Flu Vaccine is In!

Flu shots are now available at the Public Health offices in Afton and Kemmerer.

whoneedsvaccine_red_120x600The vaccine is the standard trivalent (2 A strains and 1 B strain) and is available to all people ages 6 months and up. The cost for a flu vaccine for ages 3 years and up is $20. The cost for a child ages 6 months to 2 years is $10. We accept Medicare, Medicaid, Kidcare Chip, Blue Cross Blue Shield, and most other private insurances. Please bring your cards with you in order to receive your shots. You can call and make an appointment for your shots or walk in as long as a nurse is in to administer the vaccine.

We will have our standard flu shot clinics all through the month of October. Visit the  Flu Shots page for a current schedule of our clinics. Do your part to help keep knock the flu out of our communities – get immunized!

Contact the Kemmerer office at 877-3780 and the Afton office at 885-9598 to make your flu shot appointments.

official flu fighter

NPM: Connecting with Family During an Emergency

Disaster could strike at anytime! It is very possible that you and your family will not be together, some
may be at work, school, traveling, out shopping, or somewhere in between. Because of this, it is very
important that you have a family communications plan. Planning recommendations include:

  •  Identify an out-of-town contact, such as a friend or relative, who family members can call to let
    them know they are safe. It may be easier to make a long-distance phone call than to call across town,
    because phone lines can be jammed. An out-of-town contact may be in a better position to
    communicate among separated family members.
  •  Teach your family members how to text. It may seem like second nature to some of us, but not
    everyone texts. During an emergency, it is often easier to get a text message delivered rather than a
    phone call.
  • If you have a cell phone, program that person(s) as “ICE” (In Case of Emergency) in your phone.
    If you are in an accident, emergency personnel will often check your ICE listings in order to get a hold
    of someone you know. Make sure to tell your family and friends that you have listed them as
    emergency contacts.
  • Subscribe to an emergency alert system. Check with your local health department or emergency
    management agency to see if there is one offered for your area. Post emergency telephone numbers
    by home phones or save them in your cell phone (fire, police, ambulance, etc.).
  • Teach children how and when to call 911 for help.
  • Identify a location to meet in town and out of town
    For more information and templates for developing a Family Communication Plan, visit

    http://www.ready.gov/make-a-plan

The Ready.gov Make A Plan site includes information and templates for:
 Family Communication during an emergency
 Family Communication Plan for Parents and Kids
 School and workplace plans
 Commuter Emergency Plan

Download this Family_Emegency_Plan and this Family Communication Plan today.


 

All information in this blog post is courtesy of FEMA and Wyoming Department of Health Emergency Preparedness. 

September is National Preparedness Month

AP!_General_Web_Banner_300x250Are you and your family prepared if disaster strikes? The universal building blocks of preparedness are:

1. Be Informed

2. Make a Plan

3. Build a Kit

4. Get Involved

Last year was an important reminder to all of us that disasters can strike anytime and anyplace. Nearly every region
of the country experienced some form of extreme weather event, including devastating tornadoes in Oklahoma,
scorching wildfires near Yosemite National Park, and destructive flooding in Colorado.

As with many life events, preparation is the key to success. When you prepare and practice for an emergency in
advance of an event, it makes a real difference in your ability to take immediate and informed action when it matters
most. Early action can also help you to recover more quickly.

That’s why thousands of individuals, organizations, schools, houses of worship, and local governments across the
Nation are actively participating in a new national campaign for action – America’s PrepareAthon!
(www.ready.gov/prepare).

Preparing for disasters is a year-round activity. It’s not a matter of if the next disaster will happen, but when. Start taking action and prepare now! Simple steps such as having a discussion and/or conducting a quick drill can help determine what you need to do next to become more prepared. Be smart, take part, and prepare for emergencies before they strike!

 


The information in this blog post is courtesy of FEMA and Wyoming Department of Health Emergency Preparedness. 

 

NIAM: Vaccines are for adults, too!

Adults

 

All adults should get vaccines to protect their health. Even healthy adults can
become seriously ill, and can pass certain illnesses on to others. Immunization is
especially important for adults 60 years of age and older, and for those who have
a chronic condition such as asthma, COPD, diabetes or heart disease.
Immunization is also important for anyone who is in close contact with the very
young, the very old, people with weakened immune systems, and those who
cannot be vaccinated.

All adults should get:
Influenza (flu) vaccine: Each year to protect against the seasonal flu.

Td or Tdap: Every adult should get the Tdap vaccine once if they did not
receive it as an adolescent to protect against pertussis (whooping cough),
and then a Td (tetanus, diphtheria) booster shot every 10 years. In
addition, women are also recommended to get the Tdap vaccine each
time they are pregnant, preferably at 27 through 36 weeks.
The need for other adult vaccines – such as shingles, pneumococcal, hepatitis,
HPV – depends on one’s age, occupation, travel, health status, and other risk
factors.

Vaccination is important because it not only protects the person receiving
the vaccine, but also helps prevent the spread of certain diseases to those
who are most vulnerable to serious complications, such as infants and
young children, elderly, and those with chronic conditions and weakened
immune systems.

Unfortunately, far too few adults are receiving the recommended vaccines,
leaving themselves and their loved ones vulnerable to serious diseases.

