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Don’t Pay Someone For Simple Repairs

There are many benefits to home improvement projects. If you pick a renovation or addition project that you can do without outside help, you can save a lot of cash while increasing your home’s value. Do-it-yourself home projects are often an enjoyable pastime. To make sure you do it right, consider the valuable ideas in the article below.

Prior to investing in hardwood floors, ask a professional first about the floors you already have in your home. Your home might be one of the many that has potentially-attractive original hardwood lurking beneath multiple layers of tile, linoleum, vinyl, or carpet. If this is the case, you’ll just need to strip the old carpet or flooring and refinish the natural floor underneath.

Turning off the water is important when you are working to improve your kitchen or bathroom. Whenever you will be working with pipes or the water supply, find the shutoff valve before you begin. This will stop your house from flooding.

You may be eager to demolish things that you intend to rebuild, but doing so incorrectly could have serious consequences. Do not tear a wall or cabinet down before checking what is in the supporting structure. If any electrical configurations are involved, repairs may be costly.

One of the best ways to cut down your winter heating costs is to take the time to give your attic proper insulation. Because heat rises, many homes with poor insulation lose heat through the roof during the cold weather months. Insulation is available at your nearest hardware store; you can install it yourself.

It’s an excellent idea to visit open houses around town (new subdivisions are best) to gather ideas before you embark on renovations to your own house. Seeing the actual styles and colors will give you an idea of how these options would change the look of your home. Lots of model homes have decorators who include furniture and window coverings in order to provide you with a better look. Therefore, you can simply mimic the options you like and skip the ones you don’t.

As mentioned earlier, such projects can be personally fulfilling and provide substantial financial value. You should be ready to make the best choices, get inspiration and save money with the help of these tips.

Source: 21sthomeimprovement

Do Some Work Around Your House: Discover Home Improvement.

Understanding home improvement will help you save time and money. Use the information in this article to determine whether the home improvement project you’re considering is one you can do yourself or one that is more suited for professional assistance. When in doubt, hire a professional.

Baseboard that are stained rather than painted are more appealing. This look is considered classic, and most homes can benefit from the more natural appeal. Stained baseboards will also hide scuffs and dings better than painted wood, and touch-ups to scratches will blend in more easily. You can choose from many different colors of wood stain to match any decor.

Texturing walls through the use of drywall mud could cover up unwanted blemishes. Texturing is easy. Once the drywall mud is troweled, you simply grab a brush with bristles, a sponge or an empty plastic bag, and then use whatever you grab to create texture on the drywall mud by dabbing.

Think small with your next home project and start with just one room. It is much easier to begin in one room and complete it before beginning the next project. If you make your plans in advance, you can incorporate significant bargains into the process. Long-term planning can help you achieve great home improvement results on a modest budget.

Arrange garage items in plastic boxes to keep organized. Write on the bins to indicate what is inside them. Also, get stackable ones if possible. This is an inexpensive way to clean the garage and prevent bugs and rodents from damaging your belongings.

As this article said before, be sure you know the limits of what you can do when repairing your home. Keeping the advice shared here with you in mind will help you avoid mistakes that can derail your entire project. It is better to get help from others than to make mistakes that you will regret later.

Source: 21sthomeimprovement

GrassrootsHealth Moves Vitamin D into Practice with Pregnant Women

GrassrootsHealth Moves Vitamin D into Practice with Pregnant Women

San Diego, CA (PRWEB) March 27, 2015

GrassrootsHealth, an international nonprofit public health promotion organization, will launch its Protect Our Children (POC) NOW! vitamin D demonstration project April 7 in the Charleston area at the Medical University of South Carolina (MUSC), and will soon follow with a second phase in Columbia. POC will be available at no cost to a minimum of 500 pregnant women at 17 weeks or less gestation who live within these two service areas. The project will include patient and health care provider education, screening and vitamin D supplements.

“We’re very excited to launch Protect Our Children NOW! in South Carolina,” said Carole Baggerly, founder and director of GrassrootsHealth. “This is a wonderful opportunity to trumpet the importance of vitamin D to pregnant mothers and physicians. We aim to reduce the incidence of preterm births, as well as positively influence the health of pregnant moms and lower the prevalence of early childhood diseases associated with vitamin D deficiency.”

