Home » News » Newsletters » Classified Benefits Newsletter » Classified Benefits & Wellness Newsletter January 2020 Issue #4

Classified Benefits & Wellness Newsletter January 2020 Issue #4

Published by:

Arthur Hart, Classified Benefits Coordinator

Phone: 541-790-7679 e-mail: hart_a@4j.lane.edu


4J Wellness Presentation

The 4J Joint Benefits Committee cordially invites you to a free health and wellness class presented by Cascade Health., Controlling Technology Use:  How to have a healthy relationship with your smart phone.

Do you have nomophobia?  Smart phones have brought many good things to our world; however, there is more and more proof that they are affecting our health and our relationships in negative ways.  In this training, we will discuss creating positive relationships and personal boundaries in a world run by technology.

  • Learn how your brain is affected by technology.
  • Examine your technology habits and motivations.
  • Create healthier behavior around and boundaries with your devices.

Controlling Technology Use will be presented on January 14th, from 5-6 PM in the Ed Center auditorium.  If you are interested in attending, please RSVP to Arthur Hart at hart_a@4j.lane.edu or 541-790-7679.



No matter what you plan to do in retirement, preparing for retirement can be complicated. There are many things to consider for retirement, like PERS, Social Security, personal savings, health insurance, Medicare, and taxes.  It is never too early to start working toward your retirement goals.

Consulting a professional financial advisor specializing in retirement can make decisions easier for you, and help you avoid costly mistakes. The EAP has free (for 30 consecutive days) financial and retirement phone consultation available at 1-866-750-1327.  Use access code “OEBB” to utilize EAP services.

If you are looking to retire this year, please contact me regarding the 4J Classified Staff retirement process and benefits.  Arthur: hart_a@4j.lane.edu or 541-790-7679

4J does not give PERS advice. To get advice regarding your PERS retirement, you can visit the PERS website at www.oregon.gov/PERS/ or call them at 1-888-320-7377


Total Brain App

Understand your brain better and learn how to improve your mental health and fitness with the Total Brain App.  Total Brain is an innovative mental health and fitness platform powered by the world’s largest standardized neuroscientific database.  Total Brain is available free to OEBB plan insured members over 18.  Register at app.totalbrain.com/enter/oebb



A stroke is a disease that affects the arteries leading to and within the brain. Strokes are the fifth leading cause of death and a leading cause of disability in the United States.

Though a stroke can be life-threatening and life-changing, a F.A.S.T. response to a stroke may minimize the long-term effects of a stroke and even prevent death.  Fortunately, recent advances in stroke treatments have greatly improved survival rates over the last decade.

For the best chances of a full recovery, remember to spot a stroke F.A.S.T.

  • Face Drooping– Does one side of the face droop or is it numb? Ask the person to smile.
  • Arm Weakness– Is one arm weak or numb? Ask the person to raise both arms. Does one arm drift downward?
  • Speech Difficulty– Is speech slurred, are they unable to speak, or are they hard to understand? Ask the person to repeat a simple sentence, like “the sky is blue.” Is the sentence repeated correctly?
  • Time to call 9-1-1– If the person shows any of these symptoms, even if the symptoms go away, call 9-1-1 and get them to the hospital immediately!

Time is of the essence.  It’s not long before brain cells start to die. Once a stroke begins, you can lose about two million brain cells every minute.


Walk like a Penguin

Winter weather can be treacherous for slips, trips, and falls, and following the lead of our dapperly dressed, flightless friends can help reduce our chances of a serious injury while walking on ice.

To walk like a penguin, do the following:

  • Bend slightly and walk flat-footed, keeping your center of gravity over your feet as much as possible.
  • Point your feet out slightly and take short steps.
  • Watch where you are stepping. Be extra careful getting in and out of a car.
  • Keep your arms at your sides, with hands free and out of your pockets.
  • Go slow. Penguins do not hurry.
  • Tuxedos are optional.

Check out these CDC winter weather tips, perfect for well-prepared penguins.


The answer to every problem involved penguins.

