No-cost, Drive-Thru Flu Shot Clinic Set for Geisinger CenterPoint

The best defense against getting the flu is to get a flu shot, and this year it’s more important than ever to get one. To help make it easier to get your flu shot, Geisinger’s first community drive-thru flu shot clinic in northeastern Pennsylvania will take place Saturday, Sept. 26, and Sunday, Sept. 27, near Pittston.

Drive-thru flu shots will be available from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Geisinger CenterPoint, 300 Keystone Ave., Pittston, located just off of Interstate 81 in the CenterPoint Commerce and Trade Park. This drive-thru event is open to the public and is only for people older than 18. The flu shots are available at no cost and are being provided by Geisinger’s health and wellness team.

There’s no need to preregister to get a flu shot. Remember to wear a mask and loose-fitting clothing that allows easy access to the upper arm.

When arriving at a drive-thru vaccination site, follow all directional signage. You’ll need to fill out a short electronic form before receiving your flu shot. Remain inside your vehicle next to an open window. Staff will not enter vehicles to provide flu shots.

An additional public drive-thru flu shot event is set for Saturday, Oct. 24, at the Southside Fire Station in Hazleton from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Distributed by Geisinger mobile health services, walk-up community flu shots will also be available Monday, Oct. 5, at the Greater Scranton YMCA from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.

In addition to the drive-thru flu clinics, Geisinger primary care and pediatric offices offer flu shots during regular office hours, with many locations open until 7 p.m. Geisinger Pharmacy locations offer flu shots for patients, and those age 9 and older can get a flu shot at Geisinger Convenient Care locations any day of the week, with no appointment necessary.

For a full list of flu shot locations, as well as helpful tips on staying flu-free this season, visit geisinger.org/flunews.

Keystone College to Offer Medical Billing and Coding Certificate Program

The Medical Billing and Coding Certificate Program (15 credits) prepares participants for employment in the medical community that involves medical billing, coding, and claims processing. Medical billing and coding specialists are responsible for translating and sequencing medical documentation into formal, standardized, numerical codes for diagnoses and procedures. Medical billing and coding supports the billing process by coding and processing claims. Various organizations in the community offer opportunities for employment including medical practices, hospitals, nursing and rehabilitation facilities, coding and billing services, insurance companies, government agencies, and consulting firms. Upon successful completion of 15 credits online and passing the exam, participants receive a certificate in Medical Billing and Coding.

This certificate is open to those interested in the medical billing and coding profession. No prior college experience is required. Those who hold a degree can add this academic credential. It will serve as formal education and a short-term academic credential for those interested in a role as a Medical Biller and Coder. Anyone who aspires to this career path can should attend. This certificate can be added to any associate or bachelor’s degree seeking student’s program of study.

Program Details: 15 credits plus AAPC certification exam. Delivery is all online in an asynchronous format. Orientation to Keystone College online learning platform (2 hours) precedes start of courses (no charge).

  • Medical Terminology (3 credits) – Starts 10/12/20 and ends 12/11/20
  • Introduction to Healthcare (3 credits) – Starts 1/18/21 and ends 3/12/21
  • Anatomy & Physiology for Coding (3 credits) – Starts 3/22/21 and ends 5/14/21
  • Introduction to Medical Billing (3 credits) – Starts 6/7/21 and ends 8/13/21
  • Introduction to Medical Coding (3 credits) – Starts 8/30/21 and ends 10/15/21
  • AAPC Exam (0 credits) – October 2021

Tuition:

  • $450/credit or $6750 for 15 credits
  • Student fees to support online course delivery – $400
  • Books: One for each course. Medical Terminology Book is $150. There is a book for each of the other four courses. Approximate total on books = $500
  • AAPC exam fee= $300
  • Total investment = $7950

To enroll, complete the non-degree enrollment form and submit to Janet Jones at janet.jones@keystone.edu

Seeking Community Leaders for American Cancer Society Real Men Wear Pink Campaign

The 2020 Real Men Wear Pink Campaign of NYPENN (Northeast PA and the Southern Tier of New York) is recruiting community leaders from Ithaca to Cooperstown, Wellsboro to the Poconos, Scranton, Wilkes-Barre, Hazleton, Binghamton, Vestal, Johnson City and all points in between.  