Pregnant moms can participate from the comfort and convenience of their own homes by enrolling online at starting April 7. Enrollment will include completion of a health questionnaire and informed consent form. Obstetricians are required to complete two continuing medical education courses provided by UCSD School of Medicine and POC at no cost in order for their patients to participate in the project.

Once enrolled, participants will visit their MUSC physician to complete a blood test. Upon reviewing the results of the test, participants will receive vitamin D supplements, compliments of Bio-Tech Pharmacal, as well as educational materials to guide their supplement intake. Further blood tests will measure vitamin D serum levels at 24 weeks and 36 weeks gestation.

Participants will get feedback on their vitamin D levels, as well as other health issues, via a new health portal, HYLIONTM, available at Additional features of HYLION will include a chat room for connecting with other pregnant moms, as well as ongoing education and interactive activities focused on vitamin D and health for each stage of the pregnancy. GrassrootsHealth will also organize informational sessions and support groups for pregnant women enrolled in the program.

“The South Carolina Birth Outcomes Initiative (SCBOI) encourages collaboration among providers, insurers, community organizations and other stakeholders to work toward stronger, healthier babies in our State,” said BZ (Melanie) Giese, Director, SCBOI for the South Carolina Department of Health and Human Services. “Programs such as POC that focus on keeping moms healthy and giving babies the best start at life, may help SCBOI achieve its mission to reduce infant mortality and the number of low birth weight babies.”

GrassrootsHealth has enlisted several project implementation partners including MUSC, First Choice by Select Health of South Carolina and Eau Claire Cooperative Health Centers (ECCHC). Select Health, the first Medicaid managed care organization in the nation to join the POC effort, will educate its First Choice health plan members and providers about the benefits of vitamin D.

“Select Health is pleased to lend support to this program because it’s important not only for our First Choice plan members, but also for pregnant women and babies across our state,” said Rebecca Engelman, market president at Select Health. “We have a long history of partnering to ensure the health of moms and newborns. We work closely with the March of Dimes Prematurity Awareness Initiative, as well as the SCBOI, and we’re excited that Protect Our Children NOW! offers another approach in the fight to reduce preterm births.”

MUSC’s departments of Obstetrics and Gynecology and Pediatrics have partnered to support POC, and will refer qualifying patients into the program. Carol Wagner, M.D., professor in the department of Pediatrics at MUSC and lead researcher for this project at GrassrootsHealth, will help provide online continuing medical education modules to engage medical faculty and residents in the need for vitamin D screening and treatment. This educational approach hopes to achieve lasting changes in obstetric practice, patient education and patient behavior.

“Pregnant women with vitamin D deficiencies may be at greater risk for various problems and complications, both for themselves and their babies,” said Wagner. “It’s imperative for pregnant women and the medical community at large to recognize the importance of vitamin D in overall health.”

South Carolina has struggled with one of the highest preterm birth rates in the nation for many years now. According to the March of Dimes, South Carolina’s current preterm birth rate is 13.8 percent, as compared with the national average of 11.4. A randomized trial conducted by Wagner and Bruce Hollis, Ph.D., achieved a preterm birth rate of 6.5 percent with vitamin D serum levels greater than 38 nanograms/milliliter (ng/mL). Their findings were published in the January 2013 edition of the American Journal of Obstetrics & Gynecology.

“We’re aiming to help pregnant women achieve a vitamin D level of at least 40 ng/mL, which is the same level regularly achieved by outdoor workers,” said Wagner. “It is the level that optimizes the hormone vitamin D as reported by our randomized trial, and the level at which approximately 50 percent of preterm births were reduced based on a 2015 study by Bodnar, et al that appeared in the February issue of Obstetrics & Gynecology.”

According to the Wagner and Hollis vitamin D studies in which ECCHC took part, vitamin D supplementation during pregnancy was shown to reduce preterm birth and be safe. Greatest improvements were seen among Hispanic and African-American populations.

