Health News & Recipes

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22 June Recipe Photos

Watermelon, Cucumber & Feta Salad

22 June Watermelon Salad

½ cup red-wine vinegar
2 teaspoons honey
¼ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon ground pepper
¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil
5 cups cubed seedless watermelon
1 English cucumber, chopped
6 ounces feta cheese, cut into 3/4-inch cubes
½ cup thinly sliced red onion
2 tablespoons chopped fresh mint

Whisk vinegar, honey, salt and pepper in a small bowl; gradually whisk in oil until completely incorporated.

Combine watermelon, cucumber, feta and onion in a large bowl. Gently stir in 1/2 cup of the vinaigrette. Refrigerate for at least 20 minutes or up to 2 hours.

Just before serving, gently stir in mint; drizzle with the remaining vinaigrette.

Marinated Grilled Vegetable Kebabs

Antipasti Pasta Salad

22 June Kabob


¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil
¼ cup balsamic vinegar
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoon Italian seasoning
1 teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon ground pepper
16 cherry tomatoes
12 medium mushrooms
1 medium zucchini (8 ounces), cut into 1/4-inch slices
4 (1/2 inch) slices red onion


Whisk oil, vinegar, garlic, Italian seasoning, salt and pepper in a large bowl. Add tomatoes, mushrooms, zucchini and onion slices and toss well to coat. Marinate in the refrigerator for at least 1 hour and up to 4 hours. Preheat grill to medium.

Remove the onions from the marinade and cut into quarters. Thread the vegetables onto eight 8-inch skewers. Grill, turning once, until tender, 12 to 15 minutes total. Drizzle with the remaining marinade, if desired.


¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil
¼ cup reduced-sodium chicken broth
¼ cup red-wine vinegar
3 tablespoons chopped fresh marjoram or 1 tablespoon dried
2 tablespoons finely chopped shallots
¼ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon freshly ground pepper

Pasta Salad:
6 ounces (about 2 1/2 cups) whole-wheat medium shells
2 cups thinly sliced fennel bulb
1 cup diced bell pepper
1 cup quartered canned artichoke hearts
1 cup canned cannellini beans, rinsed
½ cup cubed salami
5 tablespoons shredded Provolone cheese
3 tablespoons chopped pepperoncini
Freshly ground pepper to taste


To prepare dressing: Combine oil, broth, vinegar, marjoram, shallots, salt and pepper in a jar with a tight-fitting lid. Shake until well combined. (Or whisk in a bowl.)

To prepare pasta salad: Cook pasta in a large pot of boiling water according to package directions. Drain, transfer to a large bowl and let cool. Add fennel, bell pepper, artichoke hearts, beans, salami, cheese, pepperoncini, pepper and the dressing; toss to coat.

Oven-Barbecued Pork Chops

22 June Pork


1 1/2-1 3/4 pounds bone-in, 3/4-inch-thick pork rib chops, trimmed of fat
¼ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon freshly ground pepper
3 teaspoons canola oil, divided
1 medium onion, diced
1 clove garlic, minced
⅓ cup orange juice
1/2 cup barbecue sauce


Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.

Sprinkle pork chops with salt and pepper. Heat 2 teaspoons oil in a large ovenproof skillet over high heat. Add the pork chops and cook until beginning to brown, 1 to 2 minutes per side. Transfer to a plate.

Add the remaining 1 teaspoon oil to the pan. Add onion and cook, stirring, until softened, 3 to 4 minutes. Stir in garlic and cook, stirring, until fragrant, 30 seconds. Add orange juice and cook until most of the liquid has evaporated, 30 seconds to 1 minute. Stir in barbecue sauce. Return the pork chops to the pan, turning several times to coat with the sauce.

Transfer the pan to the oven and bake until the pork chops are barely pink in the middle and an instant-read thermometer registers 145 degrees F, 6 to 10 minutes. Serve the sauce over the pork chops.

