Rural Healthcare Today

My husband and I spent six hours in the hallway in the Emergency Department at Robert Packer Hospital last week. He is alright now; he had been sent there by his primary care doctor due to concerning symptoms. There were no rooms available in the Emergency Department. In fact, we were told that there were no rooms to be had anywhere in the hospital. ICU patients were using Emergency rooms and every other available room. So, they situated my husband, along with six other patients we could see, on a bed in the hallway. They gave me a chair so I could sit with him, between him and the next patient.

All of my husband’s health assessments took place in the hallway in full view and easy earshot of the other patients and hospital staff. We saw and heard everyone else’s health assessments as well. We heard the story of a motor vehicle accident told and retold. We heard full names, birth dates and test results of other patients clearly. We witnessed everyone’s depression and domestic abuse screenings. We heard and saw an elderly woman crying in pain for over an hour with no privacy for her suffering.

What’s the point of this story? Let’s set aside the immediate cause of this situation, an influx of COVID cases. Let’s set aside the flagrant (HIPPA) privacy violations. Staff were making the best of a bad situation, a situation largely outside their control.

Let’s look for the root cause of the problem. The root of the healthcare crisis in rural Pennsylvania is the market. There is no competition in healthcare in rural Pennsylvania, even when there are alternative providers within a reasonable distance.

Bradford is a border county. New York is less than ten minutes from the hospital in Sayre. From our house, in Warren Center, there are four other hospitals with Emergency Departments just as close as the one in Sayre. They, however, are all in New York and they are all out of network for our insurance.

Regional medical groups, like Guthrie, have swallowed up all of the competition within the county. They absorbed the Troy Community Hospital and Memorial Hospital in Towanda making them the only hospital provider in the county. Insurance barriers restrain us from seeking care across state lines, where Lourdes, UHS and Arnot Health all have hospitals with Emergency Departments.

What encourages these medical monopolies to flourish? Our healthcare and health insurance regulations. Begun in 1945 and continued despite efforts at reform, the current healthcare and health insurance system encourages regional monopolies. It limits patient choice and drives up cost.

We need change.

SMASH for Charity

Beginning at 5:30pm, join us for a Social Mixer in The Break Room lounge and adjoining restaurant for light refreshments and good conversation with many of our guest speakers for Perspectives on Freedom. No pre-registration required. A $10 donation is requested at the door to cover help cover expenses. Any proceeds from the Mixer will be split between the two charities.

SMASH: Beginning at 7pm (Space is Limited)
Register for a 15-minute SMASH session in either Spike’s Room or Tasha’s Room in The Break Room!

SMASH Premium Registration: $35 An individual 15 minute SMASH session, just you plus either Spike or Tasha in the room.

SMASH Regular Registration: $20 A 15 minute SMASH session, you plus 2 other regular registrants in the room with either Spike or Tasha.

Who will raise the most $ for their charity? Spike’s Charity is Transitional Living Centers, Inc. Tasha’s is A Community Clinic, Inc.

Tasha’s Room
Spike’s Room

For both registration options you will get with a plate you can write on and other items to smash with a baseball bat! You must sign the liability waiver to participate. The Break Room provides all safety equipment.

All proceeds from the SMASH for Charity & Mixer benefit Transitional Living Centers, Inc of Williamsport, PA and A Community Clinic, Inc of Sunbury, PA. Click on their names to visit their websites.

What We Need: June Mental Health Forum

June’s Mental Health Forum had to be unexpectedly rescheduled.

For the in-person portion, we will be meeting in the Tea Garden outside the Mad Hatter Cafe and Co-op in Athens, PA.

Join us to share your concerns and ideas for improving mental health and mental health supports in our community. We will be building on our first forum and welcoming new people into the conversation, new perspectives and new ideas for taking action to create change.

This event is FREE!

Join us for all or for part of the discussion.

We will have both in person and virtual participation again.

Please register by if you plan to join us! CLICK HERE to go to the registration form.
If you are joining us virtually, we will email you the meeting info.

What We Need: Community Mental Health Forum II

June is Men’s Health Month.

