Health Notes is a weekly feature that highlights health and wellness news in the area. Hospitals and other health related agencies may e-mail items to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Expectant parent classes and tours
Bridgeport Hospital offers classes and tours for new and expectant parents, including Birthplace Tours, Thursdays, April 7, 14, 21 and 28, May 12, 19, and 26, 6-7 p.m.; Infant CPR Anytime, Thursdays, April 7, 14, 21 and 28, May 12, 19, and 26, 7:15-8:15 p.m. To register, call 888-357-2396.
Soft touch workshop
Griffin Hospital offers a basic level Soft Touch workshop Saturday, April 16, 1-4 p.m. at the hospital, 130 Division St., Derby. Soft Touch is a therapeutic, relaxing and gentle massage that can be given to an individual’s hands, feet, or back. Cost is $30. There are no prerequisites to attend the workshop and it is open to the public. Space is limited and sign-ups are due by April 8. To enroll, contact Laura Murphy, Planetree Services Supervisor, 203-732-7466.
Aging with Grace
Griffin Hospital and the Connecticut Council of Parish Nurse Coordinators will host “Aging with Grace,” an informational workshop for parish nurses, clergy, seniors and caregivers on Saturday, April 16, 9:30-2, at the hospital dining room, 130 Division St., Derby. Cost, at $10, includes a box lunch and refreshments. To register, call St. Vincent’s Parish Nurse Office 203-576-5558. Deadline for registration is Friday, April 8.
Blood pressure screenings
Bridgeport Hospital offers free blood pressure screenings at Fairfield Senior Center, 100 Mona Terrace, Mondays, April 18, May 2 and 13, 9:30-11:30; Stratford Baldwin Center, 1000 West Broad St., Monday, April 11, May 9, 9:30-11:30; Shelton Senior Center, 81 Wheeler St., Monday, April 25, May 23, noon-2, 888-357-2396.
First aid and safety classes
Bridgeport Hospital’s Emergency Care Institute offers the following American Heart Association self-care classes at the hospital, 267 Grant St. Registration required. Call 203-384-4497.
Administration of medicine, Tuesday, April 12, May 10, 6:30-9:30 p.m., $50 full program, $25 injectables only; Adult, child and Infant CPR/defibrillator two-year certification, Wednesday, May 4, 6-9 p.m., $65; Pediatric first aid & safety and adult, child and infant CPR/defibrillator training two-year certification, Saturday, April 16, May 14, 8:30-5:30, $100 full class or $70 first aid portion only; Basic life support for healthcare providers two-year certification Wednesday, April 20, May 18, 6-10 p.m., $90 ($65 for those with an unexpired American Heart Association certification card).
Free Live Well workshops
Attend a six-week Live Well or Live Well Diabetes workshop series and learn new techniques to manage your chronic health issues, sponsored by Southwestern CT Agency on Aging, the State Department on Aging, and Connecticut Department of Public Health. Live Well is for adults and caregivers with ongoing health issues such as diabetes, arthritis, asthma, high blood pressure, heart or lung disease, pain, depression, and anxiety. Live Well Diabetes is specifically for those with diabetes. Live Well: Maplewood at Strawberry Hill, 73 Strawberry Hill Avenue, Norwalk, Wednesdays, April 13, 20, 27, 1-3:30 p.m., 203-220-9600; Live Well: Norwalk Senior Center, 11 Allen Road, Mondays, April 11, 18, 25, May 2, 9, 9-11:30, 203-847-3115; Live Well Diabetes: Black Rock Senior Center, 2676 Fairfield Avenue, Bridgeport, Tuesdays, April 12, 19, 26, May 3, 10, 9:30-noon, 203-576-7258. Information: Southwestern CT Agency on Aging, 203-814-3620, email@example.com.
Bridgeport Hospital’s Norma Pfriem Cancer Institute, in partnership with the Smilow Cancer Genetics and Prevention Program, provides weekly genetic counseling services by appointment, every Friday beginning at Norma Pfriem Breast Center, 111 Beach Road, Fairfield. Genetic counseling will be offered again at the hospital’s outpatient campus at 5520 Park Avenue, Trumbull, when a new medical office building opens at the site in spring 2016, 203-200-4362.
