Community Health Newsletter
"We're here for you!"
We believe everyone should have access to care, especially during a pandemic.
By the Community Health team at Cherry Hill Free Clinic.
Note: We’re now back to seeing patients in person, as well as virtually! Please call us to schedule an appointment: (856) 281-3032. Estamos ahora viendo pacientes en persona y virtualmente! Por favor, llamenos para hacer una cita (856) 281-3032.
Vaccine Expansion/Update - 12+
by Michelle Pham
With about 63% of Americans receiving at least their first dose of the Covid-19 vaccine, we are seeing an end to the pandemic. However, now it is not only adults that can become vaccinated. Children from ages 12 and up are eligible and highly encouraged to receive the Covid-19 vaccine. Even though fewer children have gotten Covid-19, children can still be infected with the virus that causes Covid-19, get sick from Covid-19, and spread it to others. That is why it is incredibly important not only to keep yourself safe by getting the vaccine but also getting your children vaccinated. As of now children 12 years and older are eligible to get the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine.
You can check your local pharmacy’s website for walk-in appointments or check with your child’s healthcare providers.
Summertime in Sight
by Nertila Cana
With COVID-19 cases declining, the number of vaccinated individuals increasing, and relaxation of restrictions in general, there are many reasons to be optimistic as we look ahead into summer of 2021.
We invite you to focus on what you CAN do, and there are actually a lot of great things to do, especially outdoor activities. Here are some activities we suggest to help support the mental and physical well-being of our community members: biking, hiking, canoeing, camping, fishing, birdwatching, stargazing, sports, meditation, having a picnic, and much more!
We encourage you to look out for opportunities to get outdoors, to make the most of the season ahead, and to have fun. Get to know and explore your own neighborhood and community better. Keep in mind that outdoor activities are much safer than socializing indoors, and spending time in nature has a number of health and wellness benefits.
If you are hosting a gathering:
- Remind guests to stay home if they are sick or have been exposed to COVID-19.
- Keep a list of guests who attended for potential future contact tracing needs.
- Host your gathering outdoors, when possible. If indoors, make sure the room or space is well-ventilated (open some windows).
Stay safe, be creative and flexible, and enjoy summer 2021!
Recommended website: Find Your Next Adventure: Explore Destinations & Activities - Visit Recreation.gov to discover new experiences, historic landmarks, and outdoor escapes right down the road or across the country - from camping, hiking, and horseback riding to wildlife viewing, monument tours, and ranger-led activities.
Reminder: The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says that fully vaccinated adults can safely resume activities indoors or outdoors without masks or distancing, in gatherings large or small. Unvaccinated people remain at risk, and should continue to wear masks and observe physical distancing.
Berry Tasty, Berry Effective!
By Ksenia Vongviphut
As the sun shines warmer and nature’s green is in full swing, we are blessed with plenty of fresh produce. It’s no secret that we are what we eat, and we’ve heard countless times over how important it is to eat our fruits and veggies. But, we may ask, what’s munching on some berries doing for me anyway?
Studies in humans and animals have shown that berries are beneficial to one’s health. Scientists have looked at a variety of berries and found powerful potential. Berry intake appears to help out the heart, blood vessels, and memory. It may also help us lose weight and have healthy sugar levels. Consuming these tasty treats in the natural form is our best bet for optimal health.
Fresh or frozen fruit offers a bundle of benefits to our bodies. Fiber fills our bellies and gives us good gut health. Antioxidants, vitamins and minerals help our bodies stay strong, repair damage and fight infection. This can improve our mood and motivation to take part in enjoyable activities.
Eating a cup of raw blueberries does not appeal? These ideas may change your mind. Add a cup of berries to:
❖ A bowl of multigrain cereal or oatmeal
❖ A fresh trail mix with ¼ cup almonds, cashews or walnuts
❖ A green salad with a sprinkle of feta cheese, bell pepper, your favorite greens (kale, spinach, arugula, romaine) and a teaspoon of olive oil
❖ 1 cup of unsweetened yogurt with a dash of cinnamon-- use Greek yogurt for high protein!
❖ 1 cup lowfat or unsweetened dairy-free milk pulsed into a refreshing smoothie. You can even throw in a handful or two of spinach.
❖ Half cup of cottage cheese or a spoonful of low-fat ricotta
*If 1 cup of berries daily is a little much, split the berries into half cup portions and have twice daily. Avoid dried fruit and fruit juices. These often have added sugar and are not as satisfying as the juicy whole fruit form.
