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Hospital Hosts Third Annual 5K Walk/Run to Raise Awareness of Colorectal Cancer in County

Doctors Community Hospital

Lanham, Md. (March 6, 2019)—On Sunday, March 17, Doctors Community Hospital’s Cancer Prevention, Education, Screening and Treatment (CPEST) program will hold its third annual 5K Walk/Run event at Schrom Hills Park located at in Greenbelt, MD, beginning at 7:30 a.m. to raise awareness about this type of cancer.

Colorectal cancer is often preventable and curable with early detection. The American Cancer Society estimates that 2,620 diagnosed cases of colorectal cancer with about 880 related deaths in 2019. “These startling numbers are part of the reason why awareness and education is so important,” explained Kwanza Graham-Sykes, program administrator at Doctors Community Hospital’s Cancer Prevention, Education, Screening and Treatment (CPEST) Program.  “Equipped with the right information and access to the right tools, people can improve their health.  At the same time, they can educate others within their sphere of influence—creating a cycle of improved health and wellness.”

Colorectal cancer is a disease that often occurs in the colon or rectum. Beginning at age 50 or where there is a family history of the disease, both men and women should receive colonoscopy screenings.  Also, people should recognize some of the symptoms of colorectal cancer:

• Blood in or on the stool (bowel movement)

• Lump in the abdomen

• Cramps or pain in the abdomen

•  Constipation

• Flat or ribbon-shaped stool

In addition to colonoscopies, people may help prevent this disease by:

• Being physically active

• Maintaining a healthy weight

•  Transitioning to a healthy eating lifestyle

• Drinking alcohol in moderation

• Not smoking


To improve access to life-saving screenings, Doctors Community Hospital provides “no cost to you” colonoscopies—not just in March, but throughout the year. Community members may qualify for free colonoscopy if they are:

• Prince George’s County residents

• Ages 50 to 75

• Younger than age 50 with a family history of colorectal cancer

•  Uninsured or underinsured

For more information about Doctors Community Hospital’s free colorectal cancer screening program, community walk and educational opportunities, call 301-324-4968 or 301-552-7705. To register for the walk, visit The rain date for this event is March 24 at 7:30 a.m.


Doctors Community Health System is a network of medical and surgical services provided throughout Prince George’s County and in Anne Arundel County.  At the heart of this network is its flagship—Doctors Community Hospital in Lanham.  To complement the hospital’s high-quality and comprehensive services, the system has more than a dozen centers of care in Bowie, Camp Springs, Crofton, District Heights, Hyattsville, Lanham, Largo, Laurel, Riverdale and Temple Hills.  The hospital has been rated as a high-performing facility for heart failure by U.S. News & World Report in 2017–2018 and designated as a primary stroke center by the Maryland Institute for Emergency Medical Services Systems.


Fort Washington Resident Renee Johnson Named Ultimate Medical Academy True Blue Alum
2017 UMA online graduate continues her education while working two jobs, raising three children, and volunteering overseas

UMA Public Relations

TAMPA, Fla. (March 5, 2019)—Renee Johnson, 37, a resident of Fort Washington, Maryland, today was named a True Blue Alum of Ultimate Medical Academy. This recognition is awarded each quarter by the nonprofit accredited healthcare school to graduates who are serving their communities, excelling in their careers, and accomplishing other noteworthy achievements.

UMA’s True Blue Alum for Winter 2019 enjoys setting academic goals for herself, and those goals inspire her to set an example for her family while working two jobs and raising three children as a single mom. She is a Registered Medical Assistant at MedStar Washington Hospital Center, a trauma hospital in Washington, D.C., and holds the same position at Allergy Partners of Arlington, Virginia.

Johnson graduated from UMA in March 2017 with her associate’s degree in Healthcare Management (HCM). But that was just the beginning of her healthcare journey. She jumped back into school in August 2017 and graduated with her bachelor’s degree in Healthcare Administration from another institution. The other institution accepted her UMA credits for transfer, which meant that she could complete her bachelor’s degree in 15 months.

“That was motivation,” Johnson said, which helped her to remain committed to finishing her coursework.

But she didn’t stop there. Just three days after getting her bachelor’s, she enrolled in the master’s degree program for Healthcare Administration at the same institution and is scheduled to graduate in August 2021.

Johnson also serves as a member of the UMA Alumni Association, which is a network of more than 50,000 UMA graduates. The association is dedicated to supporting every UMA graduate and offers services at no cost to alumni to keep them connected and help them advance their careers.

She said that through her education, she has realized that the possibilities are endless.

“I want to thank UMA for my jumpstart!” she said.

Johnson shares her passion for education and achievement with her children. She had set a goal to attain her associate’s degree before her eldest daughter graduated high school, and ended up earning her bachelor’s degree ahead of that date as well. Her daughter is scheduled to graduate in May.

She said that her kids are proud of her and they do not know how she finds the time to fit everything in, but they know school is important based off of her drive.

“I just keep my eye on the prize,” she said. “I’m going to do this as long as they are excelling in school. I want to be a positive, motivating force for all of my children.”