Flank Steak Pinwheels



2/3 cup sun-dried tomatoes, (not packed in oil)
2 cups boiling water
1 pound flank steak, trimmed of fat
1 clove garlic, minced
3 tablespoons light herbed cheese spread, such as Boursin (see Variation)
1 cup baby spinach
¾ teaspoon kosher salt
½ teaspoon freshly ground pepper


Preheat grill to high. Place sun-dried tomatoes in a bowl; pour boiling water over them and let steep until softened, about 10 minutes. Drain and chop.

Meanwhile, place steak between 2 large pieces of plastic wrap. Pound each side of the steak thoroughly with the pointed side of a meat mallet until the steak is an even 1/4-inch thickness.

Rub garlic all over one side of the steak. Spread cheese lengthwise in a 3-inch-wide strip down the middle of the steak. Top with the sun-dried tomatoes and spinach. Starting at one edge of a long side, roll the steak up tightly, tucking in the filling as you go.

Carefully rub salt and pepper all over the outside of the steak roll. Turn the roll so the overlapping edge is on top. Push 8 skewers, evenly spaced, through the roll, close to the overlapping edge to hold the roll together. Slice the roll into 8 equal portions, roughly 1 to 1 1/2 inches thick, with a skewer in each. Lay the slices on their sides and push the skewer through so it sticks out about 1 inch.

Oil the grill rack (see Tip). Grill the pinwheels 3 to 4 minutes per side for medium-rare. Use a spatula when turning them to prevent too much filling from falling out. (Don't worry if the ends of the skewers burn. They will still hold the pinwheels together.) Remove the skewers; let the pinwheels rest for 5 minutes before serving.

Caprese Salad Kabobs

Zucchini Fries

22 June Kabobs

24 grape tomatoes
12 cherry-size fresh mozzarella cheese balls
24 fresh basil leaves
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 teaspoons balsamic vinegar

On each of 12 appetizer skewers, alternately thread 2 tomatoes, 1 cheese ball and 2 basil leaves. Whisk olive oil and vinegar; drizzle over kabobs.

22 June Zucchini Fries

2 medium zucchini
1 cup panko bread crumbs
2 teaspoons dried basil, divided
1-1/2 teaspoons seasoned salt
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese plus 2 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese
2 large eggs, room temperature, lightly beaten
Cooking spray
Marinara sauce, warmed

Preheat air fryer to 375°. Cut each zucchini in half lengthwise and then in half crosswise. Cut each piece lengthwise into 1/4-in. slices.
In a shallow bowl, mix panko, 1 teaspoon basil, remaining seasonings and ½ cup Parmesan. Place eggs and remaining 1 teaspoon basil in separate shallow bowls. Dip zucchini slices in egg mixture and then in crumb mixture, patting to help coating adhere.
In batches, place zucchini in greased air fryer; spritz with cooking spray. Cook until lightly browned, 6-8 minutes. Flip each piece; fry until golden brown, 3-5 minutes longer.
Sprinkle hot fries with remaining 2 tablespoons Parmesan and serve with marinara sauce.


22 June Health TIp Skin
22 June Health Tip BBQ

Hibiscus Children’s Center Provides Safety and Love to Children

22 June Hibiscus

Treasure Coast - June is recognized as National Safety Month. Hibiscus Children’s Center honors the vision of our Founder LaVaughn Tilton who believed that all children should grow up in a safe and loving home, free from abuse and neglect. Since opening our doors, Hibiscus has been a safe haven for more than 3,000 abused, abandoned and neglected children at the Hibiscus Village and Tilton Family Children’s Shelter. Children have received over 425,000 safe nights where they have felt protected, loved and worthwhile.

Today, over 1,800 children and families annually receive services through Hibiscus’ residential, prevention, intervention and recovery programs. In addition to ensuring the children’s safety and well-being, critical services include medical and educational along with professional mental health counseling to help children heal from trauma. Child abuse comes in many forms, including physical, mental, emotional, sexual, neglect and/or abandonment. Hibiscus offers specialized therapy to treat victims of sexual abuse or youth that have been identified as targets of human trafficking. Clinicians who are certified in the Sexual Abuse Treatment Program receive specialized annual training and are certified through the Florida Department of Health. Statistics show about one in 10 children will be sexually abused before their 18th birthday.