Galello-Luchansky Funeral Home, 2220 Main Street, Stratford is sponsoring a free bereavement support group as part of a new initiative sponsored by a group of Stratford agencies that want to reach out to the community. Bi-monthly meetings began Tuesday, March 15, at 4:30 p.m. and will continue every other week. The next meeting is Tuesday, March 29. Free and open to anyone who is grieving the loss of a loved one, Patti Galello, 203-378-1819; Diane Puterski, 203-385-4055.
Ongoing bereavement support group every Friday, 10-11 a.m., VITAS Office, 99 Hawley Lane, suite 1204, Stratford. To register call 203-455-3300 or email Esmail.Dezhbod@vitas.com.
Griffin Hospital support groups meet in an eight-week cycle at the hospital, 130 Division St., Derby, Sundays, 2:30-4; Tuesdays, 2:30-4; and Wednesdays, 6:30-8, 203-732-1132 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
St. Mary Bereavement Support Group New Day 10-week program Thursdays, 1-3, St. Mary’s Church Hall, 70 Gulf Street, Milford, 203-283-1934, 203-874-2376, 845-239-2007; $10 fee required for the New Day Journal.
St Jude Parish of Monroe has a free nine-month Bereavement Support Group, meets once a month through May; 203-261-6404.
10-week program meets at St. Stephen’s Church, 6948 Main Street, Trumbull, Thursdays, 4:30-6. Registration required: 203-268-6217.
The Caring Network, a free ongoing support group for adults who have lost a loved one through death, meets the first and third Wednesday of every month, 6-8 p.m., Bridges campus, 941 Bridgeport Avenue, Milford. Registration not required. Information: Cody-White Funeral Home, 203-874-0268, Cynthia Dodd, M. Div, 203-878-6365, ext 344.
Substance abuse support
The Community Addiction & Recovery Education & Support (C.A.R.E.S.) Group provides a free, weekly drop-in support group for parents and other concerned family members whose loved ones are using or abusing mind-altering substances. The C.A.R.E.S. Group’s mission is to provide education, support, access to resources, and hope for individuals and families struggling with substance abuse or addiction. C.A.R.E.S. meets every Tuesday at Trinity Episcopal Church, 1734 Huntington Tpke., Trumbull, from 7-9 p.m. For additional locations and information, call 1-855-406-0246 or visit thecaresgroup.org.
Parkinson’s fitness class
The Watermark at 3030 Park will continue its Parkinson’s Fitness Class, a bi-weekly class designed to help people living with Parkinson’s engage their muscles and increase mobility. Classes are held Tuesdays and Thursdays, 12:45 at the senior living community, located at 3030 Park Avenue on the Bridgeport-Fairfield town line. Due to a limited number of spaces, reservations and a small participation fee are required for the fitness class. To RSVP, contact Cindy McGuire at 203-373-6108.
George’s Hill is a social engagement group for people diagnosed with early dementia and their caregivers meets second Thursday of the month, 11:30-1, light lunch noon-12:30, Unity Hill United Church of Christ, 364 White Plains Road, Trumbull. Anyone with a wheelchair, or problems with mobility, may enter through the kitchen door in back as there are no steps to negotiate; 203-374-8822, unityhillucc.org.
Support group for caregivers and families led by Harbor care Director, David Fife, third Thursday of the month at 5:30, Middlebrook Farms of Trumbull, 2750 Reservoir Avenue, Trumbull; 203-268-2400; email@example.com.
Group for family members and others responsible for the day-to-day care of elderly relatives meets second Friday of month, noon-1, Operations Conference Room, Bridgeport Hospital, 267 Grant Street; 888-357-2396.
Sunset Shores Adult Day Health Centers hosts a Caregiver’s Support Group the second Monday of the month, 5-6 p.m., 720 Barnum Avenue Cutoff, Stratford. The group helps to provide emotional, educational and social supports for caregivers. It can also assist in developing methods and skills to solve problems associated with caregiving responsibilities. Open to the public. RSVP to Mary Pruzinsky, 203-380-1228.
