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Concerned or curious about healthcare in Swain County?

Troubled by a recent study that shows life expectancy in Swain County is the lowest in North Carolina, members of a local, non-partisan group called Indivisible Swain County NC have invited community leaders to take part in a Health Forum, scheduled for October 12 from 7:00 to 8:30 PM in the Swain County Courthouse (101 Mitchell Street in Bryson City).  The forum, which is free and open to the public, will focus on healthcare challenges and opportunities facing the community.  There will be time for questions and answers after the panel discussion.

Members of the panel will include Alison Cochran, director of Swain County Health Department; Casey Cooper, chief executive officer of Cherokee Hospital; Kevin Seagle, chair of the Swain County Commission; Parker Chatham, director of Restoration House; and Stephanie Lagan, a licensed clinical social worker and executive director of Swain County Community Outreach.

The next day, October 13, nursing students from Western Carolina University will hold a Health Fair for the public from 9:00 am to 3:00 pm at Bryson City United Methodist Church (76 Main Street in Bryson City).  Students will offer free health screenings for blood pressure, blood sugar, hearing, vision, height/weight and more. They also will provide free goodie bags to participants and tickets for a raffle to be held at the end of the event.

Joe Buranosky, a member of Indivisible Swain County, which is sponsoring this two-day public event along with WCU nursing students, says, “We invite everyone to join us for the Forum and the Fair, and we expect both events will be interesting and informative.  We want to encourage an open discussion about behaviors that contribute to early deaths and drive Swain County health statistics down as well as habits that promote good health for all of us.”

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