Rick Riordan, The Throne of Fire


Seasonal Affective Disorder

Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) is a type of depression that comes and goes with the seasons, typically starting in the late fall and early winter and going away during the spring and summer. Depressive episodes in the summer can occur, but are less common.

Approximately half-a-million people in the United States suffer from winter SAD, while 10% to 20% may suffer from a milder form of winter blues. Three-quarters of the sufferers are women, and the depression usually starts in early adulthood. However, SAD also can occur in children and adolescents.

Signs and symptoms of SAD in the winter may include:

  • Feeling depressed most of the day, nearly every day.
  • Losing interest in activities you once enjoyed and withdrawal from social activities.
  • Having low energy.
  • Having problems with sleeping or oversleeping.
  • Weight gain and appetite changes, especially a craving for foods high in carbohydrates.
  • Feeling sluggish, tired, or agitated.
  • Having difficulty concentrating.
  • Feeling hopeless, worthless, or guilty.
  • Having frequent thoughts of death or suicide.

It is normal to have some days when you feel down. However, if you feel down for days at a time and you can’t get motivated to do activities you normally enjoy, it may be time to see your doctor. This is especially important if your sleep patterns and appetite have changed, you turn to alcohol for comfort or relaxation, you feel hopeless, or think about suicide.


Save the Date

The 4J Wellness Fair will be on February 25th, 4-6 PM at the Ed Center.


Kaiser Members News

Dr. Arwen Mohr has recently moved away from our area and Dr. Sheila Jhansale has taken over her position at the Eugene Kaiser Clinic.  Dr. Jhansale recently met with our 4J benefits team, and she expressed enthusiasm for her new position.  She started her medical career in Oregon with Portland Kaiser, and after many years in Wisconsin is pleased to make Oregon her home again.

For those enrolled in a Kaiser Permanente medical plan, you have some new mental health resources.

  • Go to org/selfcare for self-care tools, tips, and activities.
  • Download myStrength, a personalized program that helps with depression, anxiety, sleep, stress, and substance abuse.
  • Click on “digital tools”, log into your www.kp.org account, create your personal account, download the app, and get started!


4J Wellness Clinic News

You may have already met our newest clinic nurse practitioner Shannon Micheel, who has been working part time at the clinic for a few months.  As of January, Shannon will be a full time physician at the clinic, and Jennifer Young will continue to work at the clinic only when coverage is needed.

Jennifer Young will continue to be a PCP360, and if you have selected her as your PCP360, you will not need to make a change; but, you may change your PCP360 to Shannon Micheel or Michelle Davila if you like.

To reduce waiting times, the clinic is adding 4 more afternoon counseling slots.  Benefits-eligible employees and their dependents who have not selected Kaiser Insurance are eligible for 10 free counseling sessions at the 4J Wellness Clinic.  To receive a referral for counseling at the 4J Clinic, call 541-686-1427 and schedule a visit with a primary care provider.


Healthy Hand Hygiene

The winter cold and flu season is upon us!  Protect yourself and others with these handy handwashing tips.

Wash your hands often:

  • Before, during, and after preparing food.
  • Before eating food.
  • Before and after caring for someone at home who is sick with vomiting or diarrhea.
  • Before and after treating a cut or wound.
  • After using the toilet, changing diapers, or cleaning up a child who has used the toilet.
  • After blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing.
  • After touching an animal, animal feed, or animal waste.
  • After touching garbage.

Follow these five steps:

  • Wet your hands with clean, running water (warm or cold), turn off the tap, and apply soap.
  • Lather your hands by rubbing them together with the soap. Lather the backs of your hands, between your fingers, and under your nails.
  • Scrub your hands for at least 20 seconds.
  • Rinse your hands well under clean, running water.
  • Dry your hands using a clean towel or air dry them.

Clean hands save lives.  Check out the hand washing science at the CDC.


Truth, like gold, is to be obtained not by its growth, but by washing away from it all that is not gold.

-Leo Tolstoy

This newsletter is reviewed and edited each month by the District 4J and OSEA representatives of the Classified Joint Benefits Committee (JBC).The information in this newsletter is summarized, and is not intended as advice or counsel.

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