First and third Thursday of each month, 4 p.m., Jewish Senior Services, Grasmere by the Sea Adult Day Program, 1 Post Road, Fairfield; 203-365-6470, firstname.lastname@example.org. Also, second Tuesday of the month, 4 p.m., Jewish Senior Services, The Jewish Home, 175 Jefferson Street, Fairfield; 203-365-6479; email@example.com.
The Diabetes Education & Support Group at Griffin Hospital will host two free talks about research on how blood sugar affects the brains of those with diabetes on Tuesday, April 12 at 2:30 and 6:30 p.m. at the hospital, 130 Division St., Derby, 203-732-1137.
Hearing loss meeting
The next meeting of the Hearing Loss Association, Southwest CT Chapter will be on Tuesday April 12. At 1:30, Norwalk Senior Center, 11 Allan Road. Laura Friedman, program and communication manager from the Hearing Health Foundation based in New York City talks about, Is there a Cure in Sight for Hearing Loss? Information: Peg, 203-656-2733 or email Marcia at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Plan for future healthcare
The Community Health Resource Center at Griffin Hospital, 130 Division St., Derby, will host a free presentation on how to plan for future healthcare and medical decisions on Thursday, April 14, noon, 203-732-7399.
Bridgeport Hospital’s free ostomy support group meets Sunday, April 17, May 15, 2, Visiting Nurse Services of Connecticut, 12 Cambridge Drive, Trumbull. Open to anyone who has had or will have an ostomy operation, such as a colostomy, urostomy or ileostomy. Spouses welcome. Sharon Tilley, RN, 203-384-3209.
Traumatic brain injury group
Meets the third Tuesday of the month, April 19, May 17, 6-7:30, Disability Resource Center, 80 Ferry Boulevard, Stratford; 203-380-1004.
Weight-loss surgery seminar
Bridgeport Hospital will host a free weight-loss surgery information session Wednesday, April 20, 6-7:30 p.m., Fairfield County Medical Center, 112 Quarry Road, Trumbull. Speaker is bariatric surgeon Saber Ghiassi, MD. To register, call 203-789-6237.
Free breastfeeding support group for new and expectant mothers meets Wednesdays, April 20, May 4 and 18, 10-noon, hospital’s outpatient campus, 5520 Park Avenue, Trumbull. To register, call 888-357-2396.
Women’s Health Initiative Tea fundraiser
Women’s Health Initiative Tea Fundraiser to benefit the Valley Breast Health Care Fund Sunday, April 24, 2-4 p.m., Dining Room at Griffin Hospital, 130 Division St., Derby. Buffet meal, raffles and door prizes. Wear a favorite hat. Cost is $30. Reserve a seat by contacting Nancy at 203-734-6945 or email@example.com or send a check made payable to the Valley Breast Health Care Fund to Nancy Valentine, 18 Farrell Drive, Ansonia, CT 06401. Donations welcome.
Bridges by EPOCH at Trumbull will host the presentation, “Understanding Dementia: A 360 Degree Look” at Bridges by EPOCH at Trumbull, 2415 Reservoir Ave., on Thursday, April 28 at 2:30 p.m. and 5:30 p.m. All are welcome to attend but space is limited. Call 203-397-6800 to RSVP or for more information.
Tuesday, May 3, 6-7 p.m., Ahlbin Rehabilitation Center, 4 Corporate Drive, Shelton, 203-925-4201.
Senior driving course
AARP’s Smart Driver course Saturday, May 7, 9-1, first-floor Administration Conference Room at Bridgeport Hospital, 267 Grant Street, 888-357-2396.
Look Good…Feel Better
Free program helps women with cancer learn beauty techniques to overcome the appearance-related side effects of chemotherapy and radiation treatment Monday, May 16, noon-2, Operations Conference room at the Bridgeport hospital, 267 Grant St., 888-357-2396.
