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Harrison Medical Center, together with The Doctors Clinic, is hosting a free prostate cancer screening on Sept. 21. Urologists will provide a physical exam and prostate-specific antigen (PSA) blood test from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Harrison HealthPartners Urology, located at 2500 Cherry Ave., Suite 302, in Bremerton.

Prostate cancer is the second-leading cause of cancer death among men, but when it is detected early, the five-year survival rate is close to 100 percent. Men without prior diagnosis of prostate cancer, men 55 or older or 35 or older if there is a family history of prostate cancer, and African American and Latino men age 35 or older, are all eligible for the screening. read more »


BREMERTON — Mental Health First Aid is a nationally acclaimed training course recognized for its effectiveness in educating adults about how to respond to mental health problems and for reducing the stigma that often prevents people from seeking help. Certified instructors from Kitsap Mental Health Services will offer the eight-hour course to the Kitsap community on Sept. 24.

Participants learn to assess a situation and respond to signs of mental health concerns, such as helping a person through a panic attack, or talking with someone who is anxious or depressed. The course is useful for everyday events, and especially helpful to people working with the public. read more »


PR Newswire

SPOKANE — The Washington Health Benefit Exchange has unveiled details of its Customer Support Program for Washington Healthplanfinder — the new way for state residents to find, compare and enroll in health insurance plans starting Oct. 1. The support effort will focus on providing answers to questions about new types of health coverage options and financial help that will be offered to qualifying consumers.

Key to the program is the toll-free Customer Support Center in Spokane, which is now open weekdays from 7:30 a.m. to 8 p.m. by dialing toll-free 1-855-WAFINDER (1-855-923-4633). Consumers can also email customersupport [at] wahbexchange [dot] orgread more »


Business Examiner

Insurance Commissioner Mike Kreidler has reached settlements with Community Health Plan of Washington and Kaiser Foundation Health Plan of the Northwest and approved their 10 plans for sale in the state’s Health Benefit Exchange, the Washington Healthplanfinder.

Consumers in Washington will now have 41 choices in the exchange when open enrollment begins Oct. 1. Community Health Plan of Washington (CHPW) will have three plans available in 26 counties. read more »


There will be a community open house Sept. 13 at the The Orthopaedic Center at Harrison in Silverdale, which is scheduled to open the following week.The community is invited to visit The Orthopaedic Center at Harrison in Silverdale on Sept. 13, from 2-5 p.m. Harrison is hosting a community open house celebrating the center’s opening, which is planned for the following week.

The Orthopaedic Center is the region’s first dedicated orthopaedic specialty care facility. Built adjacent to the existing Harrison Silverdale hospital, the three-story center makes orthopaedic and rehabilitative services conveniently accessible under one roof read more »


The New York Times

United Parcel Service (UPS) has told its white-collar employees that it will stop providing health care coverage to their spouses who can obtain coverage through their own employers, joining an increasing number of companies that are restricting or eliminating spousal health benefits.

UPS, the world’s largest package-delivery company, said its decision was prompted, in part, by “costs associated with” the federal health care law that is commonly called Obamacare. Several health care experts, however, said they believed the company was motivated by a desire to hold down health care costs, rather than because of cost increases under the law. read more »


BREMERTON — Harrison Medical Center opened the its new Wound Care, Hyperbaric Medicine & Infusion Center in Bremerton on Aug. 19. The facility offers innovative treatment through the addition of hyperbaric oxygen chambers and provides specialized care for patients with complex wounds or IV therapy needs.

In partnership with RestorixHealth, the new center brings four hyperbaric oxygen chambers to Bremerton. The addition of hyperbaric oxygen therapy allows patients to receive this care locally, rather than endure what can be painful travel to Seattle or Tacoma. Hyperbaric chambers provide patients 100 percent oxygen under pressure to aid in the healing of wounds. read more »


The planned affiliation between Harrison Medical Center and Tacoma-based Franciscan Health System was cleared to move ahead after the state Department of Health announced last week that the affiliation would not have to go through a certificate-of-need review process.

Harrison announced its plan to join with Franciscan last October, after a nearly yearlong search exploring merger or affiliation options with a larger health system.

“We can enhance the services we offer and build on the economies of scale that a larger organization can provide,” said Harrison president and Chief Executive Officer Scott Bosch. “In light of upcoming national reforms, this partnership helps ensure we keep our enduring promise of exceptional health care to the residents of the Kitsap and Olympic peninsulas and North Mason County, now and for generations to come.” read more »


The Kitsap County Board of Commissioners is considering a slight increase in the sales and use tax, as approved by the state Legislature, to fund mental health and chemical dependency treatment programs in the county. The proposal would add one-tenth of 1 percent to the county’s sales and use tax.

Three informational forums for the public will be held in August about the proposed behavioral health funding. Those meetings will be:

  • Aug. 15, 6:30-8 p.m. at Bainbridge Island City Hall, 280 Madison Ave.
  • Aug. 19, 6:30-8 p.m. at Silverdale Community Center, 9729 Silverdale Way
  • Aug. 28, 6:30-8 p.m. in Commissioners’ Chambers, 619 Division St. in Port Orchard. This meeting will be recorded for future broadcast on local public-access channel BKAT.

The commissioners also are accepting applications from anyone interested in serving on a new Mental Health Advisory Committee read more »

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