Rotary Health Fair returns for 36th year

As the weather cools and the propensity for getting sick increases, lower Kenai Peninsula resources have a reliable annual resource to turn to — the Rotary Health Fair.

Now in its 36th year, the fair returns this Saturday from 7:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Homer High School. Sponsored by Homer Kachemak Bay Rotary in partnership with South Peninsula Hospital, the health fair brings services, resources and information from all kinds of local health organizations and vendors to the people with its one day, one stop shop-esque approach.

Those who attend can visit one of 72 exhibitors that will be set up throughout the high school commons and gymnasium. They include services like Kenai Physical Therapy, Ninilchik Traditional Council, Anchorage Sleep Center, South Peninsula Haven House, Homer Medical Center, Kachemak Bay Family Planning Clinic, SPH Health and Wellness Department and more.

People heading to the fair also have the chance to win door prizes, with the grand prize being a $250 utility credit, according to Derotha Ferraro, director of public relations and marketing for the hospital.

Also available will be blood tests at a reduced price. Though appointment for these tests are encouraged, walk ins are welcome after 10 a.m. the day of the fair. A basic blood panel will cost $55, according to the flyer for the fair. Specialized labs have the following costs:

• Thyroid free T4: $55

• Testosterone: $55

• Hepatitis C: $50

• PSA: $50

• TSH: $50

• Cardiac CRP: $55

• Vitamin D: $75

• Hemoglobin AIC: $50

Those who have already had their blood tested at the hospital in advance of the fair can pick up their results at the school on Saturday and have a free consultation with a medical professional, who will help them review their results.

In addition, SVT Health and Wellness has 200 free flu shots to give to attendees, provided by the Rotary. There is a limited supply of the senior dose of the vaccine.

There are also a number of free health screenings available, including screenings for vision, hearing diabetes risk assessment, grip strength, gait assessment, longevity test, blood pressure, sit to stand balance, driving evaluation, diabetic foot assessment and more, according to information provided by Ferraro.

Those who take the time to complete a community health needs assessment survey while at the fair will be entered for the chance to win a $100 gift certificate to Ulmer’s Drug and Hardware or Safeway.

For those bringing the kids along, the Great Candy Exchange will also be held during the fair. This is a time for children 10 and younger to bring their candy from trick or treating and trade it for prizes. The candy is then used to help fill out holiday care packages sent to U.S. service men and women, according to Ferarro.

This year marks the year in the three-year rotation used to collect input from the community on the fair. Hospital Auxiliary volunteers will greet people at the doors to the fair and will have short surveys asking about individual and family health needs.

“This helps inform the hospital and MAPP community health coalition what the needs are in the community,” Ferarro wrote. “This is a very important opportunity to be heard.”

For more information, call the Health Fair Hotline at 907-399-3158 or go to sphosp.org.

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