Health briefs: Tickets available for Rubber Ducky Race |

Health briefs: Tickets available for Rubber Ducky Race

The annual Rubber Ducky Race fundraiser, hosted by Northwest Colorado Health, will take place along the Yampa River Sept. 10 in Steamboat Springs.
Courtesy Photo

Tickets available for Rubber Ducky Race Sept. 10

Northwest Colorado Health will host the Rubber Ducky Race for Hospice Sept. 10. Tickets are $10.

The race will start at 11 a.m. at the Fifth Street bridge. A celebration, with children’s activities and food vendors, will follow at West Lincoln Park. There will be $5,000 in cash prizes, including a $1,500 grand prize. All proceeds benefit Northwest Colorado Health Hospice program.

Participants need not to be present to win. Purchase tickets online at Tickets are also available at Northwest Colorado Health, 940 Central Park Drive, Suite 101, or Yampa Valley Bank, 600 S. Lincoln Avenue.

Volunteers are needed to help with pre-event ticket sales and other aspects of the race. For more information, call Mindy Marriott at 970-871-7609.

REPS seeks emergency department volunteers

Reaching Everyone Preventing Suicide is collaborating with Yampa Valley Medical Center to increase the number and presence of volunteers in the hospital’s Emergency Department assisting suicidal patients.

The SPA program, created by REPS, enlists advocate volunteers who give information and support to patients admitted to the ED for suicidal ideation or attempted suicide. SPA volunteers are trained in both REPS and hospital procedures and can volunteer to be on call for as little as one 12 hour shift per month or as many as two shifts per week.

For information on SPA and to learn more about volunteering, contact REPS at or Pam Bosch, hospital volunteer coordinator, at

NWCH reminds residents to protect themselves from hantavirus

Northwest Colorado Health advises precautions when cleaning — or just being in — areas inhabited by rodents.

Hantavirus is a serious, potentially fatal respiratory disease carried primarily by deer mice, which can be abundant in rural areas. Cases and deaths from the virus have increased in Colorado through the past several years; most cases occur in the spring and summer.

People can be infected by inhaling dirt and dust contaminated with deer mouse urine and feces. The illness can begin one to six weeks after exposure. Early symptoms include fatigue, fever and muscle aches and may also include pain in the legs and back, headaches, dizziness, chills and abdominal problems.

If a person experiences these symptoms and has potentially been exposed to rodents, he or she should seek medical attention immediately. Hantavirus can be prevented by avoiding areas infested by rodents and following safety recommendations when cleaning up possible rodent food sources and nesting sites around the home, work areas or campsite. For information about safely cleaning rodent areas, visit

Avoid mosquito bites and West Nile virus

Northwest Colorado Health advises precautions against mosquitoes, which can carry West Nile virus.

• Drain standing water where mosquitoes lay eggs. Empty old tires, cans, flower pots, clogged rain gutters, rain barrels and toys where puddles occur.

• Limit outdoor activities, or take precautions during dusk and dawn, when mosquitoes are most active.

• Dress in long sleeves and pants in active mosquito areas.

• Insect repellents containing DEET are effective in repelling mosquitoes. Always follow label instructions and precautions. The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends not using insect repellent on children younger than two months old and not using repellents containing more than 30 percent DEET on children. For tips on safely using insect repellents on children, visit (type “insect repellent” in the search box).

West Nile virus is rare, but those who exhibit symptoms, including high fever, severe headache and stiff neck, are advised to contact a health care provider immediately. For more information, visit Travel to some international destinations may include the risk for Zika virus, which also is carried by mosquitoes. For more information, visit

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