Nurse Daniel Lopez, right, talks with David Caldwell at the Joel D. Valdez Main Library as part of a program that puts nurses in local libraries to provide health-care information.


County health fair is set for Aug. 1

To kick off World Breast Feeding Awareness Week, the Pima County Health Department will host a free health fair from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Aug. 1 for new parents, expectant parents, caregivers and children.

Lactation consultants and pediatricians will be on hand at the fair, which will feature expert guest speakers and dozens of vendors. The fair will be at the Herbert K. Abrams Public Health Center, 3950 S. Country Club Road.

Dental screenings, WIC enrollment, baby health checks and nutrition information will be available.

There also will be a mobile farmers' market, a play area for children and free raffles and giveaways.

Leading up to the fair, the Health Department is collecting diaper donations for the Diaper Bank of Southern Arizona through July, with a goal of providing 15,000 diapers to families in need. Receptacles are in the Health Department lobby. Donations should be disposable diapers in unopened packages.

Nurse program earns an honor for library

The Urban Libraries Council has named the Pima County Public Library as one of its 10 Top Innovators for 2013 during its annual forum in Chicago last month. A panel of judges selected the library's nurse program from more than 140 applications for the fourth annual Urban Libraries Council's Innovations Initiative.

The library nurse program won in the category of health, wellness and safety.

In January 2012, the library system began a partnership with the Pima County Health Department to place public health nurses in six libraries.

Among other things, the program has cut down on the frequency of 911 calls for assistance in handling customers' medical and behavioral issues.

UA hospital listed as one of best in US

One Tucson-area hospital made U.S. News & World Report's annual Best Hospitals list released last week.

The University of Arizona Medical Center, which has two campuses, ranked second in the state behind the Mayo Clinic in Phoenix.

The medical center also earned national rankings in ear, nose and throat (No. 30) and in geriatrics (No. 34) and was deemed "high performing" in 10 other specialties, including cancer, cardiology, heart surgery, diabetes, endocrinology, gastroenterology, GI surgery and gynecology.

Only 147 out of nearly 5,000 U.S. hospitals earned national rankings in one or more of the specialties.

The Mayo Clinic ranked nationally in cancer (No. 33), ear, nose and throat (No. 25), GI and GI surgery (No. 20), geriatrics (No. 17), gynecology (No. 26), nephrology (No. 21), neurology and neurosurgery (No. 38), orthopedics (No. 43), pulmonology (No. 50) and urology (No. 31).

In addition, the Mayo Clinic was recognized as high performing in cardiology, heart surgery, diabetes, endocrinology and rheumatology.

The rankings were announced July 16 on the U.S. News & World Report website. Print versions of the rankings will be on sale beginning Aug. 27.

Johns Hopkins Hospital reclaimed the No. 1 spot on the magazine's hospital honor roll, a position it held from 1991 through 2011 but lost last year to Massachusetts General Hospital.

The rankings are determined by patient survival and safety data and the adequacy of nurse staffing levels, among other data.

Another factor was a national survey that asked physicians in each of the 16 specialties to name the hospitals they consider best for the toughest cases in their specialty.

Contact Star medical reporter Stephanie Innes at or 573-4134.