Confirmed for 2020 Campaign: Henry Cook (Heavy Duty Promotions), Keith Wasley (All One Health), Will Beekman (Mohegan Sun Arena), Ray Scott (Equinox Broadcast), Leon John Jr (East Stroudsburg University)., Clarence Baltrusaitis (NET Credit Union), Matt Shaffer (BOA/Merril Lynch), Jude McDonough (Alliance Wealth Advisors), Kevin McDonough (MAC Signs), Ron Butler (Retired Health Care Exec),  Frank Crofhicks (Community Volunteer), Blair “Beau” Roskow (Naglee Moving and Storage), Jamie Kane (ACS), Jim Mathiesen (ACS), Jamie Anzalone (Anzalone Law), Kurt Lowery (Hez Salon), and Tim Dougherty (PA Attorneys General Office), Dan Casey (Bonner Chevrolet), Michael Barretta (Mayor of Owego, NY), Christopher Smith (City Of Scranton), and Matt Sharpe (Cameron Manufacturing).

Why join? Because breast cancer doesn’t just affect women. Thousands of men are diagnosed with the disease every year – and so are more than 240,000 of their daughters, wives, mothers, sisters, and friends. By Joining Real Men Wear Pink, you will show your support and raise money all while engaging in some friendly competition!  And it doesn’t have to be just you!  Your company can do this as a group if you so choose!

Your commitment as a Real Men Wear Pink candidate will be as follows:

  • Send your headshot and bio to James.kane@cancer.org
  • Fundraising goal is a minimum of $2,500 via our RMWP website alongside other RMWP candidates during September through October 31st (we will provide you the tools and coaching).
  • Wear pink every day or on specific days in October (can be any pink item!)
  • Attend the Real Men Wear Pink VIP Zoom Launch Event on Tuesday September 29th from 6-645 PM (will be recorded as well).

Are you interested in joining? If so, fill out the fillable form or we can walk you through registering yourself, drop me a line at James.Kane@cancer.org for more information!

Upcoming Virtual Community Conversation Series to Address Racism

To offer education and engage our local community, The Greater Scranton MLK Commission in collaboration with other higher education partners, including The University of Scranton, will offer a series of three sessions this October, “Talking about Racism: A Community Conversation” to provide space for community members to listen, learn, and work for change.

This series was planned over the summer as nationwide protests in the wake of the killings of George Floyd and other Black people brought renewed attention to longstanding issues of racism and social justice. The events recognize that talking about race can be difficult, but see possibilities for progress when participants engage with curiosity, knowledge, and empathy.

These sessions were developed by the Greater Scranton MLK Commission together with higher education partners utilizing speakers from Northeastern Pennsylvania colleges and universities and local organizations. 

 “Education is essential. We need to raise awareness so that people can actually see and understand the scope of the problem of racism – how it impacts individuals and our society. This conversation series will be an opportunity for learning and engagement as a Scranton community.” said Cathy Ann Hardaway, President of the Greater Scranton MLK Commission.

With this goal in mind, “Talking About Racism: A Community Conversation” was created to take participants on a learning journey over three weeks as they uncover their own implicit biases and privilege so we can all work together to create a more equitable and just community here in Northeastern Pennsylvania.

“The summer of 2020 has prompted a racial reckoning in our country. These problems are not new, but this series was developed to seize the moment now to listen and learn about the ways in which racism affects our Black neighbors and to do our part to bring about lasting change,” said Julie Schumacher Cohen, Assistant Vice President for Community Engagement and Government Affairs at The University of Scranton.

This series includes three sessions on different but related topics. The first session on Oct. 1, “Defining and Identifying Racism” will be moderated by Cathy Ann Hardaway, MLK Commission president and will feature presenters Arthur Breese, director of diversity, Geisinger, and Teresa Grettano, Ph.D., associate professor of English/theatre, The University of Scranton. The second session on Oct. 8, “Understanding White Privilege and Allyship” will be moderated by Ida Castro, JD, MLK Commission, Geisinger Commonwealth School of Medicine, and will feature presenters Jessica Nolan, Ph.D. professor of psychology, The University of Scranton, and Leon John, Ph.D., director of alumni engagement, East Stroudsburg University. The third session on Oct. 15, “Discussing Black Lives Matter” will be moderated by Lia Richards Palmiter, Ph.D., MLK Commission, Marywood University, and will feature presenters Glynis Johns, founder, Black Scranton Project, and Yerodin Lucas, Ph.D., interim director Office of Equity and Inclusion and Title IX coordinator, Marywood University.

Community members are invited to join in the conversation through a series of presentations followed by question and answer sessions held via Zoom on Thursdays from 5:30 – 6:30 p.m. beginning Oct. 1. Registration is required at surveymonkey.com/r/TalkingAboutRacism. Zoom information will be sent prior to the event.

