In recognition of National Colorectal Cancer Awareness month, South Peninsula Hospital is offering great incentives to support colonoscopy cancer screenings. Dr. Greg Hough, general surgeon, is offering free colonoscopy consultations during the month of March; a savings of up to $300. And a free $20 token to the Homer Farmers’ Market will be given to every person who gets that free colonoscopy consult.
Colon cancer is the second-leading cause of cancer deaths in America, but with regular screening, can often be cured or prevented. Colonoscopy is the preferred screening method for colon cancer, as it allows physicians to look directly at the entire colon and to identify suspicious growths, which often can be removed before they turn into cancer.For normal-risk individuals, this short, simple procedure is recommended every 10 years beginning at age 50.
Alaska has some of the highest incidence rates of colon cancer in the nation, yet just over 50 percent of Alaskans older than 50 reports being up to date with colon cancer screenings. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, more than 42 percent of residents in the South Peninsula Hospital service area are over 50 years old.
In addition, a healthy diet – with lots of fruits and vegetables – is an important part of reducing overall cancer risk. For more information, or to schedule your free consultation with Dr. Hough, call 235-0310.
Homer Marine trades is offering a $1,000 scholarship for graduating seniors or prior year graduates wanting advanced vocational education and training. HMT has sent applications to all the school counselors and it is online at www.homermarinetrades.com/
The winner of last year’s scholarship is currently studying heating and plumbing at AVTEC. He plans to make Homer his home base. The goal of this scholarship is to train Homer-area people to fill positions HMT has available now and in the future.
South Peninsula Hospital is offering several upcoming American Heart Association classes:
• Basic life support for healthcare providers: Feb. 28, 8 a.m., $75.
• First-aid training: Feb. 28, 1 p.m., $50.
• Registration is now open for the Safe Sitter two-day babysitting class on March 13-14. The course is designed for 11-13 year-olds and teaches basic childcare skills. The cost is $75.
Pre-registration is required for all classes via the SPH Education Department at 235-0258.
Kachemak Emergency Services Area Board will hold a special meeting on Thursday, Feb. 27 at 7 p.m. The meeting will be held at the McNeil Canyon Fire Station, 53048 Ashwood Ave. (Mile 12 East End Rd.).
The public is welcome. For more information call 235-9811.
NOAA Fisheries is implementing a plan to tighten limits on the amount of halibut bycatch that could be caught in the commercial groundfish fisheries in the Gulf of Alaska.
There are two broad sectors that harvest groundfish in the Gulf of Alaska that will be directly affected by the amendment–vessels using hook-and-line gear and vessels using trawl gear. The hook-and-line gear sector is further divided into catcher vessels and catcher/processor vessels. Under the amendment, the bycatch limit reductions for each sector are:
• Hook-and-line catcher/processor– 7 percent; implemented in 2014;
• Hook-and-line catcher vessel– 15 percent; phased in over 3 years by 2016;
• Trawl vessel– 15 percent; phased in over 3 years by 2016.
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