WILMINGTON — A staffer with the Clinton County Health District just became certified as a Grief Recovery Method Specialist (GRMS), and as such can serve her colleagues and the community in that capacity.
Clinton County Health District’s WIC (Women, Infant, and Children) Director Renee Quallen is one of 25 public health professionals in Ohio who is receiving GRMS training this summer as part of a professional development project in an area of need.
In an informational document that came out this spring from the Association of Ohio Health Commissioners, the group stated that few if any public health programs have implemented any form of grief training. It added that the public health workforce and the public can benefit from an effort “to develop their resilience to the ongoing impacts of the losses — grief — they experience.”
The same paper said grief is defined as the normal and natural response to change or loss of any kind — the deaths of loved ones of course, but also divorce, loss of health, and loss of a job.
Quallen completed her four days of training on Monday, July 25. As part of her written report to the Clinton County Board of Health which met Monday, she said the grief recovery method training “has been an amazing experience.”
She added she is excited about the potential of the program and about how it can serve the community.
Each GRMS is expected in their first year to provide at least three general grief recovery method educational presentations in their department or community, and to convene at least one grief recovery method group and two one-to-one sessions in their department or community.
They also are to provide at least one “Helping Children with Loss” four-session program for colleagues and community partners such as school, Children’s Services, juvenile justice, and other child-serving organizations.
In speaking Monday about Quallen’s selection, Clinton County Health Commissioner Pam Walker-Bauer said when she heard about the professional development project she thought of Quallen as a good fit for the role.
At the Board of Health meeting, Clinton County Health District Public Nursing Director Monica Wood, RN, reported on case numbers for COVID.
New reported cases in July through Monday, July 25 were almost double the total for new reported cases in June: 300 for July with several days left in the month, compared to the June total of 166 cases.
Walker-Bauer said the health department, located at the County Annex Building on South Nelson Avenue, has a limited supply of at-home COVID test kits available for citizens.
As for COVID vaccination shots and boosters, the health district is continuing with its “Walk-In Wednesdays”. No appointment is needed for ages 5 and older from 1 to 4 p.m. Wednesdays in the County Annex Building. Other times are by appointment.
For children under 5 years, an appointment is needed for a COVID shot. To schedule, you can call 937-382-7221.
Wood reported Monday that the health district has all available eight brands — all four Moderna and all four Pfizer brands of COVID vaccine.
She also reported that last week the health department held two assessment opportunities involving hearing and vision at Holmes Elementary School in Wilmington where they saw about 120 children. At the same events, childhood vaccines were offered, as was COVID vaccine.
In August, the county health district will hold open houses or clinic offerings in every school district in the county.
“So we’ll be taking vaccines, including for COVID, to each of those [events],” Wood said. As of Monday, not all of the school dates had been firmed up.
Reach Gary Huffenberger at 937-556-5768.