Terra, a former Hibiscus resident, shared “Hibiscus is an Angel in the darkness for many neglected and abused children. At Hibiscus, I learned many things. I learned how to get along better with kids my own age, I learned to cope with anger and stress, and most importantly, I learned the way I was treated before I went to Hibiscus was not how any child should be treated. Hibiscus has kind, caring staff and a wonderful mental health team. They really listened to me.” Hibiscus is keeping kids like Terra safe every day and providing them with the coping skills they need to overcome the trauma and abuse they have endured. Our goal is to give children a stronger and brighter future!

One of the key elements to help address the trauma experienced by abuse victims is through trauma-informed care. Hibiscus utilizes the Sanctuary Model, which is a trauma-informed organizational change model. The Sanctuary Model organizes both our treatment and the way we run our organization. Sanctuary is an inclusive model because it is a way of guiding leaders, staff, clients, and families to share the same language. Hibiscus received Sanctuary Model certification in 2020 and all staff have been trained.

We would love the opportunity to share more about our services and keeping children safe. Your support is always needed to help us continue providing critical services to our children. Please visit us at or contact Michelle King, Chief Development Officer, at (cell) 561-452-5791.

Florida Breast and Cervical Cancer Early Detection Program

22 May Cerival and bRAEST

Eligible women can receive free breast and cervical cancer screenings at various locations in Broward, Palm Beach and Martin counties through the Florida Breast and Cervical Cancer Early Detection Program (FBCCEDP), formerly known as BCCI.

Eligibility criteria include:

Women ages 50-64 years or 40-49 years old with an immediate family member with a history of breast cancer with little or no health insurance, who meet income guidelines (at or below 200% of the poverty level) and live in Broward, Palm Beach or Martin counties.
Women screened and diagnosed with breast or cervical cancer through the Florida Department of Health in Broward County FBCCEDP may be eligible to receive treatment services (Medicaid) through the Mary Brogan Treatment Act.

Services Provided Through FBCCEDP:

Breast and cervical cancer screenings (mammograms, Pap smears and clinical breast exams)
Diagnostic exams as necessary
Care Coordination
Treatment for eligible women may be paid by Medicaid
Outreach / public education
For more information or to schedule an appointment please call: 954-762-3649.

22 May 27 Strokes


20 Oct MC Health Logo

Martin County – As residents plan for the Memorial Day weekend, the Florida Department of Health in Martin County (DOH-Martin) offers some tips to keep residents and visitors safe and healthy this summer.
Drowning Prevention
Children, teens, and adults should never swim alone. Always use the buddy system when swimming in open water or in a pool. Someone watching from the shore or poolside who knows where swimmers are at all times is an important layer of protection.

• If you plan to head to the beach, know before you go: call the Martin County Beach Information Hotline: 772-320-3112 for updates before you leave home.

• Swim at guarded beaches and pay attention to safety flags that alert swimmers to dangerous conditions, such as rip tides.

• Open cuts or wounds should not be immersed in water. If there’s bacteria in the water, they can enter the body through a cut or wound.

• A cut or wound that happens when swimming, wading or boating should be washed with clean water and soap, and covered with a clean, dry waterproof bandage.

Florida’s Waters are Natural Places
All of Florida’s natural waters are home to aquatic life, land animals and plants that should not be approached or touched by people. Swimmers, waders and boaters should stay away from red tides and algal blooms like blue green algae (cyanobacteria). Both can cause skin irritation, burning eyes, and throat and breathing irritations.

• People and pets should avoid contact with blue green algae.

The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission posts the status of red tide locations and the Florida Department of Environmental Protection monitors blue green algae. DOH-Martin conducts beach and river water sampling for enteric bacteria at several locations throughout the county.

Sun Protection & Heat
Have fun in the sun but keep your skin safe from skin cancer.

