Healthy people, families, and communities.



FP Social Media Ad for teens3-4web


North Georgia Health District Public Health Departments in Cherokee, Fannin, Gilmer, Murray, Pickens and Whitfield Counties offer FREE Family Planning services to teens 19 and under!

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These free services include:


  • A full range of birth control options, including Long-Acting Reversible Contraception (LARC)
  • Screening and treatment for STDs/HIV
  • Reproductive life planning
  • Health history and physical examination
  • Pregnancy testing and counseling


Click on the LOCATIONS tab above to find the contact information for each of our County Health Departments.


Contact the nearest health department today!

For anyone who is on well water that is contaminated by flooding, be sure to watch this helpful Emergency Well Disinfection video by the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control. This video contains procedures for disinfecting private wells after extreme conditions.Emergency Well Disinfection Video pic for web

To those affected by severe weather this season--Stay safe out there! Use these tips from to minimize food loss and risk of illness when the power comes back on and the waters recede.

Food Safety after Flood

North GeorgiaDue to recent weather conditions, any well or spring that has been covered with flood waters must be considered contaminated. Do not drink the water until after flood waters have receded, the well or spring has been disinfected with household bleach and the water has been laboratory tested. Contact the local county Environmental Health Office for questions and further instructions, if needed.

Shock Chlorination
Disinfecting a Well
Well disinfection is necessary if the well or spring was covered with flood waters. Before chlorinating, it is important to check the integrity of the well or spring water source to prevent future contamination. Well construction must prevent entry of surface water, debris, insects and animals. The well casing and concrete slab should be sealed and the well cap or sanitary seal must be secure. Springs should be in a sealed spring house.
  1. Thoroughly clean all accessible outside surfaces removing any loose debris and mud around the well or spring.Then, wash the well area with a strong chlorine solution (1 quart of household bleach per 5 gallon of water).
  2. Determine the amount of water in the well. Calculate the amount of bleach chlorine needed. DO NOT USE SCENTED BLEACHES. Health officials recommend using the normal strength household bleach, which is 5.25 percent sodium hypochlorite.
  3. Remove the well cap or place a funnel into the small vent pipe of the well cap. Use the table below and add the appropriate amount of bleach. A minimum of 50 ppm chlorine solution is required:Water Well cleansing chart
  4. Run water from an outside faucet through a hose until a strong chlorine odor can be detected.Place the end of the hose in the well allowing the water to run down the sides of the casing and circulate for at least 15 minutes.Replace the well cap.
  5. Turn off the hose and enter the home opening each tap, one at a time, until the smell of chlorine can be detected. Please include hot water faucets, toilets, bathtubs, washing machine, etc.
  6. Once the chlorine odor reaches all outlets, let the water system stand for 8 hours, preferably overnight. Refrain from any water use during this time, except for flushing toilets.    
  7. Flush the system of chlorine by turning on an outside faucet letting it run until the chlorine odor dissipates. Finally, run indoor faucets until the water is clear and the chlorine odor is gone. Do not run any unnecessary water into the septic system or allow the chlorinated water to drain directly into a stream or pond. Continue this process until the odor of bleach is completely gone.
  8. The water should be laboratory tested to determine if it is safe to drink. It is recommended that over the next several weeks two additional samples be taken to be sure results are satisfactory. Repeated chlorination and/or a well professional should be called if problems remain.
  9. If not sure how to disinfect a well or spring, how to take a well sample or how to get laboratory results, contact the local county Environmental Health Office.

Protect Yourself and Those You Love for the Holidays:

Get Vaccinated Against the Flu!


