Monthly Archives: February 2014

Cold Weather Snow Shoveling and Your Risk for Heart Attack

Did you know that snow shoveling can actually strain the heart enough to cause a heart attack.

Snow shoveling can be more strenuous than exercising full throttle on a treadmill. While this may not be a problem if an individual is healthy and fit, it can be dangerous if not.

Shoveling, even pushing a heavy snow blower, can cause sudden increase in blood pressure and heart rate, and the cold air can cause constriction of the blood vessel and decrease oxygen to the heart. All these work in concert to increase the work of the heart and trigger a potentially fatal heart attack.

Individuals who are at risk of a heart attack during cold outdoor activities include:

  • Those with a prior heart attack
  • Those with known heart disease
  • Those with high blood pressure or high cholesterol
  • Smokers
  • Those who lead a sedentary lifestyle

If you are one of the individuals  listed above, think twice about shoveling snow and talk to their doctor before taking on the task!

Tips for Protecting Your Heart

Before You Shovel Snow

  • Talk to your doctor before you take on this task of snow shoveling
  • Avoid shoveling immediately after you awaken as most heart attacks occur early in the morning when blood is more prone to clotting. Wait for at least 30 minutes and warm up
  • Do not eat heavy meal before shoveling: blood gets diverted form the heart to the stomach
  • Warm up your muscles before starting by walking for a few minutes or marching in place
  • Do not drink coffee or smoke for at least one hour before or one hour after shoveling or during breaks. These are stimulants and elevate your blood pressure and heart rate

While Shoveling Snow

  • Use a small shovel: shovel many small loads instead of heavy ones
  • Begin slowly and take frequent, 15 minute breaks
  • Drink plenty of water to avoid dehydration
  • Dress in layers, to avoid hypothermia (low body temperature) or overheating
  • Cover your head and neck (50% body heat lost thru head and neck)
  • Cover your mouth (breathing cold air can cause angina or trigger breathing problems
  • Watch for warning signs of a heart attack, lightheadedness, dizziness, being short of breath or if you have tightness or burning in chest, neck, arms or back. If you think you are having a heart attack call 911.


WARWICK, NY (February 11) – The 2014 Olympic Winter Games in Sochi, Russia, had just begun and for the residents of the Schervier Pavilion long term care facility in Warwick, NY, it was an opportunity to celebrate the International event with a local version including an opening and closing ceremony with week long contests.

On Monday, February 10, the staff and residents started the week with the opening ceremony in the dining hall, which began with the Olympic anthem followed by everyone singing our National Anthem. That was a departure from tradition, since, for the Schervier Pavilion Olympics, the host country was the USA and not Russia.

Residents were invited to pass an Olympic “torch” from one person to another and then, in place of a parade of nations, 20 flags from different countries were handed out and individually waved during the playing of that nation’s national anthem. Those flags were placed on display for the remainder of the week.

Director of Recreation Kari Call, a certified therapy recreation specialist (CTRS), concluded the ceremony with a brief discussion and questions about modern Olympic symbols and traditions such as the Olympic rings, which represent the five inhabited continents. (The Americas are treated as one continent.) and the motto, Citius—Altius—Fortius, which is Latin for “faster, higher, stronger.” The staff then passed out red, white and blue ice cream to everyone.

During the week a modified series of Olympic games, perhaps not exactly like those in Sochi, but fun nevertheless, included “ice fishing,” curling and a “snowball” throw.

Schervier Pavilion, a member of the Bon Secours Charity Health System, is a 120-bed skilled nursing facility licensed by the New York State Department of Health. Dedicated to the highest standard of health care excellence, its full range of services, such as its therapeutic recreational program, are designed to respond to each individual’s physical, emotional and spiritual needs.

