TAMPA – The Alzheimer’s Association is inviting Tampa Bay area residents to join the fight to end Alzheimer’s by participating in the Alzheimer’s Association Walk to End Alzheimer’s. The walk will take place Saturday, Nov. 3, at Amalie Arena, 401 Channelside Drive in Tampa.

Registration will begin at 7:30 a.m. This is a family-friendly event.

Participants will complete a 2-mile walk and will learn about Alzheimer's disease, advocacy opportunities, clinical studies enrollment and support programs and services from the Alzheimer’s Association. Walk participants also honor those affected by Alzheimer's disease with the poignant Promise Garden ceremony.

To sign up as a team captain, join a team or register to walk as an individual, visit alz.org/walk.

Alzheimer's disease is the sixth leading cause of death in the United States. Currently, more than 5.7 million Americans have Alzheimer's and that number is expected to grow to as many as 16 million by 2050. Our future is at risk unless we can find a way to change the course of this disease.

More than 16 million family and friends provide care to people with Alzheimer’s and other dementias in the U.S. In Florida alone, there are more than 540,000 people living with the disease and more than 1.1 million caregivers.

GNAHEC to host no-cost Quit Your Way session

LARGO – The Gulfcoast North Area Health Education Center will host a no-cost Quit Your Way group session Tuesday, Oct. 23, 1 to 3 p.m., at the Department of Health-Pinellas, 8751 Ulmerton Road, Largo.

The group session is open to the public.

Individuals who want to quit can also receive nicotine replacement patches, gum and lozenges at no cost (while supplies last and if medically appropriate). The sessions provide information on how to prepare a plan to quit, how to deal with cravings and what to expect during the process. The programs cover all forms of tobacco.

During October, and every month, numerous classes are held at other locations in Pinellas County, too. For information about other sessions or to register, call 813-929-1000 or email info@gnahec.org. Visit www.tobaccofreeflorida.com/quityourway for other resources.

For more information about GNAHEC, visit www.ahectobacco.com.

For more information about DOH-Pinellas, visit www.PinellasHealth.com.

DOH-Pinellas encourages prevention to fight cancer

The Florida Department of Health in Pinellas County is spotlighting Breast Cancer Awareness Month in October by encouraging prevention to fight cancer.

DOH-Pinellas’ Breast and Cervical Cancer Early Detection Program provides women ages 50 to 64 with lifesaving mammography and cervical cancer screenings. During the 2017-18 program year, the program exceeded its goal by screening 1,062 women. During the year, 27 were diagnosed with cancer and are receiving treatment via Medicaid.

Breast cancer is the second most common cancer in the United States, and the third leading cause of cancer deaths. When to start mammogram screenings, and how often to repeat them, is a decision for a woman and her doctor, based on her health history, her risk factors and the current recommendations of professional medical organizations.

During October, some facilities offer mammograms at reduced rates to encourage women to be screened. A reduced-rate mammogram may not always be the best option. If an issue is detected in a woman who is uninsured, there aren’t many options for further testing or treatment.

A screening by a state of Florida program would provide more options if the patient is diagnosed with breast cancer.

Women can call 727-824-6917 for information about screenings. For information online and for the program forms, visit pinellas.floridahealth.gov/programs-and-services/clinical-and-nutrition-services/bccp/index.html.

For information about DOH-Pinellas, visit www.PinellasHealth.com.

New PACE chief medical director dedicated to healthy seniors aging in place

PINELLAS PARK – Suncoast Program of All-Inclusive Care for the Elderly, a member of Empath Health, recently announced the appointment of Dr. William Burt as the new chief medical director.

Burt joins Suncoast PACE with more than a dozen years of experience caring for senior patients.

Jennifer Kaminsky, Suncoast PACE executive director, said Burt brings a lifetime of experience to the Suncoast PACE leadership team.

“Dr. Burt is a physician who is tremendously skilled in working with older patients,” said Kaminsky. “From high school forward, Dr. Burt has been dedicated to improving the lives of others. We are so pleased to add him to our team as a leader with a passion for senior wellness.”

Suncoast PACE is an all-inclusive senior care and support program that provides a medical clinic, day center and any necessary in-home support for participants. The program helps participants manage their health, stay physically, mentally and socially active and maintain safe and independent lives in their homes and in the community.

Burt explains that his mission is to help participants stay healthy by encouraging an active lifestyle.

“We see a lot of people with memory loss, diabetes, obesity, weakening bones, and cancer, among others. Our goal at PACE is to maintain participants’ functionality. We want them to eat healthy, keep their bodies and minds active and stay involved in the community. There are lots of activities here, which is definitely good for participants’ social needs. It keeps participants going so they can be comfortable and live at home.”

Registration opens for Largo's annual Turtle Trot 5K

LARGO – The eighth annual Turtle Trot 5K will take place Saturday, Nov. 10, 8 a.m.

The Turtle Trot is a measured 3.1-mile flat course that will take participants through McGough Nature Park, at 11901 146th St. N., and continues to Bonner Park's well-kept trails, boardwalks and quiet neighborhood streets.