This series is a project of The Greater Scranton MLK Commission in collaboration with Geisinger Commonwealth School of Medicine, Johnson College, Lackawanna College, Marywood University, Penn State Scranton, and The University of Scranton. Questions can be directed to community@scranton.edu.

The University of Scranton Announces Virtual Events for Fall

Through Nov. 6 Hope Horn Gallery Art Exhibit: Women in Art: Selections from the Everhart Museum. Scheduled appointments Only. Free. Call 570-941-4214 or email darlene.miller-lanning@scranton.edu.  

Sept. 28 Noon. Lunchtime Seminar: “COVID-19 and the Economy” featuring Satyajit Ghosh, Ph.D., professor of economics, Kania School of Management. Co-sponsored by The University of Scranton Small Business Development Center and The Office of Community Relations. ZOOM.  Registration required. Free. Call 570-941-6667 or email elizabeth.geeza@scranton.edu.  

Sept. 30 5 p.m. The Gail and Francis Slattery Center for the Humanities: “A Conversation with New York Times Correspondent Eric Schmitt” with Adam Pratt, Ph.D., history professor and Paige Cognetti, Scranton mayor. A Q and A session will conclude the event. ZOOM. Free. Registration required at https://scranton.alumniq.com/index.cfm/events:register/home/eventId/93.  

Oct. 1  Noon. Schemel Forum World Affairs Seminar: “Artistic Manifestations of Life Transitions” presented by Harmar Brereton, M.D. ZOOM. Registration required. Fees vary. Call 570-941-6206 or email alicen.morrison@scranton.edu.  

Oct. 1, 8, 15 5:30 p.m. “Talking About Racism – A Community Conversation.” The Greater Scranton MLK Commission in conjunction with various higher education partners including The University of Scranton, is hosting a series of presentations that will include a Questions and Answer segment. ZOOM. Registration required. Free. Call 570-941-4419 or email carolyn.bonacci@scranton.edu.   

Oct. 6  9 a.m. 19th Annual U.S. Conference on disABILITY “Exploring Autism Across the Spectrum: Building Inclusive Communities – Year II.” ZOOM. Registration required. Free. Visit www.scranton.edu/disabilityconference or email disabilityconference@scranton.edu.  

Oct. 6  5 p.m. “Virtual Book Talk” presented by Colum McCann, author and founder of international story exchange organization Narrative 4, on his new book Apeirogon. Special guests are Bassam Aramin and Rami Elhanan, members of Parents Circle-Palestinian and Israeli Bereaved Families for Peace. ZOOM. Registration required. Free. Call 570-941-4419 or email community@scranton.edu.  

Oct. 8  7 p.m. President’s Business Council 19th Award Celebration honoring Margaret Quinn Mariotti, Au.D., P’10, Mariotti Audiology, John R. Mariotti, D.M.D., ’75, P’10, Quinn, Mariotti, Abod Orthodontics, and Msgr. Joseph G. Quinn, J.D., J.C.L., ’72, Diocese of Scranton. Proceeds support the Presidential Scholarship Endowment Fund, James P. Sweeney, S.J., Family Outreach Fund for students facing unexpected financial hardship, and Scott R. Pilarz, S.J., Scholarship a need-based scholarship established in 2011 by the Sorbera Family. Free. Event link will be made available at www.scranton.edu/PBCcelebration

 Oct. 18 9 a.m. Virtual Open House for prospective students and their families. ZOOM. Registration required. Free. Call 1-888-SCRANTON or email admissions@scranton.edu.  

Oct. 23 Noon. Schemel Forum World Affairs Seminar: “The Politics of Maps: Cartographic Constructions of Israel/Palestine” presented by Christine Leuenberger, Ph.D., senior lecturer in the Department of Science and Technology Studies, Cornell University. ZOOM. Registration required. Fees vary. Call 570-941-6206 or email alicen.morrison@scranton.edu.  

Oct. 29 4 p.m. Schemel Forum World Affairs Seminar in collaboration with the Jesuit Center: “Code Red: How Progressives and Moderates Can Unite to Save the Country” presented by E.J. Dionne, syndicated columnist for the Washington Post, contributor on MSNBC and NPR, professor, Georgetown University, and visiting professor at Harvard University. ZOOM. Registration required. Fees vary. Call 570-941-6206 or email alicen.morrison@scranton.edu.  

Nov. 1 9 a.m. Virtual Open House for prospective students and their families. ZOOM. Registration required. Free. Call 1-888-SCRANTON or email admissions@scranton.edu.  

