Howard County health briefs

April 23, 2010

Focus group

Howard County General Hospital's center is looking for women who are living with metastatic breast cancer to participate in a focus group to help determine the services and resources needed by this population. Women interested in participating should contact Tina Evans, 410-884-4650 or

The center guides women dealing with cancer through diagnostic and treatment options and includes personal support and counseling.

Hospice unit to be completed by 2011

Gilchrist Hospice Care, Maryland's largest hospice organization, will open a 10-room unit in Harmony Hall Assisted Living in the Howard County Health Park in Columbia in spring 2011. Gilchrist recently initiated a $2.5 million fundraising campaign to cover both the one-time construction and capital cost of $1.7 million, as well as the extra costs of providing inpatient care that exceed insurance reimbursements. Gilchrist Hospice Care, a subsidiary of GBMC HealthCare, provides end-of-life care for patients in the Baltimore area. Since 1994, the nonprofit has provided care and services to more than 20,000 terminally ill individuals. Gilchrist is certified by Medicare, licensed by the state and accredited by the Joint Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations.

Blood donations

The Greater Chesapeake and Potomac Region of the American Red Cross is requesting blood donations. Eligible donors can call 800-GIVE-LIFE to schedule an appointment. Platelet donors should call 800-272-2123.


Youth art contest Laurel Regional Hospital and the Laurel Art Guild will host a youth art contest open to children ages 5-18. This year's theme is "Family Fun." One entry is allowed per contestant. Only the first 100 entries will be judged. Entry applications are available at the hospital's public relations office or visitor information desk. All entries must be hand-delivered to the hospital's public relation office, 7300 Van Dusen Road, Laurel, by May 28. The first-place winner in each age category wins $100. Information: 301-497-7914.

Terminal illness pre-planning workshop Event will be at First Lutheran Church, 3604 Chatham Road, Ellicott City, from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. May 1. Topics for discussion are long-term care insurance, living wills, advance directives and pre-planning funeral arrangements. Breakfast and lunch will be provided. Registration: 410-465-2977 or

Pink plate specials Restaurants throughout the county will promote cancer awareness with Blossoms of Hope "think pink," with special chef's creations, signature desserts and drinks to raise funds for the Claudia Mayer Cancer Resource Center. Find a complete list of participating restaurants at

Wellness classes Free wellness classes will be held at Tai Sophia Institute, main campus, 7750 Montpelier Road, Laurel. Topics to be discussed:

•Introduction to Qi-Gong movement, 6 p.m. April 28.

•Yoga and meditation, 6 p.m. April 29.

Registration: (keyword: free wellness) or community programs at 410-888-9048, ext. 6611.

Graduate school open house at Tai Sophia will be held 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. May 1 and June 19. Meet with admission counselors, participate in panel discussions with faculty, students and alumni. Tour the institute's healing arts library and wellness clinic. All events will be held at the Laurel campus, 7750 Montpelier Road. RSVP to the office of graduate admissions 410-888-9048 ext. 6647 or e-mail school is now enrolling for the following programs: master's programs in acupuncture, science in herbal medicine, arts in transformative leadership and social change. Graduate certificate programs include health coaching, herbal studies, medical herbalism, transformative leadership and wellness coaching. The institute is a nonprofit, accredited educational institution for wellness-based studies.

Fitness and sports medicine clinic 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. May 15 at The Mall in Columbia, in the Lord and Taylor Court. Sponsored by Howard County General Hospital, the clinic will feature screenings for blood pressure, osteoporosis, ankle/foot, knee, shoulder pain management, body mass index, pulmonary function, physical therapy and asthma. Other services and programs include nutrition education, seated massage demonstration, American Cancer Society skin analyzer and smoking cessation information. Information: 410-740-7601.

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