About Michelle Cave

Greetings! I am an Information Officer with the California Department of Consumer Affairs and I am glad that you took a moment to check out our blog.

DCA, BRN & BVNPT Salute Nurses! National Nurses Week – May 6-12, 2017

National Nurses Week is one of the nation’s principal health care calendar events, giving recognition to all those in the nursing profession and sharing nursing education with the public.

Supported by the American Nurses Association (ANA), this week-long celebration of the nursing community occurs during the same week every year, commencing on National Nurses Day, May 6 and culminating on May 12, the birth-date of the founder of modern nursing, Florence Nightingale.

Nurses do more than put bandages on cuts and bruises.

The ANA defines the profession of nursing as “the protection, promotion, and optimization of health and abilities, prevention of illness and injury, facilitation of healing, alleviation of suffering through the diagnosis and treatment of human response, and advocacy in the care of individuals, families, groups, communities, and populations.”

The California Department of Consumer Affairs, through the Board of Registered Nursing (BRN) and the Board of Vocational Nursing and Psychiatric Technicians (BVNPT), licenses professional nurses.

Both boards encourage industry members and partner organizations to use this week long celebration as an opportunity to engage with their surrounding communities to promote the array of career opportunities available to everyone, regardless of sex, ethnic or socio-economic background.

The California Department of Consumer Affairs along with BRN and BVNPT, salute nurses in California, across the nation and beyond.

For more information about nursing careers, visit the Board of Registered Nursing www.rn.ca.gov and the Board of Vocational Nursing and Psychiatric Technicians www.bvnpt.ca.gov.

Optometry Board and State Legislators Make Successful Pitch for Comprehensive Eye Exams for California Children

One in four children and adolescents have a vision problem that can impede their learning.  Many  of these problems go undetected because children have not received the comprehensive eye exams they need to succeed in school and protect their vision for life.

The California State Board of Optometry is working to change that.

Photo Credit: Cesar Altamirano, DCA

Wednesday, at the State Capitol, the Board of Optometry took part in a press conference prior to the Assembly Education Committee’s hearing on AB 1110 (Burke), the measure to boost lifelong health and learning potential by connecting more California children under the age of 19 with comprehensive eye exams and vision wear. The cost would be covered through private or public health insurance plans.

Photo Credit: Cesar Altamirano, DCA

Those in attendance were; Rachel Michelin, California State Board of Optometry, Assembly member Autumn Burke (D-Inglewood), Senator Janet Nguyen (R-Garden Grove) and representatives from the health, education and corporate communities.

Following the press conference that afternoon, the Assembly Education Committee voted 4-1 to pass AB 1110 on to the Assembly Appropriations Committee, where the bill is expected to be taken up at the end of May.

Watch for updates to this story on TheDCAPage.

To find a licensed optometrist in your area or to check the license of your current optometrist, visit the website of the California State Board of Optometry optometry.ca.gov.

 

APRIL IS NATIONAL CAR CARE MONTH – “Be Car Care Aware”

Winter is gone and Spring has sprung!

In some parts of the state, spring often equates to rain and the unique road hazards that come with it, such as slick, wet roads.  

April was chosen for National Car Care Month because it is the perfect time to check or replace tires, brakes and windshield wipers–to get your vehicle ready for spring driving and summer road trips!

Established by the Car Care Council, National Car Care Month was developed to help educate vehicle owners about the importance of regular vehicle care, maintenance and repair through a consumer education campaign “Be Car Care Aware.”

By encouraging consumers to schedule regular check-ups of their vehicles, inherent dangers and issues caused by deferring vehicle maintenance can be avoided.  Most importantly, well maintained vehicles last longer, improve highway safety and are better for the environment.

The Bureau of Automotive Repair (BAR) has a plethora of resources for consumers such as the Top 5 Reasons to Read Your Owner’s Manual, Summer Driving Tips for Getting Your Car in Shape and they can even assist with finding a registered repair shop near you.

Remember: Check the license! Before scheduling a service appointment for your car, visit BAR’s website at www.bar.ca.gov.  Click on License Search or call (800) 952-5210.

DCA WELCOMES A NEW DIRECTOR

Dean Grafilo has been appointed by Governor Brown to serve as director of the California Department of Consumer Affairs (DCA), effective March 20.

