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  • TAKE THE TEST, TAKE CONTROL ON NATIONAL HIV TESTING DAY, JUNE 27

    Lucy Branson [left] of the North Georgia Health District's Living Bridge Center administers an Orasure, or oral swab, HIV testLucy Branson [left] of the North Georgia Health District's Living Bridge Center administers an Orasure, or oral swab, HIV testTHE LIVING BRIDGE CENTER IN DALTON WILL OFFER FREE HIV TESTING ON NATIONAL HIV TESTING DAY, WEDNESDAY, JUNE 27, 2012. THE FREE TESTING WILL BE CONDUCTED FROM 9 A.M. UNTIL 1 P.M. AT THE WHITFIELD COUNTY HEALTH DEPARTMENT, LOCATED AT 800 PROFESSIONAL BOULEVARD IN DALTON, GEORGIA.

    THE ORASURE (ORAL SWAB) TESTING METHOD WILL BE USED.

    WHO SHOULD BE TESTED?

    THE CDC RECOMMENDS THAT EVERYONE BETWEEN THE AGES OF 13 AND 64 BE TESTED FOR HIV AT LEAST ONCE IN THEIR LIFETIME, AND THOSE AT INCREASED RISK -- SUCH AS GAY AND BISEXUAL MEN, INJECTION DRUG USERS, OR PERSONS WITH MULTIPLE SEXUAL PARTNERS -- SHOULD BE TESTED AT LEAST ANNUALLY.

    FREE T-SHIRTS, EDUCATIONAL MATERIALS, GOODY BAGS, AND INCENTIVE CARDS FOR RETURNING FOR TEST RESULTS WILL BE AVAILABLE TO PARTICIPANTS.

    FOR MORE INFORMATION ABOUT THIS FREE HIV TESTING EVENT, CALL THE LIVING BRIDGE CENTER AT 706-281-2360.

    FOR MORE INFORMATION ABOUT NATIONAL HIV TESTING DAY, LOG ONTO WWW.NAPWA.ORG.

  • RABID HORSE IN WHITFIELD COUNTY

    DALTON (GA) JUNE 20, 2012 - According to Raymond King, Director of Environmental Health for the North Georgia Health District, a horse located in a pasture immediately adjacent to the Dalton Municipal Airport in Whitfield County, Georgia has been diagnosed with rabies by the University of Georgia College of Veterinary Medicine, and now a total of six local persons who had recent contact with the saliva or mucus of the horse are receiving post-exposure rabies treatments through area hospitals.
     
    The horse started to show possible symptoms on June 9th and was examined by a number of persons and veterinarians that week before being taken to the University of Georgia Veterinary College for further examination and testing.
     

  • WIC, Dalton Community Center host Farmers' Market - June 20 – 21, 2012

    Brooke Walker of North Georgia WIC and Tom Pinson of the Gaston Community CenterBrooke Walker of North Georgia WIC and Tom Pinson of the Gaston Community CenterThe public is invited to attend the Farmers' Market presented by North Georgia Women, Infants and Children (WIC) and Dalton’s Gaston Community Center.

    The Farmers' Market will be held at the new Gaston Community Center at 214 Fredrick Street in Dalton from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Wednesday, June 20 and Thursday, June 21, 2012.

    Come purchase affordably priced, locally grown, fresh fruits and vegetables, and receive free recipes for preparing healthy, nutritious meals. Participants will also be offered food storage guidelines.

    Families on the WIC program in attendance will be provided $30 worth of produce.

    Participating farmers are from Brown’s Produce of Tunnel Hill and R & A Orchards of Ellijay.

    For more information about the WIC-Community Center Farmers' Market, call 706-272-2991, extension 1 or 706-529-8202.
  • NECROTIZING FASCIITIS OR "FLESH-EATING BACTERIA"

    The case of Necrotizing fasciitis, or "flesh-eating bacteria", that recently occurred to a young Georgia victim is a tragedy and it reminds us that there are always microbes in our environments to infect us. But some proportion and perspective are appropriate here.

