• 19 Oct 2015 1:47 PM | Deleted user


    Governor LePage Appoints Dr. William Beardsley to Lead Department of Education

    Contact: Adrienne Bennett, Press Secretary, 207-287-2531

    AUGUSTA – Governor Paul R. LePage announced today that Dr. William Beardsley will serve as Acting Commissioner of the Department of Education. Dr. Beardsley is former president of Husson University and served as commissioner of the Department of Conservation.

    “Bill has a strong track record in Maine and elsewhere, broad constituency support and a personal interest in education,” said Governor LePage. “Bill has contributed greatly to the Administration already and we are fortunate to have his support again.”

    Dr. Beardsley was president of Husson University from 1987 to 2010. In 2011, Dr. Beardsley was appointed as commissioner of the Department of Conservation until the agency merged with the Department of Agriculture in 2012, creating the Department of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry.

    In 2012, Governor LePage appointed Dr. Beardsley to the state Board of Education and earlier this year appointed him to the Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) Council. He will continue to work with both groups.

    Tom Desjardin will resume his role as Deputy Commissioner, concluding his six month period of service as Acting Commissioner as authorized by statute. This follows the retirement on April 17 of former Acting Commissioner Jim Rier.


  • 15 Oct 2015 9:34 AM | Deleted user


    Governor Directs Flags to Half-Staff in Knox County in Honor of El Faro Crewman

    For Immediate Release: October 15, 2015
    Contact: Adrienne Bennett, press secretary, 287-2531

    AUGUSTA – In honor of Danielle Randolph, a graduate of Maine Maritime Academy who was lost at sea aboard the cargo ship El Faro, Governor Paul R. LePage has ordered flags on all public buildings and grounds in Knox County to be lowered immediately until sunset on Thursday, October 15.

    “The First Lady and I are deeply saddened by the loss of those aboard the El Faro, including our five Mainers. During this very difficult time, our hearts go out to the families and friends of our fellow Mainers, as well as all the other crew members,” said Governor LePage.

    A memorial service for Danielle Randolph, 34, will be held today in Port Clyde. A 2000 graduate of Rockland District High School, she was a member of the Class of 2004 at Maine Maritime Academy, where she earned a bachelor’s degree in marine transportation. She was a second mate on the El Faro. All U.S. and State of Maine flags in Knox County should be lowered to half-staff.

  • 14 Oct 2015 11:59 AM | Deleted user



    Let’s Go! Recognizes 14 Child Centric Sites for Enacting Healthy Eating and Active Living Standards


    Farmington, Maine (October 5, 2015) – Let’s Go! Announces that one school, three out-of-school programs, three health care practices, and seven child care programs in Franklin County are being honored for their commitment to creating healthy environments for the children in their care. A total of 30 sites in Franklin County have introduced or sustained healthy changes in collaboration with the Let’s Go! program. By adopting healthy eating and active living practices these sites are positively influencing the choices children make.


    “This is the fourth year we’ve officially recognized sites for their hard work. I couldn’t be more proud of the progress these sites have made. Sites are providing healthy, high energy snack choices, finding fun, creative ways to increase activity levels, and many have completely removed televisions from their spaces,” said Dr. Victoria Rogers, Director of the Let’s Go! program. “Thanks to changes like these, we’re seeing Maine’s childhood obesity rates level off.”


    Established in 2012, the Let’s Go! Recognition Program identifies and celebrates schools, out-of-school programs, child care programs and health care practices for their commitment to improving the health of all children.  Let’s Go! strives for policy change but recognizes three levels of change: 1) Bronze reflects a site implementing the program’s five priority strategies.    2) Silver acknowledges a site that has communicated these changes to parents and family members. 3) Gold, the highest level of recognition, is reserved for sites that have written all five priority strategies into policy. A total of 460 sites are being recognized this year, a 25% increase from 2014.


    Recognized sites in Franklin County include: Kingfield Elementary, Rangeley Fitness Center after school programs, Spruce Mountain Afterschool, Stratton Everybody Let’s Go! Afterschool, Franklin Health Pediatrics, Mt. Abram Regional Health Center, Western Maine Family Health Center, Sweatt-Winter Early Care, Tamarack Tree House Child Care, Charlee Briggs Childcare, Jeannie’s Jungle Childcare, Jay Early Learning Center, Farmington Early Head Start Home Base and Maine Mountain Children’s House.


    Let’s Go!’s five priority strategies are: 1) Limit unhealthy choices for snacks and celebrations, provide healthy choices. 2) Limit or eliminate sugary beverages, provide water. 3) Prohibit the use of food as a reward. 4) Provide opportunities for children to get physical activity every day. 5) Limit recreational screen time.


    Health care sites are recognized for three practice specific, obesity prevention program components: 1 )Providing consistent 5-2-1-0 messaging in offices. 2) Calculating BMI for all patients aged 2 and older. 3) Using the 5-2-1-0 Healthy Habits Questionnaire to have a respectful conversation about lifestyles with their patients.


