Thursday, May 14, 2015

Health Information Literacy Project Concludes Successful First Year

The South Carolina AHEC partnered with the U.S. National Library of Medicine (NLM) and three Lowcountry high schools for a health information literacy project. Students were charged with researching public health themes and creating educational comic books geared toward middle school students. In the process, the high school students learned about helpful resources from the NLM, gained valuable communication, research and creative skills, increased their knowledge about health careers and improved their health literacy.

Students from the three schools worked to produce the four inaugural editions of AHEC Comics. Colleton County High School students and Lowcountry AHEC partnered to create “The Expert Investigators,” a book about the public health implications of an Ebola outbreak. Lowcountry Leadership Charter School students worked in a two-semester class to produce two books: “Prescription Strength,” a book about anabolic steroid abuse and “Choosing the Way,” a book about childhood obesity and healthy lifestyle choices. Finally, North Charleston High School students, in partnership with the Raise Up mentoring program, created “Coast in Crisis,” a book about earthquake preparedness and emergency response procedures.

During the school year, the students attended workshops at the South Carolina AHEC Program Office where they learned valuable interviewing techniques and story writing skills, as well as tricks of the trade for good design and production. The students also became more proficient in determining the credibility of health information found on the Internet. Prior to the creating their storylines, the students interviewed healthcare professionals, public safety and emergency response personnel and other relevant experts to gather first-hand insight into their topic areas. In early April, two student representatives from each school along with two school liaisons and several members of the SC AHEC travelled to the National Library of Medicine in Washington , D.C. to present the project and share a sneak preview of a book with the NLM staff, including the NLM Director.

The final products are first-rate and “comic book stand” worthy. During a Red Carpet Premiere on April 29th, the students, parents, teachers, and representatives from the NLM, South Carolina AHEC, Raise Up, and the Medical University of South Carolina celebrated the launch of the first edition comic books. After listening to opening remarks and watching the project trailer, the audience was able to get autographed copies of the books, talk with the students and take plenty of “selfies” with our rising stars. The books will be available online soon.  Until then, check out the full project trailer below:



Congratulations to the students on their hard work and excellent finished products! The South Carolina AHEC looks forward to the next two years of the project and the future adventures of AHEC Comics.

For more information about the project, contact Dr. Deborah Stier Carson at carsonds@musc.edu.

Grant Funding Supports Elder Abuse and Neglect Education

The Moyer/Stock Trust has awarded Pee Dee AHEC a $5,000 grant to provide education related to elder abuse and neglect to healthcare providers, first responders and caretakers. Phyllis Debrow, attorney at law and Moyer/Stock Trust trustee, was instrumental in the decision to award the grant following the submission of a proposal from Pee Dee AHEC and Positive Approach, a dementia care and training specialist company run by long time Pee Dee AHEC Instructor Teepa Snow, MS, OTR/L, FAOTA.

The AHEC system is well positioned to disseminate education about this topic in a state with a growing influx of retirees and an aging population. This capability, paired with the AHEC system’s ability to provide a variety of accreditation options, made Pee Dee AHEC the logical choice for executing the objectives of this grant.

“The interest and support from both potential participants and instructors has been phenomenal,” reports Pee Dee AHEC Nursing CE Coordinator Cheryl Neuner, “There is such a deep need for this education throughout the state. A special ‘thanks’ goes to Ms. Debrow and the Moyer/Stock Trust for supporting our dream to educate the state about elder abuse, neglect, and financial exploitation.”

The trend of a growing elderly population paired with socioeconomic disparities can often lead to financial exploitation, abuse, and neglect of this vulnerable group. Educational programs to address the needs and protection of elder individuals will include the following topic areas: 
  • Nursing assessment for signs of neglect/abuse
  • Financial exploitation
  • Medicare/Medicaid fraud indicators
  • Prosecution framework for legal arena
  • Communication techniques for first responders and healthcare providers working with dementia patients
  • Documentation techniques for providers caring for suspected victims of abuse/neglect
  • Post-mortem indicators of abuse and neglect for coroners and investigators

 The first program, “Elder Abuse: Indicators, Issues and Response Tactics,” will take place on June 26 and will be conducted by Michelle DuPre, MD, former police investigator and medical examiner.  Continuing education credits will be available for nursing, social work, long term care, counselors, law enforcement, and victim advocates.

