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Health & Wellness
Tuesday, 25 December 2018 23:07

EOMC offering Telemed to students

Eastern Oklahoma Medical Center is proud to offer Telemedicine to students, faculty & staff of both Howe and Poteau Public Schools.


School based telehealth programs keep parents at work and kids in the classroom, a win-win for families and the community.


“The Telemed clinic is just one of the many goals at EOMC and we hope to have Telemed Clinics in all 17 schools in LeFlore county within a 5-year period,” said Amy Lomon, Marketing Director, for EOMC.


“Poteau and Howe are our test schools this year, and we are going live with this service for this school year.”


“I am excited about it, because there is not another hospital in the state offering this to its residents. Telemed has taken off in a big way in Texas, and it is also common in ER settings, but to have this technology at the schools where not only kids can be seen, but so can the faculty and staff of that school.”


The program should cut down on absences.


The Nurse Practitioner examines your child during school, with the assistance of the School Nurse, using video conferencing and medical equipment.


You’ve got enough to worry about at work. Save the travel time and days off it takes to take care of your sick child. The school nurse and our Nurse Practitioner will contact you regarding the care or treatment of your child.


Parents/Guardian must enroll students in the Telehealth program. This service does not replace your child’s regular primary care provider but provides convenient access to medical care when it is needed.


If you are unable to get an immediate appointment and your child needs to be evaluated, EOMC wants to bridge that gap and keep your kids healthy and in the classroom.

Thursday, 20 December 2018 20:45

EOMC’s Walk In Clinic opens 7 days a week

If you are feeling a little under the weather right before the holidays.

Eastern Oklahoma Medical can help.

Try the Walk In Clinic at the Family Medical Clinic.

The clinic is located at 104 Wall Street (across from the hospital).

Their phone number is: 918-635-3576.


Open 7 days a week.


Monday - Friday - 7:30am-5:30pm

Saturday & Sunday - 9:00am-5:00pm

Wednesday, 19 December 2018 13:19

EOMC announces new Pet Visitation Police

Press release

Let's admit it.... We all love our furbabies. Sometimes, the patients at Eastern Oklahoma Medical Center miss their dogs or cats more than they do some of their own family!!


Eastern Oklahoma Medical Center, led by our Board of Trustees, is proud to announce our their new Pet Visitation Policy.

EOMC realizes that the emotional and psychological needs of patients are as important as physical needs. All three must be maintained in balance for the true healing to take place.


Research shows that pet visits may significantly improve morale and possibly lower blood pressure levels in some people. EOMC is supportive of pet visitation as an ongoing commitment to quality health care for its patients.




To obtain the REQUIRED Visiting Animal Health Form, please contact EOMC Infection PreventionIST at 918-635-3322 or email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.



bandana dog

Pictured  are just a few of EOMC's favorite furbabies, and their newly remodeled Atrium, where the pets will have their visits.




atrium 1

Thursday, 13 December 2018 04:51

Plastic Waste: Are We Stuck With It Forever?

By Doug Moss and Roddy Scheer


Dear EarthTalk: Considering all the well-publicized problems with plastic in our oceans, do you think that plastic has any kind of future?

—Lea Mauduit, via


As much as environmentalists shudder at the proposition, it looks like plastics (and plastic waste) are here to stay. Most experts agree that there’s no way to get humans to stop using plastic even if it would benefit the environment. This modern petrochemical-derived material is inexpensive to make, easy to form into various shapes and sizes, and is tough and strong enough to be used in a wide range of applications. We all make use of it in various forms hundreds of times a day just going about our business.


“Plastics are the workhorse material of the modern economy,” reports the consulting firm McKinsey & Co., adding that global production has surged from 15 million to 311 million metric tons yearly between 1964 and 2014. That number is projected to double to over 600 million metric tons in the next 20 years.


But At What Cost?
But the functional benefits of plastic come at a steep price, mostly as non-recyclable waste. Single-use plastics represent a quarter of the total volume of plastics produced and around 95 percent of the value of plastic-packaging material. McKinsey estimates that the single-use plastics industry is worth some $80-$210 billion annually. Plastic’s useful life is often less than a year, yet the material lives on for centuries.


Sadly, only 14 percent of plastic, single-use or otherwise, is recycled, even though much more of it could live another life if recycling processors were equipped and willing to handle it. Europeans manage to re-use a third of their plastic waste; the U.S. has only been able to re-use 10 percent.


Some are looking to so-called “bio-plastics” made from plant wastes instead of petroleum as one solution, but experts worry that even these nouveau greener formulations still won’t break down and go away, especially out at sea. “A lot of plastics labelled biodegradable, like shopping bags, will only break down in temperatures of 50°C and that is not the ocean,” says Jacqueline McGlade of the UN Environment Programme. “They are also not buoyant, so they’re going to sink, so they’re not going to be exposed to UV and break down.”


