Lakewood Health Care

Cuyahoga Board Of Developmental Disabilities Helps In Many Ways

March is Developmental Disabilities Awareness Month. Do you know about the local board that assists county residents with DD?

The Cuyahoga County Board of Developmental Disabilities (Cuyahoga DD) supports and empowers people with DD to live, learn, work and play in our community.

When applying for eligibility, you might talk to different people depending on your age. Services for children ages 0-3 are administrated by Bright Beginnings: call 216-698-7500. Services for people age three through adulthood should call Cuyahoga DD Eligibility at 216-736-2673. In any case, your needs will be assessed, and you will learn if you qualify for services.

Cuyahoga DD supports people in many ways, based on your age and what you need to live a full life. Sometimes, Cuyahoga DD provides the services, which can range from helping people navigate public transit or prepare for their BMV temps exam, to recommending adaptive technology for greater independence, or helping people living at home cover expenses for specific items or services. Other times, you’ll be referred or introduced to other partners or caregivers who can help you achieve your goals.


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Volume 20, Issue 4, Posted 1:44 PM, 02.21.2024

Find Your Fit

Many people understand that coverage under the Affordable Care Act (ACA) is available to those who don’t have access to health insurance through an employer. Typically, these folks include members of the self-employed workforce, people who have no health insurance, and people whose employer doesn’t provide health insurance. There have been some changes to the available ACA options for the coming year, says Carl Lishing, a licensed insurance agent with HealthMarkets Insurance Agency.

“New, affordable plans may be available. Plans and prices change every year. Your situation may have changed, too. You may find plans with coverage and features that better meet your needs—especially if you had or expect income or household changes,” he says. “One change, for example, is if a married couple is on one spouse’s insurance plan through an employer but finds the plan cost is too high. The add-on spouse can explore his or her options in the ACA marketplace to determine if there might be a  more affordable fit. The primary person carrying the insurance can stay with the employer-provided plan, but the spouse can look at options under the ACA.”

The Open Enrollment Period for the ACA runs from Wednesday, November 1, to Friday, December 15, which is the deadline to enroll to make sure you have coverage starting January 1, 2024. During that time, people can consider other plans that may be a better fit for their needs or opt to stay with the plan they had last year.

Subsidies May Play a Role:

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Volume 19, Issue 22, Posted 11:05 AM, 11.22.2023

University Hospitals Announces New Urgent Care Facility Location

UH Urgent Care Lakewood West opened October 23, and is located at 14800 Madison Avenue, in Lakewood on a busy road across from Walgreens in a popular neighborhood. Beginning November 1, all UH Urgent Care facilities, including this new location, will be open from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. seven days a week, with special hours on some holidays. This new convenient location in Lakewood will increase patient access to care.
“Our UH Urgent Care delivery model aims to provide the most convenient and valuable care for our patients,” explained UH Chief Operating Officer Paul Hinchey, MD, MBA. “Having easy access to urgent care locations provide a more affordable option than emergency departments for patients who don’t have a primary care physician but need immediate, non-life-threatening medical attention. By offering more urgent care locations, we can relieve the burden on emergency departments and reduce wait times so our emergency medicine teams can focus on critical cases.”

The new facility will be equipped with advanced medical technology and staffed by experienced healthcare professionals dedicated to providing compassionate, efficient, and personalized care to patients of all ages.
UH Urgent Care President Lee Resnick, MD, looks forward to the expansion. "Our primary goal is to reimagine urgent care for Northeast Ohio by removing obstacles and easing access to care while delivering exceptional patient experiences,” Dr. Resnick said. “The expansion of UH Urgent Care in Northeast Ohio is a significant step towards fulfilling this commitment. By increasing access to urgent care services, we aim to make a positive impact on the lives of individuals and families throughout the region, providing them with the prompt and effective care they deserve in retail locations where they live, shop and work.

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Volume 19, Issue 21, Posted 9:45 AM, 11.08.2023

Lakewood Black Caucus Attacks RBF In The Black Room

What is RBF or Racial Battle Fatigue? In general, Racial Battle Fatigue explains how the social environment such as institutions, policies, practices, traditions, groups and individuals, perpetuate race related stressors that adversely affect the health and mental health of People of Color, but especially African Americans. Black people are chronically having race related stress responses in historically white institutions and environments that consume valuable time and energy.

One of the tools used to fight RBF is the Black Room. The Black Room is an environment that allows Black people to de-stress and relax. Also, it allows people to speak freely and express how they feel without fear of judgment.

Lakewood Black Caucus has initiated a program that allows Black people in Lakewood a safe space for education, expression and relaxation. While LBC provides several programs for the general public to enjoy each year, this particular program focuses on helping Black people in our community. Lakewood does not have Black neighborhoods, and LBC would like to provide a neighborhood feel which is missing in our daily lives.


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Volume 19, Issue 13, Posted 6:16 PM, 07.05.2023

New Family Education And Support Group In Lakewood For Persons Who Have Concerns About Their Loved One’s Use, Misuse Or Addictive Use Of Alcohol Or Other Drugs

The City of Lakewood’s Division of Human Services is doing something unique for the Lakewood community. Starting May 13th, the City will be sponsoring an education and support group program for parents, spouses, other family members and significant others who are concerned about a loved one’s abuse or addictive use of alcohol or other drugs. With funds made available to the City of Lakewood from the Opioid Settlement, the Department of Human Services and City Administration made a strategic decision to make this program available to the residents of Lakewood and others who could benefit from it.

