Hanger Clinic to Host Prosthetist Featured in Dolphin Tale Films
Jan. 31: The world-renowned prosthetist portrayed by Morgan Freeman in the Dolphin Tale feature films will educate amputees in Springfield on Thursday, Jan. 31.
Kevin Carroll, a certified prosthetist and developer of the first prosthetic tail for a dolphin, will speak with local amputees and show them what’s available with prosthetic technology and what’s on the horizon. The event will be hosted by the Hanger Clinic, 1985 Main St., Springfield from 5 to 7 p.m.
Carroll is acclaimed for his work in creating the first prosthetic tail fluke for Winter, a young Atlantic bottlenose dolphin who got caught in a crab trap near Cape Canaveral when she was just three months old. Her tail fluke eventually came off, as it was severely damaged by the trap’s rope entanglement. Winter received round-the-clock medical attention at the Clearwater Marine Aquarium to save her life. Having survived, she adapted to a less efficient, damaging side-to-side swimming style, as there was no tail fluke to give her thrust. Thanks to the ingenuity of Carroll and his colleague, Dan Strzempka, Winter became the first dolphin to have her entire tail fluke replaced with a prosthetic device. Additionally, the unique levels of research and development necessary to fit a prosthetic tail on a dolphin resulted in the development of WintersGel, a new gel material that is benefiting human amputee patients worldwide.
Springfield residents interested in meeting with Carroll should call (413) 313-5608. For more information about Hanger Clinic, visit www.hangerclinic.com.
EMT Training at HCC
Jan. 31 to May 23: Registration is open for the next Emergency Medical Technician training program at Holyoke Community College (HCC). 
The spring 2019 HCC EMT Basic Course (EMT-B) consists of 13 weeks (170-plus hours) of in-class lectures and additional online study, training, field trips, and workshops designed to prepare students for the state certification exam. The training takes place on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 6 to 10 p.m. and select Saturdays from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Center for Health Education on Jarvis Avenue, the state-of-the-art home of HCC’s Nursing and Radiologic Technology programs. 
The course is taught by local EMT Mike Marafuga and covers all aspects of emergency care, including patient handling, extrication, and communication, and makes extensive use of the center’s medical simulation labs.
For more information or to register, contact Ken White at (413) 552-2324 or kwhite@hcc.edu, or visit www.hcc.edu/workforce.
Choking Awareness Course
Various dates: Cooley Dickinson Hospital is offering a course designed for anyone who works in food service and wants to learn basic choking-relief skills. Completion of this course also satisfies 105 CMR 590.001 State Food Code requirements.
The course will held from 9 to 10 a.m. on six different Mondays in 2019 — Jan. 7, Feb. 4, April 22, June 3, Aug. 19, Nov. 18, and Dec. 9 — in the Dakin Conference Room at Cooley Dickinson Hospital. The course fee is $20 per person.
For more information or to inquire about a custom course, call (413) 582-2400.
Cancer Support Groups at Baystate Mary Lane
Various dates: Facing a cancer diagnosis can be a stressful life change and a daunting prospect.  During a cancer journey, patients and their families often benefit from the support of others.
“Our support groups are designed to help patients, their families, and caregivers cope with the challenges of a cancer diagnosis,” said Camille St. Onge, oncology social worker at the Baystate Regional Cancer program at Baystate Mary Lane. St. Onge provides counseling for patients and their families through all phases of their cancer care.
Support and self-help groups can vary greatly, but all groups share one thing in common: they are a place where people can share personal stories, express emotions, and be heard in an atmosphere of acceptance, understanding, and encouragement. 
“A diagnosis of cancer can bring many types of challenges and can affect each person in a different way,” said St. Onge.  “We offer a wide range of support-group meetings, and our oncology team works closely together to address the medical, emotional, and social needs of all our patients.”
The group schedules are as follows:
• Breast Cancer Support Group: open to all women with breast cancer regardless of stage of treatment. Meetings are held the fourth Wednesday of every month, 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.
• Circle of Angels, a Quilting Support Group for People Who Have Been Touched by Cancer: meets twice monthly on Tuesdays, 10 a.m. to noon.
• Expressive Writing Through Cancer: open to all cancer diagnoses. Meetings are held the third Wednesday of every month, 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.
• General Cancer Support Group: open to all cancer diagnoses. Meetings are held the first Wednesday of the month, 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.
• Partners in Caregiving: an early-evening support group for caregivers of people with cancer. Meetings are held the second Tuesday of the month, 5-6:30 p.m.
All meetings are held at Baystate Mary Lane, 85 South St., Ware.  For more information, contact St. Onge at (413) 967-2245.

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