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Go Out To Eat
What could be better than eating a good meal at one of the city's restaurants and having a portion of your tab go to the NO/AIDS Task Force?

On Thursday, July 18, NO/AIDS Task Force and 45 local restaurants invite locals to the seventh annual Dining for Life fundraiser. To participate, simply dine at any of the selected restaurants and those eateries will donate 25 percent of their proceeds for the day to the task force. For more information, call 821-2601, ext. 250.

Protecting Older Kids
The effectiveness of immunization programs for young children and complacency about the presence of harmful diseases has led to a large number of children going unimmunized during adolescence. A recent survey of Ochsner Health Plan members found that thousands of the 41,000 children covered by the HMO had not kept up with scheduled shots, particularly after age 11, an indication of a general malaise in the public.

Among recommended immunizations are hepatitis B, which should be administered at ages 11 or 12; measles, mumps, rubella (MMR): second dose after age 4; tetanus and diphtheria, booster shot recommended between 11 and 16 (with five years between shots) and a tetanus shot every 10 years; chickenpox (if child hasn't had the disease), one dose for children 12 and younger, two doses if given as teenagers.

Knowledge is Power
A decade of research into health statistics has yielded the Department of Health and Hospitals (DHH) a report that will help health professionals pinpoint the behaviors that put Louisiana adults at risk for chronic diseases.

The report, compiled by DHH's Chronic Disease Epidemiology Unit in the Office of Public Health (OPH), is based on information collected during ongoing statewide telephone surveys for the Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System. The OPH plans to use the information to determine which health interventions and prevention programs are effective and highlight areas that need more attention.

Heads Up
Nutrition and fitness expert Mackie Shilstone recently joined the Board of Directors of the National Mental Health Association (NMHA), a citizen's organization dedicated to mental health education, prevention, treatment, research and support services for the mentally ill and their families.

Shilstone, executive director of the Mackie Shilstone Center for Performance Enhancement and Lifestyle Management at Elmwood Fitness Center, was confirmed during the group's annual meeting last month. NMHA is the only consumer-driven national mental health organization in the country that serves as a national watchdog and advocate for those affected by mental illness.

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