In addition to quality long term care services, Schervier Pavilion also offers a wide range of short-term (sub acute) care needs. Its sub acute services include IV therapy, Rehabilitation therapy and wound care. These services afford residents the ability to recuperate for a short time in the sub-

acute unit of the facility and then return to the community where they can resume a more independent life. In some cases, they can then enter Schervier Pavilion’s Day-At-A-Time, an innovative medical adult day care program that provides nursing services, medication administration, ongoing evaluations, and stimulating activities tailored to each individual’s needs and abilities.

“Games and entertainment have an important value in long term care at Schervier Pavilion,” said Call. “Therapeutic recreation is essential to the quality of life and the quality of care of individuals receiving health and human services.”

All programs at Schervier Pavilion are designed to meet the psychosocial and physical needs of the residents with activities that are not only enjoyable but are also intended to achieve this goal.

Center for Diabetes Education at St. Anthony Community Hospital Offers monthly support group meetings for children with diabetes

Next meeting of 2014 is on Monday evening, February 24

WARWICK – (February 11) – You are not alone.

The St. Anthony Community Hospital Center for Diabetes Education now offers parents and their children, age 12 and under who have type 1 diabetes, an opportunity to get involved monthly with a support group that can help manage their child’s diabetes day-to-day for a full and active life.

The Children’s Support Group meets on the fourth Monday of every month from 6:30 p.m. -7:30 p.m. in the 2nd floor conference room at St. Anthony Community Hospital. The next meeting of 2014 will be on Monday evening, February 24.

According to the American Diabetes Association, as many as three million Americans are diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes. Previously known as juvenile diabetes, the disease is usually diagnosed in children and young adults. In type 1 diabetes, the body does not produce insulin, a hormone that is needed to convert sugar (glucose), starches and other food into energy needed for daily life.

“Living with diabetes is always a challenge for a child and his or her family and it can feel overwhelming at times,” said Certified Diabetes Educator Lourdes Braadt, RN, CDE. “The purpose of the group is for children with type 1 diabetes to meet other children who also have diabetes so they know they are not the only ones living with diabetes. We hope friendships will develop and children and parents will learn from one another as well as provide support for each other. Diabetes should not stop any child from accomplishing his or her dreams and we want all the children with diabetes to be reminded of that.”

All parents and children with type 1 diabetes are urged to attend the February 24 Children’s Support Group Meeting. Seating is limited and all those planning to attend are asked to reserve a place as soon as possible by calling (845) 987-5168.

The Center for Diabetes Education at St. Anthony Community Hospital offers a series of classes for all patients who have been recently diagnosed with diabetes or those who demonstrate poorly controlled diets. During group or individual sessions, clinical instructors offer initial assessment, emotional support and will seek to help patients achieve a better understanding of the disease.

For more information about the Center for Diabetes Education, call 845-987-5168 or visit


Bon Secours Warwick Health Foundation Raises Almost $20,000 in Annual Year End Appeal

Medical Staff Matched $5,000 in Donations

WARWICK, NY (Jan. 29) – The Bon Secours Warwick Health Foundation recently reported that it had raised $14,750 in its 2013 annual year end appeal to raise funds for the purchase of new medical technology and to upgrade patient care spaces.

The medical staff at the three Warwick healthcare facilities, which include St. Anthony Community Hospital, Schervier Pavilion and Mount Alverno, raised an additional $5,000 in matching donations bringing the final tally close to $20,000.

“We were delighted by the incredible response to our appeal letters from members of the community,” said Foundation Chair Raul Berina. “Their generosity and that of our medical staff will benefit many.”

Additional contributions can be made securely online at or by calling (845) 368-5151.

The mission of the Bon Secours Warwick Health Care Foundation is to expand the base of philanthropic support and to generate community goodwill for the Warwick Healthcare Campus. Funds are raised annually via the annual campaign, major gifts/planned giving and special events such as the annual June Tent Party. Capital campaigns are conducted as needed to support major projects for the campus such as construction, renovation and/or the acquisition of new technology. A volunteer Board of Directors provides leadership to the Foundation and its activities and works closely with the Foundation Staff and its devoted volunteers.