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Health Fair visitors get hands-on lesson in proper hygiene

March 11, 2007|by KATE S. ALEXANDER

WAYNESBORO, Pa. - Reaching under the black light of the Glitter Bug Hand Washing Station, Dave Gossard's hands glowed fluorescent.

"Now go to the bathroom and wash your hands with warm water and soap, cleaning around the fingernails and between the fingers," Connie Duffey said.

Staring at his freshly washed hands under the black light, Gossard, of Riverdale, Md., noticed most of the glow was gone.

"I am fairly pleased with my hand washing," he said.

Hundreds of visitors to Saturday's 24th annual Waynesboro Health Fair put their hand washing skills to the test under the black light, and learned the proper ways to clean and sanitize a germ's favorite transport.

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"We are stressing the importance of proper hand washing," said Duffey, infection control practitioner for Waynesboro Hospital. Picking up a small petri dish that was growing mold and spores, she added, "This was cultured from a keyboard. Germs are everywhere."

Infection control was only one of the steps to good health featured at the fair.

With more than 68 vendors and 150 hospital employees on hand for free screenings and demonstrations, Sheran White, public relations director for Summit Health, said the fair focused on preventative health care.

For 24 years, Waynesboro Hospital has hosted the fair to promote health and wellness in the area.

Ken Shur, president of Waynesboro Hospital, said the fair allows the hospital to show the community what it has to offer.

"I am sure some people forget what Summit Health offers. They need to be reintroduced " said Allie Kohler, vice president of the Waynesboro Hospital board of directors.

Vendors filled the Waynesboro Area Senior High School gymnasium and cafeteria to pass out information, advice, free gifts and test results to an estimated 2,200 people.

White said the fair has changed over the last 24 years to cover more areas of health and wellness, and to reach out to every demographic.

"The fair was broadened to make sure we addressed all ages," she said. "This really is a family event."

White said the fair might be the largest health fair in the Tri-State area.

Summit Health will host a disease-specific fair on April 21 at Summit Health Center in Chambersburg, Pa. The fair will focus on heart disease, diabetes and cancer.

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