Check out a local farm or outdoor market for a sunny dose of Vitamin D to pair with your fresh fruit. Local crops may offer these fresh choices at approximately these times of year. For more information, refer to Pickyourown.org.
Blackberries July 10-August 10
Blueberries June 20-August 15
Raspberries July 1-October 15 (or prior to first frost)
Strawberries May 20-June 25
Other types of these delicious fruits may be found in your local market:
-Goji and Acai berries (Not all fruit is created equal: cut the portion in half for these two)
-Elderberry (Do not eat raw!)
Variety is the spice of life and works wonders for our bodies. Here is our challenge: consume one cup of berries daily. Try 3 different types of berries in a given week. One simple change can make all the difference in our well-being. So go ahead, explore the possibilities!
Tips on Safe Traveling
by Elhussein Ibrahim
If you have been fully vaccinated, congratulations!! The CDC announced that if you are fully vaccinated, meaning that it has been two weeks after receiving your second dose for the Pfizer or Moderna vaccines, or after your dose of the Johnson and Johnson vaccine, you can essentially go back to normal! You can resume activities without a mask or socially distancing, but you still must wear a mask and socially distance where it is required by laws and business regulations (wearing a mask for example, at a grocery store). If you are travelling within the United States, you do not need to get tested or self-quarantine. If you are travelling internationally back to the United States, you still need to show proof of a negative COVID test, but do not need to quarantine after arriving in the United States.
If you have not been fully vaccinated, we hope you can get vaccinated soon! If you need any assistance registering for the vaccine, getting to and back from your vaccination site, or have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact us at 856-281-3032! For unvaccinated and not fully vaccinated individuals, the CDC recommends testing before and after your travel, and to isolate if you develop any symptoms. It is also recommended to maintain a distance of 6 feet between you and others whenever possible, wear a mask indoors and outdoors in areas of high risk of COVID transmission, limit how often you touch frequently touched surfaces, clean and sanitize your hands often, and avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth.
For more information, visit the CDC’s website and check periodically for new updates!
Update on Travel Restrictions in NJ
by Nertila Cana
As of May 17, 2021, New Jersey's travel advisory is no longer in effect. New Jersey residents returning home and travelers visiting New Jersey do not need to quarantine, but should follow travel guidance from the CDC, the NJ Department of Health, and all local health and safety protocols of their travel destination. At this time, the CDC recommends delaying travel until you are fully vaccinated. For more information, refer to the CDC's guidance for domestic travel.
International Travel - The CDC requires all air passengers arriving in the United States from a foreign country to get tested for COVID-19 no more than 3 days before their flight departs and to present the negative result or documentation of having recovered from COVID-19 to the airline before boarding the flight. For more information, visit the CDC website.
How to Get a Free Ride
To/From Your Vaccination?
By Nertila Cana
NJ TRANSIT's VAXRIDE initiative is offering free rides to and from vaccination sites. For more information on the program and public transit options near vaccine locations, visit NJ TRANSIT's VAXRIDE initiative page.
La iniciativa de NJ TRANSIT’s VAXRIDE está ofreciendo transportación gratis hacia y desde de los lugares de vacunación. Para más información, visite la pagina njtransit.com/vaxride.
In addition, NJ 211 is offering free rides to and from vaccination sites in partnership with United Way Worldwide and Lyft. Rides are available wherever Lyft operates in New Jersey and is available to everyone including those with collapsible wheelchairs and walkers. To request a free ride, call 211 or text 898-211, or visit 211 to learn more.
COVID-19 Variant Strain in Asia & How It Affects Us
by Ksenia Vongviphut
We continue to hear many news stories in recent weeks on the pandemic’s impact around the world, specifically in southeast Asia. The tragedy of outbreaks and insufficient medical resources breaks our hearts. It may evoke a new wave of questions and perhaps some fear. There are teams throughout the world, including the World Health Organization, the National Institute of Health and the Center for Disease Control (CDC) working together to learn more about the virus and how we can best prevent and treat this disease.
Mutations are common in viruses, especially those that rapidly multiply and spread over greater distances. The pandemic reaches far, and the virus has evolved into different strains or “variants” throughout the world. The CDC identifies several “variants of interest”. These COVID strains have different genes that result in slightly changed structure. If it is “different enough” the virus may not be so easily detected in the body. In other words, these variants may not be as effectively fought off by the natural immunity developed from a previous COVID infection or our current vaccines. They may spread more quickly than the other variants or make people more sick. The strain originally found in Southeast Asia called B.1.617 falls under this category.