On the Wednesday before Father’s Day, we will be holding our 2nd Mental Health Forum, with a focus on Men and boys.

Share your concerns and ideas for improving mental health and mental health supports in our community.

We will be building on our first forum and welcoming new people into the conversation, new perspectives and new ideas for taking action to create change.

This event is FREE!


Join us for all or for part of the discussion.

We will have both in person and virtual participation again.

Please register if you plan to join us!

If you are joining us virtually, we will email you the meeting info.

Registration:
https://forms.gle/XuBKQWCmSDH9e5y87

SMASH for Charity with Spike and Tasha Cohen

SMASH: Beginning at 7pm (Space is Limited)
Register for a 15-minute SMASH session in either Spike’s Room or Tasha’s Room in the Break Room!

SMASH Premium Registration: $35 An individual 15 minute SMASH session, just you plus either Spike or Tasha in the room.

SMASH Regular Registration: $20 A 15 minute SMASH session, you plus 2 other regular registrants in the room with either Spike or Tasha.

For both registration options you will get with a plate you can write on and other items to smash with a baseball bat! You must sign the liability waiver to participate. The Break Room provides all safety equipment.

All proceeds from the SMASH for Charity Mixer benefit Transitional Living Centers, Inc of Williamsport, PA and A Community Clinic, Inc of Sunbury, PA. Click on their names to visit their websites

CLICK HERE to Register! Space is Limited!

Beginning at 5:30pm, join us for a Social Mixer in the Break Room lounge and adjoining restaurant for light refreshments and good conversation with many of our guest speakers for Perspectives on Freedom. No pre-registration required. A $10 donation is requested at the door to cover event expenses. Any proceeds from the Mixer will be split between the two charities.

Community Mental Health Forum Series – A Great Beginning

Williamsport what we need community mental Health forum led by Liz Terwilliger hosted by the Break Room

On Sunday, May 23rd the first in a series of community discussions about mental health was launched in Williamsport, Pa. The forum was conducted both in-person and on-line to allow as many participants to attend as possible. The discussion was led by Liz Terwilliger, Libertarian candidate for Congress (12th District). The Break Room, a business focused on safe and fun ways to release stress and negative emotions hosted the event.

“The difficult times we all experienced this past year has highlighted the need for more attention to the mental health of our community,” said Liz. “These forums are needed to allow members of our community to identify what we need so that we can work together with area organizations and our representatives to find solutions that fit our unique needs.”

The discussion at the forum was far-reaching; conversation ranged from barriers to accessing care, qualifications and requirements placed on providers, and the stigma of mental illness and of seeking help. Also discussed were the preconceived ideas about individuals with mental illness and specific diagnoses and the recent increase in teen suicide.

As discussion around the stigma of mental illness and of seeking help gelled, Liz summarized the sentiment of the discussion, “I am not weak because I need help. I am strong because I sought the help I need.” This sentiment, changing the way we think and talk about mental health and wellness permeated the discussion.

Special attention was given by the group to our unique challenges living in a rural are. “A consensus from participants was the challenge in some of our district due to distance of mental health providers who are taking new patients, who covered by insurance or just finding any at all.”

Some participants identified cultural barriers they had personally experienced, such as hesitance to seek help due to fear of losing one’s guns or fear of what others in their family or community might think or say about them.

In each area the group discussed concerns and needs in depth and developed an action plan which will be acted on in coming weeks. The next Forum was scheduled for June 16th from 11am-1pm at the Lewisburg Farmers Market. For updates and more information, visit the Events and the Issues pages at lizterwilligerforcongress.org.

Save the Date!

Perspectives on Freedom: An American Values Forum

Friday-Saturday-Sunday, September 17-19, 2021

Williamsport & Jersey Shore, PA

Liz Terwilliger for Congress aims to increase public engagement in conversations about issues that affect our freedoms. To that end, the LT4C campaign committee is hosting Perspectives on Freedom: An American Values Forum where guest speakers and members of the public will converge on a variety of topics via moderated break-out sessions in a “reverse town hall” style format featuring facilitated, open and respectful discussions.