• Appy sunscreen often. Use sunglasses and hats for added protection

High heat can lead to heat exhaustion which causes headaches, dizziness, weakness, confusion, upset stomach and vomiting. Heat exhaustion can lead to heat stroke, which is the most serious form of heat injury.

• Dress for the heat with lightweight, loose-fitting clothing and drink plenty of water.

Fight the Bite!
Wearing lightweight clothing that covers arms and legs, as well as mosquito repellent, can keep bites to a minimum. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency keeps a current listing of safe and reliable repellents. For best results, follow all label directions.

• Drain standing water in containers around your home to prevent mosquitoes from breeding.

• For mosquito breeding concerns, call Martin County Mosquito Control: 772-419-6974.

Food Safety Tips for the Outdoors
Bacteria multiple rapidly in warmer temperatures, so keep cold food cold and hot food hot.

• Raw meat and ready-to-eat food should be kept in separate insulated and chilled coolers (kept at 41° F or below).

• Use a food thermometer to ensure meat is cooked enough to kill harmful germs. The CDC’s “Get Ready to Grill Safely” is a helpful checklist for keeping food transport and preparation safe.

• Refrigerate leftovers within two hours of cooking. When in doubt, throw it out!

Remember Good Hygiene
Good handwashing is essential to good health.

• Be sure to wash your hands before eating or preparing food, after using the bathroom, changing a diaper, coughing, sneezing, or playing with pet.

About the Florida Department of Health
The department, nationally accredited by the Public Health Accreditation Board, works to protect, promote and improve the health of all people in Florida through integrated state, county and community efforts.

5 Common Causes of Shoulder Pain

22 May Shoulder Pain

Article Provided by: Lisa Grassam - Grassam Spine & Wellness
Did you know that the shoulder is one of the biggest and most complex joints in the human body?

While a traumatic event or injury is typically the culprit of sudden shoulder pain, there are many other causes that can lead to tension and mobility issues.

Here are a few of the most common issues we see in the practice.

1. Rotator cuff injuries. This type of problem doesn’t always come from sudden trauma. In fact, years of wear and tear can lead to eventual rotator cuff tears. They typically occur in the dominant arm and are more common as you age.

2. Bursitis. All over your body, you have thin, sac-like structures called bursae, which helps to keep soft tissues from rubbing against your bones. Sometimes, bursa can experience too much friction, which leads to inflammation and ultimately, pain.

3. Arthritis. This can occur in any joint in the body. When a person experiences shoulder pain without a known injury, it may be caused by osteoarthritis or rheumatoid arthritis.

4. Frozen shoulder. Also known as adhesive capsulitis, this type of pain happens when the tissue surrounding the shoulder becomes tightened, which restricts movement and makes function difficult.

5. Spine problems. That pain you feel in your shoulder may not actually be caused by a problem in your shoulder. Herniated discs and misaligned spinal bones can cause pain to occur in the arms, hands, and even shoulder.

At our practice, we often work with patients struggling with shoulder pain through natural, gentle adjustments. If you’re interested in finding out more about how chiropractic care may help, contact us today.

22 May 27 Strokes 2

How to Beat Headaches: Prevention Tips

22 May Headaches

Article Provided by: Lisa Grassam - Grassam Spine & Wellness

Did you know that 50-75% of adults experience at least one headache each year? Among those, roughly 30% have reported migraines. And as many as 4% of the world’s population are afflicted with headaches for 15 or more days every single month.

While most people focus on treating headaches after they happen, we’d like to offer some preventative tips to help you stop headaches from starting in the first place. In fact, we’ve helped many patients overcome headaches and migraines naturally through focused and gentle chiropractic care.

Here are a few tips for beating some of the most common types of headaches.

Cluster headaches: One of the most painful types of headaches, a cluster headache is typically felt on one side of the head near the eyes and lasts anywhere between 30 – 90 minutes on average. If you’re prone to cluster headaches, potential triggers may include bright lights, foods with nitrates like deli meats, a sudden altitude change, and alcohol or smoking. Try avoiding these triggers to see if your headaches improve.