“We’ve studied vitamin D’s impact on preterm birth and we know it’s highly effective. We’re most excited about the opportunity to help integrate testing and supplementation into medical practice, making it a standard of care,” said Eric M. Schlueter, M.D., chief medical officer at ECCHC. “I expect Protect Our Children NOW! to produce best practices that can be replicated nationwide.”

For health care providers or other insurers interested in learning more about or participating in POC, GrassrootsHealth will host introductory webinars starting in April. Signup to be notified at

Those interested in program updates may sign up by contacting Jen Aliano at 800-324-8139 or jen(at)grassrootshealth(dot)org or by visiting

# # #

Media Contacts:

Jen Aliano, GrassrootsHealth O: (760) 710-9305 / (800) 324-8139 / jen(at)grassrootshealth(dot)org

Source: 21sthomeimprovement

Home Improvement Tips You Should Check Out

You’ve heard the opinions of many people when it comes to home improvement, but you should learn about it yourself. This may take a bit of time, but it will be well worth it. There are many tips in this article that can help you.

Spackle and paint can repair wall holes made by paintings. Purchase spackle at any home improvement center. A little spackle goes a long way when doing these projects. You can use a bobby pin to put spackle in the tiniest holes. After the spackle has dried, just smooth the hole with a rigid object such as a credit card. Top with paint. The holes will be gone in no time.

Look to your kitchen when you want to get an idea of where to begin home improvements and updates. Use a solution of 2-to-one TSP and water to get rid on grease stains on the walls. This may remove stains but it will also strip paint. Re-paint the kitchen in tan colors; you will be amazed at how much different your room will look as soon as you are done.

There is a lot that one person can get done in terms of home improvement, but you should never be afraid to seek out help from family and friends. If you wait till the project has begun to ask, you might have a difficult time finding the help. You also run the risk of running overbudget or overtime, which can be a problem for outdoor projects that rely on good weather.

To seal bugs out while reducing your home heating and cooling expenses, use caulk to completely seal cracks, holes or any other openings that you notice. All you need is simple caulk, which is applied around your windows, along baseboards and any other areas that could have small openings to the outside. After caulking, your home will have an air tight seal which will prevent bugs from entering your home.

To sum it all up, these are great suggestions and tips for home improvement. You hopefully have learned some new things today. Use this knowledge, and control your own home improvement success.

Source: 21sthomeimprovement

Caregivers at Baptist Nursing Home in Schenectady Organize to Join 1199SEIU Workers Call on Management to Raise Standards for Residents and Employees

Caregivers at Baptist Nursing Home in Schenectady Organize to Join 1199SEIU Workers Call on Management to Raise Standards for Residents and Employees

Schenectady, New York (PRWEB) March 25, 2015

On April 24, over 160 caregivers at Baptist Nursing and Rehabilitation Center will have an election conducted by the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) to join with 1199SEIU, the largest and most powerful union voice for healthcare workers in New York State and nationwide. The election will include caregivers at the nursing home, including certified nursing assistants (CNAs), restorative aides, housekeeping, laundry, transport, and various other titles.

The workers reached out to 1199SEIU in order to improve health outcomes. They chose 1199 because of the union’s success in bargaining contracts that help to maintain good, middle-class jobs for healthcare workers and quality care for communities.

“It’s time to make a change for our residents and ourselves,” said Amina Benjamin, a CNA who has been with Baptist for almost 18 years. “Not having enough staff means we don’t have as much time to spend with our residents as they deserve—to listen to their stories or hang out with them like they want—because we are always rushing around. By joining 1199 we hope we will be able to make improvements. by working together.”

“Not having enough staff makes us feel bad that we don’t have time to connect with the residents who depend on us,” said Jodi Palmo-Peabody, a CNA at Baptist with almost 15 years of experience at the facility. With an 1199 contract we will establish safe staffing levels that are good for our residents and caregivers alike.”

1199SEIU will do everything in our power to protect residents and caregivers, including meeting with elected officials.

Source: 21sthomeimprovement

US Congressman Guthrie Visits KORT Bardstown Physical Therapy to Learn About PT Care for Seniors

US Congressman Guthrie Visits KORT Bardstown Physical Therapy to Learn About PT Care for Seniors

(PRWEB) March 24, 2015

U.S. Representative for Kentucky’s Second congressional district Brett Guthrie visited KORT’s Bardstown clinic on March 10 to see the important role therapy plays for seniors trying to return to functional, independent living.