Treasured Time fund-raiser
A dinner theater fund-raiser for Treasured Time will be held Saturday, May 21, 6-9 p.m., Brownson Country Club, 15 Soundview Avenue, Shelton. For Better & For Worse is an unpredictable and spontaneous performance of a comedic Italian wedding. Proceeds support Treasured Time, a not-for-profit organization that grants wishes of parents with life-threatening illnesses who want to create lasting memories with their children. Tickets for dinner and the show are $60. Group rates available. RSVP: Jenn at 203-446-1068 or visit treasuredtime.org.
Nutrition for cancer survivors
Class provides information and resources for healthy eating during and after treatment in addition with dietary tips and modifications to help improve overall wellness and health, the second Wednesday of every month, 5-6 p.m., St. Vincent’s Elizabeth Pfriem SWIM Center for Cancer Care adjacent to the hospital, 203-576-6158.
Overeaters self-help group
Overeaters Anonymous is a 12-Step self-help group for compulsive overeaters. The group meets every Sunday, 8:45-9:45 a.m., at St. Vincent’s Hospital, 2800 Main Street, Bridgeport, in the Seton Room on Level C. There are no dues, fees or weigh-ins. The only requirement is a desire to stop eating compulsively. For more information, visit swctoa.org or call Bill M., 203-455-7766.
Family support group
For adult patients, family members and friends who are coping with a diagnosis of leukemia, lymphoma, multiple myeloma, or Hodgkin’s disease, first Tuesday of every month, 4-5:30, St. V’s Elizabeth M. Pfriem SWIM Center for Cancer Care, Level 3 Medical Oncology Conference Room, 2800 Main St., Bridgeport, 203-576-6158; firstname.lastname@example.org.
Hospice volunteer training
The Connecticut Hospice, Inc. is sponsoring its fall volunteer training this October. The course will inform and prepare prospective volunteers in all aspects of Hospice Care for patients in lower Fairfield County, 203-315-7510, 800-8-HOSPICE ext. 510, email@example.com.
Lunch & learn cancer support
A free Lunch & Learn Cancer Support Group offered by St. Vincent’s third Thursday of the month noon-1, Oncology Conference Room, Elizabeth M. Pfriem SWIM Center for Cancer Care, adjacent to the St. Vincent’s Medical Center, 2800 Main Street, Bridgeport, 203-576-6158, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Al-Anon is a resource for family members and friends affected by alcoholism.
Al-Anon meets Sundays, 6:30 and Wednesdays, 7:30, St. Ann’s, old convent behind church, Brewster Street, Black Rock; Sundays, 7, St. Charles Church, (Spanish meeting), 391 Ogden Street, Bridgeport; Fridays, 8, Bridgeport Mental Health Center, 1635 Central Avenue, first floor (park and enter from parking deck off Mead Street); Monday at 7:30 a.m., and Thursday at 11:30 a.m., at Grace Episcopal Church, 5958 Main Street, Trumbull; Thursday at 8 p.m., at Trinity Episcopal Church, 1734 Huntington Tpke., Trumbull. Alateen helps teens age 12-20 and also meets Thursday at 8 p.m., at Trinity Episcopal Church. There are no dues or fees to participate.
For information about groups in Connecticut, call 1-888-825-2666. For more information about Al-Anon, visit ct-al-anon.org. A free publication is available at Al-AnonFamilyGroups.org.
Do you have a problem with alcohol, drug addiction or any life controlling issue? Are you affected by a loved one’s addiction? Higher Ground Ministry is non-denominational and offers help that is permanent through Biblical truths. Through Higher Ground Ministry you will receive support, encouragement and spiritual guidance that will change your life forever. To find a meeting near you, call 203-888-9974 or visit highergroundministry.org.
Fourth Thursday of the month, 6-7:30, St. Vincent’s Level 4 Seton Conference Room, 203-576-6168.