This is somewhat of a homecoming for Dean as he served as a commissioner on DCA’s California State Athletic Commission prior to accepting his most recent post with the Office of California State Assembly member Rob Bonta, where he served as chief of staff since 2012.

Mr. Grafilo’s long career in state government will be a welcomed asset as he guides DCA forward.

On behalf of everyone at DCA, welcome Director Grafilo!

DCA’s Leadership Team

 

BPELSG Celebrates National Surveyors Week March 19 – 25, 2017

What do George Washington, Thomas Jefferson and Abraham Lincoln have in common besides having the distinction of being Presidents of the United States?

Photo Credit: National Park Service

All three worked as land surveyors before their political careers began.  This is why Mount Rushmore National Memorial is commonly referred to as “Three surveyors and the other guy.”

Surveying was not a bad skill for a future president to possess because as the early United States continued to take form, the development of boundaries was essential to the growth and expansion of the nation.  Anyone interested in claiming rights to physical property, land specifically, depended on the skills of a surveyor.

Fast-forward to present day.  If you’ve ever used a physical map or relied on GPS for assistance in finding anything, whether traveling by land, air or sea, then you have a surveyor to thank.

The National Society of Professional Surveyors has designated the week of March 19-25, 2017 as National Surveyors Week. 

This week recognizes industry professionals and increases awareness with the public, students and future surveyors about this centuries-old profession.

The California Department of Consumer Affairs, through the Board for Professional Engineers, Land Surveyors, and Geologists, licenses professional land surveyors.

Surveyor specialties vary from hydrographic surveyors, who measure the depth and bottom configuration of bodies of water, to cartographic surveyors, who use photogrammetry (the science of aerial photographs) for measurements and map production.

The Board for Professional Engineers, Land Surveyors, and Geologists, the National Society of Professional Surveyors, and the California land surveying community encourage industry members and partner organizations to use this week-long celebration as an opportunity to engage with their local communities, and promote the array of career opportunities available in the surveying profession.

For more information about surveying and obtaining a license as a professional land surveyor, visit the Board for Professional Engineers, Land Surveyors, and Geologists website at www.bpelsg.ca.gov.

 

Dream Big During National Engineers Week February 19-25, 2017

engineers-week-logo

Have you ever taken a moment to stop and think about the many ways engineering is relevant to your life?  Engineers Dream Big and their dreams become our reality.

The field of engineering has helped to shape our world on a daily basis and it affects how we live, work and play by making our lives comfortable, interesting and even fun.

National Engineers Week is February 19 – 25, 2017, and acknowledges the contributions of engineers nationwide.  Engineers Week is now referred to as EWeek and was founded by the National Society of Professional Engineers (NSPE) in 1951.  EWeek was developed to foster interest in the countless ways that the field of engineering helps shape our world.

national-engineers-week

The theme for 2017 is “Dream Big” and it is designed to raise awareness of the many ways the industry contributes to our daily lives to foster interest in generations of future engineers.  EWeek encourages industry members and partner organizations to engage with their local communities using suggested programs and exercises to promote the array of career opportunities in engineering and technology disciplines.  EWeek demonstrates that there are opportunities available to all, regardless of sex, ethnic or socio-economic background.

The California Department of Consumer Affairs, through the Board for Professional Engineers, Land Surveyors, and Geologists, licenses 20 professional engineering categories ranging from agricultural engineers who help crops grow bigger and stronger, to civil engineers who design the roads and bridges we travel on every day.

Imagination and design are factors that enable engineers to create many of the necessities that we take for granted. The industry is vast and it even influences our entertainment options by designing some of our favorite rides at amusement parks or creating the awesome special effects in television and feature films.  These are but merely a small example of the types of products and services we depend upon that engineers helped develop.

The California Department of Consumer Affairs, along with the Board for Professional Engineers, Land Surveyors, and Geologists is proud to recognize these professionals for their commitment to improving our lives and the engineering industry.

Learning to Box May Help Knock Out Parkinson’s Disease

Photo Credit - Rock Steady Boxing

Photo Credit – Rock Steady Boxing

Some people with Parkinson’s Disease (PD) have discovered an alternate form of therapy to improve their symptoms—boxing!  Not the Ali or Tyson type of boxing—we’re talking about fitness boxing.