Getting Circular on Plastic Waste
According to McKinsey, we need to start applying “circular-economy” principles to global plastic-packaging if we want to stem the tide of plastic waste. To get this ball rolling, UK-based sailor Ellen MacArthur, who set the world record in 2005 for fastest solo circumnavigation of the globe, is using her personal foundation to fund the Circular Design Challenge to inspire creative solutions in reducing plastic packaging. Ten early-stage ideas will each receive $10,000 in funding to help get their concepts into production, while bigger operations with more established solutions already in the works can apply for one of three $100,000 awards to further prototyping and production goals. While this funding may represent a drop in the bucket of the kind of resources we’ll need to beat the problem of plastic waste, it sets the wheels in motion to thinking sustainably about the future of plastics and the long term health of our environment.



EarthTalk® is produced by Roddy Scheer & Doug Moss for the 501(c)3 nonprofit EarthTalk. To donate, visit Send questions to: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

From the Editors of E - The Environmental Magazine



Dear EarthTalk: How can I minimize energy and packaging waste this holiday season?
-- Marianne, via e-mail




If you’re dreaming of a green holiday season this year, you’ll have to take care to shop and decorate with the planet in mind. Celebrating the holidays plays a substantial role in the creation of waste during this period as a result of packaging from gifts and surplus food being thrown away and making its way to the landfill. But whether you’re looking forward to a lavish holiday with your friends and family this year or a more minimalist celebration, you can still be green and enjoy the festivities.


One way to reduce your environmental footprint is to shop locally. While online shopping may seem greener, it involves excess packaging (think shipping boxes and padding) and pollution (from miles flown/driven by UPS and FedEX to get purchases to your door). By patronizing nearby businesses instead, you'll be supporting the local economy and reducing pollution. If you do shop online, try to consolidate your purchases into one big order to minimize the number of special trips shippers must make to your house.


Another way to green your holiday celebrations is to switch over from those flashing lights and inflatable snowmen to more subtle displays of holiday spirit. The Center for Global Development reports that Americans consume 6.63 billion kilowatts of electricity annually on holiday lighting and decorations. Instead of being part of the problem, unplug and light some candles. All-natural soy varieties—Real Soy’s ginger or cinnamon-scented candles are popular around the holidays—are friendlier to the environment than traditional petroleum-based paraffin candles.


Holiday cards are another clog on the waste stream during the holiday season, with Americans sending out some 2.65 billion of them each year. Ultimately many end up in landfills—especially if they're covered in glitter or foil—and as such can’t be recycled. E-cards are a great alternative as they express the same sentiment without any waste.


Single-use wrapping paper is yet another environmental scourge of the holidays. An estimated 30 million trees are sacrificed each year to support Americans’ disposable wrapping paper habit, much of which ends up in landfills. An incremental improvement would be to only buy and use wrapping paper that doesn’t contain glitter—or even better just use brown paper—for ease of recycling or composting. Alternatively, shop for fabric gift wrap which can be used over and over again.


Last but not least, is it better for the planet to get a real or fake Christmas tree? A fake tree may save you money in the long run as you can buy it once and use it for many years instead of throwing away $50 a year on a real tree. But most of the fakes come from China (which involves lots of carbon emissions in transit) and contain PVC and other chemicals that make them impossible to recycle. Meanwhile, a real tree can be chipped and returned to the earth as mulch (either by you or your municipality) once January rolls around.


Or even better, buy a live tree and plant it in your yard. That way you can feel the spirit of the holidays year-round and feel good about your commitment to protecting the planet.



CONTACTS: Real Soy Candles,; Center for Global Development,

EarthTalk® is produced by Roddy Scheer & Doug Moss for the 501(c)3 nonprofit EarthTalk. To donate, visit Send questions to: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

By Oklahoma Institute for Child Advocacy CEO Joe Dorman


The holidays are usually a busy time at the Oklahoma Institute for Child Advocacy (OICA), and this year is no exception. We are working hard to make the OK Foster Wishes holiday gift drive a success, and we were excited to assign the last “wish list” submitted by a foster child to one of thousands of Oklahomans who are donating to the effort. Our staff is not only charged with fulfilling over 4,000 of these wish lists, but also locating a warehouse space, generously loaned to us by Hobby Lobby, and running the distribution effort in Oklahoma County (DHS distributes the gifts assembled by OICA to over 60 other counties, and some counties have their own locally run gift drive). Inevitably, some of the wish lists will go unfulfilled, so we are also continuing to raise money to make sure every foster child has a holiday gift. Please consider donating to that effort at


We are also preparing for the end of the year by finalizing our daily desktop calendar, which highlights statistics about child welfare as well as local organizations that work on children’s issues. We would like to thank the many individuals and organizations who helped ensure this data will reach lawmakers. Each senator and representative, our new governor and our congressional delegation will receive a calendar, along with each sponsor. On each page of the calendar is a statistic relating to children in Oklahoma, a message from the sponsor of the day, and information about a youth program working to help Oklahoma kids.


