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Fears refuel old fights over fluoride in East TN

Fears, fights, and conspiracies over fluoride in community water supplies are practically a national pastime throughout the United States.  Cities across the country started adding fluoride to their water supply more than 68 years ago to fight tooth decay. 

Blount Memorial wins award for clinical work

An East Tennessee hospital ranks among the best in the country for its clinical work. Healthgrades has named Blount Memorial a 'Distinguished Hospital for Clinical Performance.'

"It's a very credible award because a lot of data is looked at. Only five hospitals in Tennessee have been able to achieve this award. It really reflect excellence in medical care, and we're very proud of that," said Dr. Hal Naramore.

Blount Memorial also received more than 30 other Healthgrades honors; some of those went to its employees and medical staff.

Flu vaccines available for uninsured children

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) -- Children covered by TennCare and children without insurance that covers the flu vaccine can get vaccinated at county health department clinics for only a small administrative fee.

The Tennessee Health Department says children will not be turned away if parents cannot afford the fee.   The flu vaccine is especially important for people at high risk for serious illness or death from influenza, which includes young children.

Cancer survivor hands out scarves to chemotherapy patients

Cancer survivor hands out scarves to chemotherapy patients

An East Tennessee cancer survivor is on a mission to help fellow cancer patients feel sassy when they cover up their head with a hat or scarf.

Samantha Garcia has endured two rounds of breast cancer.

She says she hated the feeling of being stared at when she wore a scarf to cover up her head during cancer treatments.

Garcia wants to do away with that stigma, make scarves sassy, and just support other cancer patients.

So, she and her friend started a Facebook page and received more than three hundred scarves and hats from across the county. 

Rural/Metro donates live-saving equipment to Seymour Fire Department

Rural/Metro donates live-saving equipment to Seymour Fire Department

A local fire department received an upgrade in life-saving equipment on Monday.

Rural/Metro of East Tennessee donated two slightly used portable heart monitoring systems to the Seymour Volunteer Fire Department.

Rural/Metro says the 12-lead Lifepaks will make a difference in Seymour's ability to be effective fire responders. The new Lifepaks will upgrade Seymour Volunteer Fire Department's trucks from basic life support to advanced.

Each pack costs more than $20,000, and have only been used by Rural/Metro for four years.

Blount Co. Animal Center performs 1,000th spay/neuter surgery

Blount Co. Animal Center performs 1,000th spay/neuter surgery

The Blount County Animal Center is celebrating a milestone in its efforts to fight animal overpopulation.

The center performed its 1,000th spay or neuter surgery Friday morning, on a three-year-old shepherd mix named Trip.

The animal center performed its first spay/neuter surgery in January, and has performed about 25 a week each Friday since then.

Volunteers say the surgeries are important to the whole community.

Donations from Alcoa-CAK game help Butterfly Fund, KARM

Donations from Alcoa-CAK game help Butterfly Fund, KARM

Alcoa is the winner of this year's Ultimate Pillow Fight between the two schools.

Each year, students from both Alcoa and CAK collect bed pillows for Knox Area Rescue Ministries. The school with the most donations wins bragging rights, and both receive scholarships from Back Yard Burgers.

High school football officials also donated their own paychecks to help fight childhood cancer.

The Blount County Football Officials Association presented the Butterfly Fund with a $2,500 check during halftime at the Alcoa/CAK game.