Tension headaches: This type of headache doesn’t always throb, but instead feels like tightness or tenderness in the head and neck. To prevent a tension headache, take note of what you did just before the headache occurred. Sometimes, stress is a trigger, so practicing mindfulness or breathing exercises regularly may help.

Migraine headaches: Most research around migraine headaches points to environmental triggers, hormones, and genetics as the main culprits. Making sure you stay hydrated, avoid foods high in salt, and stick to a regular sleep schedule may help lessen their frequency. Other triggers may include bright fluorescent lights and strong smells.

Florida Department of Health St. Lucie County, Volunteer & Partnership Appreciation

Photo 2 a

In Photo: Tricia Goulet with volunteers and Medical Reserve Corps members Dr. Elizabeth Tsarnas, Dr. Nancy Harris, Michelle Teschendorf, Pam and Bob Dadiomoff, Nancy Rice, and Jenny Hendrickson

Article & Photos by: MaryAnn Ketcham

St. Lucie County - In recognition of National Volunteer Week, the Florida Department of Health in St. Lucie County hosted their 19th Annual Volunteer & Partnership Appreciation event at

Indian River State College, Pruitt Campus. This event was made possible with the support of Friends of St. Lucie County Public Health, Inc., Children’s Services Council of St. Lucie County,

Cleveland Clinic Martin Health, Florida Power and Light Company, HCA Florida Lawnwood and St. Lucie Hospitals, Jackson Hewitt-Al Johnson, and Southeast Florida Behavioral Health Network.

The keynote presentation by Dr. Madhu Sasidhar, President of Cleveland Clinic (CC) Tradition illuminated the impact that Cleveland Clinic research and service has locally, nationally, and

globally. He highlighted collaboration with partners locally to coordinate emergency planning and preparedness, as well as to support COVID -19 response through testing, vaccinations, and

critical resource management. Dr. Sasidhar also touched on Cleveland Clinic’s community commitment to support wellness and safety initiatives, such as the Billion Steps Challenge, 5-2-1-0

education, and Safe Kids of the Treasure Coast.

Clint Sperber, Health Officer for the Florida Department of Health recognized efforts of volunteers and collaborative partners serving Jessica Clinton Heart Screenings, Treasure Coast Safety

Village, HANDS Clinic, Diabetes Coalition, Healthy St. Lucie Coalition, Maternal and Child Health Workgroups, and volunteers with the Medical Reserve Corps. HCA Florida St. Lucie Hospital

was highlighted for receiving designation and accreditation as a Baby- Friendly Hospital given by Baby-Friendly USA, a national program affiliated with the Baby-Friendly Hospital Initiative

(BFHI) of the World Health Organization and the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF).

Community Trailblazer awards were given to Dawn Jones and Arlease Hall who have had a lifelong commitment to health and provided decades of service to the community.

Photo 3 a

In Photo: Lisa Hatch, Dr. Gene Manko, Kathryn Hensley, Linda Manko, and Dr. Nancy Harris) The HANDS Clinic 25 volunteers alone provided 5,269 services to County residents at a value of $11,036,836

