Community Health Assessment Survey Launch
Mercer County Health District, in partnership with Mercer Health, Foundations, and other county organizations, is launching a comprehensive health assessment of the Mercer County community, starting July 15, 2019. The purpose of the assessment is to understand the current health needs of residents of Mercer County and to help identify opportunities to improve the health of the community. The assessment will include a review of various sources of data along with a survey of county residents.
The short survey asks about personal health and wellness, as well as priorities to improve health. Please complete an electronic version of the survey at: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/mercercountyhealthsurvey. In addition, hard copies of the surveys will be circulated at specific locations where we can capture the voices of the community who may not have access to the electronic survey.
Historically, every three years a community health assessment has been executed and an associated report and plan has been developed and implemented to evaluate and improve the health needs of the community. The most recent community health assessment was done in 2016 and the associated community health improvement plan included initiatives to be completed from 2017 – 2020. A copy of the current community health improvement plan can be found here: https://www.mercer-health.com/sites/default/files/pdf/2016_Mercer_Health_CHNA_Report_FINAL.pdf. The community health survey currently being executed will collect data and analyze trends allowing a community health improvement plan and initiatives to be developed for 2020 – 2023. A full report and plan should be available in early 2020.
The community health assessment survey is available now through the end of September. For more information, please contact Jason Menchhofer, Interim Administrator at Mercer County Health District, at JMenchhofer@mchdohio.org or 419-586-3251, extension 1273 or Mindy Kremer, Vice President of Development, Marketing and Communications at Mercer Health at 419-678-5613 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Health and Safety Information for Tornado Cleanup
The May 27, 2019 tornado which damaged and destroyed homes in Celina and the surrounding area also scattered splintered and mangled debris across neighborhoods and fields. If you are part of the cleanup, beware of the safety hazards presented by splintered wood, nails, broken glass and torn metal. In the event that you suffer an injury resulting in a break in the skin while handling debris, you should get a tetanus shot if you haven’t received one in the past five years. For more information, call 419-586-3251 extension 1270. Click here to view a fact sheet on wound care after a natural disaster, provided by CDC
Clean It Up, Swimmers
Pools are great for perfecting your backstroke or relaxing on your favorite float. But they can also spread diarrhea and other illnesses.
Germs don’t jump into the water like we do. They surf in on people’s bodies. See CDC’s full infographic on recreational water illness here.
Measles Cases Increasing in the US in 2019
From January 1 to April 26, 2019, 704 individual cases of measles have been confirmed in 22 states. This is the greatest number of cases reported in the U.S. since 1994 and since measles was declared eliminated in 2000. The states that have reported cases to CDC are Arizona, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Missouri, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Oregon, Texas, Tennessee, and Washington.
Fortunately, Measles is a vaccine preventable disease. The MMR vaccine is believed to be 97% effective when two doses are given. Here are some important things to know about measles and vaccination:
- Anyone borne during or after 1957 who does not have proof of a MMR can receive the vaccine.
- There are two separate diseases that people call measles- rubeola and rubella. Rubella is also known as the German Measles, a much milder disease but a leading cause of birth defects.
- At this time MCHD does not have MMR vaccine available for those who don’t have insurance. Pay at the time of service price is $90 for the MMR. If insurance is billed, the price is $115.
- Individuals in high risk groups (children, international travelers, adults in secondary education and healthcare workers) need two MMRs.
For more information, check out the following resources from the CDC:
Statewide Hepatitis A Outbreak
Outbreaks of hepatitis A virus infection are occurring nationwide, including Ohio. In June 2018, the Ohio Department of Health declared a Statewide Community Outbreak of hepatitis A after observing an increase in cases linked to certain risk factors since the beginning of 2018. The Mercer County Health District is reporting five confirmed cases of hepatitis A in its jurisdiction.
Hepatitis A is a vaccine-preventable liver disease that usually spreads when a person ingests fecal matter – even in microscopic amounts- from contact with objects, food, or drinks contaminated by the stool of an infected person, such as through sex.
Good hand-washing and vaccination are the best ways to prevent hepatitis A in at-risk individuals. Individuals who have one or more risk factors for hepatitis A, call Mercer County Health District at 419-586-3251 to see about getting vaccinated. Find out more about the hepatitis A vaccine Hep A VIS, or click the links below for more information on how to protect yourself from this disease.
HIV Screening Available
Do you think you may be at risk of contracting HIV due to a recent exposure? Call 419-228-4457 extension 131 to be screened over the phone. If you are considered high-risk for HIV exposure, a free test can be scheduled. Find more information here.