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Volume 19, Issue 9, Posted 12:21 PM, 05.03.2023

Holidays In Lakewood Healthcare

Kicking off the Holiday season with giving, O’Neill Healthcare’s 6 locations collected and donated over one thousand pounds of non-perishables and canned food items for the Greater Cleveland Food Bank and other local hunger centers! O’Neill Healthcare partnered with The Greater Cleveland Food Bank and its’ 230 local food pantries and ninety mobile pantries to feed over 343,000 people across sixcounties in Northeast Ohio. “Our facilities staff, residents, and their family members here at O’Neill Healthcare joined together to make an amazing donation to the food bank to help spread the holiday spirit. As a family business, we understand the importance of support and being there in times of need.
We are grateful to help the Greater Cleveland Food Bank.” David T. O’Neill, LNHA, MBA, Director of Operations.

O’Neill Healthcare has also opened its doors to family and community members hosting warm, traditional-style gatherings. Each building was excited to be again able to host these parties as families sat with their loved ones to enjoy a holiday meal. “It is a welcome sight to have our families back in our communities to celebrate the holidays with a classic meal. For years, holiday dinners have been a tradition of our communities that staff and residents love. We look forward to hosting future events in our buildings for both family members and members of our surrounding communities.” Richard O’Neill, LNHA, Director of Business Development. All O’Neill Healthcare Assisted Living communities actively participate in their cities and look forward to hosting educational programs, dances, dinners, and more!


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Volume 19, Issue 1, Posted 2:14 PM, 01.04.2023

Engaging In Wellness Day On April 30 Free Event Aims To Help Students, Parents, And Others Prioritize Their Overall Health

The World Health Organization estimates that global anxiety and depression increased by 25% the first year of the Covid-19 pandemic. Locally, many people are still struggling with the effects of the isolation, stress and fear caused by the uncertainty of the pandemic’s reach.

In response, the Lakewood Council of PTAs teamed up with its counterpart organization, Lakewood City School District, to bring "Engaging with Wellness Day 2022" to the Lakewood community. The event takes place Saturday, April 30th from 10 am to 3 pm at Lakewood High School, 14100 Franklin Avenue in Lakewood, Door 32.

Mental, physical and spiritual wellness professionals from northeast Ohio will join employees of the school district to share ways to not only improve health, but look for signs that a loved one’s health may be in jeopardy. Staff members from Ebb & Flow Counseling, the Cleveland Clinic, Holistic Health Cleveland and the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) Greater Cleveland are among the presenters.

Topics include identifying adolescent anxiety and depression, yoga as a way to lessen stress and trauma, proper diet and sleep, and the role of breathing and meditation. A dance demonstration will take place in the gym courtesy of The Beck Center. The schedule of presenters and their sessions can be found at the following link:


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Volume 18, Issue 8, Posted 2:58 PM, 04.20.2022

MetroHealth Holding Minority Men's Health Fair April 28

The MetroHealth System’s Minority Men’s Health Fair will be held be held from 5–8:30 p.m. Thursday, April 28, in three locations. The free event will feature health screenings and education at:

  • MetroHealth Cleveland Heights Medical Center, 10 Severance Circle
  • MetroHealth Broadway Health Center, 6835 Broadway Ave., Cleveland.
  • The MetroHealth’s Main Campus Outpatient Pavilion, on West 25th Street in Cleveland

When I first envisioned the idea of a free health fair for minority men nearly 20 years ago, I did so because I wanted to do my part to help eliminate health disparities – that is, the higher incidences of disease and poorer health outcomes among different groups of people. As a urologist and kidney transplant surgeon, I’ve seen first-hand the devastating effects that happen when Black and other minority men don’t have early access to health care.

I founded the Minority Men’s Health Fair while working at Cleveland Clinic. After being there just shy of 28 years, I transitioned to The MetroHealth System in September 2021. In addition to seeing patients at the Cleveland Heights Medical Center and Lyndhurst Health Center, I am Medical Director of the Office of Equity, Inclusion and Diversity. My role allows me to take an active part in MetroHealth’s recruitment of diverse medical staff and in helping to shape MetroHealth’s first Minority Men’s Health Fair. 

Although the word “minority” is part of the name, our event is fully inclusive. Men from all racial and ethnic backgrounds can take advantage of more than 30 free health screenings and health examinations for prostate cancer, hypertension, health disease, diabetes and dozens of other conditions and illnesses. Women are also invited to attend.


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Volume 18, Issue 7, Posted 9:33 AM, 04.06.2022

Farrell Foundation For Brain Health Receives Three Arches Grant

Art. Education. Music. Companionship. In the community.

A recent grant to the Carolyn L. Farrell Foundation for Brain Health from Three Arches Foundation will provide expanded opportunities and assistance for individuals with dementia and their care partners --where they live.

With the $65,000 award, the Farrell Foundation will implement an extensive community outreach program to continue services at its Westlake center but also bring activities into local facilities. The Center for Brain Health currently offers programming including enrichment, creative initiatives, and companionship, but Executive Director Jerry Devis says the new grant will now allow The Carolyn L. Farrell Foundation for Brain Health to reach further into the community.

“With this generous Three Arches Foundation operating support,” Devis says, “we will now be able to engage with clients and their care partners where they live, cooperating with health professionals  and existing programs.

“We can bring the enrichment, creative engagement and connection to recreation centers, cultural and residential facilities. We also hope to reach out to health care professionals to promote the latest interventions,” Devis continues. “These programs cannot present a ‘cure,’  but they can greatly improve the quality of life for people with dementia and other brain health challenges.” 


