District Health Department No. 4 has received a $9,000 grant from the state of Michigan to screen clients in its women's cancer screening program for colorectal cancer. The grant will cover a caseload of 90 clients with the potential for expanded coverage, Personal health Nursing Director Roseanne Schultz told the health board Tuesday morning.
Schultz said there have changes between last year's grant and the grant it just received. Last year, the health department screened 88 women in the screening program who had no signs and symptoms of or any risk of colorectal cancer. This year the health department will start off screening women in the screening program who are high risk but will able to do some colon cancer prevention with additional client groups.
"(State officials are) projecting then in March we will possibly be able to open it up to men and also to women who are not in the women's cancer screening program," she said.
She also said there has been a 20 percent cut in caseloads in a family planning program that helps women afford a colposcopy after they've had an abnormal papsmear through the women's cancer screening program. The health department had a caseload of 33 clients last year that has been reduced to a caseload of 26 clients this year.
"Hopefully we should be able to meet our client's needs even with that cut," she said.
The state also has eliminated the funding for tuberculosis programs and closed a laboratory in Houghton. The closure of the laboratory leaves none left in northern Michigan and specimens now have to be sent downstate.
In other business, Schultz will be traveling to Bay City Oct. 28 to meet with Alethia Carr, director of the bureau of family, maternal and child health for the Michigan Department of Community Health, where she will be advocating for more funding to northern Michigan. The state received federal grant funding through the Affordable Care Act but northern Michigan didn't meet some of the indicator the state was looking for in its needs assessment.
Crystal Nelson can be reached via e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at 358-5693.