What does this mean for me? Can I get sick even though I have been vaccinated? Does this cause more severe disease? Unfortunately there are no definitive answers to these questions. It appears that this strain spreads more quickly, and therefore can cause stress on the healthcare system and medical resources. Early studies show that our current vaccines show some level of effectiveness against the B.1.617 strains. Be reassured that many scientists, researchers and physicians are working hard to learn more about the different virus strains, how to prevent rapid spread and best treat patients. In the meantime, we do our part to stay safe and maintain our own physical, mental and spiritual well-being. There is a readily available vaccination that can help us fight off many strains of the virus and limit the spread. If we choose to not be vaccinated, we can wear masks and maintain distance as recommended by the CDC. And let’s not forget a timeless essential: always wash your hands!
Edara VV, Lai L, Sahoo MK, Floyd K, Sibai M, SolisD, Flowers MW, Hussaini L, Ciric CR, Bechnack S,Stephens K, Mokhtari EB, Mudvari P, Creanga A, PeguA, Derrien-Colemyn A, Henry AR, Gagne M, GrahamBS, Wrammert J, Douek DC, Boritz E, Pinsky BA, SutharMS. Infection and vaccine-induced neutralizingantibody responses to the SARS-CoV-2 B.1.617.1 variant.bioRxiv [Preprint]. 2021 May10:2021.05.09.443299. doi: 10.1101/2021.05.09.443299.PMID: 34013272; PMCID: PMC8132229.
Q & A
by Hindira Garcia
This Q & A section directly comes from you! We will aim to answer questions that have come through from our interactions with the community in particular as they relate to the pandemic and COVID-19 vaccines. Esta parte viene directamente de ustedes! Nosotros tratamos de contestar sus preguntas que vienen por nuestras interacciones con la comunidad en particular con relación a la pandemia y las vacunas del COVID-19.
1. What are the typical side effects after vaccination? Where you receive the vaccine in the arm you may see redness, swelling, and feel some pain. However, through the rest of your body you may feel tiredness, headache, muscle pains, chills, fever and nausea. For these effects you may take ibuprofen, acetaminophen or aspirin.
1. ¿Cuales son los efectos secundarios comunes de la vacuna? Donde tú recibes la vacuna en el brazo puedes verlo rojo, inflamado y sentir algún dolor. En el resto del cuerpo te puedes sentir cansado, tener dolor de cabeza, dolor del cuerpo, escalofríos y náusea. Para estos efectos puedes tomar ibuprofen, acetaminophen o aspirina.
2. What can we do after we have been fully vaccinated? You can resume your normal activities without wearing a mask or staying six feet apart, except where required by federal, state, local, tribal or territorial laws. This includes local and business guidelines.
2. ¿Qué podemos hacer después de haber sido completamente vacunado? Puedes resumir tus actividades normales sin máscaras y sin mantener los seis pies de distancia, menos donde lo requieren por las leyes federales, estatales, locales, tribales y territoriales. Esto incluye pautas locales y de negocios.
By Hindira Garcia
Want your questions to be answered in the next newsletter? Vocalize yourself through our official CHFC Questionnaire and we will answer! ¿Quiere que sus preguntas sean contestadas en nuestro próximo boletín informativo? Vocalizate a través de nuestro CHFC cuestionario oficial y nosotros contestaremos!
About Cherry Hill Free Clinic
Our Vision: An end to healthcare suffering from lack of access to care.
Our Mission: To provide free primary care to the uninsured and underinsured.In the ever-challenging world of healthcare, we often encounter people who suffer debilitating preventable conditions as a result of unmanaged chronic conditions such as diabetes, asthma or high blood pressure.
Managing those diseases and providing care means we are making an impact on the quality of people’s lives and hopefully keeping them out of the Emergency Room.
Did you know that 42% of the population lives below the poverty line, with the average income hovering around $26,000? According to the CDC, in Camden County almost 20% are uninsured. That’s 1/5 of your neighbors and friends!
We’re here for those in need, absolutely free.
Address: 5 Esterbrook Ln, Cherry Hill, NJ
Phone: (856) 281-3032
7 Days a Week | Mornings - Evenings
ELC funding made available to the Southern NJ Perinatal Cooperative from the New Jersey Department of Health – Division of Family Health