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November: Utahns mark awareness month for many health issues

Published November 9, 2012 5:17 pm

Public health • Utah advocates hope to alert residents to a variety of health challenges and issues.
This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2012, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

November marks the awareness month for many diseases and conditions. Several Utah advocacy groups are planning events and urging awareness of issues from Alzheimer's disease to rural health.

Diabetes: In Utah, 177,000 diagnosed

On Wednesday, Nov. 14, World Diabetes Day, the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation, American Diabetes Association and Utah Department of Health will hold a press conference at 10:30 a.m. to urge Utahns to "take an active role" in preventing, treating and curing diabetes.

The event will be held in front of the local offices of JDRF and ADA at 132 South 600 East, Salt Lake City. The Malialole drummers, a Pacific Islander group, will be performing. The groups want to highlight that 13.7 percent of Utah's Pacific Islander adults have diabetes, double the statewide rate of 6.9 percent. Currently, 28,000 Pacific Islanders reside in Utah.

For more information and to take action, visit an visit the following websites to take action: http://www.jdrf.org, http://www.stopdiabetes.com or http://www.health.utah.gov/diabetes.

Utah Pacific Islander Health Week: A look at disparities

The Utah Pacific Islander Health Coalition is marking its awareness week Nov. 11 -17. They aim to raise awareness of the serious health issues and health disparities that affect Utah's PI communities, and to promote available resources.

According to the Utah Department of Health, nearly 8 out of 10 Pacific Islanders in Utah are overweight or obese, and the adult diabetes rate is double the state average.

A kick-off celebration is set for Monday, Nov. 12 from 5:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. at the Sorenson Multicultural Center. It will feature free family activities, food, health resources, Zumba and Hot Hula classes/demonstrations, as well as free flu shots. The center will offer free day passes for families to enjoy the swimming pool and fitness facilities all day.

Other activities during the week include a healthy Polynesian cooking competition, participation in World Diabetes Day, MANA Fitness Challenge finale and more. An updated calendar of events is available at http://www.utahpacifichealth.org.

The Great American Smokeout: A chance to quit

Each year, more than 1,100 Utah adults die as a result of their own smoking, according to state health officials. As part of the Great American Smokeout, marked on Thursday, Nov. 15. the Utah Tobacco Quit Line and Subway are encouraging Utahns to give up tobacco.

Anyone who calls the Utah Tobacco Quit Line (1.800.QUIT.NOW ) between November 14 and 25 will receive a free smoking cessation kit with a card good for a free 6-inch sub at any Subway restaurant in Utah. The call is free and confidential.

Several Subway locations across the Salt Lake Valley will be hosting a drive-thru event, at which people can pick up free quit kits.

• Magna Recreation Center (3270 South 8400 West in Magna)

• Pride Center (361 North 300 West in Salt Lake City)

• Salt Lake County Archives (4535 South 5600 West in Salt Lake City)

Also, free quit kits and free six-inch subs to those who pledge to quit smoking will be provided on Wednesday, Nov. 14 from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. at the Salt Lake County Government Center, 2001 So. State Street.

For information on quitting, call the Utah Tobacco Quit Line at 1.800.QUIT.NOW or visit Utah QuitNet atwww.UtahQuitNet.com.

AAT deficiency: An underdiagnosed disease

November is also Alpha-1 Awareness Month. Alpha-1 Antitrypsin Deficiency is a common hereditary disease that can lead to life-threatening liver disease in adults and children, and in lung disease in adults, according to a proclamation from Gov. Gary Herbert.

Utahns can learn more about the disease and about the Alpha-1 Association at http://www.alpha1.org/latest-news/utah-s-governor-declares-november-as-alpha-1-awareness-month

Pancreatic cancer: Less-known and lethal

While Utah has one of the lowest pancreatic cancer rates in the country, according to the Utah Department of Health, the cancer is deadly. Pancreatic Cancer Action Network says the five-year survival rate for pancreatic cancer is 6 percent.

The network urges more funding for research. Utahns can learn more at http://www.pancan.org.

Rural Health Week: Improving access to care

Rural Health Week is being observed Nov. 11-17 in Utah to spotlight the importance of access to good quality health service in rural communities. A statement from the Utah Department of Health is available at http://udohnews.blogspot.com/2012/11/improving-health-care-access-in-rural.html

As part of the activities, the Utah Office of Primary Care and Rural Health is holding a photo contest. Entries — which must be original and taken during 2012 — should "communicate the concept of rural," and will be judged on creativity, originality, photo quality and overall appeal.

Submissions can be mailed to Owen Quinonez at oquinone@utah.gov, and winners will be selected on Friday, Nov. 16.

Alzheimer's disease: Helping patients and caregivers

November is National Alzheimer's Disease Awareness Month and National Family Caregivers Month. Here are some of the events planned in Utah.

Caregivers conference

You're Not Alone: A Day for You 2012, Utah's annual caregivers conference, will feature keynote speaker Amanda Dickson, KSL newsradio host who is also a caregiver; educational sessions; and rejuvenation opportunities including massages and yoga classes.

When • Nov. 13, 8:30 a.m. to 5 p..m.

Where • Salt Lake Community College's Larry H. Miller Campus at the Miller Free Enterprise Center, 9750 S. 300 West, Sandy.

Cost • The conference is free for family caregivers (five dollar lunch optional), 15 dollars for students with a student ID and 35 dollars for professional caregivers. For more information or to register, call (801) 538-3926.

Paint Mixer Fundraiser

Create a painting by following an instructor step-by-step; Contact the Alzheimer's Assn for more details at (801) 265.1944.

When • Nov. 13, 6:30 p.m.

Where • 738 Main Street, Park City.

Cost • Donations optional. Register at http://www.thepaintmixer.com.

Celebrate Caregivers

Weber Human Services hosts a party to celebrate Caregivers Month.

When • Nov. 16, 12 p.m.

Where • Weber Human Services auditorium, 237 26th Street, Ogden.

Cost • Free, lunch provided. Respite services are available during class time. Please R.S.V.P. by calling Laurie Favero at (801) 625-3866.

Dementia Professionals Support Group

Dr. John "Keoni" Kauwe will be speaking on the topic "Recent Findings on Genetic Rick Factors for Alzheimer's Disease."

When • Nov. 16, 1:30 p.m.

Where • Alzheimer's Association Office, 855 East 4800 South, Suite 100, Salt Lake City.

Cost • Free; Contact the Alzheimer's Assn for more details at (801) 265.1944.

Alzheimer's Association Open House

When • Nov. 16, 3 p.m. to 5:30 p.m.

Where • Alzheimer's Association Office, 855 East 4800 South, Suite 100, Salt Lake City.

Cost • Free; Contact the Alzheimer's Assn for more details at (801) 265.1944.

Help for Alzheimer's Families

Capture Life's Journey: Using Memories to Improve Alzheimer's Care.

When • Dec. 6, 6:30 p.m.

Where • 5005 S. 900 East, Suite 120, Salt Lake City.

Cost • To attend the free workshop, call (801) 266-9444 or email cassietweten@homeinstead.com.