All programs will be recorded, archived and available free to providers through the South Carolina AHEC SCHOOLS system at www.scahec.net/schools.  For additional information, please contact Pee Dee AHEC CE Coordinators Cheryl Neuner at 843-777-5347 or Kay Lambert at 843-777-5352.

Mid-Carolina AHEC Partners with South Carolina Youth Diabetes Association

Mid-Carolina AHEC has partnered with the South Carolina Youth Diabetes Association (SCYDA) to provide continuing education for school nurses. SCYDA is a 501(c)3 organization that aims to improve the lives of youth in South Carolina who are living with Type 1 diabetes by offering medically-driven camping opportunities and support to the children and families living with diabetes.  SCYDA offers camps, college support, and enhanced school support for diabetes management (including support for public school nurses). 

Traci Scott, RN, CDE, is a member of the SCYDA Board of Trustees and also a mother of a child with diabetes.  She is currently working on two programs that will be available as online courses via AHEC U (www.ahecu.org) related to caring for children with diabetes in the school setting.  The Sweet Science series will include “Providing Care to Students with Diabetes in the Public School Setting” and “Pumping Insulin.”  The goal of this series is to provide school nurses with more knowledge and understanding of treatment of Type 1 and 2 diabetes, insulin to carbohydrate ratio and management of various insulin pumps.

Ms. Scott will also present the Sweet Science series to the nurse volunteers who attend Camp Sweet Escape in June and August.  To find out more about SCYDA or Camp Sweet Escape please visit their websites:  www.scyda.com and www.campsweetescape.com.

Telehealth Reimbursement Webinars Available Online



Palmetto Care Connections offers free, quarterly webinars on the latest telehealth trends and topics in South Carolina.  They have posted two webinars on telehealth reimbursement, available online: Telehealth Reimbursement 101: Government Payers and Telehealth Reimbursement 201: Private Payers. Both presentations are free for download from the Palmetto Care Connections website at http://palmettocareconnections.org/webinar/.

For questions or more information, please contact Davia Smith at davias@palmettocareconnections.org.

Pee Dee AHEC Partnering With McLeod Sports Medicine: “It’s More Than Just the Shoulder.."

McLeod Health Sports Medicine will host a Sports Medicine Symposium on May 30 at the Florence Civic Center from 7:30 am - 5:00 pm. The symposium, titled "The Overhead Athlete, It's More Than Just the Shoulder," will focus on the mechanics of the overhead motion, strengthening interventions aimed at minimizing injury risk, and improving athletic performance with mental conditioning. Overhead athletes who perform motions such as pitching place demands on the shoulder joint that can lead to injury. During the symposium, attention will be given to the kinetic chain: linking injuries during the overhead motion with a focus on maximizing lower extremity power production. Sport psychology highlighting athlete confidence and return to play will also be discussed.

Guest speakers include Dr. Patrick Denton, Dr. Charley Bunyan, Dr. Jeremy Hertzog, Bobby Jones, Derick Urquhart, and Laszlo Leiter. Topics they will address include: 
  • Overhead Athletes: Non-Surgical Considerations
  • Overhead Athletes:  Assessment, Prevention, and Surgical Criteria
  • Upper Extremity Kinematics & Exercise Progressions
  • Identity Loss After Injury
  • Lower Extremity Kinematics & Exercise Progressions
  • Building Confidence…Not Just Performance: An interactive motion analysis will be presented on baseball, softball, tennis, and volleyball players

The symposium will offer continuing credits for:
Athletic trainers (3.0 EBP, 5.0 Category A)
Physical Therapists and Physical Therapist Assistants (9.6 Contact Hours)
Physical Therapists (NC) (9.0 contact hours)
Occupational Therapists and Occupational Therapist Assistants (9.6 hours)

Registration is $100 ($15 student) and includes breakfast and lunch. Register online at www.peedeeahec.net. For assistance with credit/debit payment or institutional payment, participants may call 843-777-5343.

Special Rates from the following hotels are provided:
Hilton Garden Inn   843-432-3001
Courtyard   843-662-7066
Springhill Suites   843-317-9050

For questions, please contact Pee Dee AHEC CE Coordinator Kay Lambert at                 klambert@mcleodhealth.org.