Count It! Lock It! Drop It! Adds New Communities to Program

Growth Sparked by BlueCross Health Foundation Grant

 

Count It! Lock It! Drop It! ™ (CLD), a comprehensive community program for prescription drug abuse prevention, has added 26 counties since its statewide launch last summer.

In June 2016, the BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee Health Foundation approved a grant to fund the program’s expansion to areas identified as “hot spots,” which are counties with high numbers of prescriptions dispensed, overdose deaths and babies born with neonatal abstinence syndrome.

The program, now offered in 58 counties, suggests three simple steps that anyone can practice to keep their medications out of the wrong hands:

 

  • Count pills every two weeks to monitor theft and help ensure medications are taken properly;
  • Lock and store medications in a secure place where others would not think to look; and
  • Dispose of unused or expired medications at drop boxes or during take-back events.

 

“Prescription drug misuse has reached epidemic levels in the state of Tennessee,” said Kristina Clark, CLD project manager. “Becoming a CLD community is an easy way for local law enforcement and anti-drug coalitions to encourage their residents to closely monitor their prescriptions, especially ones for opioids.”

Communities that have recently joined the program include:

 

 

  • Benton County
  • Carroll County
  • Cocke County
  • Claiborne County
  • Crockett County
  • Cumberland County
  • Decatur County
  • Dyer County
  • Fayette County
  • Fentress County
  • Gibson County
  • Giles County
  • Greene County
  • Hancock County
  • Hardin County
  • Henderson County
  • Humphreys County
  • Lauderdale County
  • Lawrence County
  • Lincoln County
  • Loudon County
  • McMinn County
  • Polk County
  • Scott County
  • Sevier County
  • Union County

 

 

“We are proud of the program’s success so far, but we know there is more work to do,” said Roy Vaughn, executive director of the BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee Health Foundation. “It’s exciting to have these new communities join the fight to combat one of the state’s most concerning public health issues.”

In addition, CLD partnered with the Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation to locate a drug disposal drop box in all 95 counties.

For more information on joining Count It! Lock It! Drop It! ™ or to locate a drop box, visit www.countitlockitdropit.org.

 

About BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee Health Foundation, Inc.
The BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee Health Foundation, Inc., was established in December 2003 as a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit corporation organized to promote the philanthropic mission of BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee. The foundation awards grants focused on high-impact initiatives across the state, which promote healthy lifestyle choices and help control health care costs for all Tennessee residents. Working with civic and economic partners, the foundation is dedicated to the support of research, innovative programs and creative approaches to improve the health and quality of life of Tennesseans for generations to come.

 

About BlueCross®
BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee’s mission is to provide peace of mind through better health. Founded in 1945, the Chattanooga-based company is focused on serving more than 3.4 million members in Tennessee and across the country. BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee Inc. is an independent licensee of the BlueCross BlueShield Association. For more information, visit the company’s website at bcbst.com.

 

Vintage901 Introduces Lowcountry Boil Event

Vintage901 is back August 19, 2017 for its Lowcountry Seafood Boil event. A Cordova farm will be transformed into a seafood diner’s delight from 6 – 10 p.m. with wine pairings that will compliment the lowcountry cuisine.

The family-style seafood feast of boiled shrimp, crawfish, potatoes, corn and sausage will also feature music by a Memphis band. Tickets for the event are $50 and can be purchased at www.vintage901.com. VIP packages are $75 and include table service and a book by the Grand Sommelier Laurie Forster, The Wine Coach.

“Our inaugural festival was such a great success, I was eager to plan the next event,” said Vintage901 Organizer Stephanie Ferreira. “This is edutainment. I want people to learn about wine and have fun. Wine can be paired with anything.”

Forster is one of America’s leading wine experts and author of the award-winning book The Sipping Point: A Crash Course in Wine. She is a certified sommelier, national speaker and TV personality who is not afraid to tell you her first wine came from a box. Her edgy approach to demystifying wine has led her to guest appearances on Dr. Oz, FOX Morning News, Martha Stewart Living Today and ABC News at Noon.