  1. NIVW-2015-IconCDC established National Influenza Vaccination Week (NIVW) in 2005 to highlight the importance of continuing flu vaccination through the holiday season and beyond. NIVW is scheduled for December 6-12, 2015.
    1. Flu vaccination coverage estimates from past years have shown that influenza vaccination activity drops quickly after the end of November. CDC and its partners want to remind you that even though the holiday season has arrived, it is not too late to get your flu vaccine.
    2. As long as flu viruses are spreading and causing illness, vaccination can provide protection against the flu and should continue.
    3. Even if you haven’t yet been vaccinated and have already gotten sick with one flu virus, you can still benefit from vaccination since the flu vaccine protects against three or four different flu viruses (depending on which flu vaccine you get).
  1. CDC recommends a yearly flu vaccine for everyone 6 months of age and older as the first and most important step in protecting against influenza disease.
  2. Another goal of NIVW is to communicate the importance of flu vaccination for people who are at high risk for developing flu-related complications.
    • People at high risk of serious flu complications include young children, pregnant women, people with certain chronic health conditions like asthma, diabetes, heart disease or lung disease, and people aged 65 years and older.
    • For people at high risk, getting the flu can mean developing serious flu-related complications, like pneumonia, or a worsening of existing health conditions, which can lead to hospitalization or death.
    • A full list of “People at High Risk of Developing Flu–Related Complications” is available.

Learn more about influenza vaccination at


Reference: All information is from Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) website:   

PCHD BreastTest-Day 12-11-15 4web



Once again, Pickens County Health Department is providing Free Walk-In Breast Exams and Mammogram Referrals, if needed, at the Pickens County Community Center on Friday, December 11th from 8 am to 12 pm! Women must be between the ages of 40-64 and have no insurance to qualify. Call 706-253-2821 for more information.

By Andrea Martin, Environmental Health Manager, Gilmer County Health Department


As flood waters in this area recede and the most immediate safety hazards pass, it will be time to address the secondary health issues that can develop as the result of floodwater pollutants.

Be sure to protect your home, family and business by following these easy guidelines from Gilmer County Environmental Health.

CONTACT WITH FLOOD WATERS - Swimming and similar recreational water activities are not advised at this time. Flood waters contain large amounts of contaminants of all kinds. These fast flood waters will carry these contaminants downstream quickly, but for now do not have contact with flood waters. Fishing and other non-contact activities are not affected by this advisory.

SANITIZING FLOODED AREAS – Floors, walls, equipment and furniture that have been covered with flood waters should be cleaned and sanitized to kill any disease bacteria or viruses. Flood waters usually have sewage from over-running sewers and septic systems, manure and other contaminants. Wear gloves, eye protection and boots when working with flood
contaminated areas and items. An easy sanitizing solution is made from a quarter cup of household bleach and one gallon of water. Items should be cleaned with soap and water, rinsed and then sanitized with the bleach solution. This will kill any disease germs and help prevent mold. Do not mix bleach with any ammonia product and work in well-ventilated areas.

MOLD – Other than physical destruction of homes and businesses, mold is the most long-lasting effect of flooding. Materials in homes become soaked with water. In most cases it is necessary to take out the wet sheetrock, carpet and insulation materials so that wood studs and supports can dry. Unfortunately the drying process can take many days or longer unless fans and heaters are used to speed the process. Unless the structural wood materials are completely dried, mold will grow behind the walls and under the floors. Nothing really replaces drying out the building. Do not replace sheet rock and other materials until the wood is dry or mold will grow. If mold is already growing where wet materials have been removed, spray the area with a household bleach solution made from a half cup of bleach (no more) and one gallon of water. Keep area vented and wear eye protection, gloves and boots. Remember, never mix bleach with any cleaner that contains ammonia – this will release chlorine gas and can kill. Gilmer County Environmental Health staff is available to answer questions about mold and to come view the affected area if further assistance with this problem is needed.

Gilmer County Health Department is providing Free Walk-In Breast Exams and Mammogram Referrals, if needed, in their office at 28 Southside Church Street in Ellijay, on Friday, December 11th from 8 am to 12 pm! Women must be between the ages of 40-64 and have no insurance to qualify. Call 706-635-4363 for more information.