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Regents vote to hike health costs for employees

Regents vote to hike health costs for employees

ATLANTA -- The Georgia Board of Regents is raising health insurance premiums for employees and cutting coverage for about 700 workers.

The board voted Tuesday to hike rates by 5.2 percent. The university system will save $30 million by limiting access to certain doctors and hospitals.

University system workers, like all state employees, received no pay increase this year.

The board also voted to cut insurance for about 700 part-time employees by raising the minimum number of hours they have to work to qualify for coverage from 20 to 30 per week. The change will save about $1.5 million.

This is the first time since 2008 that insurance premiums have increased.

GBI: Prescription drug overdoses rise

GBI: Prescription drug overdoses rise

DECATUR, Ga. -- An analysis of autopsies by the Georgia Bureau of Investigation has found a 10 percent increase in the number of prescription overdose deaths in 2010 compared to 2009.

The analysis shows that the number of drug overdose deaths involving only prescription drugs jumped from 508 in 2009 to 560 in 2010. It also showed that 68 other deaths were attributed to a combination of prescription and illicit drugs.

In all, there were 729 drug overdose deaths in 2010. Most of those deaths were found to be accidental, but about nine percent were determined to be suicides.

The analysis of the GBI Medical Examiner's drug overdose autopsies involves 152 counties. The study does not include several Metro Atlanta counties, including Fulton, Cobb, Gwinnett and DeKalb.

New hospital planned for Paulding

New hospital planned for Paulding

HIRAM, Ga. (AP) -- WellStar plans to replace its current Paulding County hospital with a new 112-bed facility.

A WellStar official said the 226,000 square-foot Hiram facility will create an estimated 300 jobs in Paulding County.

Mark Haney, senior vice president of real estate and construction for WellStar, said a new medical building is also planned and will bring an additional 200 jobs.

Paulding County's population has jumped nearly 75 percent in the past 10 years.

Haney said emergency room visits at the health system's current hospital in Dallas have hit roughly 37,000 annually and could climb to 60,000 by the time the new hospital opens in 2014.

The project will cost an estimated $125 million.

(The Associated Press)

Coca-Cola Issues an A.P.B. (All Play Bulletin) to Families: Go Outdoors. Play in the Park. Vote.

Coca-Cola Issues an A.P.B. (All Play Bulletin) to Families: Go Outdoors. Play in the Park. Vote.

America Is Your Park campaign urges families to get out, discover fun ways to get active in the park while helping their favorite park win big

 

ATLANTA, July 10, 2011 – If you’re reading this, you should get to your favorite park – STAT! Coca-Cola is calling all families to go out and play this summer as part of the second annual America Is Your Park campaign.

Georgia Eye Care Experts Warn Parents of 1,800⁰ F of Holiday Danger & Say Avoid Sparklers on July 4

Georgia Eye Care Experts Warn Parents of 1,800⁰ F of Holiday Danger & Say Avoid Sparklers on July 4
Georgia Eye Care Experts Warn Parents of 1,800⁰ F of Holiday Danger & Say Avoid Sparklers this Fourth of July Georgia Optometric Association Offers Tips to Celebrate the Holiday Safely

Paulding Sheriff reminds residents of pool safety

Paulding Sheriff reminds residents of pool safety

DALLAS, Ga. -- In light of a recent near-drowning case, the Paulding County Sheriff's Office would like to remind residents of ways to stay safe around water this summer.

The incident on June 21 involved a mother who found her toddler face down in an inflatable pool down the street from their home. The child got out of the house by climbing through an unscreened window; meanwhile, the pool was unfenced and unsupervised.

Paulding County Fire and Rescue officers managed to revive the child, who is expected to be fine.

But not all such cases have a happy ending.

"In 2007, there were 3,443 fatal, unintentional drownings . . . in the United States, averaging 10 deaths per day," according to the CDC.

Paulding Sheriff reminds families of summer window safety

Paulding Sheriff reminds families of summer window safety

DALLAS, Ga. -- Now that the weather is getting warmer, people are more inclined to leave their windows open during the day.

Unfortunately, this simple summertime gesture can often have devastating consequences.

The Paulding County Sheriff's Office has recently experienced a number of reports of toddlers falling out of windows. So far, there have been no fatalities, but some of the children experienced very serious injuries.

Many parents assume that window screens will prevent falls, but one case involved a toddler who pushed a screen out before falling.

Falls from windows result in an average of about eight deaths yearly to children ages five and younger, while an additional 3,300 children are treated in emergency rooms, according to the Consumer Product Safety Committee (CPSC). On average, about 34 percent of children need to be hospitalized after falling from a window.