Healthy Connections, Inc., and CEO Tony Calandro have been named finalists in the Arkansas Business 33rd Annual Business of the Year awards.
Healthy Connections, Inc., is a finalist for Nonprofit Organization of the Year, while Calandro is a finalist for Nonprofit Executive of the Year. The winners of each category will be revealed at the awards ceremony on March 3, 2021. Finalists were selected by an outside panel of judges and coordinated by Arkansas Business. Thirty-two finalists are selected from across the state in seven categories. See the complete list of finalists at www.ArkansasBusiness.com/ABOY.
Healthy Connections is a Mena-based nonprofit community health network with clinic locations in Mena, Hot Springs, Little Rock, Malvern, Arkadelphia, Mount Ida, and De Queen. Since its founding as a home-visiting program in 1998, Healthy Connections has been able to provide much-needed health, dental, behavioral health, and social services to families of every lifestyle.
Dr. Moore, who joined Healthy Connections in 2019, also sees patients in Hot Springs, Arkadelphia, and Little Rock. He will now come to Mena two days each month to see patients at 136 Health Park Lane, which is the flagship location for Healthy Connections.
The Healthy Connections Community Health Network is made up of primary care, pediatrics, specialty, behavioral health, and dental clinics throughout west and Central Arkansas. Healthy Connections is a Federally Qualified Health Center (FQHC) and accepts Medicaid, ARKids 1st, Medicare, and most private health insurance. There is also a sliding-fee scale for patients without health insurance who qualify. Note that Medicaid patients may be required to switch their primary care provider to Healthy Connections before they can be seen.
We’re excited to announce our January 2021 Healthy Connections Community Health Network employees of the month:
WEST: TERESA PARKS
EAST: JEREMY PORTER
Each month we ask for employees to be nominated for this award for their exemplification of the Healthy Connections Three Pillars: Excellence, Compassion, and Community. These pillars are considered heavily when choosing winners.
As winners, Teresa and Dr. Porter are winners of a $50 gift card or one day off work.
Teresa works in billing for Healthy Connections. Her co-workers nominated her for this award:
“She has gone over and above her normal duties in the last few months. She has stepped in and completed not only her work with excellence but has also the work of her coworkers who have been out due to sickness. She is always asking what she can do to help her department. She never seeks recognition for this, but I believe she deserves it for her selfless acts to continually better the billing department and the company.”
“Teresa is always easy to work with. If you need help understanding a Billing question, she is always ready, willing, and able to help you. She also will find out the answer if she doesn’t know it. AWESOME person to work with.”
“Teresa is always there to help. Whether it is a question to try and understand billing or to fix a billing problem. She is always nice no matter if she has to go way out of her way to help out. I couldn’t imagine not being able to call someone as knowledgeable as her.”
“Dr. Porter always has a bright smile on his face and is kind to everyone he encounters. He takes his time with his patients and works hard to ensure he addresses all of their needs and concerns. He works well with his staff, as well as coordinating with other providers for integrated care.”
“This man is always an example of excellence in patient care. He is compassionate with all of his patients and the staff. He is always available to consult for pediatric patients even if they are not his patients. He always makes the children feel safe.”
“I work with many of Dr. Porter’s patients and families. They always have wonderful things to say about him as their provider. He takes time to listen to his patients and make sure that he explains things in terms that they can fully understand their condition and treatment. He is always very kind to coworkers and works hard to integrate care for his patients and families by maintaining communication with other providers involved in their care.”
February is recognized as National Children’s Dental Health Month. This observance brings together dental and healthcare professionals to promote the benefits of good oral health to children, their caregivers, teaches, and many others.
Healthy Connections offers dental services for both children and adults at our Community Health Network clinics in Mena (136 Health Park Lane) and Hot Springs (1723 Malvern Ave. Call 888-710-8220 for appointments. Visit www.healthy-connections.org/teeth for more info.
It quite possible many parents will have a common refrain at dinnertime tonight: “You’d better eat that. It’s good for you.”