For more information, visit www.vintage901.com. Follow them on social media at: www.facebook.com/Vintage901, Twitter: @Vintage901Fest and Instagram: @Vintage901Fest.

About Vintage901

Established in March of 2017, Vintage901 is a three-day wine festival complete with tastings, tapas, salsa, soul and jazz that brings the world to Memphis, Tennessee to celebrate wine, food and music. It features the best in artisanal wines, an array of local flavors with a nod to global sensibilities and music that blends the classic and the eclectic.

 

 

Memphis Heritage Trail Introduces Curriculum On Memphis History

Pilot Program Tested at Kirby High School

 The Memphis Heritage Trail (MHT) is rolling out a pilot educational curriculum this summer featuring the historical locations on the trail. The curriculum’s pilot was tested to entering freshman at Kirby High School’s Summer Institute June 6-9, 2017.

After the pilot is completed and reviewed, plans are in the works for it to be available to Shelby County School teachers this fall. The curriculum roll out will coincide with a MHT smartphone app that will be launched in conjunction with the 50th commemoration of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. death, April 2018.

“This is a wonderful accompaniment to the trail,” said Felicia Harris, manager of Planning and Development for the City of Memphis. “This curriculum will teach the youth in our city about our historic people, events and places, and the trail will allow them to see first-hand where history took place. I must thank MHT volunteer Lauren Barksdale, who developed the curriculum, for all of the work she has put into it.” Ms. Barksdale is a history teacher at Kirby High School.

The curriculum, for grades K-12, is broken into four units based on aspects of Memphis heritage and creative devices such as writing, art, graphic design and music. It focuses on figures and events in Memphis history such as Robert Church and the Church legacy, the all-black military units who fought during the Civil War (Fort Pickering) and the legacy of Beale Street.

“We wanted to base the curriculum around what makes up the city’s heritage,” said Barksdale. “There’s no way to tell the story of the city without mentioning the Civil Rights Movement, the Civil War, and our cultural gems. However, we wanted to include lesser

known narratives that make up our heritage that give a full scope of this city’s beauty.”

The MHT is a historic 20-block redevelopment area in downtown Memphis. The project has been in the works since 2008 and includes the area bordered by Beale Street on the north, Main Street on the west, Crump Boulevard on the south and Manassas Street on the east. Buildings within the area are: Clayborn Temple, Mason Temple, Universal Life Building and the National Civil Rights Museum. It is considered the epicenter of African-American history, heritage and culture and will include a walking trail with historical markers.

About MHT

Memphis Heritage Trail is an expansive plan to celebrate the rich business, culture and musical heritage of African-American achievements in Memphis. The project brings historical tourism, urban redevelopment and city-wide pride to important public spaces. The borders are Beale Street, Main Street, Crump Boulevard and Manassas Street. More information is available at http://memphisheritagetrail.com/.

 

Tennesseans, Spring-Clean Your Medicine Cabinets: National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day is April 29

 BlueCross Health Foundation, Count It! Drop It! Lock It!™ promote medication safety by hosting collection events across the state

In an effort to fight opioid abuse, Tennessee residents are invited to bring their unused or expired prescriptions to one of more than 100 National Prescription Drug Take-Back events being held statewide on April 29 between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m.

The event aims to provide safe, convenient locations to dispose of prescription drugs and other medications and to raise awareness about the potential risks for abuse and misuse of certain medications, such as opioids.

This year, more drug take-back sites are available in Tennessee than ever before, thanks in part to the efforts of the BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee Health Foundation-sponsored Count It! Drop It! Lock It!™ program, which has helped place secure, permanent drop boxes in all 95 counties.

“It’s important to get rid of old or unused drugs,” explains Dr. Andrea Willis, chief medical officer of BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee. “Prescription opioid abuse is a serious public health issue, and more than half of Tennesseans who use prescription painkillers recreationally say they got them from friends and family.”

“These bi-annual events offer a convenient and safe way for individuals to protect themselves and their loved ones from potential and unintentional harm,” said CLD co-developer Kristina Clark. “It’s worth it to take a few minutes to search through medicine cabinets or other storage places and bring unneeded drugs to a Drug Take-Back Day event.”