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Volume 18, Issue 6, Posted 12:27 PM, 03.02.2022

Neighborhood Family Practice Commemorates Opening Of Recently Relocated North Coast Community Health Center

On Monday, January 10, Neighborhood Family Practice (NFP) opened the doors to its newly relocated North Coast Community Health Center at 11906 Madison Avenue in the historic “Birdtown” neighborhood of Lakewood. 

“In summer 2021, an unexpected but perfect opportunity presented for us to purchase this newer, larger building. This expansion allows us to accommodate continued growth and better address community need for the high quality, affordable health care services to those living in Lakewood and surrounding areas,” says Jean Polster, RN, MS, NFP’s president and CEO. “We’re incredibly grateful for the community’s support of what we do.”

NFP has recently added a second physician and has expanded capacity for new patient appointments. NFP provides care to all ages, regardless of ability to pay and accepts most insurance plans. Significant discounts are offered for uninsured and those with high deductibles and co-pays.

A ribbon cutting ceremony, conducted to commemorate the opening of the new location, was attended by the following:

•    Meghan George, Mayor, City of Lakewood
•    Dan O’Malley, President, Lakewood City Council and Councilman for Ward 4
•    Jean Polster, NFP President and CEO
•    Morgan Taggart, Chair, NFP Board of Directors

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Volume 18, Issue 3, Posted 7:12 PM, 02.02.2022

Neighborhood Family Practice Continues Efforts

Since the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic, Neighborhood Family Practice (NFP) has targeted efforts to increase awareness, education and outreach and later, testing and vaccines, to at-risk and underserved community members. Those efforts continue today. 

“Throughout the past year, we’ve worked independently, with state and local government, and other community partners to increase awareness and knowledge about COVID, along with access to testing and vaccines for the more vulnerable and underserved Black, Hispanic/Latino, low-income and refugee populations in our community – the very populations that have been disproportionately affected by the virus,” says Jean Poster, RN, MS, NFP’s president and CEO. 

Since January 2021, NFP has:

•    provided 29,000 vaccinations to 15,000 individuals
•    4,250 shots since August
•    Conducted 100 community vaccination clinics with community partners

Along with participating in The Cleveland Community Health Centers COVID Services collaborative in partnership with the Cuyahoga County Board of Health, Cleveland Department of Public Health and local hospital systems, NFP partnered with LaSagrada Familia Church, the Hispanic Roundtable. Saint Paul AME Church and other local community organizations to prioritize the information and care provided to communities of color. 

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Volume 17, Issue 24, Posted 2:26 PM, 12.15.2021

Medical Discrimination Has No Home In Lakewood Or Ohio

In recent days, Ohio Governor Mike DeWine signed the Ohio state budget, with a particular line item that has caused tremendous uproar from medical professionals, civil rights organizations, and the general public. 

Included in the $74 billion, 2,400-page budget was a clause allowing health care workers, hospitals, and health insurance companies to refuse to provide or pay for medical services on the basis of moral, ethical, or religious objection. Critics of this language were quick to act, and rightfully so. The mere inclusion of this language allows medical professionals to deny services to LGBTQ+ patients on the basis of moral objection. 

Why, then if 14 other line-items included in the budget were vetoed by DeWine, was this allowed to stay? According to the Governor, it is because healthcare in Ohio is plentiful, and anyone who is discriminated against can simply find another provider. In reality, this is not the case, as there are 159 Primary Care Provider Shortage Areas, and 120 Mental Health Provider Shortage Areas throughout the State, largely in rural areas. 


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Volume 17, Issue 15, Posted 2:16 PM, 07.21.2021

COVID Update 02.17.2021: COVID-19 Cases Dropping Dramatically, Do Not Stop Doing What You Are Doing

Attention Lakewoodites COVID Vaccines have been reported available at most local drug stores or their sister stores. While getting vaccinated is a real pain in the ass, most chains allow you to sign in the surf for a location. In the U.S., we are now averaging over 2,000,000 vaccines a day.

It has been reported that there are now 7 strains of COVID originating in the USA. All seem to have little difference from the original COVID-19 that arrived here through Italy and China.

There are 1,000+ cases of the UK variant in 38 states. This variation is now rated as 40% more virulent, and potentially more deadly. They are still working the numbers on this.

There are 3 rerouted cases of the Brazil strain in 2 states. Again, not much is known of this strain but it is creating havoc in Brazil. There are no real numbers on many reasons why this variations seems more intense.

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Volume 17, Issue 5, Posted 4:13 PM, 02.17.2021

Far West Center Mental Health Is Here To Help Lakewood With Changes

The Covid-19 pandemic has changed daily life for everyone living in Lakewood and all over the world. Changes came so quickly and most times without warning. Concerns for our safety, health and the health of our loved ones has added emotional pressures. Stress, worry, anxiety, and depression can overwhelm any of us at any time. It is very important to keep in mind that there is help and mental health services available for residents of Lakewood at Far West Center.

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Volume 16, Issue 10, Posted 8:02 PM, 05.19.2020

One Lakewood Progress: COVID-19: The Truth, What We Can Do, And Leaning Into American Resilience

My job with the U.S. The Department of Health and Human Services is Community Outreach. The entirety of my time in Public Health has been working to ensure that patients, families and marginalized communities all over Northeast Ohio and the tri-state area have the information and emergency services they need to make informed healthcare decisions and can access support in times of crisis.

The goal of my column, One Lakewood Progress, has been this - that residents of Lakewood should have the information necessary to understand policies, whether local, state, or national and how they impact daily life. 

This installment of One Lakewood Progress is, perhaps, the most important one I’ve written. We are experiencing unprecedented times in our country, in the trenches of the global pandemic that is COVID-19. This disease touches the daily lives of all Americans, and it presents a very real threat to our health and safety. With talk from the White House of ending the social distancing lockdown on Easter Sunday, people are starting to question whether or not the virus is really that serious to begin with.

