2017
two thousand seventeen
Twenty-Seventeen
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By John Addyman

   LYONS (Oct 4 10) – Wayne County Public Health Director Diane Devlin, a nurse who has risen through the ranks to take the reins of the agency, told the supervisors’ Health and Medical Services Committee this morning she’d like to offer a free newborn screening program for new moms.
   The visit from a public health nurse, in the new baby’s home, would include a medical check on the baby, nutritional information, and point out safety and care issues. 


   Walworth Supervisor Bob Plant asked if the nurse would point out concerns in the room where the child’s crib was.
   “Anything we see, safety-wise,” Devlin said.
   Plant asked if the parents would be warned about keeping an aggressive dog, like a pit bull, near an infant.
   “We would discuss safety issues,” Devil said. “Our whole process would be to best educate the family in how to take care of the baby.”
   “I can’t support that program at this time,” said Wolcott Supervisor Kim Park, the committee chair.
   “We need to know what the board of supervisors wants to do with the CHHA (Community Home Health Aide program) first,” added Rose Supervisor Lucinda Collier.
   The CHHA, which provides in-home health services for many county residents and has done so for 65 years, appears to be on a slippery slope. Last week the board of supervisors voted themselves out of the curbside recycling business; the county-run CHHA program seems to have since moved up on the list of what get cuts next.
   On Aug. 21, the supervisors’ 21st Century Committee, which looks at ways to save money, began the process of disbanding the CHHA and selling it off. A public hearing convened on Sep. 23to discuss the closure: but every person who spoke to the board of supervisors recommended keeping the CHHA.
   This morning, County Administrator Jim Marquette told the committee if the process to close the CHHA was to begin (it will take about a year to unfold), the committee needed to make a resolution, pass it, and send it to the full board for its Oct. 19 meeting. After an executive session called to discuss what Park termed as “health cases” – covered under the Open Meetings Law – she immediately announced there would be no resolution coming out of the committee today.
   Devlin had said that CHHA nurses and MOMS (Medicaid Obstetrical Maternal Services) nurses could handle the newborn program. She told the supervisors that the MOMS program, if the CHHA were to be closed, could still continue in a “clinical” setting at WIC (Women, Infants and Children) sites, because the CHHA nurses would no longer be visiting clients in their homes.
   She reminded the supervisors that her department did a community health assessment at the bidding of the state and came up with three priorities – access to care, chronic illnesses and disease, and healthy mothers and children.
   CHHA nurses also have a role in emergency situations – they were pressed into service for H1N1 vaccinations last year and are tasked respond to emergencies at Ginna nuclear power plant, for instance.
   Collier asked how the county would handle emergencies without a CHHA program.
   “You’d have to hire per-diem people,” said Park.
   “If you could find them,” said Devlin.
   The committee also discussed:
   Veterans’ Services – director Jamie Young has resigned and moved out of the area. She was a part-time employee ($17,400 annual salary). Left in the Veterans’ Services agency is one full-time veterans’ services officer and a part-time clerk.
   Young told Marquette before she left that a full-time director was needed. Her schedule prevented her from attending evening and weekend meetings, and that was criticized by veterans’ groups, Collier indicated. The committee went into executive session to discuss employee matters in the agency. No decision was made public.
   Sodus Point Concession Stand – what was for years a thriving, popular feature of Sodus Point county park – the concession stand – became something less popular this year when the old vendor decided not to extend for another season and a new vendor was brought in. The committee noted cleanliness and food quality issues and a general drop-off of business through the summer. The county has an option to renew the contract with the vendor or try a different process for next summer.
   Park Summer – Sarah O’Brien, of the Office of Aging and Youth, provided a report on the Sodus Point Park’s summer. One of the “main events” in the report was a man who set up a chair near the outdoor shower to take picture of young girls. A state trooper and sheriff’s deputy interrogated and searched him and barred him from future visits. The second “main event” was the blue-green algae bloom.
   The park had 18 lifeguards through the summer, with newbie Alex Kehoe of Lyons getting commendations in the report. The park saw 6,903 visitors, and 838 of them participated in a survey – 574 were county residents, 124 came from other parts of New York, 105 were from visiting from 22 states, and 32 park patrons were from four countries (Canada, England, Germany and New Zealand). 
  
   

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