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The Wyoming Department of Health (WDH) is describing its newly released recommendations for expanding healthcare coverage to thousands of uninsured residents as a fiscally responsible, Wyoming-centered approach.The department is calling its recommended plan, “Wyoming’s Strategy for Health, Access, Responsibility and Employment,” or the “SHARE Plan.”People with incomes below the federal poverty line are not eligible for federal subsidies to purchase private insurance or for coverage through Medicaid if they live in a state that has not expanded the program, due to the way the Affordable Care Act was written and related court decisions.

Wyoming residents caring for family members or friends on an ongoing basis who find they could use a little help in meeting their challenges are asked to consider a program offered through the Wyoming Department of Health (WDH).“Family members are often the major providers of long-term care,” said Jeanne Scheneman, National Family Caregiver Support Program manager with WDH.

November is National Diabetes MonthIn little more than a decade, the adult diabetes rate has almost doubled in Wyoming, leading to new Wyoming Department of Health (WDH) efforts to help limit the disease among Wyoming Medicaid clients and other state residents.Wyoming’s diabetes rate among adults rose from 4.5 percent in 2001 to 8.6 percent in 2013.

Crews are set to begin demolishing a visibly prominent building on the Wyoming State Hospital (WSH) campus in Evanston in the coming days.“We want to ensure community members aren’t surprised when the hired contractor begins the demolition and also make clear why the work is needed,” said Bill Sexton, Wyoming Department of Health Behavioral Health Division facilities administrator.

Both the Wyoming Life Resource Center in Lander and the Wyoming State Hospital (WSH) in Evanston will gain new leadership as a result of Wyoming Department of Health (WDH) organizational changes.Bill Sexton, who has been serving as WSH superintendent since 2011, has been named as WDH Behavioral Health Division facilities administrator, which is a new WDH position.

As influenza cases begin to appear across the state, Wyoming Department of Health (WDH) officials are touting annual vaccinations as the best way to avoid becoming ill with the flu.Dr. Wendy Braund, state health officer and WDH Public Health Division senior administrator, said almost everyone who is six months or older should get a seasonal flu vaccine each year to help prevent influenza.

The Wyoming Department of Health (WDH) Facilities Task Force will meet October 22 in Cheyenne to discuss the group’s recommendations about the future roles and needs of the state’s public healthcare facilities.The meeting will begin at 9 a.m.

With new federal rules in effect, the Wyoming Department of Health (WDH) is planning public forums and other opportunities to help interested residents learn more about expected changes to home and community-based services funded through Wyoming Medicaid.In March, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services approved new rules covering provider settings for home and community-based services through special programs known as waivers.

Testing recently completed by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in Atlanta confirms that the enterovirus D68 virus is present in Wyoming, as expected by the Wyoming Department of Health (WDH).Dr. Tracy Murphy, state epidemiologist with WDH, said, “We are not surprised CDC testing has confirmed two Wyoming residents were ill due to this specific virus, which has gained so much attention in recent weeks.

While many people unexpectedly take a tumble from time to time, the Wyoming Department of Health (WDH) is reminding residents that falls can sometimes lead to moderate and severe injuries, especially among older adults.Dara Lawyer, WDH injury prevention coordinator, said the chances of falling and of being seriously injured in a fall may increase with age.

With another drug “DEA Take Back” day scheduled across the nation for September 27, the Wyoming Department of Health is reminding Wyoming residents that medications can sometimes be donated to help others.“Clearing unused medications from our homes is important because it helps prevent prescription drug abuse and accidental poisonings,” said Natasha Gallizzi, Medication Donation Program manager and pharmacist with the Wyoming Department of Health.Gallizzi said items collected through take back events and drop boxes are destroyed via incineration.

An older Platte County woman represents the first and only human case of West Nile virus (WNV) reported to the Wyoming Department of Health (WDH) so far this year.“Year to year WNV activity can vary widely and is tough to predict,” said Dr. Tracy Murphy, state epidemiologist with WDH.

The Wyoming Department of Health (WDH) Facilities Task Force will meet in Casper on Wednesday, August 20, to continue discussing the roles and needs of the state’s public healthcare facilities.The meeting will begin at 9 a.m.

Adam Merrell has joined the Wyoming Department of Health (WDH) as the new administrator for the Wyoming Life Resource Center (WLRC) in Lander.Merrell has worked in skilled nursing for the past 17 years with a focus on regional oversight.

It’s not too late to register for Wyoming’s Biggest Loser RunWalk event set for Sunday in Casper.The Biggest Loser RunWalk includes a half marathon, a 5K race and a kids’ one-mile fun run for ages 4-12.

The Wyoming Department of Health (WDH) is inviting interested residents to attend a stakeholder meeting August 14 to introduce a healthcare approach known as “community paramedicine and mobile integrated healthcare.” The meeting will be held from 8 a.m.

With a significantly increased number of reported gonorrhea cases this year, especially in Campbell County, the Wyoming Department of Health (WDH) is reminding residents that preventing the spread of sexually transmitted diseases remains important.
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