Opportunities to donate blood in Berlin and Colebrook

All eligible blood donors are encouraged to give blood and help save lives in March, Red Cross Month. With the free Red Cross Blood Donor App, donors can schedule and manage donation appointments, access their donor card, track the impact of their donations and earn rewards. Donors can also save up to 15 minutes at the blood drive by using RapidPass to complete their pre-donation reading and health history questions online at before coming to their appointments.

“I've always thought it was the right thing to do, to donate when it was convenient for me,” said Lance Ford. “But after my triplets were born premature and needed transfusions in the neonatal intensive care unit, I decided that it was more important to seek out opportunities to donate, rather than just waiting until it was convenient to me. The Red Cross apps and notifications make it very easy to find a location near you, and they are so courteous, respectful and efficient. There is really no excuse not to donate. It's such a small thing that makes such a big difference!”

March has been recognized as Red Cross Month by every U.S. president since 1943 in celebration of the Red Cross volunteers who help those in need by giving their time, money or blood. Join their ranks by making an appointment to give blood by using the Red Cross Blood Donor App, visiting or calling 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767).

Upcoming blood donation opportunities:

March 23, from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., Androscoggin Valley Hospital, 59 Page Hill Road.
March 24, from 8:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m., Berlin High School, 550 Willard St.

March 21, froom noon to 5 p.m., Congregational Church, 147 Main Street.

Bereavement Support Group for parents who have lost a child

BERLIN — A bereavement group specifically for parents who have lost a child will meet at Catholic Charities, 151 Emery St. Berlin on Tuesday, March 21, from 6 to 7:30 p.m. Future meetings will be scheduled the first and third Tuesday of the month. Pre-registration is requested. For more information contact Nicole Plourde at 752-1325

“In a society which is more inclined to help you hide your pain than to grow through it, it is necessary to make a conscious effort to mourn.” Henry Nouwen

Weeks Wound Healing Center recognized with two national awards for excellence

LANCASTER — The Wound Healing and Hyperbaric Medicine Center at Weeks Medical Center has been recognized with a national award for continued excellence in wound healing.

Leaders, physicians, and clinicians from the Wound Healing and Hyperbaric Medicine Center gathered to celebrate the center’s receipt of the Center of Distinction Award and the Robert A. Warriner III Center of Excellence Award. The Center of Excellence Award is given to Wound Care Centers that have met the highest level of quality standards for a minimum of two consecutive years.

The Wound Healing and Hyperbaric Medicine Center at Weeks has achieved patient satisfaction rates higher than 92 percent and a healing rate of at least 91 percent in less than 31 median days along with several other quality standards for two years in a row. The Wound Healing Center was awarded this honor by Healogics, the nation’s leading and largest wound care management company. The award is named for Dr. Robert Warriner, a pioneer in wound care and the former chief medical officer for Healogics. Across the country, 334 centers received the Center of Distinction Award out of 630 eligible centers. Of those 334 centers, 169 centers, including Weeks, were honored with the Center of Excellence Award.

“We are proud of our excellent team of providers, nurses, and staff at our Wound Healing Center. They provide excellent service to patients and our community,” said Michael Lee, president of Weeks Medical Center.

The Wound Healing Center is a member of the Healogics network of nearly 800 centers, with access to benchmarking data and proven experience treating approximately 2.5 million chronic wounds. The Wound Healing Center offers highly specialized wound care to patients suffering from diabetic ulcers, pressure ulcers, infections, and other chronic wounds that have not healed in a reasonable amount of time. Some of the treatments offered at the Wound Healing Center include negative pressure wound therapy, debridement, application of cellular-based tissue or skin substitutes to the wound, offloading or total contact casts and hyperbaric oxygen therapy.

“We have a very experienced and dedicated team of wound care professionals. They approach each patient with care and compassion. Treatment protocols are implemented and modified based on each individual’ needs. It is a pleasure to work in an environment with such a singular focus” said podiatrist Hal Goolman, co-medical director of the Wound Healing Center.

For more information about the Wound Healing Center at Weeks Medical Center, visit or call (603) 788-5625.

North Country ‘Speaks Up’ against stigma of addiction with panel event

LITTLETON — Last month the Health Improvement Working Group of the North Country Health Consortium convened at Speak Up NH: Changing the way we talk about addiction in the North Country. This panel event gathered North Country community members ranging from addiction and health and human services workers, high school students, and individuals in long-term recovery, to address the issue of social stigmas faced by individuals with an addiction to alcohol and other drugs.

The two-hour event featured a lineup of local experts, including: Ammonoosuc Community Health Services’ Director of Integrated Behavioral Health, Stephen Noyes, LICSW; Hope for New Hampshire Recovery’s Director of Recovery Development, Bernadette Gleeson, along with Manager of Hope’s Berlin Recovery Community Center, Doris Enman, M.Ed.; and Black Crow Project Co-founder and Groveton Student Assistant Counselor, Erik Becker. Through the course of the evening’s presentations and concluding questions and answers section, each speaker shed light on relevant topics spanning: what makes addiction a disease; the concept of raising the “recovery capital” of addicted individuals; the weight of words and reactions to people when it comes to perpetuating stigma; and what it means to recover as a community.

The Changing the way we talk about addiction in the North Country panel event piggybacks on the statewide campaign, Speak Up N.H., an initiative of Partners for a Drug-free New Hampshire. The Speak Up N.H. campaign, which launched in February at the Executive Council Chambers in Concord with the support of Governor Sununu, is a rallying cry to the people of New Hampshire to change the conversation around addiction in order to create a more supportive and inclusive environment that presents individuals with fewer roadblocks to recovery.

Host of the Health Improvement Working Group, the North Country Health Consortium is a non-profit public health agency based in Littleton that collaborates with health and human services providers in northern New Hampshire. To learn more about NCHC, go to

Speak Up NH panel PRNancy Frank, executive director of the North Country Health Consortium, welcomes community members and introduces panelists Stephen Noyes of Ammonoosuc Community Health Services; Erik Becker of Black Crow Project; and Bernadette Gleeson and Doris Enman of Hope for New Hampshire Recovery, at the Speak Up N.H., panel event at the Littleton Opera House. (COURTESY PHOTO)

Cutline: Inpatient beds at AVH get new mattresses

mattresses 1New mattresses are being installed in all inpatient beds at Androscoggin Valley Hospital thanks to a donation from the AVH Auxiliary. Funds to help purchase the mattresses were raised from the AVH Auxiliary Golf Tournament held in June 2016. Pictured from the left, Louise Lessard, director, Medical-Surgical and Intensive Care Units; Beth Isaacson-Dupont, chairperson, Golf Tournament Committee; and James Patry, senior director, Patient Experience and Marketing. This year’s Golf Tournament will be held Friday, June 2. For more information, call Beth at AVH at (603) 326-5661.