All pre-registered participants will receive an event T-shirt. Awards will be given to the overall male and female runners, overall master male and female, overall grand master and the top three finishers in each age group. Post-race refreshments and water will be available.

Both parks are located on the Intracoastal Waterway and have great boardwalks and piers for post-race relaxing. Bring the kids and feed the turtles from the observation deck.

Race fees are $20 pre-registered and $30 day of race but limited to the first 500 runners. All proceeds from the race will go towards supporting Largo Nature Parks. Registration forms can be found online at LargoEvents.com, Active.com or picked up at the Largo Golf Course, at 12500 Vonn Road. Runners are asked to park in McKay Creek Reclaimed Water Pump Station and allow for extra travel time. For information, visit LargoEvents.com, call 727-593-6165 or email athletics@largo.com.

Select Chili’s restaurants to host blood drives

Chili’s restaurants will host Food and a Flick blood drives Friday through Sunday, Oct. 12-14, at select Tampa Bay area locations.

Donors can share their power to save lives by giving blood and receive a coupon for a free appetizer courtesy of Chili’s, plus a free movie ticket.

For locations, hours and appointments, visit oneblood.org/chilis or call 888-936-6283. Appointments will be honored and walk-ins are welcome.

All donors receive a wellness checkup of blood pressure, pulse, temperature and iron count, including a cholesterol screening. Generally healthy people age 16 or older who weigh at least 110 pounds can donate blood. Photo ID is required. To learn more about the importance of blood donation and how donors can target the power of their blood type, visit oneblood.org.

SHINE Medicare Part D presentation set

The public is invited to attend a Medicare Part D (Prescription Drug Coverage) presentation Friday, Oct. 19, 2 to 4 p.m., at the Safety Harbor Public Library, 101 Second St. N., Safety Harbor.

The presentation, conducted by specially trained volunteers of the SHINE Program, will provide detailed information on the basics of Medicare prescription drug plans, including eligibility and enrollment, costs, and steps to compare and choose a plan. SHINE volunteers will also be available to answer questions and provide enrollment or benefit application assistance.

The Florida Department of Elder Affairs’ SHINE (Serving Health Insurance Needs of Elders) Program is available to provide free, unbiased information and assistance to Florida Medicare beneficiaries as they carefully evaluate their health care options. SHINE is operated locally by the Area Agency on Aging of Pasco-Pinellas.

For a listing of SHINE counseling sites and public events, visit www.FloridaSHINE.org.

Cans for Cookies food drive to benefit Shepherd Center

PALM HARBOR – Care Placement Home Health Agency is hosting its second annual Cans for Cookies food drive through Nov. 9.

Owner Ruth Fanovich has been a long-time supporter of the Tarpon Springs Shepherd Center.

“We were planning our Cans for Cookies event for November when we learned that The Shepherd Center had an emergency need for canned goods. Instead of waiting, we immediately shared this with our contacts via email and Facebook,” said Elaine Hagan, business manager. “Cans for Cookies is our opportunity to rally our contacts, clients, caregivers, and staff in support of the much needed services provided by The Shepherd Center. This gives everyone an excuse to come by our office, bring a donation of canned goods or other non-perishables, and receive cookies as our thank you.”

In response to the urgent need and in preparation for the upcoming holidays, Care Placement Home Health Agency is accepting canned goods now through Nov. 9, between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, at their office, 1215 12th St., Palm Harbor. For more information, call 727-787-8677.

Care Placement Home Health Agency Inc. is a licensed home health agency providing caregivers on a private pay basis to care for the elderly and those with other physical and emotional disabilities. The agency is privately owned and licensed for Pinellas, Pasco and Hillsborough counties. Visit www.CarePlacementHH.com for information.

Wawa stores to host blood drives

Blood drives will take place Oct. 14-20, noon to 7 p.m., at select Tampa Bay area Wawa stores.

For locations, hours and appointments, visit oneblood.org/wawa or call 888-936-6283. Appointments will be honored and walk-ins are welcome.

Donors will receive a $10 Wawa gift card as well as a coupon and an entry into a drawing to win a Wawa gift basket. All donors receive a wellness checkup of blood pressure, pulse, temperature and iron count, including a cholesterol screening. Generally healthy people age 16 or older who weigh at least 110 pounds can donate blood. Photo ID is required. To learn more about the importance of blood donation and how donors can target the power of their blood type, visit oneblood.org.

Maria’s Adult Day Care Center offers support group

SEMINOLE – A support group for caregivers is offered Tuesdays, 3:30 to 4:30 p.m., at Maria’s Adult Day Care Center, 7821 Seminole Blvd., Seminole.

Attendees have an opportunity to connect with other caregivers who have been or still are going through difficult times. The support group is led by Linda Burhans.

For information or to RSVP, call 727-393-7711.

To submit health-related news and events, email editorial@TBNweekly.com. Submissions also may be faxed to 727-397-5900, dropped off at the office or mailed to Tampa Bay Newspapers, 9911 Seminole Blvd., Seminole, FL 33772. Please include contact information on all submissions.