Eleven Maine Hospitals Selected for National Quality Improvement Effort

Eleven hospitals across Maine will participate in the Aligning Forces for Quality (AF4Q) Hospital Quality Network, an innovative, nationwide program led by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF). The AF4Q initiative is RWJF’s signature effort to lift the overall quality of health care in targeted communities, as well as reduce racial and ethnic disparities and provide models for national reform. Maine’s AF4Q initiative is led by Quality Counts in close collaboration with the Maine Health Management Coalition and the Dirigo Health Agency’s Maine Quality Forum.

During the AF4Q Hospital Quality Network, hospital teams will work together to improve the quality and safety of patient care by piloting and testing new quality improvement strategies over an 18-month period.

Bull Moose Scarborough Adds Books Creating the Largest Store of its Kind in New England

The Scarborough Bull Moose Warehouse Store expansion to more than 13,000 sq. ft. will be complete on November 13, making this single store the biggest retailer of books, DVDs, video games, and CDs in New England.
The expanded Bull Moose will have room for over 20,000 books of all genres as well an even larger selection of music, movies, and video games.  People who expect Bull Moose to be a price leader will not be surprised to learn that all books will be 35% off list price. 
“Because we’re a cost cutting locally-owned business, we think we can operate more efficiently than big box retailers – this allows us to extend our low prices to books too,” says owner Brett Wickard. “And we’re going to carry a wide variety of books that appeal to everybody… we’ll have the best selling new releases, a kids corner with children’s books, books for young readers, older readers and everyone in between,” added Wickard.

Quadruple Amputee, Gold Medalist Speaks at UMA on November 16th

Joshua Kennison, a Maine resident born without arms and legs who won 3 Gold Medals and one Silver Medal in track at the 2010 Endeavor Games, will be speaking at UMA on Tuesday, November 16th in Jewett Auditorium from 6:00 PM to 7:30 PM.

Earlier that same day from 2:30 PM to 4:00 PM, Kennison will be joined by Cony High School and UMA athletes on the CONY track for a one-mile Fun Run.

Speaking at UMA on Overcoming Challenges and Giving Back, Kennison says, “I'm coming to show people that no matter their limitations you can conquer anything as long as you put your mind to it."

The Endeavor Games is a national competition that allows athletes with physical disabilities to participate in a multi-sport event.

City of Waterville's vision will be displayed in branding unveiling at Hathaway

The Hathaway will be the venue on Thursday, November 4th at 6 p.m., following decisionmaking stakeholder meetings earlier in the day, for the public announcement of a new branding concept and strategy that will represent the future vision of the City of Waterville. The two-day collaboration, led by a prominent national branding firm, is funded by the Waterville Development Corporation, the Mid-Maine Chamber of Commerce, the City of Waterville, Waterville Main Street, KVCOG and the Central Maine Growth Council.

State Entomology Staff Win for Invasive Bug Costumes

They’re creepy, they’re spooky, they’re altogether ooky – not to mention dangerous to Maine’s forests, but they make great Halloween costumes!

Two state entomology staffers walked away recently with top prizes for their invasive bug costumes at a national consortium on forest insects and diseases.

Maine Forest Service entomologist Allison Kanoti took “Most Creative Costume” for her hemlock woolly adelgid/elongate hemlock scale costume, while Anne Bills, Maine Department of Agriculture forest pest outreach coordinator, won “Most Scientifically Accurate” for her Asian longhorned beetle costume.

National Lead Poisoning Prevention Week Campaign

AUGUSTA - National Lead Poisoning Prevention Week is October 24-30. Here in Maine, public health officials are marking the week by focusing attention on a new statewide campaign to help prevent childhood lead poisoning from home improvement projects. Beginning this month, all stores in Maine that sell paint or paint removal supplies will be displaying a poster with brochures that warn customers about the danger of lead paint dust that can result from home painting or repair projects performed in homes built before 1978.
"In about 20 percent of the children we have identified with lead poisoning, lead paint dust from do-it-yourself home projects was the likely cause of the poisoning," said state toxicologist, Dr. Andrew Smith.

FAME Approves Financing for Old Town Bakery

The Board of Directors of the Finance Authority of Maine (FAME) today approved low-cost financing for an historic Old Town bakery to help it modernize, expand, and preserve Maine jobs.  FAME also authorized the issuance of bonds to help Berwick Academy finance the costs of building construction, and adopted various new program rules.

Approved for low-cost financing through the Recovery Zone Facility Bond Program was LaBree’s Bakery of Old Town.  LaBree’s is a family-owned business with roots in the community dating to 1948.  The company was approved for a bond allocation in the amount of $5,550,000 for the expansion of a building and the purchase of manufacturing equipment used in its baking processes.  Bangor Savings Bank will provide financing for the project.  The project does not carry any liability or credit enhancement on the part of FAME or the state. 

FAME Board Chair Glenn Lamarr stated:  “FAME is pleased to assist LaBree’s