Cutline: Residents at Coos County Nursing Home attend River Drivers game

Hockey Game 2017 054Hockey fan residents from the Coos County Nursing Home attend a River Drivers’ game on Sunday, March 19. The residents received special treatment from the Notre Dame arena staff, including a public address announcement welcoming them. After the game, River Drivers Coach Andre Niec and the players invited the residents into the locker room for pictures. According to the staff it was an exciting afternoon for residents Theresa Martineau, Barbara Gagnon, Richard Cloutier, Bill Hale, Edmond Albert, Edward McKinnon, Roger Laberge. (COURTESY PHOTO)

Hockey Game 2017 058Coach Andre Niec with resident Edmond Albert, who many years ago, made ice at the arena. (COURTESY PHOTO)

UNH research finds deaths involving drugs, alcohol and suicide are on the rise

DURHAM — Nationwide, the mortality rate from drugs, alcohol and suicide rose 52 percent from 2000 to 2014, according to new research from the Carsey School of Public Policy at the University of New Hampshire. Most of the increase was driven by a surge in prescription opioid and heroin overdoses.
The research also found that drug, alcohol and suicide mortality rates were highest among middle-aged non-Hispanic white males and growing fastest among non-Hispanic white females.
Among young white men, age 25-34, deaths from drugs, alcohol and suicide exceeded those of the next 10 leading causes of death combined, including accidents, heart disease, cancer, homicide and diabetes. While white males made up 29.5 percent of the young adult populations in 2010-2014, they accounted for 57 percent of all drug, alcohol and suicide deaths.
In 12 states, including Massachusetts and New Hampshire, more than half of all deaths among young white adults between 2010 and 2014 were due to drugs, alcohol or suicide. In the early 2000s, the share of deaths exceeded 40 percent in just one state, Utah.
Shannon Monnat, an assistant professor of rural sociology and demography at Pennsylvania State University and a Carsey fellow, said, "The decade-long surge in opiate mortality has drawn significant media and government attention, but added "The U.S. is not going to 'Narcan' its way out of this."
Monnat said, "The problem is larger than opiates. Focusing only on opiate misuse rather than considering the wider array of harmful health behaviors may lead to ineffective policy strategies.”
The full report can be found at
The Carsey School of Public Policy conducts research, leadership development and engaged scholarship relevant to public policy. They address pressing challenges, striving for innovative, responsive and equitable solutions at all levels of government and in the for-profit and non-profit sectors.

Response partners with manicurists to raise awareness of sexual assault

April is Sexual Assault Awareness Month. Response to Domestic and Sexual Violence Support Center has partnered with local businesses in the community to give a hand in spreading awareness. This year’s campaign goals are to increase awareness surrounding sexual abuse and provide prevention materials and presentations to schools and the community throughout Coos County.

Every 98 seconds, an American is sexually assaulted and every eight minutes, that victim is a child. To raise awareness, Response has partnered with local manicurists in Berlin, Lancaster, and Colebrook using the color teal in conjunction with the sexual assault awareness ribbon to create a fun way to promote awareness and start the conversation. To participate in this campaign stop in at your local manicurists to make an appointment or to gather outreach materials. The manicurists who have partnered with Response are:
• Cheryl Goupil at Nail Garden, Berlin, (603) 752-1001.
• Tanya at Hair Zone, Berlin, (603) 752-9663.
• Denise Bissonette at Shear Perfection, Lancaster, (603) 788-2891.
• Andrea Dauphinais at Country Roots, Colebrook, (603) 237-4700.
For more information, contact Response in Berlin by calling (603) 752-5679, Groveton (603) 636-1747 or the 24/7 Crisis Line: 1-866-662-4220.

Workshop series offers ways to understand a child's challenging behavior

BERLIN — Positive Solutions for Families, a program through Project LAUNCH (Linking Actions for Unmet Needs in Children's Health), is being offered at Brown School in Berlin, for parents of children up to 5 years old. The program offers ways to help understand a child’s challenging behavior, gain strategies to help children learn appropriate behavior and provide support to a child’s social and emotional skills. The free six-week workshop series begins on Thursday, April 6, from 5:50 to 7 p.m. Parents who enroll in this program are provided childcare and a light dinner.

"This is an exceptional workshop and a great opportunity for families here in the North Country to take part in," said Jen Buteau, Family Resource Center family support director.

Buteau has been trained through the Project LAUNCH initiative in Manchester and will be a facilitator along with Ann Tenney from Northern Human Services for the free six-week workshop series.

For information or to the opportunity to enroll in the Positive Solutions for Families workshop, contact The Family Resource Center at (603) 466-5190 ext. 322. The FRC is North Country non-profit with a mission to build healthier families and strong community connections through their Family Support or Project Youth Afterschool programs.

Androscoggin Valley Hospital named one of the Top 100 Critical Access Hospitals in the country

BERLIN — Androscoggin Valley Hospital in Berlin, was named one of the Top 100 Critical Access Hospitals in the United States by iVantage Health Analytics and The Chartis Center for Rural Health.

“This achievement is very gratifying and validates our daily commitment to providing the best health care possible to our community, while maintaining an efficient and effective facility,” said Michael Peterson, FACHE, AVH president. “This recognition is a reflection of the patient focus of our providers, nurses, employees and volunteers.”

Androscoggin Valley Hospital, which has received this recognition six of the past seven years, scored in the top 100 of critical access hospitals on iVantage Health Analytics’ Hospital Strength Index. The index is considered the industry’s most comprehensive rating of rural providers. It provides the data foundation for the annual Rural Relevance Study, and its results are the basis for many of rural health-care awards, advocacy efforts and legislative initiatives. The list of the Top 100 Critical Access Hospitals and more information about the study can be found at

“It’s more important than ever that rural hospitals proactively understand and address performance in the areas of cost, quality, outcomes and patient perspective. iVantage’s Index was designed to serve as this industry model,” said Michael Topchik, national leader of the Chartis Center for Rural Health. “Across the spectrum of performance indicators, there are rural providers that are writing the blueprint for success as they transition to value-based health care. Our analysis shows that this group of top performers exhibits a focused concern for their community needs.”

For more information about Androscoggin Valley Hospital visit