Photo 4 a

In Photo: Caleta Scott, Pinkie Hendley, Victoria Sands, and Betty Bradwell

Photo 5a

In Photo: Dr. Madhu Sasidhar, Gabriel Brook, and Rob Lord

Photo 6 a

In Photo: Ann Berner and SLC Commissioner Sean Mitchell

Photo 7 a

In Photo: Suzanne Woodward, Ashley Mock, Garry Wilson, and Sean Boyle

Photo 8 a

In Photo: Lori Matich and Alex Masmela

Photo 10 a

In Photo: State Senator Gayle Harrell and Dr. Madhu Sasidhar

Photo 11 a

In Photo: SLC Commissioner Chris Dzadovsky, Jon Prince, and Dr. Donna Mills

Photo 12 a

In Photo: Dr. Nancy Harris and Andy Treadwell

Hibiscus Children’s Center Helps Children Heal Through Mental Health Services

22 Feb Hibiscus
Lacey and Delilah.CMH 2

Treasure Coast - May is “Mental Health Awareness Month”. During this time, and throughout the year, Hibiscus Children’s Center focuses on providing Mental Health Services to children and youth in our care and in the community to help them overcome the obstacles and challenges they are facing. Some of the issues addressed include low self-esteem, divorce and family conflict, child sexual abuse, physical abuse or neglect, drop in grades or problems concentrating in class, sudden changes in behavior, and excessive fears, phobias, anxiety, and depression.

Hibiscus Children’s Center provides these services to abused children residing at the Hibiscus Children’s Village in Vero Beach and Tilton Family Children’s Shelter in Jensen Beach. Professional in-home counseling services are provided throughout the Treasure Coast and Okeechobee County to serve the community with therapeutic services that focus on decreasing emotional and behavioral issues related to abuse, trauma, neglect, and mental health disorders.

At Hibiscus Children's Center, we understand that child sexual abuse is not only traumatic on the child, it impacts the entire family. Our Sexual Abuse Treatment Program (SATP) provides specialized treatment services for children who are victims of sexual abuse, as well as for their families. Through a combination of family and individual counseling for child sexual abuse survivors and their families, SATP works to reduce the trauma caused by sexual victimization. Hibiscus Children’s Center is the only Department of Health sanctioned Sexual Abuse Treatment Program on the Treasure Coast and Okeechobee County.

Six-year old Jarrod (name changed) displayed very aggressive behavior at home and at school. He was hitting, kicking, spitting, throwing furniture at teachers and standing on tables. The Hibiscus Community Mental Health Counselor worked closely with Jarrod and his mom. The Counselor guided the mom on learning how to communicate and not just react to the behaviors. The Counselor and Jarrod practiced roll playing appropriate vs. inappropriate behaviors and taught him about various emotions and how they impact our behaviors. After some time, the Hibiscus Counselor began to see significant progress. Jarrod had no more instances of aggression in the classroom and began to communicate his feelings with others, especially when he felt upset. He stated to his teachers, who were overwhelmed with joy, “I don’t ever want to get angry at this school again. I am going to be happy and not fight anymore.” This is what the Hibiscus Counselor was working so diligently towards with Jarrod and his mom. Jarrod went from a child who was disruptive and didn’t know how to communicate his feelings effectively to positive communications and appropriate behaviors. There is no doubt that this professional Mental Health Therapist has made a difference in the lives of Jarrod, his mom, as well as his teachers and classmates.

Lacey Buxton, LMHC, Director of Outpatient Services/Sexual Abuse Treatment Program Coordinator, shared "Every day we witness youth, just like Jarrod, whose lives are transformed through the love, care and Mental Health Services provided by Hibiscus Children’s Center. Our goal is to help children develop the necessary coping skills, heal from the trauma they have endured and grow into their fullest potential."

If you would like more information about Hibiscus Children’s Center and our Mental Health Services, please visit us at LLC. is an your online newspaper, “Who they are, what they do and where they do it”?

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Treasure Coast Hospice and Little Smiles of Florida Partner to Bring Joy to Pediatric Patients

22 May TC Hospice and Little Smiles Multi

Stuart – Treasure Coast Hospice announced today that it has partnered with Little Smiles of Florida to help bring smiles and special moments to the children and teens receiving care through its Little Treasures Pediatric Care Program.

Little Smiles of Florida, a nonprofit organization based in Palm Beach County, helps kids from Ft. Pierce to Miami be kids during difficult times. Founded in 1999, the organization brings smiles to the faces of children in hospitals, shelters, and other facilities through events, activities, and gifts.

“Treasure Coast Hospice is honored to be the first hospice organization to partner with Little Smiles of Florida,” said Director of Grief Support & Pediatric Services Jacki Nardone. “Our team is trained to provide the specialized care that pediatric patients need but it’s the extra things that they choose to do for our Little Treasures and their families that make their work so rewarding. Partnering with Little Smiles will give us more opportunities to create special moments that will become cherished memories for our pediatric families.”