Photo Credit - Jim Grant / Nevada Appeal via AP

Photo Credit – Jim Grant / Nevada Appeal via AP

Though not a cure for Parkinson’s, non-combat fitness boxing is being recognized by many in the medical community as an alternate form of rehabilitation for the disease.  According to a case report by the American Physical Therapy Association, patients showed short-term and long-term improvements in balance, gait, activities of daily living, and quality of life after participating in a fitness boxing training program.  As a result, many people with varying stages of PD are looking to
fitness boxing as a means to improve their quality of life while living with the disease.

According to the Parkinson’s Disease Foundation, PD is a progressive disorder of the nervous system that affects approximately one million Americans. The disease is characterized most notably by tremors, stiffness, softening or slurring of speech, slowing of movement, and instability.

The theory behind boxing as a form of therapy for PD began when Scott C. Newman, a former Indianapolis attorney, was diagnosed with early-onset Parkinson’s disease at the age of 40. A few years after his diagnosis, Newman began intense, one-on-one, non-contact boxing workouts at the suggestion of a friend.

“After six weeks of intense boxing training, I could sign my name again. I was getting better,” Newman said during an interview in a December 2016 segment of HBO’s “The Fight Game with Jim Lampley.”

Newman says he experienced dramatic improvement in his physical health, agility, and daily functioning from his workout routine and, ultimately, his quality of life improved.

Photo Credit - Sue Cockrell Enterprise photo

Photo Credit – Sue Cockrell Enterprise photo

After experiencing his own positive results, Newman opened the first non-contact boxing gym in 2006 in his home town of Indianapolis, IN, that offered a workout program dedicated to people with PD.

Classes are separated into four levels depending on the patient’s stage of PD.  Patients share a common denominator inside of a supportive environment, which allows them to work on strength, balance and hand/eye coordination.  A combination of classic boxing moves and exercises choreographed to music is used.

Photo Credit - Luther Life Villages

Photo Credit – Luther Life Villages

To help combat the vocal challenges often faced by PD patients, fighters are encouraged to count out exercises aloud with the instructor. The louder they count the better. Cheering and yelling is also encouraged, not only to improve voice activation, but to boost morale and lessen the symptoms of depression and anxiety, two symptoms commonly associated with PD.

Nationwide, thousands of PD patients have been introduced to fitness boxing as an option to assist them with managing their disease. Medical experts acknowledge that fitness boxing may not be for everyone and before considering a new exercise regimen, it is best to check with your physician.

To check on your physician’s license status with the Medical Board of California,  click here.

 

FEBRUARY IS AMERICAN HEART MONTH

americanheartmonthsocial-cover-image-fb_midDid you know that the leading cause of death for men and women in the United States is heart disease?  According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the deaths of more than 600,000 Americans—1 in 4—are attributed each year to heart disease.

In the United States, the month of February has been designated American Heart Month. Two nationwide campaign efforts lead the charge with the goal of increasing the public’s awareness about heart disease. The most well-known—The American Heart Association’s (AHA’s) National Wear Red Day—is this Friday, February 3. This campaign encourages women to make heart health a priority. The second campaign, Million Hearts, is a joint effort of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the American Heart Association and other private-public partners; the goal is to prevent 1 million heart attacks and strokes through prevention and awareness.

The term “heart disease” encompasses not just the heart, but diseases that affect the system that supports it. The most common of these is coronary artery disease, which, according to the CDC, can lead to, or be the first sign of, a heart attack.

Heart disease does not discriminate—it affects people of all ages. In fact, a person can be born with heart disease and anyone, including children, can develop the disease.

According to both the CDC and the AHA, risk factors for increasing a person’s chances of acquiring heart disease include age, family history, smoking, eating an unhealthy diet, and not getting enough exercise. In addition, the probability of getting heart disease increases with pre-existing medical conditions, such as high cholesterol, high blood pressure, or diabetes.

Symptoms can vary depending on the type of heart disease, which is why prevention is important. Talk to your doctor about what you can do to make heart health a priority.

The Medical Board of California makes it easy for you to check the status of your doctor’s license. Visit www.mbc.ca.gov.

MEN! THE NURSING FIELD WANTS YOU!

NURSING TODAY

Thanks to the aging of our population, demand for healthcare services and the number of nurses preparing to retire from the workforce, the job outlook for careers in the field of nursing is promising.

The potential demand for more healthcare providers has created a need for an increase in recruitment and retention of registered nurses (RNs).  A high priority is focused on greater male-nurse-2recruitment of men, with an emphasis on ethnic and national diversity.