    “All of the Franklin County Let’s Go! sites are committed to creating a space and culture that encourages children to be healthy and the recognized sites are going the extra mile. It’s wonderful to work with such a dedicated and energetic group of people who care deeply about the wellbeing of children in our community,” said Molly Clark, Let’s Go! program coordinator at the Healthy Community Coalition of Greater Franklin County.


    A list of all 2015 Let’s Go! recognized sites is available at

  • 14 Oct 2015 11:56 AM | Deleted user


    Healthy Community Coalition Releases Public Flu Shot Schedule



    Public flu shots are available to individuals 18 years old and older from the Healthy Community Coalition. Healthy Community Coalition staff will be available to administer the influenza vaccine (seasonal flu shot) at sites throughout our community.


    The schedule is as follows:


    ·         Friday, Oct. 16 at Eustis Town Office from 10 a.m.-noon and at Fotter’s Market in Eustis from 12:30-3 p.m.

    ·         Saturday, Oct. 17 at Rangeley Inn in Rangeley from 10 a.m.-noon

    ·         Thursday, Oct. 22 at Phillips Town Office from 9-11 a.m.

    ·         Thursday, Oct. 22 at Strong Town Office from noon-1:30 p.m.


    Additional dates will be announced.


    For individuals that do not have insurance there is a suggested donation of $25 or whatever you can afford. We are unable to accept insurance, Medicare or Medicaid. Healthy Community Coalition purchases all vaccine used for the public clinics and appreciates donations

  • 14 Oct 2015 11:54 AM | Deleted user


    Governor Directs Flags to Half-Staff in Franklin County in Honor of El Faro Crewman

    For Immediate Release: October 14, 2015; Contact: Peter A. Steele,

    AUGUSTA – In honor of Michael Lee Holland, 25, a graduate of Maine Maritime Academy who was lost aboard the cargo ship El Faro, Governor Paul R. LePage has ordered flags on all public buildings and grounds in Franklin County to be lowered to immediately until sunset on Wednesday, October 14.

    “The First Lady and I are deeply saddened by the loss of those aboard the El Faro, including our five Mainers. During this very difficult time, our hearts go out to the families and friends of our fellow Mainers, as well as all the other crew members,” said Governor LePage.

    A memorial service for Michael Holland will be held today in Jay. A resident of Wilton and 2008 graduate of Jay High School, he graduated in 2012 from Maine Maritime Academy with a degree in Marine Engineering Technology. He has shipped as a U.S. Merchant Marine for the past three years as a 3rd Assistant Engineer and was a member of the American Maritime Officers Union.

    All U.S. and State of Maine flags in Franklin County should be lowered to half-staff.

  • 13 Oct 2015 11:52 AM | Deleted user

     Residents Invited to Attend Health Network’s Annual Meeting

    Taking place Monday, October 19, from 5-6:30 p.m.




    Franklin Community Health Network (FCHN) invites interested members of the community to attend its annual meeting. FCHN is a locally controlled not-for-profit network of rural health care providers that includes Franklin Memorial Hospital, Evergreen Behavioral Services, Franklin Health, NorthStar, and the Healthy Community Coalition of Greater Franklin County.


    The annual meeting will take place on Monday, October 19, from 5-6:30 p.m. in the Bass Room at Franklin Memorial Hospital. Attendees will receive a printed annual report, along with updates regarding new medical staff, new services and programs, benefits of our MaineHealth membership, future plans and more. Presenters will include Rebecca Arsenault, FCHN president, and Joseph Bujold, board chair.


    The meeting includes a social hour starting at 5 p.m. with refreshments. The program will start promptly at 5:30 p.m. and last no longer than one hour.


    One of the highlights of the program is the presentation of the annual Community Health Leadership Award to a deserving member of the community. Through the award, FCHN recognizes the unsung heroes who work to improve the health of our greater community and its members.


    Arsenault is also available to speak to civic and community groups to give a condensed update of information presented at the annual meeting and to answer questions.


    Those planning to attend the annual meeting should RSVP to Jolene Libby, assistant to the president, at 779-2265. Community groups interested in having Arsenault as a guest speaker are also asked to contact Libby.

  • 13 Oct 2015 11:51 AM | Deleted user

     Pharmacists Highlight Vital Role in Improving Patient Safety

    Pharmacy Week Activities Offer Opportunities for Patients to Learn about Medication Safety


    Farmington, Maine—


    Pharmacists at Franklin Memorial Hospital will use National Hospital & Health-System Pharmacy Week, October 18-24, to underscore the many new and vital roles they now play in patient care. The evolution has been especially dramatic in recent years as pharmacists have moved beyond compounding and dispensing medications to become vital members of multidisciplinary patient-care teams.


    “Many consumers are not aware that pharmacists play a critical role in preventing medication errors, advising prescribers on the best drug choices, and working directly with patients to ensure they understand how to use their medications safely and effectively,” said Garry Miller, R.Ph. Franklin Memorial Hospital pharmacy director, “Pharmacy Week is a great way to educate the public about how pharmacists can help them get the most benefit from their medicine.”


