Bethlehem Press

Monday, February 17, 2020

Opioid treatment bills in state house hearing

Monday, March 18, 2019 by JARRAD HEDES in Local News

Two pieces of legislation aimed at helping the men and women in opioid addiction treatment and recovery were in the spotlight March 12 during a hearing in front of the state House Human Services Committee.

The bills, sponsored by state Rep. Doyle Heffley of Carbon County, would create a bed registry and a warm hand-off for addiction treatment.

“The opioid crisis affects every county and every part of the state, whether you’re rural or urban,” Heffley said. “This is something we need to continue to address ,and the hearing today is another step in that direction.”

Painful picture of Abuse - More than 300 priests, 1,000 victims detailed in report

Tuesday, August 21, 2018 by JARRAD HEDES in Local News

The Pennsylvania Supreme Court released what is believed to be the largest grand jury report of its kind Tuesday, Aug. 14, leveling accusations of sexual abuse against more than 300 Catholic Church priests and a “systematic cover-up” by church leaders.

Every diocese in the state except Philadelphia and Altoona-Johnstown, which were the subject of previous grand juries, were the focus of the 18-month probe.

Working 5 feet from danger

Tuesday, April 17, 2018 by JARRAD HEDES in Local News

PennDOT workers just want motorists to slow down

Pennsylvania Department of Transportation crews worked to cold patch a portion of Route 248 between Lehighton and Palmerton on Wednesday morning.

Less than 5 feet away, motorists zoomed past the work site. Many were estimated to be traveling 15-20 mph over the speed limit.

It’s an every day occurrence, according to PennDOT’s Corey Reph, who manages road crews in the area.

“We talk all the time about safety,” Reph said.

Blue mountain merges With St. Luke’s

Tuesday, September 19, 2017 by JARRAD HEDES in Local News

Palmerton, Lehighton campuses to remain open

Wednesday marks the dawn of a new era of health care in the area as Blue Mountain Health System officials announced it would be merging with St. Luke’s Health Network.

The two sides announced the deal during a press conference on the Gnaden Huetten campus in Lehighton.

One day earlier, Blue Mountain President and Chief Executive Officer Andrew Harris penned a letter informing the system’s 1,000 employees of what he called a “win-win” affiliation.

A home run for health care

Tuesday, September 19, 2017 by JARRAD HEDES in Local News

Blue Mountain president says St. Luke’s merger secures future for local treatment

Steven Serfass is an avid baseball fan.

It’s no surprise then that the president of the Blue Mountain Health System’s board of directors called a merger with St. Luke’s University Health Network a “home run for the future of health care in Carbon County.”

“It’s a home run for the communities we serve and it’s a home run for our dedicated workforce,” Serfass added.

Warrant stop ends with two dead

Tuesday, June 27, 2017 by JARRAD HEDES in Local News

Former Palmerton woman, Walnutport man, found after standoff, murder-suicide

Two people are dead, including a Walnutport man and a woman formerly of Palmerton, after a murder-suicide Saturday.

Eric Messick, 33, of Walnutport, and Emily Fatzinger, 25, of Pike County, were pronounced dead just after 10 p.m. inside a residence in the 4100 block of Lanark Road in Upper Saucon Township.

According to investigators, the duo broke into the residence and barricaded themselves inside following a police chase.

Telethon hits $220K mark

Tuesday, April 18, 2017 by JARRAD HEDES in Local News

Cancer patients recognized with courage awards

One year after breaking its record for total pledges, the Carbon Tamaqua American Cancer Society did it again in 2017.

The organization’s annual telethon ended Sunday with $220,589 raised for cancer research.

The mark to beat was $215,949 raised in 2016.

“We’re very grateful for all the support,” said Joe Krushinsky, telethon chairman.

People filled Penn’s Peak on both days to watch the telethon in person.

“I think we had more people come here to support us live and it really adds energy to the place,” Krushinsky said.

It’s official: Valley flu season opens

Monday, October 17, 2016 by JARRAD HEDES in Local News

It may be early, but signs of flu season are already evident in the area.

St. Luke’s University Health Network has had two confirmed cases of influenza, while the Lehigh Valley Health Network reported three to date.

Medical professionals, however, aren’t alarmed.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention officially designates flu season as running from October through May.

“What we’re seeing right now are scattered cases and not an epidemic,” said Dr. Jeffrey Jahre, St. Luke’s section chief of infectious diseases.