But there’s another old favorite in the parental arsenal of dietary admonitions: “Don’t eat that. It’ll rot your teeth.”
Now more than ever, children are faced with a bewildering array of food choices – from fresh produce to sugar-laden processed convenience meals and snack foods. What children eat and when they eat it may affect not only their general health but also their oral health.
Americans are consuming foods and drink high in sugar and starches more often and in larger portions than ever before. It’s clear that junk foods and drinks gradually have replaced nutritious beverages and foods for many people. For example, in the U.S., on average, individuals consume approximately 50 gallons of sugary beverages per year! Alarmingly, a steady diet of sugary foods and drinks can ruin teeth, especially among those who snack throughout the day.
Common activities may contribute to the tendency toward tooth decay. These include – grazing habitually on foods with minimal nutritional value, and frequently sipping on sugary drinks. Consuming too much sugar can also affect your overall health, such as becoming overweight/obese, or getting heart disease or Type 2 diabetes.
When sugar is consumed over and over again in large, often hidden amounts, the harmful effect on teeth can be dramatic. Sugar on teeth provides food for bacteria, which produce acid. The acid in turn can eat away the enamel on teeth. Almost all foods have some type of sugar that cannot and should not be eliminated from our diets.
Many of these foods contain important nutrients and add enjoyment to eating. But there is a risk for tooth decay from a diet high in sugars and starches. Starches can be found in everything from bread to pretzels to salad dressing, so read labels and plan carefully for a balanced, nutritious diet for you and your children.
Reduce your children’s risk of tooth decay:
Sugary foods and drinks should be consumed with meals. Saliva production increases during meals and helps neutralize acid production and rinse food particles from the mouth.
Limit between-meal snacks. If children crave a snack, offer them nutritious foods.
If your children chew gum, make it sugarless.
Chewing sugarless gum after eating can increase saliva flow and help wash out food and decay-producing acid.
Monitor beverage consumption. Children should make healthy beverage choices such as water and low-fat milk.
Help your children develop good brushing and flossing habits.
Schedule regular dental visits. Call 888-710-8220 to schedule appointments with the Healthy Connections Community Health Network. We offer dental services in both Mena and Hot Springs.
February is recognized as American Heart Month, a time in which we spread the word about strategies for preventing heart disease and encourage people to live heart-healthy lives.
Did you know the Healthy Connections Community Health Network offers cardiology and cardiovascular disease treatment in both Mena and Hot Springs? Visit www.healthy-connections.org/heart for more information.
Friday, February 5, 2021, is designated as National Wear Red Day as part of the American Heart Association’s Go Red for Women initiative. For information on this event, visit www.goredforwomen.org.
Heart disease is the leading cause of death for men and women in the United States. In most years, 1 in 4 deaths is caused by heart disease. The good news is that heart disease can often be prevented when people make healthy choices and manage their health conditions. Communities, health professionals, including those at Healthy Connections, and families can work together to create opportunities for people to make healthier choices.
During the Covid-19 pandemic, many people have delated or avoided going to hospitals for heart attacks and strokes – netting poorer outcomes and prompting the AHA to create “Don’t Die of Doubt,” a national awareness campaign that reminds people that hospitals are the safest place to go when you have symptoms.
Also during the pandemic, more people have engaged in unhealthy lifestyle behaviors such as poor eating, drinking more alcohol, and limiting physical activity. These factors can contribute to heart disease.
Heart disease continues to be the greatest health threat to Americans and is still the leading cause of death worldwide, according to the AHA’s Heart Disease and Stroke Statistics 2021 update. The report a 17.1 increase and a 26.6 percent increase in cardiovascular disease over the past decade.
In most cases, heart disease is preventable when people adopt a healthy lifestyle, which includes not smoking, maintaining a healthy weight, controlling blood sugar and cholesterol, treating high blood pressure, getting at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity physical activity a week, and getting regular checkups.
If you have questions about your heart, please make an appointment at our cardiology clinics in Mena or Hot Springs by calling 888-710-8220. Learn more at www.healthy-connections.org/heart.