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Everyone learns differently, spectrum or not

“Jakes” brings unique challenges, joy to family

CHISHOLM – The joys and challenges of raising an autistic child. First off let me start by saying: Bahahahahahahahahahahahahaha! Insert crazy laugh here.  My Jakes (he gave himself the plural) is 11 years old. More...

Posted 4/27/2017 10:43 PM

Keeping kids active when school lets out for the summer

Mesabi Family YMCA’s free Healthy Kids Day is this Saturday

MOUNTAIN IRON – Summer is just around the corner and with it children’s break from the routine — mornings spent sleeping in, afternoons spent watching television or playing video games in the cool air conditioning and evenings enjoy More...

Posted 4/27/2017 10:43 PM

Get ready for summer with YMCA Swim Programs

Focus on fun, physical activity and safety create a lifelong love of swimming

MOUNTAIN IRON – As the season turns from winter to spring, the Mesabi Family YMCA encourages children and parents to explore the many benefits of swimming, while also keeping safety top of mind. More...

Posted 4/27/2017 10:43 PM

It’s National Infant Immunization Week Immunization programs protect infants, promote healthy communities

ST. More...

Posted 4/27/2017 10:43 PM

Healthy eating can help kids lose weight and create good habits

VIRGINIA – Helping a child or teen reach a healthy weight often means helping a family eat better.  More...

Posted 4/27/2017 10:43 PM

MyPlate Initiative makes healthy eating easy

GRAND RAPIDS – Grand Itasca launched the MyPlate Initiative in the clinic in 2013. This program ensures that all children receive a portioned meal plate at their two- or three-year-old well child visit. More...

Posted 4/27/2017 10:44 PM

ImPACT: The best approach to concussion management

COOK – Concussion is a common injury, but is often difficult to diagnose and treat. Concussions can occur in any sport or physical activity. More...

Posted 4/27/2017 10:44 PM

Kids can get free produce with new PoP program

VIRGINIA – The Virginia Market Square Farmers Market is introducing a new free kids program this summer: Power of Produce Club (PoP Club). More...

Posted 4/27/2017 10:44 PM

There is a game changer in healthcare

Spring is here! We welcome this time of the year, especially for the warmth of the sunlight that is getting longer each day. More...

Posted 4/27/2017 10:45 PM

Memorial Blood Centers asks you to be a #1 fan to patients in need

IRON RANGE – Memorial Blood Centers is teaming up with the Minnesota Twins to give blood donors a chance to win premium baseball tickets. More...

Posted 4/27/2017 10:45 PM

Head Start is growing healthy!

Head Start knows that healthy nutrition is an important part of early childhood development! Developing healthy nutrition habits for life starts at birth. More...

Posted 4/27/2017 10:46 PM

Reach Out & Read gives books to young patients

GRAND RAPIDS – Reach Out & Read is funded by Grand Itasca Volunteer Services (GIVS) with income generated through sales at the Coffee Bar and Gift Shop, along with money from various fundraising events, tips and donations, membership dues, More...

Posted 4/27/2017 10:47 PM

Minnesota awarded $5.4 million federal grant to combat opioid addiction

Minnesota has been awarded $5.4 million in federal grants to combat opioid addiction in the state. The Opioid State Targeted Response Grant, awarded by the U.S. More...

Posted 4/27/2017 10:47 PM

Coping with cancer-related fatigue

Fatigue is one of the most common and frustrating side effects of cancer treatments. While fatigue is often a result of the cancer itself, cancer treatments can also increase feelings of fatigue. More...

Posted 3/30/2017 09:36 PM

Study finds that viruses, bacteria may be found in some public water supply wells

One year into a two-year study requested by the state Legislature, scientists with the Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) report finding evidence of genetic material, like DNA, from viruses and bacteria in water from some of the state’s publi More...

Posted 3/16/2017 09:01 PM

Fairview Range hosting Sports Education Night

HIBBING – Fairview Range invites any volunteer, paid or assistant coach, athletic trainer or director to a Sports Education Night on Wednesday, March 29, at Valentini’s Supper Club, 31 W. Lake St. in Chisholm. More...

Posted 3/9/2017 11:00 PM

Senior care experts offer cybersecurity and online fraud prevention tips

Financial and online fraud against aging adults are now considered the “crimes of the century” by the National Council on Aging. More...

Posted 3/2/2017 11:09 PM

Welcome to our Health Edition!

Dear Readers,   This week we look at some weird and rare health conditions that were suggested by readers and contributors to Hometown Focus. The weirdness begins on page 8, and kicks off with a doozy: cyclic vomiting syndrome. More...