Guthrie is co-sponsor of House Bill HR 775/S 539, The Medicare Access to Rehabilitation Services Act, a bipartisan bill which would permanently repeal the arbitrary outpatient rehabilitation therapy cap currently in place.

According to Robbie Hinkebein, PT, DPT, OCS, ATC with KORT, current legislation discriminates against the most vulnerable Medicare beneficiaries and disregards the clinical appropriateness of care. The cap reduces Medicare beneficiaries’ access to timely rehabilitation and causes negative outcomes such as delayed care, reduced independence, increased pain, and an increased cost to Medicare, he said.

“Our KORT Bardstown team, as well as our community, was ecstatic to host Representative Guthrie and thank him for his support. It was very impactful to have our patients discuss the power physical therapy has had in their lives with Mr. Guthrie,” said Hinkebein.

Guthrie Learns About Care from Seniors

Numerous KORT patients turned out to meet with Representative Guthrie and give a first-hand account of their care and how much they have relied on physical therapy to maintain their active and independent lifestyles.

“To be able to take steps without the fear of falling is an incredible improvement,” said KORT Bardstown patient Barbara Thompson. “Since I started Physical Therapy at KORT, I have not had to use my walker at all. However, I’m afraid my time at KORT will be cut short due to the therapy cap. I appreciate Representative Guthrie’s support of people like me.”

Dudley Mattingly of Bardstown said he relied on physical therapy after numerous surgeries as a result of a car accident. He says he would not have been able to return to independent living without it.

Beverly Armstrong, whose husband is a KORT patient said, “Whenever we have a lapse in coverage for therapy, I notice that my husband’s progress is severely hindered and he relies on me to do more for him.”

Patients encouraged Guthrie to continue his fight to repeal the cap and thanked him for his ongoing efforts.

“The current cap on care is simply bad policy that in many cases increases overall healthcare costs while impeding needed patient access. Clinical evidence and research shows that physical therapy as a first course of treatment for multiple conditions provides the best patient outcome and greatest cost savings. A hard therapy cap forces patients into higher-cost interventions such as medications or surgeries to treat a problem better served through physical therapy,” said Hinkebein.

Contact Your Representative

“Medicare patients, families and caregivers are urged to contact their United States Congressmen and Senators and let them know how important physical therapy benefits are to them. Encourage them to sponsor and support legislation that would repeal a bad policy that could cause delayed care, having to choose between necessary services, and a reduction in an individual’s independence in his or her home,” said Hinkebein.

About the Therapy Caps

The therapy caps were created in the 1997 Balanced Budget Act to cut costs necessary to balance the federal budget. Congress has seen the error in this flawed legislation and the potential harm to Medicare beneficiaries and has acted by passing several moratoriums on its enforcement of the caps. In 2006, Congress allowed the therapy caps to go into effect but authorized Medicare to allow exceptions for beneficiaries needing additional rehabilitation services based on diagnosis, clinician evaluation, and judgment. Congress has acted annually to extend these exceptions for beneficiaries, but the exceptions are only authorized through March 31, 2015. Completing House Bill HR 775/S 539 before the March 31 deadline provides an opportunity to end the pattern of yearly extensions that puts access to medically necessary therapy for Medicare beneficiaries at risk.

Kentucky Orthopedic Rehab Team (KORT) has been specializing in outpatient physical and occupational therapy in Kentucky and Southern Indiana for over 25 years. Local ownership and independent operations, allow KORT clinicians to work one-on-one with patients to regain strength, increase flexibility, improve mobility, and reduce pain without drugs or surgery. Selected as a “Best Places to Work in Kentucky” for 11 consecutive years, and with over 40 locations, KORT has the most board certified Orthopedic Specialists and Vestibular Rehabilitation specialists than any other provider in the region. KORT’s certified athletic trainers provide sports medicine services to more than 30 high schools and colleges in Kentucky & Southern Indiana.


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Source: 21sthomeimprovement