Kent & Queen Anne's Hospital
Recent News

July 30, 2001

FOR RELEASE: Immediately

Health System Offering Low Cost
Cholesterol & Blood Glucose Screenings
Elizabeth H. Morris

This Valentine's Day take care of your heart and health by getting a blood test that will measure your cholesterol and blood glucose levels. The cholesterol test is a complete coronary risk profile screening that will indicate levels of total cholesterol, good and bad cholesterol and triglycerides, while the blood glucose test will indicate if further evaluation for diabetes is needed.

The employees of the Chester River Health System are celebrating February as American Heart Month by providing these low cost screenings on Tuesday, February 12, from 7 to 10 a.m., in the Kent & Queen Anne's Hospital's cafeteria meeting room. The employees request that participants make a $15 donation, which is less than the cost of many insurance co-payments. It may be made with cash, check or credit card. Proceeds will benefit enhancements to patient care programs at the hospital.

The test requires a 12-hour fast (ONLY WATER MAY BE CONSUMED; no coffee or tea in the morning) and test results will be sent to the patient and the patient's primary care physician.

Appointments are required and can be scheduled by calling Betty Jo Embert at Chester River Home Care & Hospice at (410) 778-1049, weekdays, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Participants are asked to not use the hospital's usual central registration process but instead go directly to the second floor room. For easy access, drive around the back of the hospital and enter the building via the door under the third blue canopy, across from the Dialysis Center. Signs will be posted.

High cholesterol is a major risk factor for heart disease but you can help to lower your risk of a fatal or disabling heart attack or stroke by lowering your cholesterol levels. Generally speaking, a one-point drop in cholesterol equals a two-percent decrease in risk.

"The best way to get a respectable cholesterol level is the old-fashioned way-through a low-fat diet, weight control and exercise. Some individuals will not be able to lower their cholesterol levels through lifestyle changes and may need to take prescription medications," notes Sherrie Hill, RN, MSN, CCRN, Coordinator of Kent & Queen Anne's Hospital's Cardio-Pulmonary Rehabilitation Program.

Diabetes is a chronic disease that can have serious complications such as blindness, kidney disease, lower limb amputations, heart disease and stroke. "By learning to control the factors that influence blood sugar, individuals may avoid some of the serious complications," Barbara McDanolds, MA, RN, a certified diabetes educator and coordinator of the Living with Diabetes Program, points out. "But for some diabetics, learning to manage their diet, stress level and physical activity will not be enough to control these factors; some will need to take diabetes medication to minimize their chance of developing complications."

Coronary artery disease or heart disease is still the number one killer of both men and women in this country and in our community. And diabetics have risk of developing heart disease is two to four times greater that the risk of non-diabetics.

Learning your risk for these diseases may be the best Valentine you ever receive.