Nov. 5 Noon. Schemel Forum World Affairs Seminar: “What Democracy Requires: The 2020 Election in Historical Perspective” presented by Fred Logevall, Ph.D., Laurence D. Belfer Professor of International Affairs, Harvard University. ZOOM. Registration required. Fees vary. Call 570-941-6206 or email alicen.morrison@scranton.edu.  

Nov. 13 to Nov. 20 Hope Horn Gallery Art Exhibit: Soaring Gardens Artists’ Retreat: The Second Decade Preview. Scheduled appointments only. Free. Call 570-941-4214 or email darlene.miller-lanning@scranton.edu.  

Nov. 20  Noon. Schemel Forum World Affairs Seminar: “Antisemitism Past, Present and Future” presented by David N. Myers, Ph.D, Sady and Ludwig Kahn Professor of Jewish History, UCLA, and president, New Israel Fund. ZOOM. Registration required. Fees vary. Call 570-941-6206 or email alicen.morrison@scranton.edu.  

Schemel Forum Courses 

Mondays: Oct. 5, 12, 19, 26 and Nov. 2, 9    6 p.m. Schemel Forum Virtual Course: “Inverted America: Great Stories from Latin America” presented by Yamile Silva, Ph.D., associate professor and chair of the Department of World Languages and Cultures, The University of Scranton. ZOOM. Registration required. Fees vary. Call 570-941-6206 or email alicen.morrison@scranton.edu.

Thursdays: Oct. 15, 22; Wednesday, Oct. 28; Thursdays, Nov. 5, 12, 19  6 p.m. Schemel Forum Virtual Course: “Responses to the COVID-19 Crisis: A Philosophical Perspective” presented by Matthew Meyer, Ph.D., associate professor of philosophy, The University of Scranton. ZOOM. Registration required. Fees vary. Call 570-941-6206 or email alicen.morrison@scranton.edu

Geisinger Welcomes New Provider to 65 Forward Health Center

Shane Young, M.D., a family medicine physician, has joined the Geisinger 65 Forward Health Center team in Luzerne County as the first clinician at the Hazleton location.

Dr. Young earned his physician degree as a surgeon from the Universidad Autonoma de Guadalajara after completing undergraduate studies in biology and chemistry at William Penn University. He completed his family medicine residency at Williamsport Hospital in Lycoming County.

Dr. Young joins the 65 Forward team following his time practicing family medicine across the country, most recently in Utah, and serving as a family medicine physician and field surgeon for the United States Army. In addition to family medicine, Dr. Young has served as an emergency room physician in Iowa and associate medical director for Encompass Hospice in Utah.

“I’m excited to be a part of a program like 65 Forward and to focus on making health care easier for our neighbors,” said Dr. Young. “I believe compassion plays a big part in health care, and I have strong interests in preventive medicine, wellness and evidence-based medicine. Joining 65 Forward allows me bring all of these together to make sure patients get the care they need stay healthy.”

He is certified by the American Board of Family Medicine and is fluent in Spanish.

Dr. Young will begin practicing at the new Geisinger 65 Forward Health Center in Hazleton when it opens in November. To schedule an appointment with Dr. Young or tour a Geisinger 65 Forward Health Center, call 866-490-2115. To learn more about Geisinger 65 Forward, visit geisinger.org/ForwardNewsHazleton.

National Policy Maker Joins Local Conversation About Electronic Health Records

“Sharing Data, Saving Lives: The Healthcare Interoperability Agenda,” a special program advocating for the seamless exchange of patient health information between providers and healthcare systems — and even patients themselves — premiered Thursday, Sept. 17, on WVIA-TV at 8 p.m. and on the Pennsylvania Cable Network at 9 p.m. Additional WVIA air dates include Sunday, Sept. 20, at 2 p.m.; Thursday, Oct. 1, at 9 p.m.; Sunday, Oct. 4, at 3 p.m.; Thursday, Oct. 8, at 8 p.m.; and Sunday, Oct. 11, at 5 p.m.

Dr. Linda Thomas-Hemak, CEO of The Wright Center for Community Health and President of The Wright Center for Graduate Medical Education, moderated a panel discussion that also included a video message from Dr. Don Rucker, National Coordinator for Health Information Technology for the United States Department of Health & Human Services, who congratulated The Wright Center’s efforts for leading this important charge.

“Health information sharing is more critical than ever in the wake of COVID-19. The pandemic exposed crucial infrastructure needs in our local, regional and national healthcare delivery and public health systems, and has significantly amplified the clinical, operational and business risks that result from a lack of digital information sharing,” Dr. Thomas-Hemak explained. 

