Friday, February 3, 2012

CVHC Doctors advocate for drug free youth

Taylor Kelso, Dr. Phil Petersen, and David Olson demonstrate some props used to showcase healthy lifestyle choices at the 2012 OES Health Fair. 

A Health Fair was held Jan. 26 at Orofino Elementary school for grades K-7 where students visited twenty different stations throughout the day. Presenters focused on health issues and came from a wide range of local businesses and organizations including the Orofino Police Department, Sunnyside Fire Department, LCSC Outreach, Clearwater Valley Hospital and Clinics and several others. Topics that were covered were exercise, bone health, germ awareness, internet safety, spine care, boating safety, goal setting and healthy choices. 

 “We wanted to have a broad range of presentations to really cover every area that is related to health. We asked Dr. Petersen and Dr. Meza to focus on healthy lifestyles that are free of drugs, alcohol and tobacco,” says Angie Baldus, OES Principal.

Dr. Phil Petersen, Physician at CVHC, presented to the morning classes and spoke about smoking in terms of lifelong cost, “How much does a pack of cigarettes cost? Five dollars? Some people smoke one, two and three packs a day! That’s really going to add up over time,” as he held up a little red sports car toy, “If you’re smoking three packs a day, there’s no way you’ll ever be able to afford a car like this!”

Dr. Michael Meza, Physician at CVHC, took over for the afternoon classes and continued on the same track. “The children at all age levels seemed to really enjoy the discussion and many had great questions. We spoke about the importance of healthy decisions, in an attempt to learn healthy behaviors throughout life,” says Meza.

Dr. Petersen recently joined a task force based in Coeur d’Alene that aims to deter kids from using any type of prescription medications that are not prescribed to them. “I know the interest is here to get something similar started in this community. There are a lot of people from the hospital who I think would want to participate and I’m hoping to find more potential members, possibly through the K-12 Roundtable. It’s a very important issue that needs to be addressed here in Orofino as well as all over Idaho,” says Petersen. 

“The Health Fair was a great success that the kids enjoyed and learned a lot from. We hope to do it again next year and continue teaching our kids about healthy, safe, productive lifestyles,” says Baldus.

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