Let me disabuse you of that notion.

What is COVID-19? Why is it so dangerous?

CO-ronaVI-rus D-isease 2019 is a respiratory virus first discovered during an outbreak in Wuhan, China in 2019. 

COVID-19 is a brand new disease to humankind, which means that we have developed no antibodies against it through prior exposure. Because of this, the risk of infection is universal: if you come into contact with it, you are probably going to be infected. 


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Volume 16, Issue 7, Posted 11:01 AM, 04.02.2020

North Coast Health's Next Chapter

Since announcing the news of North Coast Health (NCH) and Neighborhood Family Practice’s (NFP) plans to join in a strategic affiliation, so much has happened! During the Fall, both organizations embarked on a detailed and well-orchestrated transition plan. And, on January 1, 2019 North Coast Health started a new year, and our next chapter, as Neighborhood Family Practice North Coast Community Health Center!

Everyone continues to be an important partner along this journey. I look forward to introducing you to the Neighborhood Family Practice community and the meaningful work that is being done across our network of community health centers.Your investment of time, talents and treasures will continue to make it possible for everyone to receive high quality, affordable health care, regardless of their ability to pay. You are an important part of our past, present and future. Working together, as a vital part of the health care safety net, we will continue to meet the needs of our community.

Jean Polster, President and CEO of Neighborhood Family Practice and I invite you to attend a Community Update on Thursday, May 30th at 6:30 p.m. at Roundstone Insurance in Lakewood. We are excited to share updates about our transition and expansion of services, information on the newly established North Coast Health Foundation and the opportunity to answer your questions. Please reserve your seat by emailing or by calling 216.281.8945 ext. 285. I’m looking forward to seeing you there!

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Volume 15, Issue 10, Posted 9:38 AM, 05.22.2019

Lakewood Medical Clinic: Is Medical Marijuana Right For You?

As of 2018, thirty-one states have legalized medical marijuana, and Ohio is one of them.  Ohio’s medical marijuana control program is designed to help patients who suffer from 21 severe and chronic medical conditions.  Because many of the qualifying conditions are symptomatic of aging, the fastest growing demographic relying on medical marijuana nationwide is patients aged 54 and older.  If you have any of the conditions listed in the sidebar, call Lakewood Medical Clinic to start integrating medical marijuana to improve your quality of life. 

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Volume 15, Issue 1, Posted 5:06 PM, 01.08.2019

We've Got Our Veterans' Backs

It is no surprise that many military veterans face a variety of health issues resulting from physical, emotional and/or psychological concerns. Veterans Day provides the perfect opportunity to show those veterans the appreciation and gratitude they deserve. That’s why Lakewood’s Gold-In-Touch Massage is offering half off full body relaxation massages to veterans throughout the month of December.

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Volume 14, Issue 21, Posted 3:08 PM, 11.07.2018

Lakewood Residents Give To Feed Need, Lakewood Government Gives To Feed Greed

Over the years numerous citizens of Lakewood have given generously to help the less fortunate among us. Our time, perhaps the most valuable thing we possess, has been contributed by many individual Lakewood citizens to help others. How many of our citizens have helped to man the Lakewood Christian Service Center to feed the hungry?  How many have helped Lakewood Fish to provide transportation to those in need?  How many have helped deliver food for Meals on Wheels? How many have mowed a neighbor’s lawn when they were not able to, or taken in their mail when they are away? For most of our citizens, that’s just doing the right thing.

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Volume 14, Issue 13, Posted 6:08 PM, 07.03.2018

New Medical School Curriculum Project Wins Major Grant For Teamwork Training

As the Ohio University Heritage College of Osteopathic Medicine at Cleveland prepares to launch a groundbreaking experiment in training the primary care physician of the future, endorsement of the project has come in the form of a major grant to train faculty in improved teamwork teaching practices.

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Volume 14, Issue 9, Posted 12:39 PM, 05.01.2018

Joyce Dixon Retires After 40 Years

O’Neill Healthcare Lakewood, a skilled nursing facility, celebrated the retirement of Joyce Dixon, who was employed at the Lakewood location as a State Tested Nurse Aide (STNA) for more than 40 years! Joyce started working at 13900 Detroit Avenue in Lakewood on September 13, 1977 when she was in her twenties. Joyce touched the lives of thousands of residents and family members during her tenure there. Her commitment to one facility is remarkable and not something you often hear about – especially in the nursing field. Joyce was known to her coworkers to always be smiling, personable, and a friend to all.  She exemplified a kind and caring attitude towards her residents that she was lucky to care for. It was a tough decision for Joyce to retire, but she is looking forward to finally devoting time to take care of herself and her family. O’Neill Healthcare is proud to have had Joyce as an employee for the last 40 years. The staff and residents will surely miss her and are more than grateful for her years of service. Best wishes and Happy Retirement, Joyce!

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Volume 14, Issue 8, Posted 3:27 PM, 04.17.2018

The Living Miracles And Future Directions Open House

The Living Miracles Peer Empowerment Center and Future Directions, C.O.S. moved into their new location at 2070 West 117th Street in Lakewood in December 2017. The building is the former home of the Mormon church, just across West 117th Street and south of the RTA rapid station. The two mental health organizations will be hosting an open house at the newly renovated space on March 29th, 2018, from 2pm-4pm.