Free yoga for cancer patients
Restorative yoga, chair yoga with breathing and meditation for patients in active treatment or post-surgery, Tuesdays, 10 a.m., The Watermark, 303 Park Ave., Bridgeport; Thursdays, 10 a.m., Yoga Room, Level 3 of St. Vincent’s Elizabeth Pfriem SWIM Center for Cancer Care, adjacent to the Medical Center. Gentle Yoga, for patients in treatment or recently finished, Saturdays, 8:30 a.m., Yoga for Everybody, 27 Unquowa Road, Fairfield. Formal Yoga, for cancer survivors of five years or less, Wednesdays, 4:30 p.m., The Watermark, 3030 Park Ave., Bridgeport, 203-576-6158.
Free HIV/HCV tests
The Greater Bridgeport Area Prevention Program and the Stratford Health Department will offer rapid HIV and Hepatitis C testing with results in 20 minutes every first and third Tuesday of the month from 3 to 4:30 p.m. at the Stratford Health Dept., 468 Birdseye St., Stratford.
To schedule an appointment call 203-385-4058.
Cancer support group
Ongoing monthly group is focused on giving support to patients and families who have been diagnosed with lung, colon, head and neck, esophageal, GI cancers and other solid tumors. Meetings are the third Wednesday of the month, 9-10 a.m., Elizabeth Pfriem SWIM Center for Cancer Care, third floor conference room, St. V’s, 2800 Main St., Bridgeport. Call 203-576-6158.
Healthy traveler service
Bridgeport Hospital’s Healthy Traveler Service provides pre-travel consultations, travel vaccines, medications and comprehensive travel information to help prepare for a healthy and safe international trip. For information or to make an appointment, call 203-384-3613.
Ring for Your Rhythm
Bridgeport Hospital’s “Ring for Your Rhythm” line provides recorded, step-by-step instructions for taking a pulse reading, to help detect atrial fibrillation (a-fib) and possibly prevent a stroke. Call toll free, 24/7, at 855-247-8573.
Led by licensed acupuncturist Gregor Wei, Mondays, 10-2, Norma F. Pfriem Breast Care Center, 111 Beach Road, Fairfield. Call 203-255-5300 to register. Advance registration requested. Private appointments available.
Massage is offered for oncology patients undergoing definitive active treatment and for survivors who have completed treatment. Call 203-576-6158 for an appointments. Program takes place on third floor of Elizabeth Pfriem SWIM Center for Cancer Care at St. V’s, 2800 Main St., Bridgeport.
Health and wellness classes
St. Vincent’s Medical Center, 2800 Main St., Bridgeport offers a variety of health and wellness classes. Most sessions run for 10 weeks with the exception of Pilates, which is six weeks; and Y Diabetes Prevention Program and Weight Watchers program, 16- and 17-week sessions respectively. 10-week sessions: $90. Information/registration: 203-576-6267; email@example.com.
Free exercise video program
A new online video program called A-B-E (Activity Bursts Everywhere) for Fitness, designed specifically to help adults meet those recommendations for daily physical activity, is available at abeforfitness.com.
Beginner and intermediate level, runs weekly, Fridays, 9:15 a.m., Norma F. Pfriem Breast Care Center, 111 Beach Road, Fairfield. Class size limited to six students. Advance registration requested; 203-255-5300; bridgeporthospital.org. Yoga, restorative yoga and teen yoga classes also available. Call for full class schedule.
Weekly, Mondays, 5:30 p.m., Norma F. Pfriem Breast Care Center, 111 Beach Road, Fairfield. Class size limited to six students. Advance registration requested; 203-255-5300.
St. Vincent’s Wellness Booth has relocated to the main lobby of the Medical Center, 2800 Main Street, Bridgeport. Health screenings and services offered to the public every Tuesday and Wednesday, 11:30-3:30. No appointment required for any of the screenings.
Free blood pressure screenings are performed every Tuesday. On Wednesdays, Cholesterol/HDL ratio/glucose screening, $18; a lipid panel requiring a four-hour fast, $25; blood sugar screening alone requiring a two-hour fast, $1.
For more information call St. Vincent’s toll-free Care Line at 877-255-SVHS (7847).
Heart-disease risk quiz
Bridgeport Hospital offers “Take 10 for Your Ticker,” a free online heart-disease risk quiz. Quiz is available at bridgeporthospital.org, by clicking on the link in the “Take 10 for Your Ticker” box.