Posted 1/26/2017 10:12 PM

Dry eye syndrome

Treatment options ARE available

VIRGINIA – Have you ever experienced symptoms of itching, burning, watery or red eyes? If you have, you are not alone. If you have not, there may be a time in the future that you do. These symptoms are hallmarks of dry eye syndrome. More...

Posted 1/26/2017 10:13 PM

SHIP training, coaching helps child care providers give young children a healthy start

Family and small, independent child care providers were more likely to offer vegetables, increase kids’ physical activity and support infants’ breastfeeding after receiving trainings and coaching from Minnesota’s Statewide Health Im More...

Posted 1/26/2017 10:13 PM

It takes a village to help save Ella

COOK - My daughter, Ella, was diagnosed with High Risk B-Cell Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia (ALL), in October of 2016. She is currently being treated at the Erick Peter Person Cancer Center at Essentia Health, and St. Mary's Hospital in Duluth.  More...

Posted 1/26/2017 10:13 PM

Blacklegged tick (formerly deer tick)

Female blacklegged tick adults are reddish brown with a black head, legs, and scutum (the plate-like structure behind the head). More...

Posted 1/26/2017 10:13 PM

Fun and Fit Health Expo to be held at HCC February 4

HIBBING – Fairview Range and Hibbing Community College are once again partnering to host the third annual Fun and Fit Health Expo, scheduled for Saturday, Feb. 4, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Hibbing Community College.  More...

Posted 1/26/2017 10:13 PM

Fairview Range welcomes Nancy Middlestead, FNP

HIBBING – Fairview Range welcomes Nancy Middlestead to its full-time medical staff as a family nurse practitioner at Fairview Mesaba Clinics—Hibbing.  More...

Posted 1/26/2017 10:13 PM

Fiona’s Hope Totes provide care packets of essentials

ST. PAUL - Fiona's Hope Totes are tote bag care packages for families that are experiencing an unexpected, extended hospitalization with their sick child. More...

Posted 1/26/2017 10:13 PM

Severely autistic and nonverbal: Not the whole story

“He’s almost always happy … that makes him extremely remarkable”

MAKINEN – It was 1997 when my beautiful son Elias was born. He was nine pounds of perfection with chubby cheeks and a full head of jet-black hair. He was always such a happy baby. He loved to cuddle and was hitting every milestone. More...

Posted 4/27/2017 10:43 PM

Y’s Day Camp looks forward to “Best Summer Ever”

Twelve weeks of themes set; program starts in June at Merritt Elementary

MOUNTAIN IRON – The Mesabi Family YMCA’s Summer Day Camp 2017 is sure to be the “Best Summer Ever”! More...

Posted 4/27/2017 10:43 PM

Getting your kids involved in the kitchen

Teaching meal prep has short- and long-term benefits

LAKELAND – Growing up we didn't have elaborate meals, but I remember conversations together or working on manners, setting or clearing the table, and feeling a sense of togetherness. More...

Posted 4/27/2017 10:43 PM

Helping children and families be healthier through home visits

ST. LOUIS COUNTY – Public health nurses have been visiting clients in their homes for as long as our profession has existed. More...

Posted 4/27/2017 10:43 PM

Children’s Mental Health Awareness Day, May 4 Recognizing and treating children’s complex mental health needs

ST. LOUIS COUNTY – Childhood is a time of tremendous growth and development, not just physically, but also mentally. More...

Posted 4/27/2017 10:43 PM

Local fundraiser to support pediatric healthcare in Grand Rapids

GRAND RAPIDS – Burggraf’s Ace Hardware of Grand Rapids, in partnership with Grand Itasca Foundation, is hosting the 4th Annual Caring Fore Kids Charity Classic set for Thursday, June 1, at Pokegama Golf Course in Grand Rapids. More...

Posted 4/27/2017 10:44 PM

Students create posters for National Poison Prevention Week

Ely-Bloomenson hospital teaches students about poisons

ELY – Students in kindergarten through 8th grade were invited to Ely-Bloomenson Community Hospital (EBCH) on Thursday, April 6, to learn a little bit about poisons and create a poster that will be submitted to the National Poison Prevention Cou More...

Posted 4/27/2017 10:44 PM

Take it to the Box program allows for safe disposal of unused prescription medicine

National Prescription Drug Take Back Day is this Saturday, April 29—a day intended to promote the safe disposal of unused prescription drugs while raising awareness of the potential for misuse and abuse when medicat ons are left sitting in medi More...

