Health and support
Alcoholics Anonymous: For Hernando County locations, call (352) 683-4597.
Alzheimer's Association: The Florida Gulf Chapter of the Alzheimer's Association offers support groups at several locations:
• 2:30 p.m. the first Thursday of each month, Oak Hill Hospital's Senior Partners Club (behind the hospital), 11361 Cortez Blvd., Spring Hill. Jerry Fisher, (352) 688-4537.
• 2:30 p.m. the first Friday of each month, Lykes Memorial Library, 238 Howell Ave., Brooksville. Jerry Fisher, (352) 688-4537.
• 2 p.m. the third Monday of each month, Residence at Timber Pines, 3140 Forest Road, Spring Hill. Free day care available with advanced reservations. Diane Koenig, (352) 683-9009.
• 11 a.m. the first Tuesday of each month, Our Lady of Fatima Catholic Church, 550 U.S. 41 S, Inverness. Sue Piatek, (352) 527-4600.
• 1 p.m. the second Monday, First United Methodist Church, 8831 W Bradshaw St., Homosassa. Free day care provided with advanced reservations. Sue Piatek, (352) 527-4600.
Visit the Alzheimer's Association website at alz.org. To reach the local office, call (352) 688-4537 or toll-free 1-800-272-3900.
Alzheimer's Family Organization: Caregiver support group — 1 p.m. Mondays, Brooksville Regional Hospital, Medical Arts Building, Suite 120, 17222 Hospital Blvd., Brooksville; John Winans, (352) 232-0081.
Elder Abuse Hotline: To report suspected cases of elder abuse, neglect and exploitation, or those 60 or older who are being hurt or taken advantage of by someone you know, call toll-free 1-800-96-ELDER (1-800-963-5337) or 1-800-96-ABUSE (1-800-962-2873). Sponsored by the Florida Department of Children and Families and the Florida Department of Elder Affairs.
Narcotics Anonymous: For Hernando County locations, call (352) 754-7200.
SHINE Program Assists Seniors with Health Insurance: The Florida Department of Elder Affairs offers the free SHINE program (Serving Health Insurance Needs of Elders) at the following locations in Hernando County:
• 11 a.m. to noon Tuesdays, Brooksville Enrichment Center, Suite 120 of the Medical Arts Building at Brooksville Regional Hospital, 17222 Hospital Blvd. Call (352) 544-6022.
• 11 a.m. to noon Thursdays at Spring Hill Enrichment Center, Suite 105 of the Medical Arts Building at Spring Hill Regional Hospital, 10441 Quality Drive, Spring Hill. Call (352) 684-7568.
• Appointments may be scheduled at the Hernando County Mining Association Enrichment Center, 800 John Gary Grubbs Blvd., Brooksville. Call (352) 544-6022.
SHINE counselors offer information and assistance with Medicare (figuring out paperwork, bills and filing appeals), Medicare supplemental insurance, Medicare prescription drug coverage, long-term care planning and pharmaceutical assistance programs.
No appointments necessary (unless otherwise noted). For information or for counseling locations outside Hernando County, call the Elder Hotline toll-free at 1-800-262-2243.
Weight Watchers: For area meetings, call toll-free 1-800-651-6000.
CoDA (Co-Dependents Anonymous): Words of Wisdom group, 6:30 to 8 p.m. Tuesdays, Salvation Army Fellowship Hall, 15464 Cortez Blvd. The purpose of this program is for the development of healthy relationships and the building of self-esteem. Email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Heart2Heart: Inaugural meeting, 10 to 11 a.m. Feb. 14, Brooksville Regional Hospital, first-floor conference room, 17240 Cortez Blvd. This is a new heart health support group, sponsored by Brooksville Regional and Spring Hill Regional hospitals. All those attending will receive a Heart2Heart binder to organize materials and information gathered at each support group session. Those affected by high blood pressure, a heart attack, coronary artery disease, heart valve damage, diabetes or obesity are encouraged to attend. Registration for the first session is required and limited to the first 45 callers. Call (352) 754-3230.
