ROCKINGHAM – You may have heard the phrase “Know Your Numbers.” You may even know what it means. Then again, you may not.
According to the American Heart Association and other health organizations, to “Know Your Numbers” means being aware of such vital personal health information as your cholesterol, blood pressure and blood sugar levels and your body mass index (BMI). This information is important to know because it helps you and your health care provider determine your risk for developing any number of serious ailments including cardiovascular disease, diabetes and cancer.
On Saturday, Oct. 8, from 8 to 11 a.m., FirstHealth Richmond Memorial Hospital will host its 34th Annual Wellness Screening Day, a communitywide event of diagnostic lab screenings that will help residents of the Richmond County community “know their numbers.” Eight days of diagnostic lab pre-draws, scheduled for Sept. 26-30 and Oct. 3-5, from 6 to 9:30 a.m., will precede the Wellness Screening Day event.
“FirstHealth Richmond Memorial Hospital hosts Wellness Screening Day each year as a service to our community, attracting about 1,700 people annually,” says Richmond Memorial President John Jackson. “We believe very strongly that a health care organization has just as much a responsibility for encouraging personal wellness as it does for healing. With the availability of free and reduced-cost screenings, Wellness Screening Day contributes to our goal of making Richmond County a healthier community.”
The diagnostic lab screenings to be offered during the pre-draw period, their cost and a brief explanation of each are listed as follows. Results and interpretation will be available during the Oct. 8 Wellness Screening Day event, and blood profile results can also be viewed through the FirstHealth patient portal. Register at www.myhealthcareportal.org.
- Wellness Profile, $25: A blood test that gives the results for a variety of blood measurements taken at a yearly exam including: cholesterol, triglycerides, fasting blood sugar, cell count, thyroid, potassium and more. (No food or drink for eight hours before this test although you may take required medication with a sip of water.)
- Prostate Specific Antigen (PSA), $10: A blood test that is used to detect infection or prostate cancer in men.
- A1C/Glycosylated Hemoglobin, $10: A blood test that shows your blood sugar levels over the last three months. This test may be used to diagnose diabetes or to check how a diabetic patient is managing his/her diet and medications.
- PAP Smear, $25: A test of a sample of cells to look for infection or cervical cancer in women. Offered on Friday, Oct. 7, by appointment only with pre-registration required.
- EKG, $10: A test that checks for problems with the electrical activity of the heart.
- Blood Pressure, Free: The measurement of the difference in pressure when the heart beats and when it relaxes. This screening can diagnose high blood pressure.
- Body Mass Index, Free: The measurement of height compared to weight for the individual’s age group. This screening opportunity will also include information showing how life span can be increased by decreasing weight and improving BMI through physical activity and improved diet.
- Bone Density, Free: An ultrasound of the heel bone to show the bone strength. This screening indicates the individual’s risk for brittle bones.
- Vitamin D, $25: A blood test that measures the amount of Vitamin D in the body. Vitamin D is needed for bone health.
- Basic Spirometry, Free: A measurement of the strength of the lungs as the individual breathes in and out.
- Urinalysis, Free: A test of a urine sample that can show possible infection or other sickness.
New to Wellness Screening Day programming this year will be the opportunity to sign up for free community CPR classes to be taught by Mitch Staub, an American Heart Association instructor and director of Cardiopulmonary Services at Richmond Memorial Hospital. The classes, to be presented at the hospital on two different dates, will be offered to the first 48 people to sign up for them during the pre-draw period.
According to a recent Community Health Assessment, the most common “disease states” in Richmond County are cardiovascular disease, diabetes, obesity and cancer and all will be addressed in the Wellness Screening Day program and pre-draws.
“We want to encourage people to take advantage of this opportunity to ‘know their numbers’ as well as to set some goals as to how they can reverse this deadly trend,” says FirstHealth outreach manager Amy Hamilton Forester. “This link ties in nicely to the Wellness Screening Day laboratory tests we are offering.”
Participants in the Richmond Memorial Hospital Wellness Screening Day program will be able to register for a variety of door prizes. For more information on the event or the pre-draw screenings, visit www.firsthealth.org/wellnessday.