Bi-Annual Public Health Update
Click here to read our Bi-Annual Public Health Update and learn about all the good work being done at MCHD as we pursue public health accreditation. You can also look at statistics on the incidence of various disease in the county, as well as services provided by the health department.
Influenza activity is increasing across Ohio. It’s not too late to get protection from the seasonal influenza vaccine! See full story here.
Acute Flaccid Myelitis in Ohio
Acute flaccid myelitis (AFM) is a rare but serious condition. It affects the nervous system, specifically the area of the spinal cord called gray matter, and the muscles and reflexes in the body become weak. This condition is not new, but the increase in cases observed in the U.S. starting in 2014 is new. Still, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimates that less than one in a million people in the United States will get AFM every year. There are a variety of possible causes of AFM, such as viruses and environmental toxins. Most of the cases that CDC has learned about have been in children.
On October 19, 2018, the Ohio Department of Health released the onset range, age range, hospitalizations, and counties of the 4 cases of confirmed Acute Flaccid Myelitis in Ohio
- counties: Columbiana, Cuyahoga, Mercer, and Pickaway
- onset range August 5 to September 16.
- All were hospitalized
- Age range <1 to 13 years.
- All were male
CDC has done extensive lab testing on specimens from patients, but has not determined what caused most of these people to get AFM. It is unclear what pathogen (germ) or immune response caused the arm or leg weakness and paralysis. AFM may have a variety of possible causes such as viruses and environmental toxins.
While the cause of most of the AFM cases is unknown, it’s always important to practice disease prevention steps, such as staying up-to-date on vaccines, washing your hands, and protecting yourself from mosquito bites.
More information can be found on the CDC website.
Public Health in the News: It’s time to improve Ohio’s immunization process
In this recent opinion piece from The Columbus Dispatch, Cleveland Clinic pediatric nurse practitioner Cheryl Cairns emphasizes the importance of providing accurate and reliable information to support parents’ immunization choices, and provides information on recently introduced House Bill 559. Read the article here..
New vaccine to prevent shingles now available at MCHD!
The Shingrix vaccine was approved by the FDA in 2017 for the prevention of shingles. In clinical trials, shingrix was more than 90% effective in preventing shingles. The vaccine is recommended for adults 50 years old and older, and is recommended even if you have had a shingles vaccine in the past.
Please call your insurance company to see if the cost is covered. The billing code is CPT code 90750. For more information or to schedule an appointment, call 419-586-3251, extension 1270.
We offer a wide variety of childhood and adult immunizations. Important immunization information is found below.
The following websites offer nationally-recognized information on immunizations.
Pertussis, also know as whooping cough, is a highly contagious respiratory disease. Pertussis is known for uncontrollable, violent coughing which often makes it hard to breathe. Pertussis can affect people of all ages, but can be very serious, even deadly, for babies less than a year old. The best way to protect against pertussis is by getting vaccinated.
Adult head lice are roughly 2-3 millimeters long. Head lice infest the head and neck and attach their eggs to the base of the hair shaft. Lice move by crawling; they cannot hop or fly. Head lice infestation is spread most commonly by close person-to-person contact.
For information on the treatment and prevention of scabies, visit Centers for Disease Control website at:
ALL MERCER COUNTY FACILITY
INSPECTIONS ARE NOW AVAILABLE
NEW AS OF JULY 2016!! WE HAVE POOL, CAMPGROUND AND FOOD ESTABLISHMENTS LINKED HERE. FOR PRIOR INSPECTIONS CALL 419-586-3251 TO REQUEST A REPORT.
Check out our Upcoming Events page for Community Outreach!
Have you ever wondered what services are offered at Mercer County Health District?
Here’s our most recent BROCHURE.
The Mercer County 2018 Resource Handbook is compiled through collaborative efforts and reviewed yearly by the following agencies: Celina City Schools, Cheryl Ann Programs, Mercer County Educational Service Center, Mercer County Family & Children First Council, Mercer County Head Start, Mercer County Health District, Mercer County Help Me Grow, Mercer County Job and Family Services, Mercer County WIOA, Mercer County WIC Program, Mercer Health, Mercer Health Maternal Care Center, OUR Home Family Resource Center and West Ohio Community Action Partnership.
Food Recall Updates: http://www.agri.ohio.gov/apps/odanews/ODARecalls.aspx
Mercer County Health District Organizational Mandates and Authorities: Link to the OAC (Ohio Administrative Code) http://codes.ohio.gov/oac/ & ORC (Ohio Revised Code) http://codes.ohio.gov/orc/37.