Tuesday, December 8, 2015

The DIY Vaccine

Hand washing is like a "do-it-yourself" vaccine—it involves five simple and effective steps (Wet, Lather, Scrub, Rinse, Dry) you can take to reduce the spread of diarrheal and respiratory illness so you can stay healthy.

Regular hand washing, particularly before and after certain activities, is one of the best ways to remove germs, avoid getting sick, and prevent the spread of germs to others.

It's quick, it's simple, and it can keep us all from getting sick. Hand washing is a win for everyone, except the germs.

Here's some humor to share with friends who may roll their eyes at your attempts to keep them healthy:

Monday, November 16, 2015

Happenings at CCHD: Public Health Nutritionist

This month's "Happenings" features KayLeigh Raville, Public Health Nutritionist.

I went to school for nutrition, completed a dietetic internship and passed an exam to become a registered dietitian (RD). Typically when people think of an RD they think of a hospital setting or someone who can help them lose weight, but when I finished my community nutrition rotation during my internship I knew I would work in public health one day. And here I am!

I work with Obesity Prevention in Pediatric Health Care Settings (OPPHCS).* The goal of this grant is to reduce the percentage of overweight and obese children in Clinton, Essex, Franklin, and Hamilton counties by working with pediatricians to change guidelines and policies.

How do I do that?

·        I complete chart audits at the doctor’s office to see what is already being done and what we can work on.

·        I provide trainings and resources to pediatricians and their staff. Examples of some of the resources are: snow man kits to promote physical activity in the cold North Country winters, MyPlate placemats to encourage healthy eating habits and scales to be sure the correct height and weight are documented.

·       I also help doctor’s offices become “Breastfeeding Friendly” by walking them through the New York State 10 Steps to a Breastfeeding Friendly Practice. To read more about the 10 Steps visit: http://www.albany.edu/sph/cphce/prevention_agenda/bf_ny_10_steps_practice.pdf. To see if your Pediatrician’s office is designated as Breastfeeding Friendly visit: http://www.health.ny.gov/prevention/nutrition/cacfp/bfpraclst.htm.

I enjoy working with everyone here at CCHD and with all of our participating practices. They make coming to work fun and exciting! Although it can be hectic at times, I find my job very fulfilling. Aside from interacting with numerous people on a daily basis, I think the best part of my job is being part of something that can impact so many lives.  

*A grant funded by the New York State Department of Health

Thursday, November 5, 2015

A Shot in the Arm

Many adults are unaware that they need vaccines. Keeping up-to-date on vaccinations reduces the risk of getting sick and passing that illness on to other people. No one likes suffering from influenza but it is just one disease that adult vaccines can protect against. Clinton County Health Department is conducting a survey on adult vaccine knowledge and information on where they receive their vaccinations. This survey will allow us to gather data to determine strategies, barriers, gaps in treatment, and services needed to help ensure adults receive the recommended vaccines. This adult vaccine project aims to optimize vaccination rates and outcomes across adult populations.
This survey attempts to answer these questions:
  • What is the status of adult vaccination rates in Clinton County?
  • What is the accessibility and availability of recommended adult vaccines in Clinton County?
  • What is general adult population’s knowledge or awareness of adult vaccine needed and scheduled?
  • What/Where are the gaps in vaccine management?
  • What recommendations should be given for ensuring Clinton County meets the Healthy People 2020 objective for adult vaccination?
Want to participate?  Our quick survey is anonymous and can help answer these questions.  https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/58JPWMY 

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Happy (and Healthy) Halloween

Halloween may not be an "official" holiday, but plenty of people enjoy celebrating in spook-tacular style! The Clinton County Health Department loves a fun treat (in moderation), but we are wary of some of the hazards of Halloween.
Here are our top 5 Safe Halloween websites to help remind parents and trick-or-treaters some fun ways to stay safe and healthy this Halloween.

Thursday, October 1, 2015

Who is up for the Challenge?

The Clinton County Trailblazers are launching a NEW challenge.  The 50/50 challenge encourages Clinton County residents over 18 years of age to walk 50 miles in 50 days.  Walking is a free exercise that only requires a good pair of walking shoes and a commitment to good health.  Participants are encouraged to explore the many trails in the area along with routes near where they live, work and play.  50 miles in 50 days only requires walking 10 minutes twice a day!