    Hospital and health-system pharmacists have been able to take on enhanced patient-care roles because of a number of factors, including the deployment of highly trained, certified technicians and new technologies like robotics that dispense medications. As technology evolves—such as the addition of machine-readable codes to medication labels—patients will have greater opportunities to have a pharmacist involved in their care. 


    Pharmacists are experts on the thousands of medications available today, how each one works in the body, and the ways to use each one safely and effectively. Pharmacists who graduate today receive six years of education focused on medication therapy, and many pharmacists practicing in hospitals and health systems also complete post-graduate residency programs. They advise doctors and nurses on the best medications and monitor every patient’s medication therapy and provide quality checks to detect and prevent harmful drug interactions, reactions, or mistakes.


    On October 20, FMH also celebrates National Pharmacy Technician Day to recognize how important pharmacy technicians are and the supportive role they have in providing for a safe medication system. Without their support and work, the ability of pharmacists to be clinically focused would not be possible. 


    Operationally, the FMH pharmacy department dispensed 249,000 doses of drugs during the last year and provided clinical services that included antibiotic dosing and monitoring of kidney function to adjust dosing for certain drugs and other high risk medications to ensure the safest use of medications.


    The pharmacy department is staffed by four clinical pharmacists and the director of pharmacy; and, five pharmacy technicians including a business assistant who specializes in purchasing and inventory control. They provide seven day per week coverage of the hospital pharmacy. The pharmacists are certified in medication therapy management and several of the pharmacy technicians are also nationally certified and trained in infusion and chemotherapy.


  • 06 Oct 2015 1:11 PM | Deleted user


    Governor LePage: The Root of America’s Violence is Mental Illness

    Contact: Adrienne Bennett, Press Secretary, 207-287-2531

    AUGUSTA – Governor Paul R. LePage has ordered flags on all public buildings and grounds to be lowered to half-staff immediately until sunset on Tuesday, October 6, 2015 in honor of the victims of the tragedy in Roseburg, Oregon.

    While the shooting in Oregon is a tragedy and Americans will take time to mourn the victims, Governor Paul R. LePage is urging the President and politicians to address the root of such violence in America: mental illness.

    “Mental illness is plaguing millions of American lives, but politicians don’t want to talk about it,” said Governor LePage. “We blame guns when our nation’s problem with violence is really about people with mental disease getting access to firearms.”

    “It is our responsibility as a society to address mental illness in a comprehensive manner, instead of attempting to curtail constitutional rights. When mental illness is understood and a plan is established, we have an opportunity to prevent the other serious issues resulting from this disease, such as joblessness, homelessness, substance abuse, incarceration and loss of life,” the Governor said.

    In a proclamation issued Friday night, President Obama directed that flags be flown at half-staff until sunset on Tuesday, October 6 in honor of the victims in Roseburg, Oregon.

  • 06 Oct 2015 1:09 PM | Deleted user


    Statement of Governor LePage on El Faro Search and Rescue

    Contact: Adrienne Bennett, Press Secretary, 207-287-2531

    AUGUSTA – Governor Paul R. LePage released Monday the following statement with regard to the search for survivors, including four Mainers, from the cargo ship El Faro.

    “While Coast Guard officials have suspended the search for El Faro, the search for survivors continues and we are not giving up hope. The First Lady and I are praying for all those aboard, including our four Mainers. During this very difficult time, our hearts go out to the families and friends of our fellow Mainers, as well as the other 29 crew members.”

    “Our gratitude also goes to rescue teams who are risking their own lives to find those who are lost. We pray for your safe return and hope those aboard El Faro are brought back to their families.”

  • 06 Oct 2015 1:08 PM | Deleted user


    Statement First Lady Ann LePage Promotes Maine Fall Foliage Season

    October 6, 2015

    For Immediate Release: Tuesday, October 06, 2015
    Contact: John Bott, Director of Communications, Maine Department of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry, (207) 287-3156

    Video invites visitors to explore the many regions of Maine, family farms

    AUGUSTA — Maine’s First Lady Ann LePage is inviting people to explore the many regions of Maine and visit family farms this fall foliage season. In anticipation of peak fall foliage colors, the First Lady highlighted resources to help plan a trip in a video filmed today at the Blaine House.

    “Maine welcomes you to see the breathtaking colors of our famous fall foliage,” said First Lady Ann LePage in the video. “While you are here, make some family memories while visiting one of our many Maine farms. Pick your own apples and pumpkins. Go antiquing and sample the flavors in a small town restaurant.”

    Link to First Lady Ann LePage’s fall foliage video:

    The Maine Department of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry’s (DACF) employees have been reporting foliage color changing conditions since 1959. To produce the weekly report on fall foliage conditions, DACF forest rangers submit on-the-ground observations each week throughout the reporting season (September 9 through October 25). Maine’s official fall foliage website: has a number of resources, links to scenic byways and to the Maine office of tourism. The site includes a map indicating current foliage conditions with a useful foliage color key that is updated weekly. Visitors to the site can also find information on Facebook.

    Generally, the northern region of Maine is at or near peak the last week of September into the first week of October

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