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Volume 14, Issue 6, Posted 7:14 PM, 03.20.2018

Ronald McDonald Family Room Expands Services At Fairview Hospital

Provides 24-Hour Respite to Families of Pediatric Patients

Cleveland Clinic Fairview Hospital boasts a 26-bed Level III Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) capable of caring for the most premature or critically ill babies, a 24-bed Pediatric Inpatient Unit and a 13-bed Inpatient Child and Adolescent Psychiatry Unit. In many cases, families of these patients are simply unable to leave the hospital, often for days at a time. For the past 8 years, the Ronald McDonald Family Room has provided these individuals a place to rest and recharge just steps from their child’s treatment room. Open from 9am – 9pm, 7 days per week, the Room is equipped with a lounge area, full kitchenette stocked with snacks and beverages, children’s play area, computer with internet access, shower access and other things that bring comfort to families so they can remain strong for their children.

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Volume 14, Issue 2, Posted 9:51 PM, 01.23.2018

Local Non-Profit Medical Clinic Invites Community To Participate In National Movement

This holiday season most of us will spend time gift shopping, visiting with family and enjoying holiday parties. But what if you were a single mother with diabetes and you are struggling with the decision to either purchase insulin or the toy your son wants for Christmas? Or if you are an unemployed veteran who has to choose between putting gas in his car to get to a job interview or purchasing an inhaler to control his asthma? Or maybe you are an uninsured student who is suffering from depression and cannot afford to see a counselor?

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Volume 13, Issue 22, Posted 5:56 PM, 11.21.2017

ACA Open Enrollment Highlights

ACA open enrollment November 1st – December 15th.
Cleveland Clinic is coming out with their own health plan. As a result Medical Mutual will not have them in network for this product line. Everything available will be HMO plans so people will have to choose which healthcare facility they want to be with. Cleveland Clinic = Oscar Health, University Hospital = Medical Mutual in Cuyahoga County, Medical Mutual will have Mercy Healthcare in Lorain County, not UH. Metro will be the hospital system for Caresource, AMBetter & Molina.

Carl Lishing is a licensed insurance agent with HealthMarkets Insurance Agency.
HealthMarkets Insurance Agency is the d/b/a or assumed name of Insphere Insurance Solutions, Inc. which is licensed as an insurance agency in all 50 states and the District of Columbia. Not all agents are licensed to sell all products. Service and product availability may vary by state.

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Volume 13, Issue 19, Posted 5:13 PM, 10.03.2017

Ohio Bill Seeks Safety Limits On Number Of Patients Assigned To RNs - Proposed Law Would Also Set Whistleblower Protection For Nurses

On Feb. 14, registered nurses with National Nurses Organizing Committee-Ohio/National Nurses United (NNOC/NNU) and elected officials gathered at the Ohio Statehouse, in Columbus, to mark the reintroduction by Senator Michael Skindell of the Ohio Patient Protection Act—a bill which sets specific limits on how many patients nurses can care for at once, in hospitals throughout Ohio.

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Volume 13, Issue 4, Posted 6:40 PM, 02.21.2017

STNA Your Way: Creating Your Healthcare Future

What if you were offered a career choice that would permit you to begin working in the healthcare field in just two weeks? A jumpstart to a career that costs just $600 which will be mandatorily, 100% reimbursed, by the first Facility that hires you; it’s a State law. STNA (State Tested Nursing Assistant) is that Program and there is one right here in Lakewood, OH!

Obtaining an STNA license is dependent on the successful completion of an Ohio Department of Health- approved Program and subsequent passing of the State Competency Exam. Once the program is completed an STNA Registry card will be issued and the student is on their way to enjoying a bright and shiny new career in the healthcare field. The Lakewood Learning Center offers the STNA Your Way Program monthly; running day & evening classes.

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Volume 13, Issue 2, Posted 1:46 PM, 01.24.2017

Bad Government 11: “New Foundation” Is Objectively Worse In Every Measurable Way

On December 12, 2016, each of the seven members of City Council nominated one person to the “new wellness” Foundation Planning Task Force. City Council plans to nominate 2 additional task force members and Mayor Summers is to nominate 8 members-- so there will be a total of 17 members of the task force. The stated goals of the Foundation Planning Task Force are to: “recommend a process for the creation…discuss and reach preliminary conclusions about the nature, scope, mission and governance of the new foundation”provided for in the Master Agreement passed on December 21, 2015. So it has taken a year to create a task force even though the hospital has been closed since February, 2016 and people are in need of help.

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Volume 12, Issue 26, Posted 8:36 PM, 12.20.2016

Mobile Stroke Unit To “Go Live” To Help Save Lives In Lakewood

During the October 17, 2016 meeting of Lakewood City Council’s Committee of the Whole, Council President Sam O’Leary toured Cleveland Clinic’s Mobile Stroke Treatment Unit and discuss how Lakewood residents will benefit from new advances in stroke care. Within the next several weeks, following the completion of protocols and training among Cleveland Clinic officials and Lakewood dispatchers and paramedics, the unit will help first responders save lives in Lakewood.  

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Volume 12, Issue 23, Posted 3:38 PM, 11.09.2016

Stop The Madness!

I think that this whole Hospital issue needs to still be centered. I get that the Keep Lakewood Strong activists want Issue 64 not to pass so the city can have a discussion on the issue they couldn't have two years ago to the open public. I also get that City Council and the Lakewood Hospital Association did everything they could to keep it open, even though a small section of Lakewood's citizenry disagrees with that notion. Also, as a two year resident of Lakewood, I think it must be said that from the newcomer's eyes, there has already been a discussion going on regarding health care options in this city. I will probably vote against Issue 64, but out of principle because I believe that people should have a say in their health care options, but I think it must be said to those in between this current ordinance and the last one needs to have questions answered, and I would really appreciate a reply in the form of a rebuttal to this article. 