Hernando Gift Room: This free service, provided by the American Cancer Society, is open noon to 4 p.m. Wednesdays at 14540 Cortez Blvd., Suite 203, in the Pinebrook Regional Medical Center, west of Brooksville. The Gift Room provides uninsured and under-insured patients with free wigs, hats and head coverings (scarves, kerchiefs, beanies and knitted caps), prosthesis and mastectomy bras, as well as emotional support for people going through chemotherapy. To learn more, call the American Cancer Society toll-free at 1-800-227-2345 or visit cancer.org.
Take of Pounds Sensibly 208: 6 p.m. Thursdays, Gulf Ridge Park Church, 20200 Manecke Road. Linda Ward, (352) 796-1236.
Ridge Manor West
Take Off Pounds Sensibly 530: 8:15 to 10 a.m. Tuesdays, First Lutheran Church, 30419 Park Ridge Drive. Meeting starts at 9 a.m. Evelyn, (352) 796-0477.
Al-Anon: Adult Children Focused Step meeting, 7:30 to 9 p.m. Thursdays, Oak Hill Hospital's Partner's Club, 11375 Cortez Blvd. (behind the hospital). Toll-free 1-888-425-2666.
Alzheimer's Program for Caregivers: 2 to 3 p.m. Wednesday and Feb. 20, HPH Hospice, 12260 Cortez Blvd. This is a two-part program for those currently caring for, or anticipating caring for, someone with Alzheimer's disease. Topics include how the disease changes communications and dealing with difficult behaviors. Free, but registration is required due to limited space. RSVP to Carla Hayes, (352) 597-1882.
Caregivers Day Out: 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Tuesdays, First United Methodist Church, 9344 Spring Hill Drive. Provided by Community Aging and Retirement Services, the program offers a fun, supervised atmosphere for individuals with memory challenges, such as Alzheimer's disease or dementia, while caregivers take some time off. There is no cost for first-time participants; subsequent days are $20. CARES is a nonprofit organization that provides services to meet the needs of older persons and their families in west-central Florida. Dianne, (352) 686-2614, or Chris Powers, (727) 862-9291, exts. 2002 or 2040.
Catholic Charities Mini-Adult Day Care (Respite) Program: 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Tuesdays and Thursdays, Catholic Charities, 8370 Forest Oaks Blvd. The program is specifically designed for people with early-stage memory disorder illnesses, such as Alzheimer's, dementia, stroke or Parkinson's disease. Gary Chapin, (352) 422-7731.
Crescent Community Clinic: The clinic, 5244 Commercial Way (Winchester Plaza), provides primary medical, dental and mental health services to uninsured adults ages 18-64 who meet the federal poverty guidelines. Those wishing to receive services from the nonprofit, volunteer-staffed clinic must first apply for services. To apply, potential patients must visit the website at crescentclinic.org and download the application on the first page. The clinic is staffed by volunteers from 9:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. weekdays. For information, call (352) 610-9916. Potential patients are not to call the office for appointments.
Diabetes Mellitus series: 5:30 p.m. today and Feb. 21, Access Health Care, 4270 Lake in the Woods Drive. Today's topic is "Diabetes 101," and the Feb. 21 topic is "Meal Planning and Portion Control." The speaker will be Verna Pedersen, a registered nurse and nurse practitioner. Free, but seating is limited and reservations are required. (352) 597-7249.
Gamblers Anonymous: 7 to 9 p.m. Fridays, Holy Cross Lutheran Church, 6193 Spring Hill Drive. New members welcome. Coffee and refreshments served. RSVP to Arlene, (352) 688-9034.
Heart Failure Symposium: 5 to 7 p.m. Monday, Palace Grand, 275 Della Court. The theme is "Living with Heart Failure." Presented by a panel of Oak Hill Hospital health care specialists: Dr. Mowaffak Atfeh, a cardiologist; Frank Guardiani Sr., director of cardiology services; Leanne Salazar, family nurse practitioner, and Mary-Anne Flowers, clinical nutrition manager. A complimentary hot meal will be served. Free, but reservations are required. RSVP to (352) 597-6333.
Hernando County Ostomy Association: 7 p.m. today, Grace Lutheran Church, 411 Mariner Blvd. Bob Barnard, (352) 442-9787, or Carol Krause, (352) 683-5586.
