Bariatric surgery

WILLMAR – A bariatric surgery informational meeting for individuals who are considering having weight loss surgery will be from 5:30 to 7 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 8, in the Carris Health-Willmar Skylark Clinic conference room. This group will be facilitated by a surgeon and a registered nurse. To register, call 320-214-6966 or online at carrishealth.com.

Memory Cafe

WILLMAR – The Forget-Me-Knot Memory Cafe will meet from 2 to 4 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 8, in the upstairs community room at the Willmar Public Library. The group offers a place for individuals with early dementia and their caregivers to socialize, receive support and get connected with local resources. For more information, call 320-235-8573.

Multiple myeloma

WILLMAR – The central Minnesota multiple myeloma support group will meet from 10 a.m. to noon, Saturday, Aug. 10, in the training room at the Willmar Fire Department. Interested patients, caregivers, family members and friends are encouraged to join. Robin Tuohy, senior director of support groups for the International Myeloma Foundation, and her husband, Michael Tuohy, a myeloma survivor since 2000, will give 2019 American Society of Hematology highlights. For more information, contact Bev and Tony Hartzburg, 320-894-8101; Steve and Sheila Ellingboe, 320-295-3940; Jesse and Carrie Wadsworth, 320-364-2222; CentralMN@IMFsupport.org; or visit CentralMN.support.myeloma.org. The group is affiliated with the International Myeloma Foundation.

YMCA Healthy Aging

WILLMAR – The YMCA Healthy Aging program has several events planned at the Kandiyohi Area YMCA in Willmar. All are open to the public. For questions call Beth Johnston 320-222-9622.

Happy Together Club: Aug. 6, 10 a.m., for persons 55 and over; Liam Johnston will speak on “Artificial intelligence: Will robots take over the world?”

Red Head Creamery tour: Aug. 9, 11:25 a.m. bus leaves YMCA, tour at 12:30; ends with a sampling at 1:15 p.m.;return by 3 p.m.; $20, discount for Y members.

Happy Together Club: Aug. 13, 10 a.m., for persons 55 and over; Abbey Weiler will speak on “The Kingdom of Thailand from the vantage of a Peace Corp volunteer.” She just returned after 30 months in southeast Asia.

Book discussion: Aug. 13, 11 a.m., “Abercrombie Trail” by Candace Simar.

Mental Health First Aid course

BIRD ISLAND – The National Alliance on Mental Illness Minnesota will have a free mental health first aid training course from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Wednesday, Aug. 7, at the Cultural Center in Bird Island. The course is designed to teach the basic first aid skills needed to help a person who is experiencing a mental health problem or crisis and is aimed at improving mental health literacy. Participants will receive a course manual and certificate for completing the course. Pre-registration is required, see “classes” at namimn.org. For more information, contact NAMI at 651-645-2948.

QPR Suicide Prevention Class

BIRD ISLAND – The National Alliance on Mental Illness Minnesota will have a free QPR suicide prevention presentation from 8:30 to 9:30 a.m., Thursday, Aug. 8, at the Cultural Center in Bird Island. Learn the three steps anyone can take to help prevent suicide. Just like CPR, QPR is an emergency response to someone in crisis and can save lives. It is open to members of the community over the age of 16 who want to learn best practices in suicide prevention. Pre-registration is required, see “classes” at namimn.org. For more information, contact NAMI at 651-645-2948.

Prediabetes

WILLMAR – The Carris Health Diabetes program will have a small group prediabetes lifestyle change program on Wednesdays beginning Aug. 7 at the Skylark Center clinic in WIllmar. The program is free for those eligible for Medicare or Medicaid. For more information, including meeting time, and to register call 320-231-6348.

Veterans Town Hall meeting

MONTEVIDEO – A Veterans town hall meeting focused on improving VA health care services and programs will be at 5 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 22, at the Montevideo VA Clinic. It will allow veterans to hear from and have concerns addressed by St. Cloud VA officials. Veterans can attend in person, watch on Facebook Live @StCloudVAHCS or participate by phone. Area Veterans enrolled for VA health care will receive an automated phone call at 5 p.m. inviting them to join the town hall. Callers desiring to ask a question via telephone will be placed in queue. If some questions can’t be addressed during the event, VA staff will contact callers with questions following the event. Veterans who do not desire to participate can simply hang up the phone.

