|There is a reason that the annual 5HealthFair is so popular in Custer County… It’s affordable and lets locals take charge of their health. Self-empowerment through affordable health screenings has been the goal of the 5HealthFair and Custer County citizens always respond with a huge turnout.
This year the health fair takes place on Saturday, April 8 from 7 a.m. till 12 p.m. at the Custer County School Multi-Purpose Room located on the far west side of the building. And while the name of the Health fair in Westcliffe has changed from 9HealthFair to 5HealthFair, it’s still the same organization providing amazingly affordable lab tests.
Last year nearly 600 residents attended the event and even more “owned their health” in 2016. “The 5HealthFair is an excellent event that helps people take control of their health and often ends up saving lives,” commented public health nurse Beth Green. “On more than one occasion the health screens found cancer, several times a chance for an early heart attack. It’s just so easy to come into the health fair and save lives.”
But the health fair is for everyone, not just the elderly. One of the main missions of the health fair this year is to get younger people to come into the fair and get screened. “We often have a hard time reaching the 18 year to 40 year old groups in Custer County because younger people think ‘oh I am young, I am sure I am in good health.’” Preventative health measures work best on younger generations because it can prevent disease and sickness later in life.”
A free offering this year is the very interesting and ongoing “Weigh in and Win” a proven certified weight loss program that pays participants cash as they lose weight. This program in Custer county helps citizens that sign-up lose weight and receive cash for pounds lost with additional money if they keep the weight off.
One of the big changes at the health fair is credit cards will be accepted at the fair. In the past people had to sign up online if they wanted to use a credit card.
Another change is that based on the most current research, the 5Health Fair Medical Advisory Committee has decided that fasting is not required for blood screenings. In fact the board has noticed that people with diabetes should not fast, and that fasting does not have a large impact on the blood screenings.
The Custer County Public Health Department has created a complete list of services that will be available at this year’s fair. The health fair can be broken down into three main types of health services: free screenings, paid but affordable screenings, and free health information.
Free Screenings. The free screening are on a first come/ first served system and include: skin, foot, height/weight/BMI, diabetes risk assessment, memory, lung function, pulse oximetry, blood pressure, body in balance, vision and eye health, sleep apnea, cardiac risk assessment, stress management, nutrition, and hearing.
There are also free screening that do require a prior appointment and will be held at the Custer County Clinic. These include breast exam and prostate and testicular exam. To schedule these free screenings please call 719/783-3369.
Affordable Screenings: The real value of the 5HealthFair is found in blood tests. These tests are heavily discounted compared to going to a hospital or clinic and include: blood chemistry panel for $35, hemoglobin A1C for $30, PSA test for men $30, blood count $20, Vitamin D $45, colon cancer screening kit $25, testosterone for men $35 or women for $45, and vitamin B12 for $20 or free with any other blood test.
Those interested in any of these tests can save time by signing up for online at www.9healthfair.com.
Free Information Tables: During the health fair, there are a lot of tables with people presenting information regarding a wide variety of topics that includes: diabetic education, ask a medical professional, Weigh and Win weight loss program, Search and Rescue, Community Emergency Response Team (CERT), Code Red, Medical Reserve Corps, Vali Assisted Living, CO Beef Council, Senior Citizens Center, Public Health, Friends of the Library, Alzheimers Assoc. of Southern Colorado, Drive Smart, Magic Moments, Family Crisis, WMFD Ladies Auxiliary, Sexual Assault Nurse, Club America, Cooking Matters, Healthy Heart, and Custer County Social Services.
For more information on the health fair and to schedule an appointment online please visit www.9healthfair.org, call 303-698-4455 or 1-800-332-3078.