It is a great time for men to consider a career in nursing!

OPPORTUNITIES AND BENEFITS

Male nurses are not a new phenomenon.  Historically, nursing had significant male representation until the 1800s.  During the Civil War, a shift began when men were engaged in other pursuits and women stepped into those positions.  By the 1900s, nursing schools were admitting only women, and the Army and Navy Nurse Corps were limited to women.  Men were not allowed to serve in nursing positions in those organizations until after the Korean War.  Currently, women make up the majority of nurses (2011 American Community Survey).  However, since the 1970s, the number of men in the profession has continuously grown as more men discover the richness of career opportunities available in the nursing profession.

“Show me the money!” – Rod Tidwell, Jerry Maguire (1996)

According to recent surveys, RNs have very low unemployment rates because of high demand for skilled nursing care, and annual salaries range from $60,700 to $162,900.

NURSING OCCUPATIONS AND WHAT THEY DO

  • Registered Nurse – Assess patient health problems and needs, develop and implement nursing care plans, maintain medical records, and administer holistic healthcare.  Average pay is $60,000-plus.
  • Nurse Anesthetists – Administer anesthesia and monitor patients’ recovery from anesthesia.  Specialized graduate education is required.  Average pay is $150,000-plus.
  • Nurse-Midwife – Diagnose and coordinate all aspects of the birthing process and provide gynecological care.  Specialized graduate education is required.  Average pay is $80,000-plus.
  • Nurse Practitioner – Diagnose and treat illnesses and may order, perform, or interpret diagnostic tests.  May prescribe medications and work as a healthcare consultant.  Specialized graduate education is required.  Average pay is $80,000-plus.

LIKE WHAT YOU’VE READ SO FAR?

There are many routes to travel to arrive at a nursing career.  Whether you’re still in high school, a college student, or weighing a career change, consider a career in nursing that will allow you to make a positive difference in the lives of others while also achieving your personal and financial goals.men-in-nursing-pic

The California Board of Registered Nursing has helpful resources available to you to assist in your research of a career in nursing.  The brochure “Consider A Rewarding  Career In Nursing!” is available online at the Board of Registered Nursing’s Web site, www.rn.ca.gov.

 

 

 

 

Can You Smile Your Way to Happiness?

Have you ever been told to “turn that frown upside down?”

It just so happens that doing so is good advice.shutterstock_154095902

Emotions may originate in the brain, but the muscles in the face either reinforce or transform those feelings.  Studies have revealed that through the enhancement of positive emotions – or the suppression of negative ones – with facial expressions, peoples moods begin to align with the emotion their face is communicating.

What kind of smile is the most beneficial?  Apparently, it doesn’t matter.  Smiles are generally divided into two categories. Standard smiles (otherwise known as posed), which use the muscles surrounding the mouth.  While genuine or Duchenne smiles, engage the muscles surrounding both the mouth and eyes (think crow’s feet).  Our brain does not differentiate between real and fake smiles.

Psychological scientists Tara Kraft and Sarah Pressman, of the University of Kansas, conducted a study to test the effects of smiling.

During their study, participants were told to hold chopsticks in between their teeth (a pen or pencil will work, too).  The researchers discovered that by holding the chopsticks between the teeth, it forced the study participants’ faces to mimic the same expression as a standard smile and produced the same effect.

Smiling Affects How Your Brain and Body Function

According to researchers, when we smile, even faking or forcing a smile, our stress is reduced and our mood is improved.

Smiling elevates your mood and creates a sense of well-being thanks to the release of the body’s “happy chemicals” serotonin and endorphins.

shutterstock_329221124These chemicals have been found to relax the body and lower heart rate and blood pressure.  As an added benefit, endorphins act as a natural pain reliever and serotonin serves as an anti-depressant and mood lifter.

Lastly, smiling sends a signal to the rest of your body that things are okay and it’s safe to let down your guard.

 Smiling Affects Other’s Perception of You

Smiling doesn’t just benefit you on the inside; it also works to your advantage from the outside.  A study from Penn State University found that people who smile appear to be more likeable, attractive, courteous and even competent.

Additionally, studies have shown that lifting those facial muscles into a smile is also contagious.  If you smile and they smile, everyone in the room becomes a little happier.

So, the next time you’re feeling stressed or gloomy, take a tip from the researchers and grab a pen or a pencil and muster up a smile.