The Count It! Drop It! Lock It!™ program, expanded statewide in 2016 with a $1.3 million grant from the BlueCross Health Foundation, encourages community members to:

 

  • Count It! Count pills once every two weeks to monitor theft and help ensure medications are taken properly.
  • Lock It! Lock and store them in a secure place where others would not think to look.
  • Drop It! Take unused or expired medications to drop boxes located in participating law enforcement offices or pharmacies, or during bi-annual take-back events.

 

Tennesseans can find their nearest prescription take-back location online at countitlockitdropit.org.

 

 

About Count It! Drop It! Lock It!™

 

Count It! Drop It! Lock It!™ (CLD) is a comprehensive community program for prescription drug abuse prevention that began in Coffee County, Tenn. Today, CLD is actively represented in 44 counties across Tennessee. For more information, visit countitlockitdropit.org.

 

About BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee Health Foundation, Inc.

The BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee Health Foundation, Inc. was established in December, 2003 as a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit corporation organized to promote the philanthropic mission of BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee. The foundation awards grants focused on high-impact initiatives across the state, which promote healthy lifestyle choices and help control health care costs for all Tennessee residents. Working with civic and economic partners, the foundation is dedicated to the support of research, innovative programs and creative approaches to improve the health and quality of life of Tennesseans for generations to come.

 

About BlueCross®

 

BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee’s mission is to provide peace of mind through better health. Founded in 1945, the Chattanooga-based company is focused on serving more than 3.4 million members in Tennessee and across the country. BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee Inc. is an independent licensee of the BlueCross BlueShield Association. For more information, visit the company’s website at bcbst.com.

 

 

 

 

 

 

First Centennial Luncheon for the NAACP Memphis Branch Promises to Inspire and Honor

MARCH FUNDRAISER FEATURES AUTHOR AND NATIONAL POLLSTER CORNELL BELCHER

 

The National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) Memphis Branch will host the first of three major fundraisers for the year on Thursday, March 30, 2017 from 11:30 a.m. – 1 p.m. at First Baptist Broad Church (2835 Broad Avenue, Memphis, TN 38112).  The speaker for the Centennial Kick-Off Luncheon will be author, pollster and one of the premier strategists in national progressive politics, Cornell Belcher.

“The luncheon will serve as a time to honor heroes of our chapter, reflect on the accomplishments of our past and share with our members and supporters our responsibilities for the future,” said Deidre Malone, President, Executive Committee, NAACP Memphis Branch.  “We will honor the service of Rev. Keith Norman and receive an inspirational word from Mr. Belcher.  It promises to be an exciting luncheon, and we hope all of our supporters will purchase a ticket, table or sponsorship and attend.”

Belcher is author of the book “A Black Man in the White House: Barack Obama and the Triggering of America’s Racial-Aversion Crisis.” His polling was the blueprint for the heralded 50-State Strategy as Pollster for the Democratic National Committee (DNC) under Chairman Howard Dean—Cornell was the first minority to be lead pollster for either national party. He also served on the polling team for both Obama presidential campaigns, and has worked with both Senate and House Democrats as Senior Political Advisor to the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee (DSCC), Special Projects Director for the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC), and Women VOTE! Coordinator for EMILY’s List. In 2015 he was an Institute of Politics (IOP) Fellow at Harvard University’s Kennedy School. He is a highly sought after political commentator, and is currently President of brilliant corners Research & Strategies.

Tickets start at $30.  To purchase, please click https://www.eventbrite.com/e/centennial-kick-off-luncheon-tickets-31733299152. For more information contact Sherry Boyce at 901. 521.1343 or email at Sherry@NAACPMEMPHIS.org.

About the Memphis Branch NAACP:

The National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) is the nation’s oldest civil rights organization, and the Memphis Branch NAACP is the largest branch of the organization in the United States.  The mission of the NAACP is to ensure the political, educational, social, and economic equality of rights of all persons and to eliminate race-based discrimination.  During the entire year of 2017, the Memphis Branch NAACP is celebrating 100 years of service to the community. 

