Health literacy is a big part of a safe and fun summer for all!

Summer 2019 Newsletter from the SSCPP Health Literacy Initiative
Consumer Health Literacy at Plymouth Public Library

The Plymouth Public Library has been buzzing with all sorts of healthy programs throughout April and May, at the Main Library and at the branch in Manomet, Outreach Librarian, Tom Cummiskey, MLIS, has led several “Information Prescription” sessions designed to demonstrate how easy it is to use from the National Library of Medicine.  Simple searching, easy to understand and navigate, no pop-up ads or endless scrolling, the site offers information on a variety of health and wellness topics.  The first speaker event focused on Fitness for Seniors, with a fitness trainer providing basic exercise and nutrition tips, along with search tips from Tom using and the National Institute on Aging sites.  Participants are enjoying using specially designed Chromebooks to search specific sites that are easy to navigate.  The Consumer Health Resource collection is taking shape and should be ready to browse by July.
Useful tips when searching include:
  1. Take notes and write down your search question, what do you really need to find out?
  2. When searching, take frequent breaks to avoid screen-time burnout.
  3. Make a list of things you learned and bring along to discuss on your next visit with your care provider.
On May 25th, Healthy Gardening tips and ways to stretch before gardening was the topic.  Not only does gardening give enjoyment, it provides therapeutic benefits both from herbs and from getting outside and helping plants grow and thrive.  The Healthy Film series on May 30th, focused on the 1918-19 Influenza Pandemic in light of where we’ve come in the past 100 years and where to go online to find out the latest and reliable information on communicable diseases.

June 5th, the focus is on the Opioid crisis and Safe Medication practices with speakers Dr. Jim O’Neil and Kelly Macomber. Family Fun Day at the library is June 15th where a Health Literacy table will have handouts along with Tom Cummiskey, Medical Librarian offering search tips when using the Health Literacy Chromebooks. Information Prescription programs will continue throughout the summer, in various venues in the Plymouth area. 

Save the date for our first Health & Wellness Fair at the Plymouth Public Library on Saturday, September 28th complete with health screenings, flu shots, and information sessions along with fun activities for children. Bring your family and friends!

If your local church, civic or community organization would like Tom to present his Information Prescription program, please send an email to to plan an event tailored to your needs and population.
Honoring Health Literacy Community Leaders
Join Us
Friday, June 14, 2019

American Legion Hall 199 Federal Furnace Road, Plymouth 8:45AM – 10:30AM

Health Literacy Award Nominees
Joseph Weeks, Bay State Community Services

Sheila Flaherty, Plymouth NAMI Road to Responsibility
Theresa Harmon, To the Moon and Back
David Glass, Carver Cares
Joanne Earner and Cindy Wengryn, Pembroke Schools

Continental breakfast will be served.

Please RSVP to Kim Allen at by Friday, June 7th.
Please note this event will serve as our June Meeting- we will not be meeting on June 12th.
Summer Tick Safety Tips

Summer vacation is almost here! Get ready for fun! Beaches! Camping! Cookouts! And, nymphal deer ticks! Wait… Nymphal deer ticks?
A “nymph” is the second of three stages a tick goes through. Nymphal deer ticks are active from late April through September. Nymphs can be found on average about 1-2 inches from the ground. They are about the size of a poppy seed.
But, you can still enjoy your summer break! With the right tools and knowledge, tick-borne diseases are preventable. What can you do beyond “covering up?”
ONCE A MONTH (or after 6 washings): Use products with the active ingredient permethrin
Protect anything that might be near the ground. Shoes, socks, pants, backpacks, and gloves are good examples.
Protected items will repel and kill ticks.
Permethrin is approved safe for pregnant women, nursing mothers, infants, toddlers, and children. But, keep the “wet stuff” away from cats until it dries.

  1. Spray on the outside of fabrics or shoes
  2. Let it to dry. Keep cats away during this time
  3. Enjoy anti-tick protection for 6 washings or 1 month
BEFORE outings (or as needed): Use EPA-registered repellents!
Apply to skin and any clothing not protected with permethrin.
Repellents interfere with ticks’ Haller’s organs and their ability to detect us.
Look for products with following active ingredients and concentrations:
DEET, picaridin, or IR3535: 20% or more
Oil of lemon eucalyptus: 30% or more
DURING outings: Enjoy yourself!
               If you’ve done the above, then you are well-protected. Go out and have fun!
AFTER outings: Tick checks
Check your body for ticks after each outing… just in case.
The above methods offer very high levels of protection, but are not 100%.
Notice a new mole? A new scab? Take a closer look!
Additional resources:
Tick Tips:
Tick Removal:
Tick Identification:
Tick Testing:
Looking for more information? Contact

Blake Dinius
Entomologist-Extension Educator
Plymouth County Extension

Copyright © 2019 South Shore Community Partners in Prevention, All rights reserved.

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