STATEN ISLAND, N.Y. — Staten Islanders are being asked to get a jump start on the path to healthy living during the Staten Island Economic Development Corporation’s (SIEDC) Health & Wellness Expo next week at the Hilton Garden Inn, Bloomfield.
Staten Island Advance/Irving Silverstein
Staten Island University Hospital President and CEO Anthony Ferreri, left, and Councilman James Oddo discuss the Health & Wellness Expo during a press conference at SIUH.
New information regarding the third annual event, which is free to the public and will be held Tuesday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., was announced today during a press conference at the Regina M. McGinn, M.D. Education Center at Staten Island University Hospital (SIUH), Ocean Breeze.
"The conference is about getting more Staten Islanders to take control of their own lives," said Councilman James Oddo, a presenting sponsor of the expo who proclaimed Sept. 20 as "Staten Island Health Awareness Day."
"We do a lot of finger pointing on Staten Island," he continued, noting that the truth is residents smoke too much, eat the wrong foods and don’t exercise enough. "Let’s do our best to get as many Staten Islanders to come out and benefit from the day."
Representatives from SIUH, another presenting sponsor, and other sponsors were on hand to talk about the expo and the 13 workshops and seminars that will be held throughout the day.
They include: The Visiting Nurse Association of Staten Island, “New Initiatives for Providing Care Giving in the Home”; Primary Care Ambulance, “You Can Save A Life”; the Staten Island Slim Down team, “The Five Secret Steps to Burning Belly Fat,” and Leigh Briscoe-Dwyer of North Shore-LIJ Health System, “Pharming, Phishing & Trail Mixing: Keeping Your Children Safe from Prescription Drug Abuse.”
Dr. Cynara Coomer, chief of breast surgery and director of the Comprehensive Breast Center at SIUH, briefly explained her morning keynote address.
“What we’re going to impart on the audience is the importance of taking care of ourselves based on diet and lifestyle and also taking care of our environment,” Dr. Coomer said, pointing to the high rates of cancer, diabetes and heart disease among Islanders.
Alfredo (Frado) Dinten of Todt Hill also spoke about his participation in the expo, which includes a presentation to elementary school children and a keynote speech that will address his struggles with weight loss — which even continue now after his stint on “The Biggest Loser.”
Also announced at the conference was the launch of a new website, sihealthwish.com, to coincide with the expo. The site features information on Island health issues and is meant to be a platform for residents to exchange dialogue about the issues that concern them.
In addition, the expo will include around 100 vendors, various health screenings, blood donations and fitness demonstrations. A new addition is the Health Heroes awards, given to 13 people who make the Island a healthier place to live. Honorees will be announced during the expo.