 

BlueCross Foundation Seeking 2017 Diversity Scholars

$10,000 scholarships assist minority students pursuing health care careers

 

 BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee Health Foundation’s 2017 Diversity Scholarship application period opened today and continues through March 1. Three $10,000 scholarships will be awarded to three minority college students pursuing health care careers.
 Now in its fifth year, the diversity scholarship program was developed to help address the need for a qualified and more inclusive health care workforce in Tennessee. The scholarships are presented in partnership with the Memphis chapter of the National Association of Health Services Executives (NAHSE) and recognize achievements in academics, community service and leadership.

“These scholarships help outstanding minority students to achieve continued academic success,” said Ron Harris, vice president of workforce diversity for BlueCross. “And in addition to that, this program serves to increase diversity in the health care field.”

According to BlueCross research on health care reform and its effects on minority populations in Tennessee, African-Americans, Hispanics, American Indians, and other minorities remain underrepresented in medical professions compared to their numbers in the population.

For more information, including FAQs and the application, go to the community diversity page on bcbst.com.

The Seafood Nutrition Partnership Kicks-Off Restaurant Week

Memphis Seafood Week begins October 17-21

 With October being National Seafood Month it was only right to highlight our seafood partner restaurants for Memphis Seafood Week 2016. Eating healthy is a good way to keep a healthy heart. The national non-profit, Seafood Nutrition Partnership (SNP) is doing its part by building a coalition of community leaders, restaurant owners, and other influencers that will help spread the message of the health benefits that come along with consuming seafood.

We are proud to share with you our Memphis partners. These restaurants are doing their part to encourage a healthier lifestyle by offering their patrons healthy seafood dishes. We are encouraging Memphians to patronize these restaurants and take a selfie from October 17-21 to post to social media with the hashtag #Seafood2xWkMem.

 

  • Flying Fish (105 S. 2nd Street)
  • Pearls Oyster House (299 S. Main)
  • Captain D’s (All Locations)
  • Cajun Catfish Company (1616 Sycamore View)
  • Humdingers (1134 N. Germantown Parkway & 6300 Poplar Ave Suite #101)
  • Fish Net (2731 Lamar Avenue)
  • Southwind Fish (7915 Winchester Rd. Suite 101)
  • Bayou Bar & Grill (2094 Madison Ave.)
  • Mardi Gras Memphis (496 N. Watkins)
  • Sekisui (All Locations)
  • Tsunami (928 Cooper St.)
  • Déjà vu (51 S. Main St.)

 

About SNP

The Seafood Nutrition Partnership (SNP) is a 501 (C) (3) nonprofit whose mission is to inspire a healthier America through partnerships that raise awareness about essential nutritional benefits of eating seafood. SNP, a member of the Non-Communicable

Diseases Roundtable, leads education efforts to help Americans gain the skills to select, order and prepare fish and shellfish, and to inspire a healthier America by promoting a nutrient-rich diet that includes seafood. For more information, visit

seafoodnutrition.org.

 

 

 

 

BlueCross Launches Campaign To Combat Opioid Abuse

BlueCross Health Foundation Awards Grant to Count It! Lock It! Drop It!TM

Count, Lock and Drop your pills! That’s the message from the BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee Health Foundation, which is teaming up with the state Department of Health and the Coffee County Anti-Drug Coalition to reduce prescription pain medication abuse in Tennessee.

 To help address the state’s opioid epidemic, the BlueCross Health Foundation is providing a $1.3 million grant to expand the Coffee County Anti-Drug Coalition’s Count It! Lock It! Drop It!™ program to counties with high rates of opioid deaths. The funding will support training and outreach efforts including a public education advertising campaign.

 

According to Dr. David Reagan, chief medical officer for the Tennessee Department of Health, opioid abuse is one of Tennessee’s most concerning public health issues. “It will take various parties and a multifaceted approach to tackle this crisis, and we’re pleased to have the state’s largest insurer commit itself to this cause,” Reagan said.