Featured Guests: Spike & Tasha Cohen

Spike Cohen and Liz Terwilliger in Williamsport, 2020

Session Topics (so far…)

  • Improving Healthcare Access
  • Demilitarizing Policing
  • Decriminalizing Addiction
  • What’s Underlying Gun Violence
  • Tension Between Regulation and Rights: Environmental Protection
  • Parental Rights in Education
  • Reducing Abortions, Respecting Rights

Have ideas for a session topic? Want to be a moderator or lead a discussion at the event? We have an open Call for Participation thru June 30th, 2021. Click for the Download button to link to the packet.

All are welcome to participate! Join us in person for a single session or for the whole weekend or register to join us online.

A special early registration will be available at our table during the LPPA Convention at the Indigo Hotel – Oakland, in Pittsburgh, PA May 14th-16th.

Interested in advertising at the Forum? We will have full page, half page and business card ad space in the Forum program as well as an option to add a flyer to the registration packet. There will also be opportunities to sponsor a coffee hour or mid-morning/mid-afternoon break. Interested in having a table in our vendor and info area? We will have a limited number of tables available for reservation as well.

Firehouse Footgear Challenge

May 4th thru July 15th

Fire Departments across the state have had their funding impacted by COVID-19 restrictions cancelling so many critical fundraisers. We want to do something to help the departments in the 15 counties of the 12th Congressional District. We are organizing a shoe drive fundraiser as a district-wide challenge.

Liz Terwilliger for Congress is providing supplies to departments, promoting the drive, collecting bags of shoes at the end of the drive, coordinating the shipping of collected shoes and distributing proceeds to each participating fire department.

Participating Fire Departments will collect shoes at their fire house, promote the shoe drive, store bags of shoes collected in a dry place out of the weather.

Departments will receive 100% of the funds raised for the shoes they collect. The more a Department collects, the more money they’ll raise.

As an added incentive, the Fire Department that collects the most shoes will get their name on the Firehouse Footgear Challenge Plaque (donated by Woodland Art) and will possess the plaque until next year’s drive.

Shoes have to be clean and gently used or new.

Liz Terwilliger is partnering with Funds2Orgs. They are paying for the shoes collected, by the pound. They are supplying collection bags that hold approximately 25 pairs of shoes. Each bag is worth approximately $10 in proceeds. Shipping will be FREE if we collect 100 bags of shoes combined from all participating departments.

Here’s the form to use if your Fire Department would like to join us: https://forms.gle/d6HMLGUtRRxBBkrM8

If you want to help with this drive, complete this Volunteer form, be sure to tell us you want to help with this drive.

What We Need: Community Mental Health Forum

May is Mental Health Awareness Month.

The Break Room is a place built for therapeutic stress release.

Join us for a community discussion about “what we need” for Mental Health Awareness Month hosted by The Break Room of Williamsport!

Share your concerns and ideas for improving mental health and mental health supports in our community.

This event is envisioned as a combination in person and virtual group discussion.

The Break Room will be open for smash therapy during the forum and after for those who wish to try it out. (Smash therapy pricing per The Break Room)

This event is FREE!

Please register using this form – if you are joining us virtually, we will email you the meeting info. https://forms.gle/tzzATMSmFEAd4WhQ7

Clean Up at Marysville Lions Club Park

Join us April 24th to Celebrate Earth Day and give back a little to the community by clearing brush and cleaning up litter around the pond at the Marysville Lions Club Park.
There will be 3 projects we’ll be working on at this event.
1. Clear vines and low vegetation that is crowding David’s Walk.
2. Trash cleanup on the bank.
3. Cutting the low scrub around the pond.
Bring work gloves, clippers or loppers and dress for the weather.
We’ll be meeting in the parking area on the south side of the pond at 10am and working until we’re done.

By the pond at Marysville Lions Club Park

102 Park Drive, Marysville, PA 17053

10a Saturday, April 24, 2021


RSVP to join us here: https://forms.gle/QjaGR5TZbHpCC61aA S