Healthy people, families, and communities.


Dalton, GA - Over one thousand North Georgians, so far, have armed themselves against the flu at Drive-By Flu Shot Clinics in the North Georgia Health District!

In Chatsworth on Tuesday, 121 residents were vaccinated at Murray County Health Department’s drive-by flu shot clinic, and on Wednesday, Whitfield County Health Department administered 876 flu shots at their drive-by flu shot clinic in Dalton. Also on Wednesday, Pickens County Health Department vaccinated 110 people against the flu at the drive-by flu shot clinic they held in Jasper.

The next Drive-By Flu Shot Clinic will be conducted by the Fannin County Health Department this Monday, September 23 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the Farmers Market in Blue Ridge.

Cherokee County Health Department will conduct a Drive-By Flu Shot Clinic on Tuesday, October 1 from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. at the Woodstock Health Center on North Main Street in Woodstock.

Gilmer County Health Department will hold their Drive-By Flu Shot Clinic on Thursday, October 3 from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the First United Methodist Church of Ellijay.

World Breastfeeding Week 2012 in DaltonDalton (GA) - In anticipation of World Breastfeeding Week, October 1-7, 2013, the North Georgia Health District is presenting a World Breastfeeding Week Walk on Friday, September 20, 2013! The World Breastfeeding Week Walk will be held from 5 p.m. until 8 p.m. at the Mack Gaston Community Center in Dalton at 214 Fredrick Drive. The public is encouraged to come for a healthy walk, exciting exhibits and free goodies. North Georgia Women, Infants and Children (WIC) will partner with the Northwest Georgia Breastfeeding Coalition to highlight the importance of providing support to breastfeeding families through the 2013 World Breastfeeding Week theme, Breastfeeding Support: Close to Mothers.

Infant feeding is one of the most important decisions that new families make. Evidence is clear that breastfeeding is the ideal way to feed an infant. Research shows that infants who are not exclusively breastfed for their first six months of life are more likely to develop a wide range of chronic and acute diseases, including ear infections, diarrheal diseases, asthma, Sudden Infant Death Syndrome, obesity and respiratory illnesses. Mothers also benefit from breastfeeding with a decreased risk for breast and ovarian cancers.

Despite most mothers wanting to breastfeed, many are met with barriers that keep them from achieving their personal breastfeeding goals. Support and encouragement from all angles can make success possible for mothers who wish to breastfeed. Negative attitudes and practices of the mother's closest support network can pose a sizeable barrier, making it difficult for mothers and babies to successfully breastfeed.

Georgians can be affected by disasters at any time. Preparing for emergencies is essential.


The North Georgia Health District is collaborating with key partners to prepare our communities for emergencies ranging from natural disasters, such as severe weather, to potential public health crises, such as pandemic influenza. Likewise, individuals and families need to be ready for emergencies, and there is no better time to prepare than September, National Preparedness Month.


Just as community-wide emergency preparedness efforts are underway among district and local public health officials, emergency management agencies, emergency medical services, law enforcement, fire departments, hospitals, healthcare facilities, non-profit volunteer agencies, government agencies, schools, faith-based organizations and businesses in Cherokee, Fannin, Gilmer, Murray, Pickens and Whitfield Counties, families and individuals should also plan as though they will be without electricity, water service, access to a supermarket or other local services for at least three days. Follow these steps:

On August 25 in Gilmer County, two male mixed-breed Labrador Retrievers fought and killed a raccoon that was later confirmed as positive for carrying the rabies virus.


Rabies VirusGilmer County Environmental Health Manager Andrea Martin said, “The incident took place five miles out Chatsworth Highway in the vicinity of Gates Chapel Road.”


The raccoon was prepared for rabies testing by the VCA Appalachian Animal Hospital in East Ellijay on August 26, and then Martin shipped the specimen to the Georgia Public Health Laboratory. The positive test result for rabies was reported on August 28.


Martin stated that, of the two dogs, only one is current on its rabies vaccination. For the vaccinated dog, the recommendation is that it be revaccinated and it is required that the dog be observed at home for 45 days. However, the second dog is not vaccinated and is over 10 years old; therefore, the owner is going to have it euthanized.


No human exposure was reported in this incident.


Health officials urge residents to maintain current rabies vaccinations in their pets.