In 2015, BlueCross covered more than 1 million opioid prescriptions for its members – that’s more than 66.6 million painkillers dispensed. “We know pain medication is necessary to treat many conditions; but there is a clear need to engage in clinical and social efforts across the state to prevent the many tragedies that individuals, families and entire communities have faced from opioid abuse and addiction,” explained Dr. Andrea Willis, chief medical officer for BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee.

Count It! Lock It! Drop It! was co-founded in 2011 by Christina Merino and Kristina Clark of the Coffee County Anti-Drug Coalition. The goal was to build a comprehensive, community-level approach to prescription drug misuse. The program ensures patients are receiving the same messaging at doctors’ offices and pharmacies, as well as integrating counseling on the addictive nature of certain medications and teaching drug safety skills.

The Count It! Lock It! Drop It! program encourages community members to:

 

  • Count It!Count pills once every two weeks to monitor theft and help ensure medications are taken properly.
  • Lock It!Lock and store them in a secure place where others would not think to look.
  • Drop It!Take unused or expired medications to drop boxes located in participating law enforcement offices or pharmacies or during take-back events.

 

“Many adults and teens do not understand the dangers of misusing prescription drugs, and think of them as safe because they are prescribed by a doctor,” said Christina Merino, co-founder of Count It! Lock It! Drop It! “Our program educates everyone from health care providers to grandparents on the need to use, store and dispose of prescription medications safely.”

BlueCross Community Relations and Foundations Director Dawn Abel pointed to research that shows 55 percent of those who abuse painkillers in Tennessee get them from a friend or relative who has a prescription. “Count It! Lock It! Drop It! has a proven track record of educating communities on the importance of safeguarding and properly disposing of prescriptions,” Abel said.

Last year, the Count It! Lock It! Drop It! program in Coffee County collected approximately 600 pounds of various medications at its three drop boxes in the Coffee County Sheriff’s Office, the Manchester Police Department and the Tullahoma Police Department. The estimated street value of the collected opioids was more than $11,387.

Count It! Lock It! Drop It! is currently operating in 32 counties statewide – 11 in East Tennessee, 18 in Middle Tennessee and three in West Tennessee – with its educational and grassroots program. A main element of the program is permanent drop boxes located in law enforcement offices. By September, all 95 Tennessee counties will have a box in place. For more information on Count It! Lock It! Drop It! or to locate a drop box, visit www.countitlockitdropit.org.

 

The Non-Profit Seafood Nutrition Partnership (SNP) Launches The 2016 Seafood Recipe Sweepstakes In The United States To Encourage People To Incorporate More Seafood Into Regular Meals

The 2015-2020 USDA Dietary Guidelines for Americans recommend eating seafood at least twice a week and to take in at least 250mg of omega-3s EPA+DHA per day. Currently only 1 in 10 Americans follow this guideline.

As part of SNP’s 3-year public health education Healthy Heart Pledge campaign, the 2016 Seafood Nutrition Partnership Recipe Sweepstakes encourages people to show how easy, delicious, and nutritious fish and shellfish can be to add to weekly meals. “We are excited to introduce this consumer education program to teach Americans about the critical importance seafood nutrition has in supporting heart and brain health,” said SNP Executive Director Linda Cornish. “This program not only highlights the health benefits seafood offers, but also how simple, easy and delicious it is to incorporate seafood at least twice a week into your regular meals.”

Beginning today through October 21st, people are encouraged to share a photo of a seafood dish prepared using 5 ingredients or less (not counting spices/garnishes) on Twitter or Instagram using the hashtags #HealthyHeartPledge and #SNPSweepstakes for a chance to win a $250 gift card. A total of ten winners will be randomly selected in accordance with the Sweepstakes Schedule, with winners being announced on http://www.SNPSweepstakes.com and SNP’s Instagram and Twitter accounts.