When Johnson finds some time away from her studies, she enjoys singing in the church choir, traveling, and helping others. She combined all of these passions during a mission trip to Linstead, Jamaica. She went for the first time last year to help volunteer at a church there.

Speaking of giving back, Johnson offered some advice for UMA graduates looking to continue their education.

“Stay focused and go at a comfortable pace,” she said. “And utilize your resources that are given to you.”


Ultimate Medical Academy is a nonprofit healthcare educational institution with a national presence. Headquartered in Tampa, Florida and founded in 1994, the school has more than 50,000 alumni and offers content-rich, interactive online courses to more than 14,000 students as well as hands-on training to hundreds of students. UMA students have access to academic advising, one-on-one or group tutoring, resume and interview coaching, job search assistance, technical support and more. UMA is institutionally accredited by the Accrediting Bureau of Health Education Schools (ABHES). Learn more by visiting

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Free St. Patrick’s Day Lyft Rides Offered throughout Prince George’s To Prevent Drunk Driving


Upper Marlboro, Md. (March 6, 2019)—Preparing to combat that time of year when, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), over a third (37%) of all U.S. traffic deaths involve drunk drivers*, free St. Patrick’s Day Lyft rides will be offered to deter impaired driving throughout Prince George’s County, Maryland beginning Sunday, March 17th.

Offered by the nonprofit Washington Regional Alcohol Program (WRAP), the 2019 St. Patrick’s Day SoberRide® program will be in operation beginning at 4:00 pm on Sunday, March 17th (St. Patrick’s Day) and continue until 4:00 am on Monday, March 18th, 2019 as a way to keep local roads safe from impaired drivers during this traditionally high-risk holiday.

During this twelve-hour period, area residents age 21 and older celebrating with alcohol may download Lyft to their phones, then enter a SoberRide® code in the app’s “Promo” section to receive their no cost (up to $15) safe transportation home. WRAP’s St. Patrick’s Day SoberRide® promo code will be posted at 3:00 pm on Sunday, March 17th on

Last year, a record 982 persons in the Washington-metropolitan area used WRAP’s St. Patrick’s Day SoberRide® program rather than possibly driving home impaired. The charity also offers its SoberRide® program on Cinco de Mayo, Independence Day, Halloween and the winter holidays.

“Nearly 40-percent (37%) of all U.S. traffic fatalities during St. Patrick’s Day 2017 involved drunk drivers according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration,” said Kurt Gregory Erickson, WRAP’s President. “Between midnight and 6:00 am the day after St. Patrick’s Day that year, three-fourths (75%) of all U.S. traffic deaths involved alcohol-impaired drivers.”

SoberRide® is offered throughout Lyft’s Washington, D.C. coverage area which includes all or parts of: the District of Columbia; the Maryland counties of Montgomery and Prince George’s; and the Northern Virginia counties of Arlington, Fairfax, Loudoun and Prince William.

“Lyft is proud of the role ridesharing has played in reducing impaired driving across the nation. Here in the DC area, partnering with the Washington Regional Alcohol Program allows us to take our commitment to providing safe, convenient, and affordable transportation a step further, particularly during times of the year when people are out celebrating and in need of a ride home,” said Steve Taylor, GM, Lyft Washington, D.C.

Since 1991, WRAP’s SoberRide® program has provided 75,498 free safe rides home to would-be drunk drivers in the Greater Washington area.

More information about WRAP’s SoberRide® initiative can be found at

*Source: National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, see: 


Governor Hogan Releases Supplemental Budget
Includes $2.8 Million for University of Maryland, $1.5 Million for Maryland’s Dairy Farmers, $250,000 for Ellicott City Public Alert System; $27 Million In Additional Savings

Office of the Governor

ANNAPOLIS, Md. (March 4, 2019)—Governor Larry Hogan today submitted a supplemental budget for Fiscal Year 2020 that saves $27 million in general funds, provides increased funding for several important state and local initiatives, and makes necessary technical corrections.

The largest savings are realized in Medicaid, as the state is now forecasting nearly $35 million more in savings across Fiscal Years 2019 and 2020 than when the budget was submitted in January.

The FY 2020 supplemental budget also includes $1.5 million pledged by Governor Hogan to provide funding to enable Maryland’s dairy farmers to participate in the Federal Dairy Margin Coverage Program, allowing them to leverage up to $17 million in federal funds.

The University of Maryland will see a nearly $2.8 million increase that will go toward attracting and retaining top talent at the University of Maryland Marlene and Stewart Greenebaum Comprehensive Cancer Center, operating costs at the R. Adams Cowley Shock Trauma Center at the University of Maryland Medical Center, to establish National Registry testing centers at Maryland Fire and Rescue Institute's training regions to increase student access to emergency medical services certification, and to implement programs and initiatives to improve educational outcomes, promote civic engagement, and raise awareness around mental health and wellness among vulnerable populations at the Judge Alexander Williams, Jr. Center for Education, Justice and Ethics.

Also included is $250,000 in the current fiscal year for a public alert system in Ellicott City, $243,000 to expand cold-weather shelter services for individuals experiencing homelessness in Charles County, and $110,500 to support inspection, compliance, and enforcement activities related to the federal Food Safety Modernization Act Produce Safety Rule.


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