What’s New at the 2022 Ruby Valley Medical Center Health Fair
Spring is here and it’s time for the Ruby Valley Medical Center’s annual Health Fair! This is an excellent opportunity to get a variety of blood tests at a significantly reduced cost. Annual blood tests provide early detection for serious diseases and conditions. The Ruby Valley Medical Center has modified the testing schedule to facilitate more community participation and there are changes for some of the testing options.
All April Health Fair!
The 2022 Health Fair will be held every weekday in April! Ruby Valley residents won’t have to mark a couple days on their calendars as a reminder to get tested. Just circle the entire month! “By running our Health Fair for the entire month, we are hoping to reach out to more patients and bring in as many community members as we can,” said laboratory manager, Laura Belisle. “It’s also easier for our lab to run this program through April and a benefit for everyone!” The lab will draw blood samples from 7am until noon. As in the past, no appointment is needed and there is no insurance billing. Check-in at the Ruby Valley Medical Center’s registration desk. Payment is due at the time of service and credit cards are accepted. Patients can expect to receive their test results by mail within two weeks.
Health Fair Test Options
The Ruby Valley Medical Center’s Health Fair will be offering a Basic Metabolic Panel, a Comprehensive Metabolic Panel, a Lipid Panel, TSH, Prostate Specific Antigen (PSA), Complete Blood Count and Hemoglobin A1C. It helps to know what the different blood tests analyze when deciding which tests are appropriate. Checking with your healthcare provider about these tests is also recommended. For accurate test results, fasting for 8-12 hours is recommended prior to Basic Metabolic Panel, the Comprehensive Metabolic Panel and the Lipid Panel.
Basic Metabolic Panel
This is a combination of tests that evaluates blood sugar, kidney function and electrolytes. The glucose blood sugar test is used to detect hyperglycemia (high), hypoglycemia (low) and diabetes. Kidney function is evaluated by the BUN, Creatinine and eGRF tests and determines how well your kidneys are filtering toxins or waste from your blood. Sodium, potassium, chloride, carbon dioxide, and calcium are electrolytes that are important for muscle, heart, nerve and other organ functions.
Comprehensive Metabolic Panel
This combination of tests includes all the tests in the Basic Metabolic Panel plus tests for liver function such as albumin, ALT, AST and Alkaline Phosphatase.
The tests in this combination measure various blood fats such as HDL-cholesterol (good), LDL-cholesterol (bad), total cholesterol and triglycerides which is blood fat made from fatty acids. These tests help determine the risk of building up fatty deposits in the arteries which can lead to blockages and coronary artery disease.
The TSH test measures the amount of thyroid stimulating hormone in the blood which is an indicator of thyroid disease. Over 5% of Americans have thyroid disease and 60% of those with thyroid disease are undiagnosed. While most thyroid disease can be treated with medication, untreated thyroid disease can lead to conditions such as cardiovascular disease, osteoporosis and infertility.
Prostate Specific Antigen (PSA)
This test is used to help detect and monitor prostate cancer and other diseases of the prostate in men. Elevated levels of the PSA can indicate prostate cancer. The American Cancer Society recommends that men of average risk get baseline tests starting at age 50. African American men and men who have had a close relative diagnosed with prostate cancer should start baseline testing at age 45.
Complete Blood Count
The Complete Blood Count or CBC tests for the white blood cell, red blood cell and platelet counts, hemoglobin, and hematocrit. White blood cells act as defense agents against infections and cancer. High white blood cell counts can indicate that the body is fighting an infection or disease and the count is useful in monitoring the progress of the condition. Red blood cells carry oxygen throughout the body and hemoglobin is the oxygen-carrying protein. Platelets are vital for normal blood clotting. Hematocrit is the proportion of the red blood cells versus the fluid or plasma component of blood. The CBC can help identify anemia, bacterial or viral infections, bone marrow disorders, autoimmune conditions, allergic reactions and nutritional deficiencies.
Hemoglobin A1C is the minor component of hemoglobin that is bound to glucose and is used to diagnose and monitor diabetes.
Please invest a little time in your physical well-being this spring. Whether you’re checking your kidneys and electrolytes or your prostate and lipids, you’ll feel better knowing where you stand on your health. Please discuss the testing options with your healthcare provider or call the Ruby Valley Medical Center at (406) 842-5453, if you have questions.