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Volume 12, Issue 22, Posted 5:52 PM, 10.25.2016

Lawsuit Charges That Lakewood Hospital Turnaround Plan Was Fiction

Cleveland Clinic executives may have deceived Lakewood’s officials with a fictional turnaround plan for Lakewood Hospital, according to recent filings in a related lawsuit.

Attorneys representing Lakewood taxpayers have discovered that Clinic executives dismissed their “Vision for Tomorrow” plan as ineffective as early as 2010, after barely one year. The Clinic nonetheless continued public promises that the initiative would ensure Lakewood Hospital’s long-term viability.

According to the most recent plaintiffs’ filing in taxpayers’ ongoing
lawsuit, “the Lakewood City Council, the Lakewood Hospital Foundation donors, and the public were being duped into supporting a mirage.”

In June 2010, the Clinic petitioned City Council’s permission to remove from Lakewood Hospital all trauma and inpatient pediatric care, in order to consolidate those services at Fairview Hospital. The Clinic reassured audiences that under the Vision for Tomorrow, expansion in other services would keep Lakewood Hospital fit.

City Council gave its assent to the proposal on that basis. On June 10, Council agreed that the Cleveland Clinic could remove the two valuable services, which otherwise the Clinic was contractually obligated to provide in Lakewood. Council’s resolution was explicit that this agreement was based on losses to Lakewood Hospital being offset by the overall Vision for Tomorrow plan.

Cleveland Clinic regional hospitals president Dr. David Bronson
privately judged the plan ineffective, however, even though the Clinic originally projected its completion as requiring several years. Bronson has testified in court that in September 2010 he advised then-Mayor Ed Fitzgerald that the Vision for Tomorrow was unlikely to succeed.

Attorneys for Lakewood taxpayers have suggested that in combination, “Those misleading statements are evidence of a deception, in violation of Ohio Revised Code Section 2913.43 Securing Writings by Deception, as well as evidence of fraud…”

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Volume 12, Issue 22, Posted 5:52 PM, 10.25.2016

It's Time To Put This Issue To Bed

St. Alexis, St John’s, Grace Memorial, St Lukes, Booth Memorial, St. Anns, Huron Road, Bay View, St Michaels. That’s an incomplete list of Cleveland area hospitals that have closed in the past twenty five years. Please: if you think that the Cleveland Clinic, like the Borg in StarTrek, conspired to secretly seize and assimilate each of these hospitals into its evil web, then save all of us the trouble; stop reading right now and go put up yard signs. But if you think that these hospital closings are possibly the result of dramatic changes in the way medical services are delivered now, compared to 50 years ago, compounded by the area’s dramatic population losses, then you are in good company - read on.

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Volume 12, Issue 22, Posted 5:52 PM, 10.25.2016

Vote For Issue 64: Do No Harm

Defeating Issue 64 would be an unmitigated disaster. The hospital will not remain standing. You will not bring an outdated facility into the future, bigger and better than before. Dr. Jacob Palomaki's recent letter to the Sun Post Herald is spot on regarding the facts and future of medicine. 

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Volume 12, Issue 22, Posted 5:52 PM, 10.25.2016

Democratic Party Endorses FOR Issue 64 In Landslide Vote

A major endorsement was delivered recently in support of the FOR Issue 64 position when the Lakewood Executive Committee of the Cuyahoga County Democratic Party backed the issue in a landslide vote. A 60 percent majority was needed for endorsement, and the FOR Issue 64 position actually received a majority of greater than 88 percent. The vote means that the Democratic Party officially recommends that Lakewood voters vote FOR Issue 64 on this November’s ballot.

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Volume 12, Issue 21, Posted 4:56 PM, 10.11.2016

Protect Healthcare And Progress By Voting FOR Issue 64

I have committed myself to public service. I work in charity as my living, doing everything I can to meet the needs of the underprivileged, ensuring people can keep their lights on, keep their family fed, keep clothes on their backs and have access to services of all kinds. This was my inspiration for running and serving on City Council, and my guiding principle during my service as a Lakewood Hospital Trustee.

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Volume 12, Issue 21, Posted 4:56 PM, 10.11.2016

Is The City’s Community Bulletin, Issue No. 5 Misleading?

Citizens of Lakewood have received Community Bulletins in their water bill that contain information about the new Master Agreement between the City and the Cleveland Clinic. Is that information accurate?

Let’s examine the statements made in Issue No. 5.

The following is the relevant content of Issue No. 5 followed by my comments.

CITY OF LAKEWOOD…will receive

  • $19.7 million in cash, including $7 million in rehab demo fund, $8.2 million for sale of Columbia Rd facility, $2.88 million in lease payments through June 2018 and $1.7 million in land sale to Cleveland Clinic.

My response:

The Clinic has agreed to pay $7 million in rehab/demo funds, however, the Clinic will only pay if the CITY EXPENDS 100% OF ALL OF THE HOSPITALS $84 MILLION IN CASH AND INVESTMENTS. (SOURCE?) Since the City anticipates having money left over to fund a new Foundation then the City must also anticipate that the Clinic WILL NOT pay the $7 million.

The City will receive $8.2 million for the Columbia Road property over a number of years. However, the property was appraised at nearly $15 million and the City had an offer from another interested party for a lot more than $8.2 million. The Columbia Road facility was also home to a business that once generated substantial profits for the Hospital. Why did the City give the Clinic such a sweet deal?

