As part of AHEC West's Employee Wellness program, staff has the opportunity to participate in a monthly "15 Minutes of Fitness." This month’s topic was "Get Moving with Music – Dance Party." Led by Jen Thomas, STEP Program Coordinator, ACE Personal Trainer, and Health Coach, second from left, participants included (left to right) Catie Wampole, Jade Methney, Dorian Birkholz and Katie Marvin.
Research shows dancing can improve your mental health by boosting your overall happiness. Dancing can also improve cardiovascular health, increase stamina, strengthen bones and muscles, and increase immunity to ward off illness.


THANKS to LaVale Library for producing this awesome poster for STEP - Stretching To EmPower. Free 90-minute classes combining art and yoga begin at the library Feb. 7. For more information visit or email STEP Coordinator Jen Thomas at

Stretching To EmPower (STEP) is coming to the LaVale Library on Thursdays, beginning Feb. 7, 2019. STEP is a Yoga Wellness program to educate, motivate, strengthen and empower women (although men are welcome to attend!) The LaVale program will also feature an art component. Yoga will be from 10:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. and is suitable for all levels, including newcomers. Art will follow directly after yoga from 11:30 to noon. Projects will be fun and simple and promote exploration of emotions, feelings, gratitude, and well-being.
The program runs through March 14. There is no cost to attend.
Program Coordinator is Jen Thomas, AHEC West. Yoga Instructor is Sera Beth Weaver. For more information contact Jen at or by phone at 301.777.9150. The program web site is

January is Cervical Health Month! Think you know all there is to know about cervical cancer and #HPV? Test your knowledge about cervical cancer and other gynecologic cancers with this CDC quiz. The answers may surprise you! #AHEChpv
How much do you know about gynecologic cancers? Take this quick quiz from CDC’s Inside Knowledge campaign to find out!

From the CDC: Flu has sickened 7 million in U.S. so far this year; half needed medical care:
CDC releases estimates of influenza illness for the first time during flu season (instead of after) to underscore the importance of getting vaccinated.
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