Health briefs: Mercy Health introducing monthly Ask the Expert series

Press Staff Writer

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        Mercy Health wants to make health and wellness topics more accessible through a monthly Ask the Expert series offered via Zoom. All are welcome to join the sessions that features experts providing valuable health and wellness information.
        The one-hour, monthly sessions will be the third Thursday of every month from 12:30-1:30 p.m. To join, participants can call 646-931-3860 or zoom meeting ID: 975 5220 8436. There is no need to pre-register,
        “There are so many factors that contributes to a healthy life and we want to make sure our community has access to information that can help them live more fully,” said Susan Zirkel, community health program coordinator, Mercy Health – St. Vincent Medical Center. “Making this series available virtually just opens the door wider for those who can benefit from the valuable information that our experts have to share.”
        On Feb. 15, the program will discuss heart health, tackling subjects such as risk factors, the benefit of knowing your numbers and the different types of heart disease. Dr. Farah Sharieh, Mercy Health resident physician, will also share how exercise and diet can help stave off heart disease and will be available to answer questions.
        Ask the Expert is the result of Mercy Health’s efforts to address factors that influence the health and wellbeing of the community. In particular, Mercy Health has focused efforts to build the overall health of area residents in the ZIP codes surrounding central city Toledo.
Healthy living workshops
        The Eastern Community YMCA is offering a series of free healthy living workshops and classes which are open to the community.
        Classes include:
        • Heart Attack and Stroke Prevention: The eight-week program is geared toward people who have not experienced a recent cardiac event. The program includes discussions on topics related to high blood pressure including nutrition, exercise and other factors that may contribute to hypertension. Proper use of a blood pressure monitor is demonstrated and each participant will have his/her blood pressure checked every week. Begins Feb. 20 and meets Wednesdays from 10:30-11:30 a.m.
        • Exercise Class for Parkinson's: The “Movement Improvement” class is ongoing and meets Monday and Wednesday from 12-1 p.m. The class is intended to improve functions affected by Parkinson’s including coordination and strength, balance and posture, range and speed of movement and voice volume and cognitive abilities. Participants must be able to walk without a cane or walker.
        Call 419-725-7844 or visit  to reserve a spot.
Mobile mammogram van
        Mercy Health’s mobile mammography unit has visits scheduled throughout the region in February.
        Customized for patient convenience, the unit delivers mammograms to women age 40 and older. It is equipped with 3D technology and offers patients the option of self-compression, meaning she will have the ability to control the compression once she is in position.
        Scheduled stops include:
        • Wednesday, Feb. 14: Old West End Community Health, 2244 Collingwood Blvd.
        • Thursday, Feb. 15: Community Cares Clinic, 2150 S. Byrne Rd., Toledo.
        • Friday, Feb. 16: Mercy Health – Waterville Primary Care, 1222 Pray Blvd.
        • Monday, Feb. 19: Mercy Health – Perrysburg Primary Care, 1103 Village Square.
        • Wednesday, Feb. 21: Wiley Homes Inc., 5250 Renwyck Dr. # D, Toledo.
        • Friday, Feb. 23: Mercy Health – St. Luke’s Campus, 5757 Monclova Rd., Maumee.                 
        • Monday, Feb. 26: Mercy Health – Sylvania Medical Center, 3100 King Rd., Sylvania.
        • Tuesday, Feb. 27: Mercy Health – Perrysburg Lighthouse Way Family Medicine, 7045 Lighthouse Way, Perrysburg.
        • Wednesday, Feb. 28: Mercy Health – Maumee Primary Care, 1657 Holland Rd., Maumee.
        To view the full list of dates and locations, visit
        While mammogram screenings may be covered by insurance, for best coverage, patients should verify if Mercy Health – St. Charles Hospital is an in-network provider with their insurance carrier. Financial assistance programs are available for patients who are uninsured or underinsured (have high deductibles. Call 1-800-929-6626 for more information.
        Mobile mammogram screenings are by appointment only. Call 833-MAMM- VAN to schedule.
        Certified radiologists read all mammograms and because a second look can mean a second chance, all mammograms are double-checked with a computer-aided detection system that detects more breast cancer than mammography alone. The patient and her physician receive a copy of the results.
ProMedica community events
        ProMedica will offer the following community events in February:
        • Feb. 16 – Red Cross Blood Drive, ProMedica Bay Park Hospital, 2801 Bay Park Dr., Oregon, 9 a.m.-2 p.m. in the Michigan/Superior rooms. To schedule an appointment, call 1-800-RED-CROSS or visit and enter sponsor code: BAYPARKHOSP.
        • Feb. 21 – Chronic Illness Peer Support Group, ProMedica Neurosciences Center, 2130 W. Central Ave., Toledo, 6 p.m. The group provides an opportunity to engage with others to share experiences, skills, and resources that can help in navigating chronic illness. Participation is also open to friends and family. No registration is required.
        • Feb. 22 – Stroke Support Group, ProMedica Flower Hospital Conference Center, 5200 Harroun Rd., Sylvania, 4:30 p.m. The group will be discuss neuroplasticity and stroke recovery. Stroke survivors, caregivers and supporters are encouraged to attend. No registration is required.
Magruder Hospital hosts blood drives
        The American Red Cross will host blood drives Fridays, Feb. 23 and March 1 from 10 a.m.-4 p.m. in the Magruder Hospital Conference Center, 615 Fulton St., Port Clinton.
        Appointments are required and may be made by calling 1-800-RED-CROSS or visiting
        Find other nearby blood drives by visiting and entering your ZIP code.
Mercy Health introduces MS support group