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Volume 12, Issue 20, Posted 5:03 PM, 09.27.2016

Vote Against Issue 64: The Loss Of Our Hospital & Our Most Charitable Foundation

Friends ask me why I am still involved in Save Lakewood Hospital. As a mother of two teenage boys, I am involved because I know the importance of healthcare. Not only am I concerned about the well-being of my children, I am also concerned about the well-being of my community. Lakewood Hospital touched countless lives. There was great care and love to millions for over a century. How many babies do you know who were born in our hospital? How many lives were touched by the Grace Unit? Our hospital was an icon of hope for all that is good in medicine and all that is good for a community. A sign still hanging in one of the middle schools states “Lakewood Hospital, Over A Century of Touching Lives and Partnership in Education.”  The impact of this loss is catastrophic, to both our economy and our social welfare. It didn’t have to happen. The closing of the hospital was built upon fabrication, greed and guile.

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Volume 12, Issue 20, Posted 5:03 PM, 09.27.2016

Why You Should Vote Against 64

“The ER at Lakewood continues to be a community asset and will remain that way if it is supported by the community.”

This is a direct quote made by Fire Chief Scott Gilman on the Lakewood Observer’s Observation Deck on Friday, Sept. 9, 2016.

“…..if it is supported by the community.”


So, it is up to us, the residents, to support the ER?  

Now, how do we do that?

Gilman makes the ER sound like a local storefront that we should patronize.

Are we to drop-in at that facility on Belle Ave. for every bump and bruise we get, so as to show our support?

Notice that Gilman makes no mention of Cleveland Clinic/EMS supporting the ER.

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Volume 12, Issue 20, Posted 5:03 PM, 09.27.2016

“Build Lakewood” Insiders’ PAC Hurt Healthcare and Costs Taxpayers Over $184 Million-Vote Against 64

In the last Lakewood Observer, Jim Kenny, a spokesman for “Build Lakewood” recently rebranded as an insiders’ fake “progress” Political Action Committee (PAC) published some seriously false claims. The Rebranded PAC is the same group of insiders who last year took $50,000 in charitable money from the hospital and spread the same kind lies to “win” by cheating. Here is a point by point rebuttal of the claims made by the PAC:  

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Volume 12, Issue 20, Posted 5:03 PM, 09.27.2016

Why The Councilwoman Who Questioned Is Standing Firm FOR Issue 64

When City Council began a year of meetings in 2015 about a proposal to transform Lakewood Hospital to an outpatient medical center, I was concerned. I preferred to keep Lakewood Hospital as an inpatient facility and to retain the jobs and economic activity it provided. I work for an independent physician and I am a strong supporter of independent physician practice. However, the climate of healthcare is changing at a furious pace. I felt that my relationship to healthcare offered a great sensitivity to this important decision presented to Council.

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Volume 12, Issue 20, Posted 5:03 PM, 09.27.2016

My Mother Fell Last Week

My 87-year-old mother fell last week. They couldn't reach me right away, so she drove herself to the "ER" in what used to be Lakewood Hospital. I arrived about an hour later.  In the ensuing three hours, they managed to get her hideously abraded left leg bandaged.  As she stood up to leave she realized that her right foot was painful.  An x-ray was taken and read by a presumably off-site radiologist, and a fracture was diagnosed.  They put her in a half-cast and sent us off to an Orthopedic practice.  The first thing that the Orthopedic specialist did when he entered the room was to press on my mother's foot in the area of the supposed fracture and realized immediately that the fracture shown on the x-ray was an old one and that her foot was not fractured, but merely sprained.  No one at the Lakewood Urgent Care had bothered to verify that her area of pain matched the area of the fracture on the x-ray.

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Volume 12, Issue 19, Posted 5:46 PM, 09.13.2016

Hospital Vote Q&A at Lakewood Library Sept. 13

Lakewood’s main library is the place to get informed about the upcoming vote on Lakewood Hospital.

This November, local voters will make a choice for or against a city ordinance closing Lakewood’s publicly owned hospital. With early voting coming up even sooner, voters are invited to learn the details of this choice at a public Q&A, at 7:00 p.m. on Tuesday, September 13.

Everyone attending the free event can take home a voter guide with information from the Board of Elections. Along with the issue number for this vote, which the board will announce in early September, the guide will include ballot language and important voting deadlines. Panelists at the event will talk about these basics as well, along with the facts and background of this big decision.

Following the brief presentation, panelists will take audience questions on any and all aspects of the pending vote. The evening’s panel will feature experienced representatives from law and government, including leaders of Save Lakewood Hospital, a local organization that opposes the hospital closing.

Save Lakewood Hospital spokesman Kevin Young says that “This evening is local democracy at its simplest and best. Community leaders will sit down with neighbors, and discuss the issues and process of an important vote, face to face.”

The Sept. 13 event will take place at Lakewood’s main library, 15425 Detroit Avenue, in the first-floor multipurpose room. (The entrance to the multipurpose room is reached through the children’s department.) Advance registration is required as seating is limited, but all are encouraged to sign-up while spaces last by calling (216) 586-2401. There is no cost to register.

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Volume 12, Issue 18, Posted 4:10 PM, 08.30.2016

Is There A Middle Regarding The Hospital Issue?

The last time I wrote an article about the Hospital issue, I was involved with Save Lakewood Hospital. Needless to say, it was a brief involvement, and I am not writing now to choose sides nor badmouth anyone on either side of this local issue. Last night, I attended my first Lakewood Democratic Club meeting, and observed what ensued. 

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Volume 12, Issue 18, Posted 4:10 PM, 08.30.2016

Diamonds For Hope

Take a chance at winning a diamond and give another hope by providing the medical care they need. This year, North Coast Health’s summer raffle features a brilliant cut 0.5 carat center diamond that rocks within a halo pendant surrounded by 16 round full cut diamonds weighing 0.15 each. Total diamond weight of 0.74 carats strung on an 18 inch 14 karat white gold box chain. This exclusive diamond necklace is valued at $3,500; courtesy of Broestl & Wallis Fine Jewelers in Lakewood.  