    Odds that you will be struck by lightning during your life are one in 10,000. The CDC estimates that only one of 400,000 people get necrotizing fasciitis in any one year in the U.S.

    Most cases of necrotizing fasciitis occur in persons with health risk factors such as diabetes or compromised immune systems. The most common cause of necrotizing fasciitis is Group A Streptococcus (strep), about 725 cases a year in the U.S. Treatment consists of antibiotics and surgical removal of dead tissues. Around 20% of patients with necrotizing fasciitis caused by Group A strep will die.

    Necrotizing fasciitis can be caused by at least six completely different bacteria.
  • Leaving Kids in Hot Cars: We're All at Risk

    Kids in Hot Cars: We're all at RiskChildren are dying of heat stroke in cars (vehicular hyperthermia) and it’s something we can all prevent. Take a look at these national statistics:*
    • So far in 2011, at least 10 children have died, including a fivemonth old girl in Kennesaw on May 25
    • Forty-nine children died in 2010, the highest number of fatalities for a one-year period
    • From 1998—2011, at least 501 children died, an average of 38 per year (1 in every 10 days)
    • Ages of child fatalities due to vehicular hyperthermia range from five days to 14 years

    These are unnecessary deaths, and we’re all at risk.
  • Summer Swimming Pool Health and Safety

    Pool-Safety-cartoon-R.KingRecently an 8-year-old girl swimming in a Doraville apartment complex pool had her arm trapped in a vacuum drain. Her brother kept her afloat in the water, while her mother called 911. Crews worked for about three hours -- first, lowering the water level in the pool, then chipping away at the concrete pool siding. The girl was taken to Children's Healthcare of Atlanta at Egleston to have the pipe removed from her arm. The girl is expected to make a full recovery but many children die needlessly each year in private and public pools because simple safety equipment and health precautions are not taken.
  • Second raccoon tests positive for rabies in Cherokee, Exposed dogs euthanized

    raccoonCherokee County Environmental Health officials reported that a second raccoon this year has tested positive for rabies after coming into contact with dogs. Unfortunately, unlike the first incident, these dogs were not protected against the disease.
  • Near Record Temperatures Bring Early Health Warnings

    SunWith temperatures already soaring into the 90s – much earlier than normal – the Georgia Department of Community Health (DCH) is urging Georgians to exercise caution. Every year, thousands of Americans are hospitalized from heat-related illnesses. The elderly and those working in excessive heat are particularly vulnerable to extreme heat exhaustion and heat illness.

    “We’re sounding the alarm early,” said Division of Public Health (DPH) Director Brenda Fitzgerald, M.D., noting that temperatures are generally 10 degrees higher than normal for this first week of June. “I’m asking everyone to ensure their own safety and also the safety of their neighbors and loved ones.”

    It’s important to take the proper steps to avoid common summer-related injuries and illnesses.
    • Do not leave children in hot cars. Even with outside temperatures in the low to mid-70s, a car’s inside temperature can jump as much as 19 degrees in just 10 minutes. Last year, a record 49 children nationwide died from heatstroke after being left in cars, including three children in Georgia.
    • Avoid sun exposure. Melanoma is the third most common skin cancer. Every year, an estimated 1,709 new melanoma cases are diagnosed in Georgia. Wear light, loose fitting clothing and use a sunscreen with a Sun Protection Factor (SPF) of at least 15. Avoid the outdoors between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. when the sun’s UV rays are the strongest. Infants and children are especially susceptible to sunburn.
    • Stay hydrated. Drink more fluids than unusual if you’re outside in hot weather for prolonged periods of time or doing vigorous physical activity. Avoid alcoholic beverages or those containing caffeine as they cause dehydration.
    • Check on the elderly. Check on elderly neighbors and relatives often to watch for signs of heat-related stress. The elderly population and those with weakened immune systems are more likely to suffer from extreme and prolonged exposure to heat.
    • Locate the coolest room in your home. Finding a place to cool down, at least temporarily, can provide some relief and allow a person’s body to recover from higher temperatures.
    • Bathe to cool down. Taking a cold shower or bath can reduce body temperature.

