Weight-loss surgeon: Patients cite COVID-19 as push for change

When the COVID-19 pandemic reached the Rio Grande Valley in spring, the region was already beset by prevailing endemics: diabetes and obesity. The collision of...

Psychiatrist: Identify signs of suicidal thoughts in family and close friends

Stress associated with the COVID-19 pandemic has led to an increase of suicidal patients at DHR Health Behavioral Hospital in Edinburg, according to one...

Coalition guiding teens through the pandemic

Teenagers may be aware of the safety measures to follow during the COVID-19 pandemic, but they don’t always know how to deal with the isolation. One of the most difficult things about this pandemic for 14-year-old Jennifer Cruz, a member of the UNITED Youth Group, is not being able to see her nephew due to safety guidelines. The UNITED group is part of the Uniting Neighbors in Drug Abuse Defense (UNIDAD) coalition, a program from Behavioral Health Solutions of South Texas which serves in Hidalgo County and focuses on topics such as underage drinking, binge drinking, marijuana and synthetics, and prescription medication misuse, according to its website. Read the full story at themonitor.com

Far from home, UTRGV athlete recovering from surgery embraced by hospital staff

When she couldn’t be with her family, Talita Olivera De Paula adopted a new one: the staff at Edinburg Regional Medical Center. The family of the 24-year-old native of São Paulo in Brazil couldn’t be there for her college graduation or at her bedside when she was recovering from spinal surgery. That’s when the Edinburg Regional staff stepped up. “I was there without my family, and they turned into my family,” De Paula said of the nurses, physicians and physical therapist who helped her during her three-week recovery after spinal surgery at the Edinburg hospital on April 29. Read the full story at themonitor.com.

Local students raise $100K for cancer research

In two months, nine local high school students raised a total of $122,506 for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society.  This year, the Rio Grande Valley’s LLS chapter hosted the organization’s campaign project, Student of the Year: a 7-week competition between high school students to raise the largest donation for the blood cancer nonprofit. This is the fifth year the nationwide organization has run the campaign, and the first year the local chapter has taken on the project.  Students were responsible for reaching out to local businesses and setting up meetings to deliver their pitches. Each candidate recruited their own team to help reach their monetary donation goal.  Read the full story at themonitor.com

Festival for healthier living set for Sunday

In an effort to encourage healthier lifestyles in the Rio Grande Valley, AIM Media Texas, which owns The Monitor, will be hosting Por Vida Health & Food Fest. Featuring more than 40 vendors offering a variety of health-related services — food sampling, local gym information and health screenings — the free event is set for 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Sunday at the Pharr Events Center, at 3000 N. Cage Blvd. in Pharr. DHR Health is the presenting sponsor of the event, and will have a variety of specialist on site throughout the day. Attendees will have the opportunity to have a variety of screenings done, including vision and cholesterol. Read the full story at themonitor.com

Push begins as signup period starts for healthcare

Nearing the beginning of the open enrollment period for health insurance under the Affordable Care Act, U.S. Rep. Henry Cuellar is reminding people that embattled legislation — also known as Obamacare — is still the law of the land and encouraging them to sign up. Cuellar, D-Laredo, held a press availability last week to promote enrollment for Obamacare, which begins Friday, Nov. 1 and lasts until Dec. 15, as well as enrollment for Medicare which began on Oct. 15 and runs through Dec. 7. “I know that under the current administration, the Affordable Healthcare Act has been under attack to repeal it, but it’s still there and we want to make sure that we get as many people signed up,” Cuellar said. Read the full story at themonitor.com.

Finding hope: Harlingen couple promotes lupus awareness

HARLINGEN — It was a step forward. That’s all it took for Jay Garcia to decide to retire from a top management position in a...

Health Center seeks to curb rise in diabetes

HARLINGEN — It was such an eye opener. Although Mary Menegay has had to manage her diabetes for years, she gained a great deal of...

Air ambulance takes flight again in Hidalgo County

EDINBURG — A rotor ambulance navigated by GPS and boasting a speed of about 140 miles per hour will again provide air supported emergency...