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Volume 12, Issue 17, Posted 6:39 PM, 08.02.2016

Healthcare Forum Attracts Capacity Crowd

Lakewood residents were invited to a free forum discussing Healthcare and Lakewood Hospital's Future on Tuesday, July 27 at the Winton Place. A panel of five residents consisting of Dr. Terence Kilroy, Dr. Ashoka Nautiyal, Marguerite Harkness, CPA,  Attorney Brian Essi, and Tom Monahan, vice chairman of Save Lakewood Hospital spoke on the subject of healthcare in Lakewood.

Tom Monahan covered the over 100 years of the history of Lakewood Hospital including the challenging years during the Depression, the 1996 Lease Agreement with the Cleveland Clinic and ending with the vote of the City Council to accept the Master Agreement that gave the hospital to the Cleveland Clinic. Mr. Monahan concluded with the comment, "Council folks keep saying that 'we had no choice.' That truly is a stunning admission from these folks that they really don't understand what or how to do their job. The Cleveland Clinic could not have gotten away with this deed without their consent."

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Volume 12, Issue 16, Posted 6:37 PM, 08.02.2016

Join North Coast Health In Celebrating 30 Years Of Caring

What if you needed medical care and couldn’t afford it? What if you had to choose between buying your medications and feeding your family? For 30 years, North Coast Health- a faith based charitable clinic- has been the answer to these “what ifs”; providing these services, and many more, to thousands of people in need. What if you could help? Join us at North Coast Health’s annual fundraising gala, Celebration of Caring, on Thursday, September 15, 2016 from 6 to 9:30 p.m. at the Global Center for Health Innovation, Cleveland, Ohio.

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Volume 12, Issue 15, Posted 4:38 PM, 07.19.2016

North Coast Health: Providing More than Medical Care

North Coast Health, a charitable medical clinic on Detroit Avenue in Lakewood is engaging the community in a new way this summer with the addition of a Little Free Library located in front of the building. The Little Free Library began as a grassroots movement in 2009 and is now a global sensation that has rapidly expanded into all fifty states and seventy countries.

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Volume 12, Issue 14, Posted 4:11 PM, 07.06.2016

Antonio Announces $3 Million State Grant To Lessen Infant Mortality

State Representative Nickie Antonio (D-Lakewood) today applauds the allocation of $3 million in state funds for First Year Cleveland, a city-county initiative to combat Cuyahoga County’s alarmingly high infant mortality rates. The state investment is part of a total $26.8 million allocated in the latest state budget to support community-driven proposals to combat infant mortality at the local level and enhance efficacy among various agencies that provide care for at-risk women and infants.

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Volume 12, Issue 13, Posted 8:13 PM, 06.21.2016

Missing Millions: A Reminder That Lakewood Hospital Was Profitable

In the following statement Marguerite Harkness, CPA and Committee Chairperson, reaffirmed that Lakewood Hospital could easily be a profitable business if operated properly.

“The Clinic had increased administrative fees by 718% from 2002 to 2014 without providing any explanation. Last year, Lakewood Hospital handed over more than 24 million dollars in fees that the Clinic refused to account for. Any health care provider would have loved the deal the Clinic had, charging whatever it pleased without accountability.

“Free of these excessive fees, we confidently estimate hospital earnings of 18 to 20 million dollars annually before depreciation. That could add up to a 14% return on net patient revenue. The conclusion is clear. The hospital could easily operate at a profit. Otherwise why would three health care operators be so interested in running Lakewood Hospital? There was no open bidding. Serious suitors were coldly rejected. It only makes business sense to have considered these proposals. Instead, the city turned the hospital over to the Clinic for pennies on the dollar. You don’t have to be Warren Buffett to figure out that this is a horrible deal.” – Marguerite Harkness, Chairperson, Save Lakewood Hospital Committee

A referendum vote to repeal the deal that closed Lakewood Hospital will appear on the November 8, 2016 ballot.

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Volume 12, Issue 11, Posted 3:33 PM, 05.10.2016

Emergency Care? With Some Exceptions

Following recent questions about the limits of Lakewood’s freestanding emergency department in the Observer and at a recent City Council meeting, the Cleveland Clinic has scrambled to attempt community reassurance.

Advocates for Lakewood Hospital have drawn attention to a statement at the Clinic’s own web site, posted barely a year ago, advising that “Some situations are clearly an emergency: A heart attack, fall off a ladder, serious kitchen burn or bone break. You know to call 9-1-1 and to get your loved one to the nearest hospital,” i.e. a full hospital and not a freestanding emergency department.

Apparently both Lakewood City Council members and the Clinic are reluctant to directly confront the limitations of care without a hospital. In a full-page ad in the April 13 Observer, the Clinic touted “full-service emergency care” in Lakewood, “always close to home.”

Unfortunately, this and the rest of the Clinic’s advertising about services in Lakewood is mostly an exercise in misdirection. Given that there is no fixed definition of “emergency department,” the claim of “full-service” emergency care is largely meaningless.

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Volume 12, Issue 9, Posted 3:24 PM, 04.26.2016

Who Is Politicizing Emergency Care?

Two cheers for Lakewood Emergency Medical Services. That’s the message from City Council these days. Council advises that everyone trust in EMS personnel—except when they depart from the party line.

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Volume 12, Issue 8, Posted 4:37 PM, 04.12.2016