Medicare questions

WILLMAR – There are important decisions that need to be made when you become eligible for Medicare. Making the wrong decision can lead to not having any or enough health care coverage and financial penalties. Participants will learn the basics of Medicare and their coverage options in Minnesota in this one day class. The next class will be from 3 to 5 p.m. Aug. 15 at the Willmar Community Center. No fee. Call Senior LinkAge Line at 1-800-333-2433 to register.

Community Health Service

WILLMAR – Community Health Service Inc. provides affordable health care for seasonal workers, farmers, hired help and families who have been employed in agriculture in the past 24 months. Retired and disabled farmers also qualify. Health care services are available at Community Health Service, 1804 Trott Ave. S.W., Willmar. Sliding fee scales are income-based. Late clinic hours are offered with a health care provider. Interpreter services also are available. For more information about hours and appointments, call 320-214-7286.

Insurance counseling

WILLMAR – Trained staff and volunteers with Senior LinkAge Line are available to help answer questions and provide assistance with Medicare, supplemental insurance, long-term care insurance, prescription drugs, forms and more. Counseling is free and confidential. Walk-ins are welcome. Upcoming dates are 9 to 11 a.m. Aug. 13 and 27, consumer health library at Rice Memorial Hospital, Willmar.

Senior LinkAge Line

Older adults can contact the Senior LinkAge Line at 1-800-333-2433 to receive help with questions involving Medicare and health insurance, need help finding services to stay in your home or can’t afford your medication between, 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. weekdays. Be sure to have a complete list of prescription drugs and dosages when you call.

The Senior LinkAge Line is a free service of the Minnesota Board on Aging. The Senior LinkAge Line is the State Health Insurance Assistance Program (SHIP) and Senior Medicare Patrol for Minnesota. Specialists provide one-to-one assistance with all Medicare and health insurance issues. Live chat with a specialist also can be accessed online at www.MinnesotaHelp.info.

Immunization clinic

WILLMAR – Kandiyohi County Public Health will hold a walk-in immunization clinic from 2 to 5 p.m. Monday, Aug. 12, 19 and 26, Suite 1080 at the Kandiyohi County Health and Human Services Building, 2200 23rd St. N.E., in Willmar. No appointment is needed. All childhood vaccinations are available. An administration fee is charged for vaccinations given to children who qualify for the Minnesota Vaccines for Children program. A tetanus booster for adults that is recommended every 10 years is also available, along with other adult vaccinations. Medical Assistance, BluePlus, UCare and MinnesotaCare are accepted as payment – your card must be presented at the clinic. However, no one will be denied their immunizations due to inability to pay. If financing is a problem, call 320-231-7860. Parents are asked to bring immunization records to the clinic for accurate recordkeeping.

Bloodmobile

The American Red Cross conducts blood drives in the west central area. To give blood you must be at least 17 years old, weigh 110 pounds or more and be in good health. Sixteen-year-olds may if they have a signed Red Cross parental/guardian consent form. You can give blood every 56 days. Double red cells can be donated every 112 days. While all blood types are needed, type O and type B-negative donors are especially encouraged to give.

Appointments can be made at 1-800-RED-CROSS or online at www.redcrossblood.org unless otherwise noted. All donors need acceptable identification. The preferred form is a government-issued picture identification, such as a driver’s license, or a Red Cross blood donor card. Otherwise you will need to provide two other forms of identification, such as a work identification, Social Security card, personal check or credit card. Personalized mail such as a utility bill will not be accepted. Blood drives scheduled for the Tribune area are:

Aug. 7, Renville: 1 to 7 p.m., Community Center

Aug. 8, Litchfield: 1 to 7 p.m., St. Phillips Catholic Church

Aug. 9, Litchfield: 8 a.m. to 1 p.m., St. Phillips Catholic Church

Aug. 12, Willmar: 12:30 to 5:30 p.m., Assembly of God Church

Aug. 12, Glenwood: 1 to 7 p.m., Restoration Church

Aug. 13, Willmar: 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., Willmar Public Library

Aug. 13, Clarkfield: 1 to 7 p.m., Clarkfield Lutheran Church