Thursday, August 20, 2015

Shop Smart, Eat Healthy, Be Well

It's easy to get lost in the aisles of temptations at the grocery store. With limited time and money, many families opt for the easiest meals they think they can afford. Have you thought about how to pick out the healthiest foods for you and your family?

The Clinton County Health Department offers grocery store tours with a registered dietitian. Check out more on the CCHD website.

Thursday, August 6, 2015

Swimming Safely

Injury isn't at the top of our list when we're at the beach or pool. Yet, drownings are the leading cause of injury death for young children ages 1 to 4, and three children die every day as a result of drowning.
How can we help prevent drowning?
Learn life-saving skills.  Everyone should know the basics of swimming (floating, moving through the water) and cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR).
Fence it off. Install a four–sided isolation fence, with self–closing and self–latching gates, around backyard swimming pools. This can help keep children away from the area when they aren’t supposed to be swimming. Pool fences should completely separate the house and play area from the pool.
Make life jackets a "must." Make sure kids wear life jackets in and around natural bodies of water, such as lakes or the ocean, even if they know how to swim. Life jackets can be used in and around pools for weaker swimmers too.
Be on the look out. When kids are in or near water (including bathtubs), closely supervise them at all times. Adults watching kids in or near water should avoid distracting activities like playing cards, reading books, talking on the phone, and using alcohol or drugs.
For more information on drowning injury, and water-related injury.

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Down with Mosquitoes

Swat! Slap! Squash!

Aside from being a pesky addition to your outdoor fun, several mosquito species have been linked to carrying West Nile virus, an infection that can cause serious illness. There are 70 different species of mosquitoes in New York State, so how can we best avoid and reduce our exposure to mosquitoes?

Some mosquitos are most active between dusk and dawn when the air is calm, and that is when the females are most likely to bite. However, others will feed at any time of the day.

Some mosquitos lay their eggs in standing water around the home. They can develop in any standing water that remains more than four days. Weeds, tall grass and shrubbery provide an outdoor home for adult mosquitoes, which may also enter houses through unscreened windows and doors, or broken screens. Many kinds of mosquitoes will breed in discarded tires.

How can you reduce the number of mosquitos around your home?

·         Make sure all windows and doors have screens, and are kept repaired

·         Turn over plastic wading pools and wheelbarrows when not in use

·         Remove leaf debris, used tires, containers, pots of similar water-holding containers

Thursday, June 25, 2015

WIC on YouTube

WIC is a popular program for families in Clinton County. Have you checked out some of the services they offer? (Link to new webpage) They even have several videos on our Clinton County Health Department YouTube channel.

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Happenings at CCHD

CCHD is excited to kick of their new blog series, "Happenings at CCHD."

Every so often, we'll feature a different employee from the Clinton County Health Department. You'll get to learn about what they do, who they get to interact with, and why they love working for Public Health.

This month we're featuring Christa VanCour, Children's Services Program Specialist.

Here's what Christa does:

I work with the Preschool Special Education program. I have a background in health education, and a master's degree in teaching. When I found this position - I knew I'd be hooked. It's the perfect crossroads between public health and education.

A typical day for me looks like this:
  • I get to work and check emails and catch up on voicemail messages.
  • I head to Committee on Preschool Special Education meetings at different districts around the county to help a team of people, including the child's parents, make decisions on what the best education services for them will be.
  • I work with lots of different Special Education Chairpeople, their support staff, and the various provider agencies, including transportation, to help preschool children throughout the county receive intervention services.
I have a great team here at CCHD that helps children and their families from birth through age 5 identify and target areas where children may need some extra help. I love what I do, and it's very rewarding.

Promoting Student Health through Healthy Schools

Today’s children may have a shorter lifespan than their parents. This startling statistic is supported by an increasing number of children diagnosed with hypertension (high blood pressure) and type 2 diabetes; chronic conditions usually seen only in adults.
Healthy eating and increased physical activity are two of the best ways to protect against chronic diseases. Children need healthy food choices and opportunities for physical activity and schools are a great place to provide both.
School Wellness Policies are important tools that can be used to advance the health and safety of children and adolescents. Comprehensive school health policies that are effectively implemented can improve student’s health and academic behaviors and successes.