April 2016
Important Health Observances for the Month of April 
The first National Autism Awareness Month was declared by the Autism Society in April 1970. The aim of this month is to educate the public about autism. Autism is a complex mental condition and developmental disability, characterized by difficulties in the way a person communicates and interacts with other people. Autism can be present from birth or form during early childhood (typically within the first three years). Autism is a lifelong developmental disability with no single known cause.


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This April, Join the National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence (NCADD) to Spread Awareness
Each April since 1987, the National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence, Inc. (NCADD) has sponsored Alcohol Awareness Month to increase public awareness and understanding, reduce stigma and encourage local communities to focus on alcoholism and alcohol-related issues.

With this year's theme, "Talk Early, Talk Often: Parents Can Make a Difference in Teen Alcohol Use," the month of April will be filled with local, state, and national events aimed at educating people about the treatment and prevention of alcoholism, particularly among our youth, and the important role that parents can play in giving kids a better understanding of the impact that alcohol can have on their lives. Local NCADD Affiliates as well as schools, colleges, churches, and countless other community organizations will sponsor a host of activities that create awareness and encourage individuals and families to get help for alcohol-related problems.
Remote Area MedicalĀ® (RAM) to Hold Free Medical Clinic at Southeastern Oklahoma State University  
May 14-15, 2016

More than 1,000 people are expected to receive dental cleanings, dental fillings, dental extractions, eye exams, eyeglass prescriptions, eyeglass production, women's health exams and medical exams. All services are delivered on a first-come, first-served basis. The clinic will be open from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Saturday,  May 14, and from 6 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Sunday,  May 15 at Southeastern Oklahoma State University in Durant, Oklahoma. Entry numbers will be distributed at 3 a.m., three hours before the clinic begins. Patients can begin lining up for entry numbers at midnight, although many patients will form a line before midnight to ensure they receive a number.
The initiative is a part of the Remote Area MedicalĀ® (RAM) Oklahoma program, in conjunction with the Rural Health Network (RHN) of Oklahoma. The two organizations have a common goal of increasing access to quality health care for many underserved Oklahomans.  Stacie  Pace, RHN's Executive Director, worked collaboratively with the RAM organization to bring this program back to Oklahoma with help from local providers.
Two Southeastern facilities - Bloomer Sullivan Arena and Bloomer Sullivan Gymnasium - located on N. First Avenue will serve as sites for the medical clinic. In 2014, a similar clinic was held in Oklahoma City that provided services to 1,000 individuals.
Medical professionals, volunteers, public donors, partners, and sponsors are combining forces for the Durant clinic. All providers are certified medical professionals, including, but not limited to:  dentists, dental hygienists, optometrists, opticians, nurse practitioners, physicians and physician assistants. Medical professionals are encouraged to join the event at or sign up at the volunteer entrance door before 6 a.m. on  May 14-15, 2016.
RAM, founded in 1985 by British cowboy Stan Brock, initially served third-world countries. By 1995, RAM held 60 percent of its operations in the United States.  Today, 90 percent of RAM's operations are held in the United States.
RHN of Oklahoma was formally established in 2008 through a Rural Health Network Development Grant awarded to Little Dixie Community Action Agency, Inc. RHN's purpose is to improve the health of rural Oklahoma by building a sustainable network of integrated services. This includes electronic health records and health information exchange consulting, creating county health improvement organizations, and educating health care practitioners and the community. RHN of Oklahoma is 100% supported through a Rural Health Network Development Program Grant from the Health Resources and Services Administration of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, with a total three-year grant amount of $900,000.
For more information or to volunteer, email Stacie Pace at, call (405) 259-4824, or visit

Little Dixie Serves as Intermediary for 502 Direct Loan Program

Through a partnership with USDA Rural Development, Little Dixie Community Action Agency is serving as Intermediary for the 502 Direct Loans in a six state area. We were initially assigned four states -- Oklahoma, Kansas, Arkansas and Nebraska, and in February 2016 we added two states -- Louisiana and Missouri.
LDCAA works to obtain USDA Rural Development approval and perform quality reviews on 502 Direct Loan applications prior to submission to Rural Development. We currently oversee 10 certified packagers of these loans in these six states. There are currently five 502 Direct Loans submitted to USDA Rural Development for processing.
As the Intermediary, we strive to increase the number of certified 502 loan packagers across the six-state area for the purpose of identifying eligible loan applicants. By doing this, we assist in providing affordable housing for the low/very low income families. More details here.
Other Health Observances for the Month of April
  • Alcohol Awareness Month
  • Irritable Bowel Syndrome Awareness Month
  • National Child Abuse Prevention Month
  • Sexual Assault Awareness and Prevention Month

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