FHSU to sponsor regional stroke prevention and rehabilitation conference

In observance of Stroke Awareness Month, Fort Hays State University's Stroke Research and Wellness Center will team up with several other local and national organizations to sponsor a regional stroke prevention and rehabilitation clinic on Saturday, May 11, beginning at 9 a.m. in the Memorial Union on the FHSU campus.

The conference, "Life After Stroke: Picking Up the Pieces," will include stroke screenings, community education and lectures by stroke survivors, caregivers and healthcare professionals. Topics to be covered include stroke warning signs and information about what to do if they occur.

Also, high risk factors for stroke will be identified and explained, including risk factors which can be controlled by the individual; those which a doctor can help control, such as diabetes or high blood pressure; and those which cannot be controlled, such as genetics and gender.

"If more people are aware of the warning signs of stroke, they will seek medical help immediately and increase their chances for improved quality of life by reducing the devastating effects of stroke and the associated costs of care and rehabilitation," said Sandy Billinger, program manager of the Stroke Research and Wellness Center.

Another feature of the conference is a health fair with booths by the Herndon Clinic, NWKAAA, RehabWorks, Hays Medical Center for Health Improvement, Physical Therapy Plus and the Good Samaritan Center.

Other sponsors of the conference are FHSU's Herndon Speech-Language-Hearing Clinic; McDonald's of Hays, Russell and WaKeeney; Northwest Kansas Area Agency on Aging; American Heart Association and NuStep Inc.

The University of Kansas Medical Center's Northwest Kansas Area Health Education Center and the American Stroke Association will be involved as well.

A special concert by the Stroke Connection Revue, a trio made up of stroke survivors Bob Nichols, Ken Carter and Lenny Nalls, will conclude the conference.

"I believe this is a truly unique conference which will inspire survivors, caregivers and the general population while creating an awareness and providing the necessary public education to help prevent stroke," Billinger said.

The conference is free and open to the public; a buffet lunch is included. To pre-register, call the American Heart Association at 1-800-590-5613, extension 4038.

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Kent Steward, Director   |  ksteward@fhsu.edu  |  Kurt Beyers, Assistant Director   |  kbeyers@fhsu.edu