How do e-cigarettes affect teens’ brains?

Many Montana children are unaware of the harmful chemicals in e-cigarettes. Alli Kieckbusch, prevention health specialist at RiverStone Health, offers tips for parents to educate their children. Alli can be reached at

Smart fish choices for your healthy diet

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention cautions Americans to limit their consumption of some fish and seafood. To protect your health, it’s important to know the risks so you can make well informed food choices. In this Billings Gazette column, Chris Walker, a communicable disease case investigator at RiverStone Health, explains precautions that reduce metal exposure risks from eating fish caught in Montana waters and from commercial fish products.

Your Community Health Center welcomes everyone

During Community Health Center Week Aug. 7-12, RiverStone Health thanks our patients for entrusting us with their care and allowing us to be part of their journey to better health. We celebrate our dedicated staff, and we highlight our mission to improve life, health and safety for our entire community. If you would like to learn more, read this Billings Gazette column from Eric Owen, RiverStone Health vice president for clinic and public health services.

Rabies lives in Montana; prevention protects us

RiverStone Health has been averaging 10 animal bite reports a week. Most involve pets biting a person. Pet owners who keep their animals’ rabies vaccinations up to date are protecting their furry friends, people around them and other animals from risk of this fatal disease, says Casey Saul, communicable disease interventionist at RiverStone Health. Casey provides evidence-based recommendations on rabies prevention to bite victims. To report an animal bite, phone 406.247.2129 or email

How to help your student get ready for middle school

Starting middle school is a big transition that often brings worries for students and parents. Helping your child get ready for middle school can ease the stress on both of you. Brandi McFerran, LCSW, for RiverStone Health Clinic at Medicine Crow Middle School offers practical tips for a good start in middle school in this column. To reach the RiverStone Health School-based Clinic, call 406-247-3210.

Take stress out of back-to-school immunizations

Students starting kindergarten and sixth-grade usually are due for recommended vaccinations to prevent serious diseases. If your student isn’t up to date on vaccinations, now is the time to make an appointment with your child’s healthcare provider or with the RiverStone Health Immunization Program by calling 406.247.3382. Brenda Koch, manager of the RiverStone Health Immunization Program, offers tips to take the stress out of student immunizations in this column.

Public health works to prevent foodborne illness year-round

RiverStone Health thoroughly investigates every confirmed or suspected case of foodborne illness when we get complaints, says Clark Snyder, RiverStone Health registered sanitarian. We work every day to prevent foodborne illness. We educate food businesses and managers on safe food practices. Our shared goal is to keep our food supply safe. RiverStone Health Environmental Health Services can be reached at 406-256-2770.

Shingles infects unvaccinated kids with chickenpox

Karen Graf, RN, manager of RiverStone Health Rural School Nursing, explains how a person infected with shingles can infect unvaccinated people with chickenpox. The best way to prevent chickenpox is to get the chickenpox vaccine. Ask your healthcare provider about getting protected against chickenpox or call the RiverStone Health Immunization Clinic at 406-247-3382 for an appointment.

Nutritious summer foods boost kids’ health

Exercise and nutrition go hand in hand to ensure children’s health, says Ashley Miller, nutrition educator for RiverStone Health WIC. Ashley offers tips for kids’ summer nutrition and activities in this Billings Gazette column. She can be reached at 406.247.3370.

Keep kids active and healthy this summer

Help your child stay healthy this summer. James Miller, RiverStone Health physician assistant for our School-Based Clinics, reminds parents to make sure you know where your child is at all times and who they are hanging out with. Talk to your children about the risks of using substances, such as nicotine products, vape pens or other illicit drugs. When you or your child needs healthcare, call RiverStone Health Clinic at 406-247-3350.

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