When Lisa Ratliff first approached the Bear Paw Lodge at Canaan Valley Resort and Conference Center on June 4, 2011, she was just curious as to what the Tucker County Regional Health Fair had to offer.
Before she left, the visit ended up changing her life.
Ratliff, director of sales and marketing at Canaan Valley Resort and Conference Center, had decided that morning to go see what was happening at the ski lodge. This was her first experience with the Tucker County Regional Health Fair.
Lisa Ratliff, director of sales and marketing at Canaan Valley Resort and Conference Center, points to Tucker County on a map of West Virginia. Ratliff was successfully treated for skin cancer that was discovered at the 2011 Tucker County Health Fair. The 2012 health fair will be held June 2.
With a troublesome area on her nose, Ratliff hoped someone at the Health Fair could give her some advice. After receiving a skin analysis by health providers at the fair, she was told to go see the dermatologist across the room.
A dermatologist from Mountain State Dermatology examined her, and office appointments and surgery to remove a basal cell carcinoma followed.
"I was talking to one vendor about the mark on my face who knew that a dermatologist was there and directed me to that station," Ratliff said. "The doctor and his nurse were very kind, caring and professional. That same treatment was continued at his office when I went to be treated.
"My skin cancer was small and not life threatening - but left untreated, the cancer would have continued to 'eat' away my skin, causing a deformity," she said.
Now, she suggests that everyone attend the Health Fair.
"It's free - no doctor appointments, no co-pays, no sitting in a waiting room," Ratliff said. "Second of all, it saves lives. Third, the vendors are all professional, well-trained doctors, nurses and health care employees. And fourth, many of the tests that are provided free actually cost hundreds of dollars."
The seventh annual Tucker County Health Fair will be at Canaan Valley from 7 a.m. to 1 p.m. June 2. For more information, anyone interested can call 304-599-7358.
"It's a 'no-brainer,'" Ratliff said. "Mark your calendar."