Seniors enjoy annual health fair

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Seniors Jo Ballard and Nancy Howell pose for a photo at the 2019 Retiree and Senior Health Fair Thursday morning. (Christy Perry for The Cullman Tribune)

CULLMAN, Ala. – Seniors from around Cullman County came out Thursday morning to the Donald E. Green Senior Center for the 2019 Retiree and Senior Health Fair. Organized by the Cullman County Commission on Aging and Cullman Parks, Recreation & Sports Tourism, the fair offered health screenings as well as useful information and resources for a variety of senior issues.

This year’s event had a great turnout according to the Director of the Cullman County Commission on Aging, Dusty Baker.

“The theme today was ‘House Divided,’ so it’s Alabama/Auburn to coincide with football season kicking off,” he said.

The seniors had a great time teasing each other while checking out all the different vendors.

Baker added, “We probably had about 250-300 people come through. This is about connecting community and about them figuring out what’s available to them, especially to our senior population.”

Many of the senior centers from around Cullman County brought groups and Baker explained there was a competition between the senior centers to see which could bring the most people.

As the seniors were waiting for their buses, each had tote bags loaded with goodies and information. Some won some door prizes provided by the agencies, organizations and businesses participating in the event.

One of the services Baker talked to the seniors about is the upcoming open enrollment for Medicare Part D.

He explained, “Oct. 15 through Dec. 7 is the open enrollment for Medicare Part D. During that period, they do Medicare Part D counseling which is their drug and prescription medication. They get them on the right plan based on the prescription and medications they are taking.”

The counseling will be offered at the Commission on Aging office at Sportsman Lake Park.

Baker added, “Our hope is, in the future, to offer our services out in the county through our senior centers.”

“We got just a little bit of everything. I even got a shingles shot,” said Colene Wells from Cold Springs.

Wells was there with Sherry Stricklin, also from Cold Springs. Both ladies came with the Brushy Pond Senior Center. Stricklin was especially appreciative of Investigator Trevor Clemmons from the Cullman County Sheriff’s Office.

Wells laughed, “I tripped, and he caught me.”

Seniors were able to get flu shots from McSwain Pharmacy. Cullman Regional and the Good Samaritan Health Clinic also offered free health screenings including bone density and blood pressure checks from Blue Cross/Blue Shield. More than 30 vendors participated in this year’s health fair.

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Christy Perry

christy@cullmantribune.com