direct deposit onto a debit card - all free! Individuals can receive their refunds in half the time compared to returns filed on paper — even faster, when tax refunds are deposited directly into a bank account.  North Laurel-Savage Multiservice Center, 9900 Washington Blvd (Rt 1), Laurel, MD 20723

Appointments are encouraged!  Please call (410) 880-5917 to make an appointment; or to learn more about VITA and the documents you will need to bring, click here.


Developed by: Maryann Thomas


Additionally we welcome you to submit any news or events that you would like to share with the group.  The deadline for submissions is Monday by 5:00pm to

 Our mailing address is: 7178 Columbia Gateway Dr., Columbia, MD 21046