Posted 4/27/2017 10:44 PM

Excess sugar in our diets can lead to diabetes and damage to our eyes

VIRGINIA – Sugar has become a prominent feature in our homes and grocery stores. Sugar is simply a carbohydrate that is used as a sweetener in everything from condiments to beverages to cakes and cookies. More...

Posted 4/27/2017 10:44 PM

Fairview Range, Grand Itasca bring heart care close to home

HIBBING/GRAND RAPIDS – Fairview Range and Grand Itasca Clinic & Hospital announce the expansion of cardiology (heart care) services in both Hibbing and Grand Rapids.  More...

Posted 4/27/2017 10:45 PM

MDH urging parents, doctors to help protect children during measles outbreak

With 20 cases of measles now confirmed among Somali Minnesotan children in Hennepin County, health officials are asking parents and health care providers to watch for potential cases and help make sure as many Minnesota children as possible are prote More...

Posted 4/27/2017 10:45 PM

Healthier popsicles for sore throats

COOK – Springtime allergens and hectic schedules can predispose both children and adults to sore throats. More...

Posted 4/27/2017 10:46 PM

Fairview Range welcomes pediatrician to Hibbing clinic

HIBBING – Fairview Range welcomes board certified pediatrician Lisa Buenger, M.D. to its medical staff at Fairview Mesaba Clinics-Hibbing. She brings experience and compassion as a pediatrician for 16 years in Minnesota and Wisconsin. Dr. More...

Posted 4/27/2017 10:47 PM

Special awards, activities planned for National Public Health Week

Public Health nurses and staff work one on one with clients, but also with larger groups to create community- or system-wide change. Many of these efforts focus on the broad goal of ensuring that all people have equal opportunity to be healthy. More...

Posted 3/30/2017 09:36 PM

4 foods that can boost energy levels

Diet can go a long way toward increasing or lowering energy levels. No one wants to consume foods that will make it harder for them to get through the day, so the following are a handful of foods that pack an energetic punch.  More...

Posted 3/30/2017 09:36 PM

Personalized medicines may be the future of healthcare

When a person feels ill, his or her doctor may assess any symptoms and then prescribe a particular medication to treat or alleviate those symptoms. More...

Posted 3/16/2017 09:01 PM

March is National Kidney Month

Kidney stones don’t always go with the flow

March is National Kidney Month and most people forget that they even have kidneys until there is something wrong with them. More...

Posted 3/9/2017 11:00 PM

12 steps, 12 stories

A holiday of self-discovery

Dedicated to Jean Cole More...

Posted 1/26/2017 10:13 PM


Weird and rare health conditions

EDITOR’S NOTE: I asked friends and Hometown Focus readers to suggest and/ or share stories about weird and/or rare health conditions they are familiar with for this week’s Health Edition. More...

Posted 1/26/2017 10:13 PM

Memorial Blood Centers is calling all life-savers

Memorial Blood Centers invites all eligible blood donors to roll up their sleeve and give blood. Every 2 seconds someone needs blood – from heart transplant and cancer patients to accident victims and premature babies. More...

Posted 1/26/2017 10:13 PM

I almost died

Going from 6% to 100% in less than a heartbeat

As I reviewed the consent form for my angioplasty, the doctor advised me that there was a 6% chance that something could go wrong during the procedure and that death was always a possibility. More...

Posted 1/26/2017 10:13 PM

Transverse myelitis

Mark’s story: Puzzling paralysis put me in a wheelchair

On July 1, 2016, right before a regular check-up scheduled with Dr. Ciriacy at Ely Health Clinic, I had trouble moving my legs correctly. They just weren’t doing what I wanted them to do. More...

Posted 1/26/2017 10:13 PM

Marvin Fosso shakes the hand of the doctor who saved his life

HIBBING – Marvin Fosso of Britt made a trip to Fairview Range to see a doctor. But this wasn’t a routine visit.  He came to thank the doctor who helped save his life.  More...

Posted 1/26/2017 10:13 PM

Living Well 6-week workshop announced

HIBBING – Fairview Range is sponsoring a Living Well workshop, a six-week workshop that guides people in exploring healthy ways to live and maintain an active lifestyle while managing the symptoms of chronic conditions such as diabetes, arthrit More...

Posted 1/26/2017 10:13 PM

Peyton’s Pepper Jelly helps support children and families in need

BIWABIK – Desta Lashmett of Biwabik, MN, and her best friend, Roxy Woods from Angora, MN, founded their non-profit business, Peyton’s Pepper Jelly in 2013 as a way to help raise money to donate to entities that support people with intelle More...

Posted 1/26/2017 10:13 PM

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