By Jacquelyn Nelson
The Hesston Community Wide Health Fair will be held at the Hesston Area Senior Center located at South Main and Randall on Saturday June 15 from 8 am to noon.
The fair will include free health screenings, information on health issues, demonstrations on the use of fire safety equipment, and assistance with completing the File of Life, an important document of personal health information.
This year more than fifteen screenings will be available for both children and adults. They include heart risk assessments, Peripheral Arterial Disease, skin cancer, and hearing and eye screenings, as well as blood draws for blood glucose, cholesterol, lipids and thyroid levels.
Did you know that chronic diseases like heart disease, stroke, cancer and diabetes are the leading cause of mortality and represent about 63 percent of all deaths?
Did you also know that out of 36 million people who died from a chronic disease in the last five years, nine million of them were under 60 years of age and ninety per cent of these premature deaths occurred in low and middle-income countries (statistics from World Health Organization website)?
Primary prevention screenings such as those being offered at the Hesston Community Wide Health Fair are intended to detect and prevent new diseases by identifying and reducing risk factors as early as possible.
Hesston is fortunate to have many outstanding health care providers who are committed to improving the health and wellness of the residents of our community. Among the Hesston healthcare professionals scheduled to attend will be Drs. Zachary and Jessica Unruh of Mid Kansas Eye Care, who will be available to answer your questions about vision and eye health.
Dr. Justin Dillner DDS and Stephanie Hodge RDH will be there to introduce Dr. Maria Wittman DDS, who will be joining Hesston Dentistry in September. They will provide limited dental exams, oral cancer screenings, fluoride varnishes and offering oral health education and information.
The Hesston Lions Club will again be sponsoring the Mobile Screening Unit with Dr. McKinney available on-sight to provide eye screenings and information. The Vision Screener, a mobile device first used in 2012 for children 6 months through pre-school age, is on the list as well.
This Vision Screener looks into the eyes through the pupils and sees problems before parents become aware of them. Since young children do not know how they should be seeing, their sight can be quite blurry or irregular, forcing them to cope in other ways and leading parents to believe their children see normally.
The Vision Screener detects serious eye diseases and problems that then can be treated by ophthalmologists who specialize in such eye diseases and problems.
Many eye problems and serious, sight-robbing diseases begin in infancy or early childhood. While it is estimated that approximately 5 to 10 percent of all children experience sight robbing vision problems, just 14 percent of U.S. children six years and younger see an eye doctor for testing. By the time a child is four years of age, it may already be too late to stop or reverse the damage of certain eye diseases.
The Hesston Community Wide Health Fair is free and open to all residents of the City of Hesston. The Health Fair is underwritten and funding provided for by the Hesston City Grant, Dr. Hall, Mid Kansas Family Practices, Hesston Community Foundation, Thrivent Financial for Lutherans, and Participating Organizations.