A young fundraiser for Akron Children’s Hospital is celebrating her own victory this Super Bowl Sunday.
Ava Turner, 6, of Munroe Falls is scheduled to take her final dose of chemotherapy after a three-year battle with an aggressive form of leukemia.
Ava is a poster child for this year’s Have a Heart, Do Your Part Radiothon, the largest annual fundraiser for Akron Children’s Hospital.
The radiothon takes place Feb. 13-15 on WKDD (98.1-FM).
Ava and her family are encouraging residents and businesses to become “Change Bandits,” the network of grass-roots supporters who collect spare change to support the hospital before and during the radiothon.
“We’re just happy to be a part of it to help share the word how awesome the hospital is,” said Ava’s mother, Robin Turner. “She’s already been collecting all of our spare change around the house.”
The Turners started volunteering as Change Bandits the year before Ava was diagnosed with leukemia.
In February 2012, just months after Ava’s diagnosis, she got to be on the radio when the family brought the money they collected to the hospital during the radiothon.
Radiothon host Keith Kennedy from WKDD agreed to play her favorite song at the time, Baby by Justin Bieber, and let her sing along if people donated money.
Within an hour, radiothon callers and visitors to the hospital contributed more than $70,000.
“She shook the whole hospital lobby down for money,” her mother recalled. “In her little sequined vest and bald head, she was taking her bucket around. They couldn’t resist.”
This year, Ava and her family and friends, collectively known as “Ava’s Angels,” are trying to raise more than $3,000 in change for the radiothon.
The hospital is seeking others to become Change Bandits.
Individual Change Bandits are asked to raise at least $100, which can be used to purchase 575 diapers or 100 pacifiers for the hospital’s patients.
Change Bandits groups are given the goal of $250, which can be used to buy 8,300 Band-Aids or 2,735 children’s toothbrushes.
In the past 15 years, nearly 6,000 Change Bandits have donated more than $2.2 million to the hospital during the radiothon.
For more information or to register as a Change Bandit, visit www.akronchildrens.org or fax your name, address and phone number to the Akron Children’s Hospital Foundation at 330-543-4335.
Think your family doctor is the best?
The Ohio Academy of Family Physicians is seeking nominations for its 2014 Family Physician of the Year award.
Nominees must be members of the organization who have been in practice for at least 10 years.
The award honors doctors who are an outstanding role model, possess high professional standards, provide “high-quality, family-centered, continuing health care” and are active in the community.
Nominations can be submitted online at www.alareg.m/_2014physicianofyearform.
Letters also can be mailed to: OAFP Awards Selection Workgroup, Ohio Academy of Family Physicians, 4075 N. High St., Columbus, OH 43214-3296 or faxed to 614-267-9191.
To verify whether a doctor belongs to the organization, call director of communications Megan D. Smith at 800-724-7327 or email email@example.com.
Part D savings
The Ohio Department of Insurance’s Ohio Senior Health Insurance Information Program helped Medicare enrollees save $16.4 million during the recent open enrollment period for part D prescription drug and Medicare managed-care plans.
The program provided help to people who called a toll-free hotline (1-800-686-1578) and those who attended in-person assistance sessions throughout the state, according to a recent news release.
A department spokesman said the largest savings came by helping enrollees compare plans from year to year. The department looked at what consumers would have paid if they remained in their current plans versus the estimated total out-of-pocket costs in a new plan.
Some consumers also saved money by enrolling in extra help available with premiums and out-of-pocket costs.
The program will be holding “Welcome to Medicare” events throughout the state, starting in May, to help new and soon-to-be enrollees.
For more information, call 1-800-686-1578 or visit www.insurance.ohio.gov.
Cheryl Powell can be reached at 330-996-3902 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow Powell on Twitter at twitter.com/abjcherylpowell.