HEALTH

HHS expands flu PSAs with spots featuring Elmo, local governors

BY Michael Johnsen

WASHINGTON The Department of Health and Human Services on Monday announced the availability of 13 new 30-second flu radio public service announcements, featuring 13 of America’s governors and Elmo from “Sesame Street.”

The messages, which will be promoted to radio stations across the country, promote key flu prevention messages to parents and children.

Children and young adults continue to be disproportionately affected by H1N1, HHS reported. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, more than half of the hospitalizations from 2009 H1N1 flu reported recently were people age 24 and younger.  That’s why HHS has teamed up with Sesame Workshop and other partners to promote flu prevention PSAs aimed at educating children and their parents about the importance of staying healthy during flu season.

“Elmo has emerged as one of our best partners in fighting the flu this year,” stated HHS secretary Kathleen Sebelius. “That’s why we are excited for Elmo to join some of the nation’s governors in promoting important flu prevention tips. We know that kids are especially vulnerable against H1N1, and we hope that hearing flu prevention tips from Elmo will help them stay healthy and flu free.”

These new 30-second radio ads are designed for broadcast in states around the country. All of the new ads are available for download at http://www.flu.gov/psa/psacongress.html.

The new radio PSAs include recordings from Govs. Jodi Rell, Conn.; Chet Culver, Iowa; Mark Parkinson, Kansas; Jennifer Granholm, Mich.; Jay Nixon, Mo.; Bev Perdue, N.C.; John Hoeven, N.D.; Ted Strickland, Ohio; Brad Henry, Okla.; Ted Kulongoski, Ore.; Jim Douglas, Vt.; Chris Gregoire, Wash.; and Dave Freudenthal, Wyo.

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Carex launches Pedal Exerciser with Digital Display

BY Michael Johnsen

OAKLAND, Calif. Carex Health Brands recently launched its new Pedal Exerciser with Digital Display for retail durable medical equipment sets.

The Pedal Exerciser is expected to appeal to those undergoing rehabilitation after injury or for seniors who may be a bit less mobile but want to remain fit, the company stated.

The new Pedal Exerciser features a digital display that enables users to readily track their progress. Display features include time elapsed, calories burned and the total number of repetitions undertaken.

Designed for consumers seeking a gentle workout, the Pedal Exerciser also features a resistance knob that can be simply turned as a user’s strength and endurance improves. In addition, the new product – which folds for compact storage – comes with anti-slip rubber pads for enhanced comfort and safety, as well as pre-installed batteries.

Carex’s Pedal Exerciser with Digital Display will be available at select retailers for a suggested retail price of $61.18.

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Mead Johnson develops Web site addressing infant health

BY Michael Johnsen

EVANSVILLE, Ind. Mead Johnson last week posted a collection of visual images and a video to tell the story of how nutrition plays a vital role in babies’ health, growth and development during the critical first 12 months at http://www.thevisualmd.com/health_centers/child_health/infant_nutrition.

The collection takes the viewer on an educational journey through the many aspects of infant development, including the benefits of the nutrients DHA and ARA on the eyes, brain and immune system, as well as the importance of vitamin D early in a child’s development. The images are designed to teach moms how nutrition works in babies, what nutrients are important for breastfeeding or what ingredients to look for in infant formula.

“Getting the right nutrition is essential for both mom and baby, during pregnancy and throughout the baby’s first year of life,” stated Madelyn Fernstrom, founder and director of the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center’s Weight Management Center in Pittsburgh. “Helping moms take the complexity out of nutrition science and presenting information in a way that is easily understood helps them understand how vital good nutrition is in supporting growth and development.”

The Web site is sponsored by Mead Johnson Nutrition, the maker of the Enfamil family of products.

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