Official instructions and rules of the sweepstakes are as follows:

  • Share a photo of a seafood dish prepared using five (5) ingredients or less (not counting spices/garnishes) and list the ingredients or provide a link to a page, which includes a list of the ingredients, and, if possible, include the directions in the social post or via a link.
  • Post to Twitter or Instagram using the hashtags #HealthyHeartPledge and #SNPSweepstakes.
  • A total of ten winners will be randomly selected in accordance with the Sweepstakes Schedule to win a $250 gift card. People can submit one entry per day, and SNP will announce winners on http://www.SNPSweepstakes.com, and SNP’s Instagram and Twitter accounts.
  • No purchase necessary. The sweepstakes ends on 10/21/16. Open to legal residents of the 50 U.S. and D.C., 18 and older. For Official Rules, including odds, and prize descriptions, visit http://www.SNPSweepstakes.com. Void where prohibited.
  • By posting the #HealthyHeartPledge hashtag, you are taking SNP’s Healthy Heart Pledge. This means you recognize seafood is a healthy choice for you and your family and you’ll pledge to eat at least two servings of seafood each week and supplement with omega-3s. You can learn more about the Healthy Heart Pledge and sign up for our newsletter for information to help you eat more sustainable seafood on http://www.seafoodnutrition.org/healthy-heart-pledge.html

About Seafood Nutrition Partnership
Seafood Nutrition Partnership (SNP) is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit whose mission is to inspire a healthier America through partnerships that raise awareness about the essential nutritional benefits of eating seafood. SNP, a member of the Clinton Global Initiative and NCD Roundtable, leads education efforts to help Americans gain the skills to select, order and prepare fish and shellfish, and to inspire a healthier America by promoting a nutrient-rich diet that includes seafood and omega-3s. In October 2015, SNP launched a three-year national public health education campaign. For more information, visit SeafoodNutrition.org.

Attorney Stimac Joins Memphis Area Legal Services Board of Directors & Serves as Sponsorship Chair of Justice For All Ball

Glassman, Wyatt, Tuttle & Cox, PC Attorney Lauran Stimac has recently joined the Board of Directors of Memphis Area Legal Services (MALS) and will serve as the sponsorship chair for the first annual Justice for All Ball benefiting MALS. “Our community’s need for the services MALS provides grows each year, and we must raise funds to provide MALS with the resources to meet those needs,” said Stimac.
Stimac is a Memphis-based trial attorney with the Firm where she handles medical malpractice, legal malpractice matters and assists attorneys facing board-related disciplinary complaints.
MALS is the primary provider of civil legal representation to low income families in the western Tennessee counties of Shelby, Fayette, Tipton and Lauderdale. MALS helps individuals and families facing critical, sometimes life-threatening, situations including domestic violence, mortgage foreclosure, wrongful denial of healthcare and other necessary services, consumer fraud or predatory lending and special challenges of children and the elderly. MALS does not accept fees for its services and does not handle criminal cases, class action lawsuits or fee generating cases such as personal injury or worker’s compensation
“I’m very excited about this opportunity to help our Memphis community through providing a quality service to the underserved and giving hope to those who might have once felt vulnerable during their time of need,” said Stimac. “I’m also super excited about this year’s Justice for All Ball, and I hope that the legal community will come out in full force to support this worthy cause.”
The Justice for All Ball is a superhero-themed event that will be held at the Halloran Center on Saturday, October 15, 2016. It will be a fun night with live music, a silent auction, and more – all to benefit MALS.
Individuals and businesses interested in participating in the Justice for All Ball as sponsors should contact Lauran Stimac directly at (901) 527-4673. Tickets are $125 each with all proceeds going to support MALS. The black tie (and cape) optional event will begin at 7pm. For more information on purchasing tickets, please visit The Justice For All Ball website.
About Glassman, Wyatt, Tuttle & Cox:
Glassman, Wyatt, Tuttle & Cox is a boutique law firm engaging only in civil trial litigation in courts primarily around the Mid-South, including in Tennessee, Arkansas, Mississippi, Kentucky and Alabama. Our lawyers focus their talents on helping clients achieve the best possible results in their trial and arbitration matters both inside and outside the courtroom. The firm is renowned for its ability to handle the most difficult legal situations with targeted and steadfast intensity.