Inspired by American College of Physicians Advocacy Day efforts, “Sharing Data: Saving Lives” features input from Wright Center leadership and key thought leaders from healthcare organizations across the region, state and even our federal government.

Also joining Dr. Thomas-Hemak in person on the panel:

  • Dr. Jignesh Y. Sheth, Chief Medical Officer for The Wright Center for Community Health 
  • Dr. David Lopatofsky, Chief Medical Officer for University of Pittsburgh Medical Center (UPMC), Susquehanna Region 
  • Kim Chaundry, MBA, Senior Director of IT, External Customer Relations, Geisinger; Operations Director for the Keystone Health Information Exchange in the Northeast
  • Christian Carmody, MBA, Senior Vice President of Enterprise Technology and Services, UPMC, who oversees Clinical Connect, Western Pennsylvania’s Health Information Exchange

PennDOT Announces Achievements in the Realm of Highly Automated Vehicles

The Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT) today announced recent achievements reflecting leadership in the realm of Highly Automated Vehicles (HAV) in Pennsylvania and the nation.

“As automated and connected vehicle technologies advance, it’s critical that we ensure they develop safely and in partnership with these companies,” said PennDOT Secretary Yassmin Gramian. “I’m proud of the leadership that we and our partners at the state, in academia and the industry are showing as we move Pennsylvania into the future.”

At the center of the department’s efforts is the development of testing guidance for automated vehicle stakeholders. Following discussions and meetings with the state’s Autonomous Vehicle Policy Task Force and more than a dozen automated vehicle technology companies, PennDOT issued updates to its guidance to enhance safety oversight of HAVs in Pennsylvania. This months-long effort included several rounds of internal and external reviews, and roughly 40 hours of discussions with the testers. The changes reflect advances in the industry and best practices.

PennDOT was tapped by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) to join nine companies and seven other states as the first participants in a new web pilot of the U.S. DOT’s initiative to improve the safety and testing transparency of automated driving systems: the Automated Vehicle Transparency and Engagement for Safe Testing (AV TEST) Initiative.  The states included are California, Florida, Maryland, Michigan, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Texas, and Utah. The participating companies are Beep, Cruise, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles, Local Motors, Navya, Nuro, Toyota, Uber, and Waymo.

In addition to joining the national AV TEST initiative, PennDOT was asked to join the Partners for Automated Vehicle Education’s (PAVE) Public Sector Advisory Council, a group of public sector organizations that will assist with PAVE’s campaign to educate consumers about automated vehicles and their societal impacts.

Pennsylvania’s Highly Automated Vehicle Advisory Committee recently published its first annual report available on PennDOT’s Highly Automated Vehicle Advisory Committee webpage under “Resources.”

The updated guidance and other information on automated and connected vehicles in Pennsylvania is available at www.penndot.gov/AV.

COLTS Returns to Regular Service with 11 Route Changes Effective Monday, Oct. 5

The County of Lackawanna Transit System (COLTS) will return to normal service with changes to 11 of its routes on Monday, Oct. 5. 2020. The changes will make these routes more efficient and provide more service for COLTS’ passengers. The routes affected are: #14 Drinker/Chestnut, #18 Petersburg, #21 Lake Scranton/Oakmont, #26 Mohegan Sun/Wilkes-Barre VA Medical Center, #31 Old Forge/Stauffer, #36 Keyser Valley/Lafayette, #42 Olive/Providence, #43/45 Viewmont Bangor/Viewmont Express, #52 Carbondale/North Main Ave., #53 Marywood/U of S, and #54 Green Ridge/Dickson City.

“We took time during the pandemic to resize our bus system and reconfigure routes so that they best meet demand for service,” said Bob Fiume, COLTS Executive Director. “We are constant-ly looking to improve our system for our riders.”

Changes include service to the Wilkes-Barre VA Medical Center, the renaming of some routes due to rerouting, combination of some routes on one paper schedule, and minor changes to routes and timetables. The #48 Dalton/Waverly/Clarks Summit and the #99 Minooka/Montage will be cancelled due to low ridership. The #48 route will be served through Demand Response Service, and employees of EDM Americas who take the #99 route will be served on the #42 Olive/Providence.

The list of changes and the new schedules will be posted on coltsbus.com.

Some bay assignments, or the bays that the buses pull into and out of, will also change. The bay assignment changes will be posted on the COLTS web site at coltsbus.com.