For those without access to the Internet, a free printed copy of the quiz, with an explanation of results, is available by calling 1-888-357-2396.
Help for new movers
Bridgeport Hospital’s free Newcomer Concierge Service helps new residents of Bridgeport and surrounding towns locate physicians to meet personal and family health needs. Service also provides information on health-related events and activities. To reach the Newcomer Concierge Service, call 203-330-7462, Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays or Fridays, 9-3.
Atria Stratford Assisted Living, 6911 Main St., offers a support group for family caregivers of persons with Alzheimer’s disease, or related dementia, living at home or in an extended care facility. Group meets first Wednesday of the month, 6-7; 203-380-0006.
Grasmere By The Sea: One Post Road, Fairfield, offers open discussion about Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias, first Thursday of month, 4 p.m.; 203-365-6470.
Jewish Family Service, 2370 Park Ave., Bridgeport, offers support group for family members or friends helping with the care of adults over 60, meets first Wednesday of month, 6-7:30 p.m. RSVP: 366-5438, Ext. 219.
Sunset Shores Adult Day Health Center, 720 Barnum Avenue Cut Off, Stratford, offers a support group for people caring for a loved one with Alzheimer’s disease or a related dementia. Meetings are the second Wednesday of the month, 4-5; 380-1228.
St. Vincent’s SWIM family support group meets first Tuesday of each month, 4-5:30 p.m., Elizabeth Pfriem SWIM Center for Cancer Care at St. V’s, 2800 Main St., Bridgeport. No reservations required; 203-576-6158; firstname.lastname@example.org.
Prostate cancer survivors
St. Vincent’s SWIM Prostate Cancer Survivors Educational Lecture Series and Support Group meets at Elizabeth Pfriem SWIM Center for Cancer Care, at St. V’s, 2800 Main St., Bridgeport. Call 203-576-6158 or e-mail email@example.com for dates and times of lectures. No reservations required.
Breast cancer wellness
St. Vincent’s Breast Cancer Survivor Wellness program, intended for women who have recently undergone breast cancer surgery and those further along in their recovery, 4:30-5:30, Elizabeth Pfriem SWIM Center for Cancer Care at St. V’s, 2800 Main St., Bridgeport. No reservations required. For dates, call 203-576-6158.
Breast cancer stories
Bizymoms.com has helped many women with whatever information it is they may be seeking about breast cancer. A panel of cancer experts, women, wives, and mothers are waiting to share their expertise and stories while learning about yours. Visit bizymoms.com/cares/breastcancer.
St. Vincent’s partners with Saxon-Kent Lingerie of Orange to provide special products for women battling cancer. Boutique hours: Monday-Friday, 10-4. Fitting hours for wigs, prosthesis, mastectomy bras, lymphedema sleeves etc: Tuesdays, 2-4; Wednesdays, 10-noon; or by appointment; 203-576-6158; firstname.lastname@example.org. Boutique hours: 10-4.
Breast cancer support
Woman-to-Woman, an American Cancer Society sponsored support group for women who have had breast cancer or who have been newly diagnosed, meets monthly, 2-4 p.m., Cambridge Manor, 2428 Easton Tpke., Fairfield; 800-889-3340.
Cancer resource library
St. Vincent’s SWIM Cancer Resource Library is open Monday-Friday, 9-5, Maureen Ringel Cancer Resource Library, Elizabeth Pfriem SWIM Center for Cancer Care, St. V’s. Medical Center, 2800 Main St., Bridgeport. A representative is available to assist visitors with navigation of web-based searches, cancer clinical trial searches and direct patient referrals to a variety of free resources Monday-Friday, 9-1.
Trumbull MS support group meets third Tuesday of each month, 6:30-8, Trumbull Library, 33 Quality St. Ed, 445-0118; 1-800- FIGHT MS; ctfightsMS.org.
The American Society For Scleroderma Research has formed a support group for all afflicted by this disease. The group meets every second Thursday, 6:30-7:30, St. Vincent Medical Center, Main Street, Bridgeport; Aimee Turiano or Joy LoSchiavo, 203-273-2034.