    Learn to recognize the symptoms of Heatstroke:
    • An extremely high body temperature
    • Red, hot and dry skin (no sweating)
    • Rapid, strong pulse
    • Headache
    • Dizziness
    • Nausea
    • Confusion
    • Unconsciousness

    Learn to recognize the symptoms of Heat Exhaustion:
    • Heavy sweating
    • Paleness
    • Muscle cramps
    • Tiredness
    • Weakness
    • Dizziness
    • Headache
    • Nausea or vomiting
    • Fainting


    What to do if you or someone near you exhibits these symptoms:
    • Help victim cool off and seek medical attention if condition worsens or lasts for more than 1 hour.
    • Get out of the sun.
    • Take a cool shower, bath or sponge bath.
    • Drink cool, non-alcoholic or non-caffeinated beverages.


    About the Georgia Department of Community Health


    DCH was created in 1999 to serve as the lead agency for health care planning and purchasing issues in Georgia. DCH is designated as the single state agency for Medicaid and the State Health Benefit Plan, the health insurance program for Georgia’s teachers, state employees, retirees and their dependents. In 2009, Healthcare Facility Regulation was created at DCH from sections transferred from the former Department of Human Resources, Office of Regulatory Services. At that same time, the Division of Public Health and the Section of Emergency Preparedness and Response transitioned to the Department. To learn more about DCH, visit www.dch.georgia.gov.
  • Rabies confirmed positive in Cherokee County raccoon today, Officials seek stray dog that may have been exposed

    Cherokee County Environmental Health officials announced today that another raccoon in the county has tested positive for rabies. This is the third confirmed case of rabies among raccoons in the county so far this year. Rabies was also confirmed recently in a stray kitten found in Cherokee County near the Cobb County line.
  • ALERT! - Rabies confirmed in raccoon that bit Whitfield County boy; Local officials concerned others may have been exposed

    Whitfield County Environmental Health Manager Chad Mulkey announced today that Georgia State Laboratory results have confirmed rabies in a raccoon that bit a young boy at Al Rollins Park yesterday. Officials believe other children may have been scratched by the raccoon and are urging parents to contact them if they believe their child could have been exposed.

    According to Mr. Mulkey, “On Tuesday, June 29, a large male raccoon attacked a little boy playing in the water near a culvert at Al Rollins Park off of Threadmill Road. The little boy's dad beat the raccoon off with a rock and killed it.”

    Diane Franklin, Whitfield County Animal Control Officer, was called immediately and took the raccoon’s head for rabies testing at the state lab. The positive test results were returned late today.

    Diane Franklin, Whitfield County Animal Control Officer, was called immediately and took the raccoon’s head for rabies testing at the state lab. The positive test results were returned late today.

    Ms. Franklin and local health officials have reason to believe other children may have come into contact with the raccoon; therefore, Whitfield County Environmental Health staff are posting flyers in the Al Rollins Park area asking residents to call if they believe they or their children were exposed. Those individuals are urged to contact Diane Franklin at the Whitfield County Animal Shelter at (706) 278-2018 or by dialing (706) 463-0463, or they may call Chad Mulkey at the Whitfield County Environmental Health office at (706) 272-2005.
  • Protect Your Baby Before You Are Pregnant

    Are you considering having a baby or are between the childbearing ages of 14‐50? Did you know that half of all pregnancies are unplanned? Whether you’re planning a new addition to your family or simply the age at which you could potentially become pregnant, think about adding a folic acid supplement to your daily routine.
  • “Rescued” kitten exposed family and vet assistant to rabies

    Cherokee County Environmental Health officials reported that a stray kitten picked up by a family residing on Lake Circle near the Cherokee/Cobb County line recently tested positive for rabies. Members of the family and a worker at a Cobb County veterinarian clinic were exposed to the kitten prior to rabies testing.
  • Rabies confirmed in two Cherokee County raccoons

    Cherokee County Environmental Health officials announced that state lab results recently confirmed two cases of rabies in the county.