Hospice Bereavement Support Group: 3 to 4 p.m. Thursdays, HPH Hospice, 12260 Cortez Blvd. This is an ongoing bereavement support group for adults grieving the death of a loved one. There is no cost and no reservations required. Toll-free 1-800-486-8784. Web: hph-hospice.org.
Moving On: 12:15 p.m. Thursdays, Perkins Family Restaurant, 4685 Commercial Way. This is a self-help support group for seniors who have difficulty dealing with the loss of a loved one. Marilyn, (352) 593-4736, or Rita, (352) 684-3916.
National Alliance on Mental Illness/NAMI Hernando: Support groups, 7 to 8:30 p.m. Mondays; 3 to 5 p.m. Wednesdays, Beautiful Mind Outreach Center, 10554 Spring Hill Drive, Spring Hill. There are two separate meetings; one for those with mental illnesses, the other for family members. Call the Beautiful Mind, (352) 684-0004. Web: namihernandofl.org or NAMI.org.
Overeaters Anonymous: 5:15 to 6:30 p.m. Wednesdays, St. Andrew's Episcopal Church, 2301 Deltona Blvd. Option coffee and fellowship will follow the meeting. This is a newly formed group. Ann, (352) 346-6962, or Julie, (352) 688-2877. New Beginnings group, 1:30 to 2:30 p.m. Fridays, also at St. Andrew's Episcopal Church. Betty, (352) 666-1710. This is a 12-step program for those suffering from compulsive overeating. There are no dues, fees or weigh-ins for this support group.
Spring Hill Stroke Support Group: 11 a.m. Thursdays, Holy Cross Lutheran Church, 6193 Spring Hill Drive. Family and friends welcome. Coffee and cake follows the meeting. A. Schaffer, (352) 688-2594, or the church, (352) 683-9016.
Take Off Pounds Sensibly: TOPS 746, 8:30 to 10 a.m. Wednesdays, Grace Presbyterian Church, Building B, 8375 Spring Hill Drive. Patti, (352) 597-6869, or Sue, (352) 688-5209. TOPS 604, Weigh-in from 8:30 to 9:15 a.m. and meeting 9:30 to 10:30 a.m. Tuesdays, Forest Oaks Lutheran Church, 8555 Forest Oaks Blvd. Doris, (352) 666-9525, or Nancy, (352) 592-1088. TOPS is a weight-loss management program for men and women, and has a philosophy of combining healthy eating, regular exercise, wellness education and support from others.
Divorce Care: 6 to 8 p.m. Thursdays, starting today, Christian Church in the Wildwood, 10051 Country Road, Building B, Room 103. This is a 12-week support group for those who are divorced or separated. The cost for the workbook is $16. No child care provided. (352) 596-1388, ext. 224. ccwildwood.com.
Overeaters Anonymous: Bridge to Serenity group, 1 p.m. Tuesdays, Nativity Lutheran Church, 6363 Commercial Way. This is a 12-step program for those suffering from compulsive overeating. There are no dues, fees or weigh-ins for this support group. Belinda, (352) 293-3455.
Take Off Pounds Sensibly: TOPS 461, 9 to 11 a.m. Thursdays, Nativity Lutheran Church, 6363 Commercial Way. Dorothy Kuta, (352) 596-6697, or Pat Gall, (352) 688-6755. TOPS is a weight loss support group that promotes successful weight management with a philosophy that combines healthy eating, regular exercise, wellness education and support.
Community Chatterboxes: 3 p.m. today, Medical Center of Trinity, 9330 State Road 54. For those with communication deficits as a result of a cerebral vascular accident or other neurological disorders. Caregivers and spouses welcome. (727) 845-0757.
Send information for the Health and Support column to Phyllis Day, Hernando Times, 15365 Cortez Blvd., Brooksville, FL 34613; fax to (352) 754-6133; or email email@example.com. Deadline for this news is two weeks before event or reservation deadline. Information cannot be published if the time, date, place, ticket price (if applicable) or contact person and phone number are missing. For information, call (352) 754-6101 from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. weekdays.