We are also gearing up for the 2019 legislative session. With so many new members, and nearly three-quarters of lawmakers having two years or less experience, it will be a challenge to educate the Legislature about specific policies that need review, revision or a complete overhaul. OICA is prepared for this task as we submitted our own wish list to lawmakers to look at dozens of suggestions to improve the health, well-being and overall quality of life for Oklahoma’s children and their families. You can see our Legislative Agenda at on our website.


I want to thank some of those lawmakers who have stepped up early to provide leadership in this area. I am looking forward to the legislation submitted in a bipartisan fashion by House Floor Leader Jon Echols, R-Oklahoma City and Representative Jason Dunnington, D-Oklahoma City, that will enhance reforms in criminal justice laws to apply to persons who have previously been sentenced under old guidelines. This will allow for a release of non-violent offenders who would not be convicted under current law and allow them, many of whom are parents, to be reunited with their children. Children are six to seven times more likely to go to prison themselves if they have had a parent in prison, and on average, one in ten of Oklahoma’s children have had a parent in prison at some point. Reducing the number of non-violent adults in prison today will inevitably reduce incarceration rates for today’s children as they grow up.


We also appreciate Rep. Carol Bush, R-Tulsa, for her effort last session to create a Trauma Informed Care Task Force, and for the modifications that will be pursued this year by her to include lawmakers and more regional representation in this effort. Rep. Bush will also be carrying several of our other agenda items, as will Rep. Mark Lawson, R-Sapulpa, who is assisting with revisions to foster care laws at our request.


I am also thankful for the new lawmakers who have jumped into the mix: Sen. Darrell Weaver, R-Moore, is working with OICA to craft legislation to help protect young Oklahomans from predators in schools. Rep. Jacob Rosecrants, D-Norman is reintroducing his “Lauren’s Law” legislation to bring knowledge about consent to teenagers. We are also pleased to partner with the Potts Family Foundation to increase participation in the “Early Childhood Caucus” to improve knowledge about trends in that demographic.


It is a busy time of the year, but we are pleased that we are able to do all of this work on behalf of Oklahoma’s youth as their voice at the State Capitol!

Monday, 03 December 2018 13:32

Sensitive Santa Is Coming To A Town Near You



The Pervasive Parenting Center will present Sensitive Santa throughout eastern Oklahoma.


This is an opportunity for anyone with sensory issues or disabilities to meet Santa without standing in the long lines.



For some families with children on the autism spectrum, or with other sensory problems, the holiday season can be overwhelming.


The long lines at stores to get a couple seconds with Santa, which may or may not work out, can be frustrating for a child with autism and the families.


There is an alternative to those lines and hotbeds for meltdowns. The Pervasive Parenting Center will be holding Sensitive Santa. The event is a great way for children with disabilities and sensory issues to enjoy the holiday season.


“Any parent of a child on the spectrum knows that waiting in those long lines is just an invitation to a meltdown. The sights, smells, and long delay can cause a sensory overload that will leave a bad impression of Christmas. Children with disabilities who attend can enjoy a quiet evening with Santa, and don’t have to wait in lines,” said Kodey Toney, Pervasive Parenting Center Director. “This is the seventh year that we have held the event.”


Toney went on to say that Sensitive Santa is soft spoken, unlike the boisterous, jolly soul that we see at the mall. The stereotypical reproduction of the real man from the north is usually too much for a neurotypical child to handle, much less someone that is easily upset by loud sounds. He won’t touch the children unless they come up to him. They don’t have to sit in his lap unless they want to.

“This has been such a blessing for us to sponsor,” said Toney. “Every year we see children interact with Santa that wouldn’t typically get a chance to, and Santa is so patient.”


The children are treated to milk and cookies while they wait, there are games and activities, and someone is on hand to read a book as well. This gives them something to do instead of standing around in a long line.


Santa will be at the Senior Citizen’s Center in Wilburton on Tuesday, Dec. 4;  Carl Albert State College in Sallisaw on Thursday, Dec. 6; Kibois Community Action building in Stigler on Tuesday, Dec. 11; and Carl Albert State College in Poteau, on Thursday, Dec. 13.


These events will begin at 6 p.m. each night. The event is held by appointment only to help with crowding.

Sensitive Santa is open to ALL children with disabilities, not just those on the spectrum. We understand that not all children will feel comfortable around huge crowds, and it’s inconvenient to wait in line with any type of disability. The only thing we ask is that this is for just the children with disabilities; no siblings. Too many children can mean too many distractions.