“It is my pleasure to announce Treasure Coast Hospice as one of our pediatric partners,” said Little Smiles Executive Director Nicole Mercado. “Their pediatric program, Little Treasures, is truly a model in providing specialized palliative care for children and teens facing life-limiting illnesses and support for their families. Little Smiles looks forward to working with the

Little Treasures Team by helping them with individual requests or program-wide activities that will bring smiles to their pediatric patients.”
The first collaboration planned by the programs was a UCF-themed Tailgate Party for an Okeechobee patient. Since the teen’s plans to attend college have been put on hold, the Little Treasures Team wanted to do something special to lift his spirits. With the support of Little Smiles, this young student enjoyed a “game-day experience” at his home surrounded by family and friends. LLC. is an your online newspaper, “Who they are, what they do and where they do it”?

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Florida Department of Health In Martin County Maintains National Accreditation

20 Oct MC Health Logo

Maintaining Accreditation through PHAB Ensures DOH-Martin’s Capacity to Continue to Evolve, Improve and Advance

Martin County — The Public Health Accreditation Board (PHAB) reaccredited the Florida Department of Health, which includes the Martin County Health Department, as an integrated health department for another five years. This seal of accreditation signifies that the unified Florida Department of Health, which includes the State Health Office and the 67 county health departments, meets or exceeds national standards for public health performance management and continuous quality improvement. The Department demonstrated a focus on accountability and performance to improve the health of communities throughout the state.

"We are so pleased to again be recognized by PHAB for achieving national standards that foster effectiveness and promote continuous quality improvement," said Carol Ann Vitani. “I want to thank our public health staff and our community partners for their ongoing efforts to promote and protect health in our community.”
To further performance improvement, DOH-Martin and dozens of community partners recently completed a Community Health Improvement Plan (CHIP), which identifies goals and strategies for improving health in the county. A copy of the plan can be viewed here:

PHAB praised the Department for operating as a collaborative and effective integrated system noting that the inter-county collaboration is evident through shared programs and positions across the state. PHAB applauded staff across the integrated system for being highly dedicated, passionate, and proud of their work around improving the health of the communities they serve. PHAB also commended the Department for maintaining a continued commitment to accreditation.
PHAB, the nongovernmental, nonprofit organization that administers the national accrediting program, works to improve and protect the public's health by advancing and transforming the quality and performance of governmental public health departments in the United States.

21 Feb Madisons Logo

The Ultimate Guide to Sleeping Well as a Senior

22 Feb Sleeping Well Photo

Article by: Kimberly Thomas

The Ultimate Guide to Sleeping Well as a Senior

 As we age, sleeping steadily through the night may become more difficult for various reasons. No matter the cause, it’s important to know that there are ways you may indeed improve your sleep. Here are some tips and advice for getting better sleep -- brought to you today by Out2 News.

Finding the Best Mattress

To improve your rest at night, you may need to invest in a new mattress. Older mattresses may sag, or not give you the support you need to sleep undisturbed through the night. If your mattress is uncomfortable, it might be time to upgrade to a new one. You may want to start with foam mattresses. They disperse weight more evenly than spring-coil mattresses, which can be more comfortable.

Latex mattresses are gaining in popularity and are similar to foam mattresses, but tend to be easier for those with back problems as they are more firm. A new mattress type may take time to adjust, so try to find one that gives you a long trial period.

How to Prepare for Sleep

 As the night grows later, turn lights down to help yourself unwind. Cut back on liquids before bed, or you may find yourself waking repeatedly throughout the night to use the facilities. Prepare for a good night’s rest by turning off any mobile or computer devices a few hours before bedtime. These devices can interfere with how our brains prepare to sleep. An exception might be soothing music that you can play via a wireless Bluetooth speaker, and even set on a timer so that it’ll shut off just as you’re drifting off to sleep.

