January 28, 2016 By: Teresa Osborne, Secretary of Aging SHARE Email Facebook Twitter BLOG: Helping Older Pennsylvanians During Winter’s Worst Like Governor Tom Wolf on Facebook: Facebook.com/GovernorWolf PSA, Seniors, The Blog, Weather Safety Though its impact is still being felt in communities and neighborhoods across Pennsylvania, one of the worst winter storms in the history of the commonwealth did not disturb the commitment of scores of social and health care workers who care for older Pennsylvanians.From hospitals and nursing homes, to personal care homes and group homes, direct care workers, cooks, dietary aides, nurses, and support staff from various other facility departments worked around the clock to make certain that residents who rely on them for care and shelter were tended to before, during, and after the storm.Administrators from facilities most directly impacted by the storm have shared countless stories hailing these often unsung heroes who left the solace of their own homes to ensure that their facility’s patients or residents would be safe, cared for and comfortable.One such story involved an 18-year-old high school senior, Elsie McCarthy, who walked two miles so that she could be at her job at a Harrisburg-based assisted living community, ensuring that breakfast, lunch, and dinner was prepared, served, and cleared without interruption. Because of the dedication of workers like Ms. McCarthy, those who reside in such facilities don’t have to worry about having enough food or shoveling snow.I would also like to praise our local area agencies on aging, who ensured that extra meals were delivered and extra wellness checks were made. In one local community, the area agency on aging director calmed the fears of an out-of-town son by ensuring that his elderly mother’s pilot light was functioning and the vent pipe on her roof was clear of snow.This winter, the PA Department of Aging is reminding Pennsylvanians that while these dedicated workers have kept care facilities running, the majority of older adults who live on their own must practice caution and safety on their own accord when winter storms wreak havoc.While age alone does not make a person vulnerable or compromised in their capacity to respond to and recover from such storms, there is a correlation between advancing age and the likelihood of having special needs, such as being house-bound or socially isolated, having impaired mobility, or being reliant upon nursing, home health care or food from aging service providers or volunteer agencies. These needs increase frailty and thus heighten the need for an elderly citizen’s community to be good neighbors.There have been numerous incredible examples of neighbors stepping up to support each other. When severe weather strikes, being a good neighbor can help save a life.Here are some tips for checking on your elderly neighbors during winter weather:Take a few minutes to shovel out their driveway and sidewalks and clear the front of all the doors, so that even if the elderly occupant does not need to get out, if need be, medical personnel, home health workers, or volunteers can get in. If they have a car, offer to clean off the snow, start it up, and let it run for a few minutes.Engage in a conversation with your elderly neighbors. Ask them if their smoke and carbon monoxide detectors work and if they have an adequate supply of oil, batteries, water, food, and medications. If you are headed to the market, call and ask if you can pick anything up for them.Knock on the door of those you may not have seen out and about during and after the storm. Sometimes a quick check-in can make a big difference — for safety or for those who may be lonely.As we witnessed throughout the commonwealth during and after this weekend’s blizzard, facility and home based health and direct care workers, area agency on aging staff, and community neighbors did a tremendous job to care for Pennsylvania’s seniors, despite the extreme forces of Mother Nature. I thank them for their vigilance and commitment as together we strive to enable, empower, serve, and protect older Pennsylvanians.
From January 1, 2019, Punjab government will be providing free-of-cost blood in all its government-run hospitals as part of its ‘Tandarust Punjab’ mission.Health and Family Welfare Minister Brahm Mohindra made the announcement on Monday.More about the free-of-cost blood availability at Punjab government hospitalsAs per the announcement, “blood and blood components like packed RBC, fresh frozen plasma, platelet rich plasma, platelet concentrate will be given free of cost to all the patients” from January 1Moreover, it will also be ensured that the blood is available round-the-clock in all the hospitalsThe entire cost of providing free blood would be borne by the state government, said the ministerThousands of patients across the state earlier had to pay processing charges of Rs 300 per unit of blood in civil hospitals and Rs 500 per unit in government medical colleges. The recent move will help all these patientsThis decision was taken by Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh as part of the ‘Tandarust Punjab’ missionThe minister said there are 116 blood banks in Punjab out of which 46 are operated by the government, six by the military and 64 by private entitiesMohindra said last year 2.26 lakh units of blood were collected by government blood banksThe minister also said that the government has launched web portal ‘E-Raktkosh’, which would help in checking availability of a particular blood group and blood components and its quantity across blood banks With this decision to provide blood free of cost, thousands of patients in Punjab don’t need to pay the processing charges anymore.advertisementAll about ‘Tandarust Punjab’ mission’Tandarust Punjab’ mission was launched by the Punjab government on May 30, 2018, with an aim to make the state the healthiest in the countryIt was envisaged by Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh as a holistic initiative to take care of the state’s air, water and food quality, thus ensuring a good living environment for the people of PunjabAccording to a notification issued by the state’s Department of Science, Technology & Environment, “The main goal of the mission will be to provide clean drinking water, improve air quality, ensure growing and consuming unadulterated food and food products, and to improve the physical and mental health of the people of Punjab.”The mission “envisages to build a healthy Punjab for achieving human excellence in a sustainable manner,” as per the notification, which lays down a multi-pronged strategy to achieve this goalThe mission title and content were suggested by the farming communityThe mission has been evolved as a focused and integrated approach towards creating a healthy Punjab in consultation with all the stakholders to work, namely the departments of Health, Water Supply & Sanitation, Local Government, Transport, Environment, Agriculture and Horticulture, Cooperation, Forests, Sports, Public Works, and Water ResourcesA mission task force at the state level would be constituted to oversee the programme implementation and its review on a monthly basisThe mission would have the chief minister as its chairman and the environment minister as vice chairman. Secretary (Agriculture) and PPCB chairman KS Pannu has been designated as the Mission Director. Other members would include all ministers concerned, chief secretary and principal secretary (environment) and principal secretary to CMPrincipal Secretaries of the various departments will also be involved in the implementation of the Mission.(With inputs from PTI)Read: 1 lakh patients aided under Ayushman Bharat: Who is eligible and how to avail benefits under the schemeRead: 10 highlights of 2018 from the health ministryRead: India is getting its first public healthcare record system to track the health of all citizens!Interested in General Knowledge and Current Affairs? Click here to stay informed and know what is happening around the world with our G.K. and Current Affairs section.To get more updates on Current Affairs, send in your query by mail to firstname.lastname@example.org