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The slimmed-down Francis and Margaret Mercado with their two children, after their intensive weight-loss program.Like many people who struggle with weight their entire lives, Francis Mercado has tried different things through the years but always gained back the weight he lost. But when he stepped on a scale at a relative’s home in April 2011 and watched the needle inch past 290, he couldn’t believe it.

“I thought it was broken,” he said. read more »

Bremerton chiropractic clinic specializes in using technique for injury rehab

Forrest Hartford of Smith Chiropractic uses the Active Release Technique in working on the foot flexor muscles of Kasy Kiarash, a player for the Kitsap Pumas soccer team.Like many runners, Ryan Chapman was not new to the issue of pains and injuries. The Bremerton athlete and triathlon coach also knew that recovering from those injuries often meant down time. One of Chapman’s struggles was pain from ITBS (Iliotibial Band Syndrome), a common injury among runners caused by an inflammation or tightness of the IT band.

“I have a weaker right hip and I was compensating for it by using other muscles excessively,” Chapman said. read more »


The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, which becomes fully effective in 2014, requires the states to operate a Small Business Health Options Program, or SHOP, as part of the health exchanges set up to provide individual and small-business plans.

The SHOP is for employers with 50 or fewer employees. When Washington state’s exchange, called Washington Healthplanfinder, opens for enrollment later this year, however, most employers will not have access to SHOP. Although seven carriers filed letters of intent to participate in SHOP earlier this year, only one of them, Kaiser Foundation Healthplan of the Northwest, has a plan for approval. By contrast, 57 health insurers submitted for approval a total of 229 plan options for individuals and families. read more »


Dr. David Gent has owned Kitsap Foot and Ankle Clinic in Bremerton since 2002.Bremerton-based Kitsap Foot and Ankle Clinic has been adding new services and physicians for the past year. And now, the practice is expanding again, getting ready to open a location in Port Orchard in August.

Dr. David Gent, who has owned the business since 2002, said he’s been contemplating the expansion to South Kitsap for some time. The addition of Dr. Andrew Hune and Dr. Kirsten Grau to the medical staff last year made that expansion possible.

The Port Orchard clinic, located on Pottery Avenue in the Cedar Heights Professional Center, will initially be open a couple of days a week. read more »


Retailers are pushing for changes to the Affordable Care Act that would redefine full-time employment and greatly change health care eligibility.

The National Retail Federation appeared before a Congressional panel last week to raise concerns about the ACA (Obamacare). They cited confusion about the many regulations and looming deadline to comply as reasons to delay implementing the act, but emphasis was put on changing the act’s definition of full — vs. part-time employees.

Under Obamacare, full-time employees are those who work a minimum of 30 hours a week, in contrast to the 40 hours per week historical definition of full-time. read more »


The Washington State Department of Labor & Industries (L&I) offers solutions to help injured workers recover while controlling workers’ comp costs for employers:

  • Create and support light-duty jobs.
  • Encourage injured workers to file a report of accident online.

Both these return-to-work, best-practice strategies help keep an injured employee connected to the workplace as part of the recovery process. These practices not only benefit the worker, but help the business manage workers’ comp costs.

Stay at Work reimburses qualified employers for half the injured worker’s base wages when given a light-duty or transitional job during recovery. read more »


The public is invited to an informational community meeting on June 23 from 2-4 p.m. at the Gig Harbor Public Library. The speaker will be Michelle Vest, who will discuss the effects of the Affordable Care Act (commonly known as ObamaCare) on health care.

The presentation will cover:

  1. The Health Benefit Exchange — who, what, where, when
  2. Expansion of Medicaid — who, what, where, when
  3. Changes the average citizen will see in the doctor’s office, the emergency room, and in hospitals. These changes focus on care coordination, illness prevention and patient involvement in care.

There will also be time for questions.

The Gig Harbor Library is at 4424 Point Fosdick Drive NW. read more »


BREMERTON — The Kitsap Public Health District has released its annual health “report card” for Kitsap County. First released in 2006, the district’s Kitsap County Core Public Health Indicators report is a synthesis of population and public health data that provides an overview of the health of Kitsap County residents and their surroundings.

The report is available online at this link.

The report includes social and economic, physical environment, health care, and personal behavior indicator data, all impacting public health. read more »


Traditional Chinese medicine practitioner Kieran Jones, a licenses acupunturist, will present a class on utilizing acupressure to reduce symptoms of pain, insomnia, stress, fatigue and digestive upset.

The free event will be held at 6:30 p.m. June 10 at Chiropractic Lifestyle Center, 991 NE Riddell Road in Bremerton. Refreshments will be provided.

The session is limited to 30 participants. To reserve a place, call (360) 373-2225.

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