AAUW meeting 20211110_160324.jpg

Jane Hanley, AAUW program vice-president, invited Amanda Danlovich, left, and Joshua Pierce to speak about health issues in Tehachapi.

Members of American Association of University Women heard from Joshua Pierce when he spoke at their November meeting. He is the director of community outreach and integration for Adventist Health in Tehachapi and Bakersfield.

Pierce spoke about COVID and the importance of vaccination. He was especially proud of the hospital’s response to the epidemic and praised Amanda Danlovich, community outreach associate, for her role in coordinating the administration of COVID vaccines and testing.

He said Tehachapi was the first hospital in the county to offer the vaccine and the first to provide a mobile program for vaccination. The hospital is no longer offering the vaccine because it is now widely available in other places.

Danlovich was instrumental in setting up a program for free COVID-19 testing. It is held every Tuesday and Saturday at Monroe High School, 126 S. Snyder Ave., from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. It is safer than going to the hospital and less expensive because there is no charge.

Piece reported that during the first week of November there were more COVID cases in the county than during the summer months. He said there will likely be another surge of cases in mid-January. Masking, hand washing and social distancing were stressed as extremely important to control the spread of the disease.

Health integration is a program Pierce is responsible for in Tehachapi. It deals with those who have physical and mental issues, including suicidal thoughts and addictions. There are now 198 people enrolled in the program who are provided free access to services, which teach healthy eating and mental health tools.

AAUW promotes education and equity for women and girls. Both women and men with a two-year or higher degree are eligible to join. Meetings are held the second Wednesday of each month at 4 p.m. at Tehachapi Community Church Friendship Hall. Information about Tehachapi Mountain Branch AAUW may be found at tehachapimountain-ca.aauw.net. Call 714-313-0456 for further information.

Phyllis Belcher is a longtime Tehachapi resident, and is involved in various volunteer organizations.