    Both cases involved separate incidents in which animals were exposed to infected raccoons. No human exposures were reported.
  • We Can! Free Summer Camp

    For Youths Kindergarten thru 12th grade!
    We-Can-Summer-Camp
    click for larger view


    July 5 - 16, 2010 8am - 1pm @ Dalton Recreation Center

    1st 50 to register may participate, so call NOW at (706)281-2326 to hold your spot!

    FREE Nutrition and Physical Activity Camp for Youth!

    FREE Breakfast and Lunch provided by Seamless Summer Nutrition Program!

    FREE T-Shirt for all 50 participants!

    FREE Swim from 1pm - 2pm each day of camp!
  • Health Departments’ hours change July 5

    Health department clinics in the North Georgia Health District will change hours of operation on July 5, 2010. The North Georgia Health District is comprised of Cherokee, Fannin, Gilmer, Murray, Pickens and Whitfield Counties.
  • Gilmer County raccoon confirmed positive for rabies

    Gilmer County environmental health officials announced today that a raccoon in the county recently tested positive for rabies.

    Andrea Wheeler of the Gilmer County Environmental Health Department stated, “On May 25, 2010, a Golden Retriever Mix came into contact with a raccoon that tested positive for rabies on May 26, 2010. The dog has a life-long history of rabies vaccinations and received a rabies booster vaccination and will be observed at home for 45 days.”
  • OH MOSQUITO, WHERE ART THOU?

    Mosquito Cartoon by Ray King
    The other day a fellow asked me why, given the record amount of rain this year, we weren't all eaten alive with more mosquitoes. The mosquitoes have been bad but not in proportion to the record amount of rain we've had this spring. But don't despair; mosquitoes are on their merry way now to your neighborhood, home, business and property.
  • Dogs euthanized after exposure to rabid raccoon in Ellijay


    Officials warn of several stray animals in Rose Ridge Dr. /Hwy. 382 arearaccoon


    Two dogs on Rose Ridge Drive near Highway 382 in Ellijay were exposed on June 6 to a raccoon that was later confirmed as positive for rabies, according to Andrea Wheeler of Gilmer County Environmental Health. Neither dog was currently vaccinated against rabies, so both dogs were subsequently euthanized.
  • Volunteer Orientation - Emergency Preparedness

    North Georgia Medical Reserve Corps presentsVolunteer Orientation
    Emergency Preparedness training in Dalton

    Tuesday, June 16, 2009 6 p.m.MRC poster
    Downstairs Conference Room,
    North Georgia Health District
    Bryman’s Plaza North, 100 W. Walnut Ave., Dalton, GA

    • WHERE do folks go during a disease outbreak when they need medication. . . fast?
    • WHO is responsible for getting needed medications to you and your community?
    • WHAT is the best way to prepare your family for an emergency?
    • HOW can you can help in the event of a Public Health Emergency?

    To RSVP or to learn more details, please contact Jennifer Moorer, Public Information Officer, at 706-272-2125, x346, or email: jamoorer@dhr.state.ga.us

    MEETING IS OPEN TO THE PUBLIC—Refreshments provided!
  • Two rabies cases confirmed in Cherokee County this week

    Cherokee County Environmental Health Officials announced today that they recently received confirmation of rabies in both a raccoon and a fox. Additionally, a local woman is being treated for possible rabies exposure.

    Glendon Gordy of county environmental health said the incident involving the raccoon occurred on May 31 when the animal entered a residential yard on Cherrydale Lane in Woodstock and attacked two puppies.
North Georgia WIC   DPH CDC