New Braunfels Herald Zeitung (Newspaper) - April 28, 2004, New Braunfels, Texas
Mecke and Guenther won district titles to lead SVHS to regionals. Page SA
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With a blues influence, the Seth James Band rocks local crowds regularly. Page IB
Serving New Braunfels and Comal County since 1852.
By Dylan Jimtnez
A new approach to volun-teerism at McKenna I lealth System could yield more help.
In March, officials made the McKenna Auxiliary a part of hospital administration.
“For about a year we’ve been planning to update our volunteer program at McKenna,” said Jennifer Malatek, McKenna administrator.
Before, volunteers had to join
Free immunizations come with incentives
By Leigh Jones
Children hate getting shots, and parents hate paying for them.
During the next two weeks this necessary torture will be a little easier to endure.
The Comal County Public Health Department is administering free vaccinations as part of a nationwide push for immunization.
Children who receive their free shots also will get a buy-one-get-one free coupon from Schlitter-bahn, a free child admission coupon from Natural Bridge Caverns, a free child’s buffet from Mr. Gatti’s and a free child’s ice cream cone from Dairy Queen.
“We have a soft spot for children at Schlitterbahn," said park spokeswoman Sheri Brammel. "Participating in this event seems like a natural fit for us.”
Schlitterbahn has participated in the free immunization program for IO years.
Brammel noted that with more than $100,000 in tickets donated over the years, the incentive seems to be working.
Comal County nurse Karon Preiss and her staff were busy Monday morning as they began the first week of free shots with a focus on infants. School children are encouraged to come after school this week or anytime next week after TAKS testing is finished.
"Last year, the focus was on getting kids in the immunization reg-istry, so we didn’t do as many shots,” Preiss said. “But two years ago we gave about 675 shots.”
Preiss said she hoped they would give roughly the same amount this year.
All standard booster shots for children under age 18 will be provided.
Young children need vaccines more often than older children, but Preiss said she encouraged any student involved in sports to get a Hepatitis B vaccine. The full vaccination requires three shots, and only the first can be administered during the free shot promotion.
“College-bound seniors should also consider getting a meningo-’ coccal vaccine,” Preiss said.
College freshmen living in dorms are often at higher risk of contracting meningitis, which can be fatal in some cases.
The meningococcal vaccine is not free, but Preiss said it is worth getting.
“We don’t want to see sick kids, especially with a vaccine preventable disease,” she said.
(Above) Beth Bizer, a nurse at the Comal County Health Department, preps the syringe for an immunization Monday. (Below) Michael Alvarez, 13, receives his immunization from Maria Smith Monday at the Comal County Health Department. The department offers some free child immunizations through May 7.
■ When: 8 a m. to 5 p.m. through May 7
■ Where: Comal County Health Department -178 E. Mill St
■ For appointments: Call 608-2015
■ Free shots:
MMR. HIB. IPV,
Hepatitis A and 8. Varicella (Chicken Pox), I TB Skin Tests
McKenna changes volunteer policies
March of Dimes Walk America event raises funds to research why some children, like J.T. Gore, are horn premature.
the McKenna Auxiliary and pay dues for membership.
“We were losing a lot of people who didn’t want to be in a formal organization,” Malatek said.
Now, volunteers will go through an application, interview and orientation process that will give more people an opportunity to be involved, Malatek said.
“We recruited 19 new people in the last week through the changes in our program,” she said.
McKenna Ambassadors of all ages can help in almost every department, including the information desk, gift shop, nursing units and other patient care areas.
Malatek said the majority of volunteers were “really excited” about the changes, but that one of the 120 volunteers decided to retire.
Laity Jennings, a longtime volunteer, said in a letter to the editor that she didn’t like the manner in which McKenna officials
See VOLUNTMRS. Page 3A
Guadalupe County votes 3-2 to stick with Schertz contract
By Scott Mahon
SEGUIN — Guadalupe County Judge Donald Schraub chastised commissioners Tuesday for “giving in to scare tactics” after they awarded the county’s EMS service to Schertz.
“Five months ago, we asked a committee to draw up the specifications for this contract,” Schraub said just before the vote. “Four entities responded with bids, and the court needs to live up to its word. So I have problems with our credibility over this.”
Schraub and Pct. 3 Commissioner Jim Wolverton voted not to award the contract to Schertz EMS, which was the highest bidder.
Commissioners Roger Baenziger (Pct. I), Judy Cope (Pct. 4) and Cesareo Guadar-rama III (Pct. 2) voted for Schertz EMS.
Since 2001, EMS services in the county’s unincorporated areas have been provided by a coalition of providers — Seguin, Schertz, New Braunfels and
See aUAOALURI, Page 3A
PIA officer pleads guilty to stealing
By Ron Maloney
The former Memorial Primary School PI A treasurer who stole $9,000 children raised pleaded guilty in district court Tuesday
Under terms of a plea bargain negotiated by defense attorney Frank Suhr and Assistant District Attorney Ed Jendrzey, Angela C. Bielke, 30, pleaded guilty to theft between $1,500 and $20,000, which is a state jail felony punishable by a $10,000 fine.
lf 22nd Judicial District Judge Charles Ramsay will approve the agreement at a sentencing hearing to be set in about 45 days then Bielke will serve three years of deferred adjudication probation, pay a $1,500 fine and court costs, pay restitution and perform 120 hours of community service.
Bielke, who has already paid back $4,100 of the money she took from PI A funds, will do no jail time. Jendrzey said that was due to Bielke’s cooperation with investigators and her background.
“We recommended this given her circumstances and the fact that she has no prior criminal history,” Jendrzey said.
New Braunfels police said the thefts, totaling close to $9,000, occurred in 2003 and were reported after school began tliis past fall.
They were discovered in an audit when this year's PIA officers took over, said
See FTA, Page 3A
cive kids a
Vol. 153, No. 145 14 pages, 2 sections
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