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Health Center Today, March 26, 2010

Fair Offers Something for Everyone

By Chris Kaminski

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From learning about personal safety to environmental tips to taking a chance at an hourly drawing, the annual UConn Health Center Health, Safety, and Environment Fair had something to offer everyone.

Reminiscent of a country fair, the Food Court was transformed into a carnival-like atmosphere complete with fair booths, spinning wheels, and popcorn. Tables manned by Health Center staff and partnering organizations provided information about programs and services throughout the day.

"I think itís wonderful that the Health Center does this every year because you always learn something new and the giveaways are great," said Elissa Simon, Health Information Management. Fair participants included the Diabetes Education Program, Know Better Place, University Dentists, Department of Dermatology, Employee Health Service, Research Safety, Calhoun Cardiology Center, Rehabilitation Services, Nursing Department, the Auxiliary, and many, many more. In addition, cholesterol and blood pressure screenings were offered as well as information about smoking cessation, lifestyle modification, health resources, skin care, and patient safety.

New to the fair was the addition of "Safety Jeopardy." Based on the popular quiz show, five teams challenged each other and tested their safety knowledge. Hosted by the Health Centerís own Steven Jacobs, Research Safety, the teams responded to categories focused on safety ranging from very easy to extremely difficult. The teams had fun competing against each other and the audience got to check their own safety knowledge.

This yearís event was not limited to just the Food Court. Staff at Munson Road, and East and West Health Partners also enjoyed a taste of the fair. At the Munson Road location, many took advantage of the self-defense and Zumba demonstrations. "The demonstrations were a great way to bring the fair to us," said Mark Dombrofski, Patient Services.

"The fair is a wonderful way to showcase not only Health Center services and providers but also a way to partner with other organizations that are important when thinking about health, safety, and the environment such as the American Red Cross, Haitian Relief Foundation, and the Department of Transportation. Itís a wonderful way for the entire Health Center community to get together and have some fun and discover something new at the same time," said Pamela Miles, co-chairperson of the fair.

This yearís event was dedicated in memory of Marcia Trapť-Cardoso, M.D., former medical director of Employee Health Service, who was passionate about ensuring the health and safety of Health Center employees.