        Mercy Health has launched a monthly support group for those living with multiple sclerosis and their families, caregivers and partners. The group meets the first Tuesday of the month at 5:30 p.m. at Mercy Health – Perrysburg Hospital, 12623 Eckel Junction Rd. Meeting will be in Pontius Room.
        Mercy Health neurologist Dr. Anna Bite, the region’s only fellowship-trained physician in multiple sclerosis, will lead the group.
        “A MS diagnosis is life changing, but it isn’t a journey that must be traveled alone. This support group offers a place to learn, and we hope it will serve as another form of healing,” Dr. Bite said. “The group is a place where participants are welcome to share their unique stories in a supportive and uplifting environment.”
        Multiple sclerosis, also known as MS, is a neurological condition that affects the central nervous system (brain, spinal cord). Multiple sclerosis occurs when the body’s immune system attacks and damages myelin. Myelin is a protective sheath that surrounds the body’s nerve fibers. As the disease progresses, the nerves may also deteriorate.
        There are approximately 400,000 cases of MS in the U.S. More women develop the condition than men and frequently are diagnosed between the ages of 20 and 40.
        New to Mercy Health, Dr. Bite completed a fellowship in Multiple Sclerosis and Neuroimmunology at Ohio Health. She is a partner in MS care through the National Multiple Sclerosis Society.
        For more information, visit or contact Abigail Myers at or 419-619-8250. Registration is appreciated but not required.
Ladies’ Night Out
        Wood County Hospital will present a “Ladies’ Night Out” Thursday, Feb. 29 from 5:30-7 p.m. in the surgery waiting area. The hospital is located at 950 W. Wooster St., Bowling Green.
        The free event will focus on important aspects of women’s health that can be easily overlooked.
        Dr. Purvi R. Saraiya, from Wood County Neurology, will share information on headaches and migraines. There will also be information and resources, screenings, tours and giveaways. Attendees will also have a chance to win a drawing for a float spa gift card.
        Registration is requested and may be completed by visiting
Life Line Screening
        Residents living in and around the Oak Harbor area can learn about their risk for cardiovascular disease, osteoporosis, diabetes, and other chronic, serious conditions with Life Line Screenings. Shoreline Church, 769 N. Locust St., Oak Harbor, will host this community event on Tuesday, March 19. Free parking will be available.
        Screenings can check for:
        • The level of plaque buildup in arteries, related to risk for cardiovascular disease, stroke and overall vascular health.
        • HDL and LDL cholesterol levels.
        • Diabetes risk.
        • Kidney and thyroid function and more.
        Package pricing starts at $159. Consultants will work with clients to create a package based on age and risk factors. 
        Pre-registration is required. Call 1-877-237-1287 or visit to schedule or for more information.
Hospice offers grief support
        Hospice of Northwest Ohio offers in-person bereavement groups and private counseling sessions at no charge to anyone in the community who is grieving.
        Current group offerings include:
        • Coping with Loss – A twice monthly interactive support group for adults. Participants will learn about grief and have the opportunity to express and receive support, develop an understanding of loss and discover healthy coping skills.
        Meets the second and fourth Tuesdays of the month from 11 a.m.-12:30 p.m. at the Toledo Center.
        • Spousal or Partner Loss – Twice monthly support group for those who have experienced the death of a spouse or partner. Participants will learn ways to adapt to this life-changing event and to live with/manage loneliness after loss.
        Meets the first and third Wednesdays of the month from 5:30-7:00 p.m. at the Toledo Center; the second and fourth Tuesdays of the month from 3-4:30 p.m. at the Perrysburg Center and starting in March, the second and fourth Wednesdays of the month from 5:30-7 p.m., also at the Perrysburg Center.
        • Gentle Yoga for Grief – A four-week gentle yoga workshop aimed at connecting the mind, body and heart of those who have experienced the loss of a loved one.
        Meets Fridays from 10:30-11:30 a.m. at the Toledo Hospice Center on March 1, 8, 15 and 22; April 5, 12, 19 and 26 and May 3, 10, 17 and 24.
        • Walking through Grief – Twice monthly interactive group for adults who are adjusting to the loss of any loved one. Being outside in nature is one of life’s most healing activities. This is especially true when grieving.
        Meets the first and third Fridays of the month May through October from 10-11 a.m. at the Perrysburg Center.     To assure the best possible group experience, anyone interested in attending must first speak to a member of the Hospice bereavement team by phone to learn about grief support options and determine which group would be the most beneficial. Call 419-661-4001 for more information.
        All bereavement services are provided free of charge and are available to anyone in the community, whether they have had previous involvement with Hospice of Northwest Ohio.
        To learn more about grief and loss, visit
Monthly lab screenings
        Magruder Hospital offers community lab screenings on the second Thursday of each month between 8 and 11:30 a.m. in the Community Clinic, 730 Jefferson St., Port Clinton.
        The main lab test is a CBC, CMP and lipid profile, which includes liver and kidney function, fasting blood sugar, cholesterol, HDL/LDL, triglycerides and a complete blood count (red blood cells, white blood cells, and platelets in the blood) for $50.
        Add-on tests area also available, including:
        • Lipid profile: $20.
        • Hemoglobin A1C: $20.
        • PSA (prostate specific antigen): $30.
        • TSH (thyroid stimulating hormone): $25.
        • Vitamin D: $35.
        Appointments are required and may be made by calling 419-301-4304. Participants are asked to fast for 12 hours prior to their appointment times but can have water. No insurance is accepted. Payment may be made by cash, cash, check or credit card (no American Express).


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