If you want more information, or to make an appointment, please contact us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., or 918-647-1255 contact us on Facebook at Pervasive Parenting Center.


Monday, 03 December 2018 13:17

OSDH Provides Tips for Winter Driving Safety

Press release


The upcoming holiday season means Oklahomans may often be traveling during potentially dangerous winter weather conditions.


The Oklahoma State Department of Health (OSDH) encourages the public to begin preparation for the upcoming holiday travel season.


Proper planning can reduce the risk of injury and illness while also ensuring a family is prepared for a major winter weather event.

OSDH Emergency Manager Darrell Eberly reminds travelers to check local television and radio reports of weather forecasts prior to making travel plans, and to know what the National Weather Service winter storm and blizzard watches and warnings mean.

“It’s a good idea to minimize travel during hazardous conditions,” said Eberly. “If you have to travel, it’s important to ensure your cell phone is fully charged, keep emergency supplies in the vehicle, and let friends or relatives know about your travel plans.”

Recommended supplies include:
• Blankets
• Snacks/water
• Flashlight/batteries
• Booster cables
• Sand or cat litter for traction
• Battery-powered radio
• First-aid kit

Officials also recommend keeping the vehicle’s fuel tank full to avoid ice in the tank and fuel lines. For travelers who become stranded, it is recommended to stay visible by putting a bright cloth on the antenna, and raising the hood when snow stops falling.
Residents are encouraged to stay tuned to local media reports about current watches, warnings and road conditions.


To learn more about weather advisories, visit


By Oklahoma Institute for Child Advocacy CEO Joe Dorman


With Thanksgiving behind us, ‘tis the season for holiday decorations, non-stop Christmas music on the radio, and a lot of hard work for the public employees, OICA staff and volunteers working to get holiday presents for the roughly 8,000 Oklahoma children in foster care.


That effort begins with caseworkers at the Oklahoma Department of Human Services (DHS), who collect holiday wish lists from each foster child. Next, those wish lists are matched with partner organizations like OK Foster Wishes, the gift drive run by the Oklahoma Institute for Child Advocacy (OICA) that works to fulfill these wish-lists with the help of generous donors.


We are proud to say that OK Foster Wishes is the largest gift-drive for foster children in the state, fulfilling more than half of the Oklahoma foster children’s wish lists. OICA and DHS operate the OK Foster Wishes warehouse (a space being generously lent to us, free of charge, by Hobby Lobby) where gifts are stored, sorted and eventually sent out to children. In Oklahoma County, we work directly to schedule foster family pickups to lighten the workload for DHS caseworkers. In cases where donors are not found, or wish-lists are unavailable, OICA collects unwrapped toys and our staff personally makes shopping runs (funded by monetary donations) to make sure as many gifts as possible are sent out.


If this sounds like a massive operation, it is! It can only succeed with the help of generous and caring Oklahomans. Please be one of them by going to to request one of our remaining 500 wish-lists or to make a monetary donation. You can also call (405) 236-5437 should you need assistance. Contributions ensure this program can continue and not leave a single child out of receiving gifts!


Ensuring that every foster child receives a holiday gift is a team effort, and we are not the only organization working to support this great cause through distributing lists or collecting donations. In Cleveland County, the youth are served by the Secret Santa program, administered by the Citizens Advisory Board. You can request a list from their website at Tulsa County is served by the program Tulsa Advocates for the Protection of Children, and wish lists for those foster children can be requested at by filling out their checklist.


There are other local programs assisting this effort, but In total, OICA supports 54 of the 77 counties. Contact our office if you would specifically like to know which group supports your county.


We are also thankful for other organizations, such as Citizens Caring for Children. They requested 1,200 lists directly from the Department of Human Services to aid in the effort. You can donate to them or request a list from them by emailing Julie at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. with the subject line Joy 4 Kids Wishlist. Oklahoma Lawyers for Children also began a project this year to assist foster youth over the holidays. If you would like to receive a wish list for this group, contact Tsinena at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or DeMarco at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., or you can also call the organization at (405) 232-4453.


As you can see, there many groups working towards one goal: ensuring Oklahoma foster children have a special holiday season. Please join with us to support this effort to assist our foster youth across the state!


OICA volunteers help sort presents at the OK Foster Wishes warehouse (and ensure they are up to North Pole standards)


About OICA
The Oklahoma Institute for Child Advocacy was established in 1983 by a group of citizens, to create a strong advocacy network that would provide a voice for the needs of children and youth in Oklahoma, particularly those in the state’s care and those growing up amid poverty, violence, abuse and neglect, disparities, or other situations that put their lives and future at risk.

Our mission statement: “Creating awareness, taking action and changing policy to improve the health, safety and well-being of Oklahoma’s children.“


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