A routine before bed can help to trick your body into getting sleepy as well. Deep breathing for a few minutes at the same time every night can help. The BBC notes you should try to get sunshine during the day, as exposure can help your body sleep at night. It might be wise to lower the temperature of your bedroom as well, as cooler air can help your body stay asleep.

In addition to creating a routine, it’s important to make sure your bedroom is set up in a way to enhance sleep and to reduce stress. Ideally, you want to eliminate any clutter, which can spur anxiety, as well as tidy up your bedroom. Plants and blackout curtains can also be wonderful additions. Keeping your bedroom a sleep sanctuary is optimal for getting the rest you need.

The Best Diet and Exercise

 What you eat, and the amount of exercise you get, can affect how well you sleep. Avoid processed foods, caffeine and alcohol, especially as bedtime nears. SleepScore Labs explains that foods that are naturally rich in magnesium can aid in sleep, and calcium helps to regulate the natural process of creating melatonin. Exercising regularly can also impact the quality of your sleep, but make sure you don’t do it late in the day. Working out can help our bodies stay in deep sleep longer, which makes casually waking up less frequent. It also can relieve anxiety, which can prevent us from sleeping well.

Speaking to Your Doctor

If you make these changes, and you still do not sleep well, it may be time to speak to your doctor. There are plenty of sleep disorders that can interfere with getting adequate rest at night. Restless Leg Syndrome can keep us awake, as can sleep apnea, and a number of others. Doctors can aid in treating these conditions, so don’t hesitate to speak to yours.

Your doctor might recommend you take part in a sleep study so that your problem can be properly diagnosed. Be sure you're clear on what Medicare will cover. If testing is defined as “medically necessary” then Medicare will likely cover it. For example, CPAP therapy for sleep apnea may be covered for a short-term (three-month) trial. Check with your doctor and the clinic conducting the study to verify whether you’re covered.

There is no need to trudge through poor sleeping. You can make a few small changes, which may lead to big results.

Out2 News has many different sections for just about anyone wanting to know what is happening on the Treasure Coast. Contact us today for more info! (772) 834-1890

Floridians Find Hope at Alzheimer's Community Care

MRC Volunteers Promote & Protect Health in Martin County

21 Nov Hands and Feet Logo

The Kristin West Family prepares to deliver needed resources to local foster families through the Hands and Feet project, started last summer.

Port St. Lucie – You might call it the Door Dash of foster care. Almost.

Unlike the food-delivery service rendered indispensable by the Covid pandemic, these deliveries are free to any good foster home.

Started this past July, Hands and Feet of the Treasure Coast fills and delivers orders for new caregivers in Indian River, Martin, Okeechobee and St. Lucie counties.

The idea is to do the running around – to be the hands and feet – for new caregivers, said St. Lucie County foster parent Kristin West, who adapted the project to the Treasure Coast this summer after discovering it in Palm Beach County.

“We want to be the hands and feet of our foster care community, running around for them while they’re dealing with everything that comes with receiving a child into the home,” West said.

The Hands and Feet project served its first Treasure Coast family in July and has since served 119 children, collecting and delivering everything from a washer and dryer and a dining room table to essential clothing. The project works in partnership with the Stuart-located Foster Closet, a resource founded by another foster mother.

“When we get a request, we go to the Foster Closet and the community first,” West said. If that doesn’t work, the request is posted to a following of Amazon “wish listers,” people who follow the project and purchase needed items.

The project is simple and easy to access:

Caregivers, including both foster families and relative and non-relative caregivers, fill out a Hands and Feet request form at specifying their family’s material needs after a child has been placed in their home.

Next, Hands and Feet staff receive the request and then gather the requested items from local foster closets and community donors.

Finally, the items are delivered to the family within 48 hours.

For more information, or to become a supporter, follow the program on Facebook @thehandsandfeet:deliveringhelpandhope, or visit the website at

21 Oct Stay Healthy
21 Oct Eat healthy

Martin County Fire Rescue