Metro news for Wednesday

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention launched a new program Tuesday to help prevent dangerous infections among patients being treated for cancer. People receiving chemotherapy have weakened immune systems and can easily contract an infection when exposed to germs, the CDC said. The CDC found that infection control varies greatly among oncology clinics with some failing to follow basic prevention practices. The new program provides information, action steps and tools that patients and health care providers should use to reduce the risk of these infection, which are a major cause of hospitalization and death among cancer patients.  For information, visit: www.preventcancerinfections.org. CARRIE TEEGARDIN

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Georgia colleges students who still need some help paying their bills have until Oct. 31 to apply for the state's new low-interest loan program. Lawmakers funded the Student Access Loan Program when they overhauled the state's merit-based HOPE scholarship. The loans, which carry a 1 percent interest rate, won't cover all costs but can fill financial holes for those who exhausted other options. For applications and additional information go to: www.gacollege411.org. LAURA DIAMOND

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The Baldwin County court system is getting $1.2 million for its mental health court. The federal grant if for the court to work with River Edge Behavioral Health treatment defendants suffering from mental illness or substance-abuse.  Baldwin County, which is the home of the state's first psychiatric hospital, Central State Hospital in Milledgeville was the only system in Georgia and one of 11 nationwide to join the Behavioral Health Treatment Court Collaborative, which combines drug court and  mental-health courts with community reentry programs. STEVEN VISSER

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