In 2102: (NHIS 2012)
o Only 14% of adults 19 years or older had received Tdap
vaccination.
o Only 20% of adults 60 years or older had received zoster
vaccination.
o Only 20% of adults 19 to 64 years at high risk had received
pneumococcal vaccination.
• Although adults believe immunization is important, many are unaware that
they need vaccines. Health care professionals play a critical role in
educating their patients about recommended vaccines and ensuring that
they are fully immunized.
• CDC asks ALL health care professionals – whether they provide
immunization services or not – to routinely assess the vaccine needs of
their patients and make a strong recommendation for needed
vaccinations.
• Adults should talk with their doctors to learn which vaccines are
recommended for them and take steps to stay up to date.
• Vaccines are available at private doctors’ offices, as well as other
convenient locations such as pharmacies, workplaces, community health
clinics and health departments.

 

 

Call us to find out if you could be due for some booster immunizations. We carry TdaP, Td, Hepatitis A, Hepatitis B, Pneumococcal, Shingles, HPV, and Meningitis for adults. If you are a Wyoming resident age 19 and older and are uninsured or your insurance does NOT cover immunizations, you could qualify for our Vaccines for Uninsured Adults program where you can receive vaccines for a reduced price. Call us at 885-9598 to make an appointment. Flu shots should be available in our offices as early as the end of September. Watch for ads for flu clinics in October.


All the information and infographics in this blog post are courtesy of the National Public Health Information Coalition and by the Center for Disease Control.

 

NIAM: Back to School!

BackToSchool

Now that a new school year is upon us, it’s time to start thinking beyond the school clothes and supplies shopping and check your child’s immunization records to make sure they’re up to date on their shots. The Lincoln County School District has an immunization policy that is important to follow in order to make sure your child has all the protection they need against vaccine preventable diseases that become so much easier to be exposed to when kids get together in enclosed spaces (such as classrooms and lunchrooms) for long periods of time.

When children are not vaccinated, they are at increased risk for disease and can spread disease to others in their classroom and community – including babies who are too young to be fully vaccinated, and people with weakened immune systems due to cancer and other health conditions. Schools are highly susceptible to outbreaks of infectious diseases because students can easily transmit illnesses to one another as a result of poor hand washing, uncovered coughs and dense populations.

Children age 4 to 6 are due for boosters of four vaccines: DTaP (diphtheria, tetanus, pertussis), chickenpox, MMR (measles, mumps, rubella) and polio. Starting at 11 or 12 –preteens and teens – need Tdap (tetanus, diphtheria, pertussis), MenACWY (meningococcal conjugate vaccine) and HPV (human papilloma virus) vaccines. A yearly flu vaccine is recommended for all children 6 months and older.

Some key things to consider during this back to school season: 

  • Immunizations create a shield of protection at school and at home.Given recent outbreaks, it’s important that children be protected from dangerous and highly contagious diseases like pertussis (also called whooping cough) and measles.
  • Vaccines don’t just protect your child. Some diseases, like whooping cough, can be deadly for newborns or infants. You can help protect our littlest community members from being exposed to vaccine-preventable diseases by making sure your child is up to date.
  • Many parents have never witnessed the damaging effects of a vaccine-preventable disease. As a result, they are not aware of the continued importance of getting all children vaccinated.
  • Diseases like measles are only a plane ride away. Measles epidemics are occurring in the Philippines with nearly 32,000 cases as of April 20, 2014.
  • Vaccines are among the safest and most cost-effective ways to prevent disease. Protecting your children from preventable diseases will help keep them healthy and in school.
  • When a child comes down with a disease such as whooping cough, chickenpox or the flu, he or she may miss a lot of school while recovering. Somebody will need to stay home to provide care and make trips to the doctor.
  • Schools are a prime venue for transmitting vaccine-preventable diseases, and school-age children can further spread disease to their families and others with whom they come in contact.
  • As you get ready to send your children back to school, educate yourself. Learn about the benefits and possible side effects of vaccinations.
  • If you haven’t already, check your child’s immunization record and schedule a visit to their physician or clinic. Doing so now will avoid a potential last minute rush and will help make sure there are no surprises on the first day back to school.
  • The Lincoln County School District requires children to be up to date on vaccinations before enrolling or starting school in order to protect the health of all students.
  • If you are unsure of your state’s school immunization requirements, check with your child’s doctor, school or give Public Health a call.
  • Take advantage of any visit to the doctor – checkups, sick visits, even physicals for sports or college – to ask the doctor about what vaccinations your child needs.

Kindergarten does not mark the end of our immunization needs. Your preteens and teens need them, too. The following are very important vaccines that are available to this age group: 

Click parent-version-schedule-7-18yrs for an easy to read schedule of immunizations for preteens/teens.

HPV is cancer prevention.

  • HPV is short for human papillomavirus. HPV is a life-saving vaccine that protects against cervical and anal cancers and other diseases caused by HPV. Preteens and teens need the HPV vaccine now to prevent HPV cancers later.
  • About 79 million people in the U. S., most in their teens and early 20s, are infected with HPV.
  • HPV vaccine is recommended by CDC and major medical groups, including the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), the American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP), and) and other medical societies, for 11 or 12 year olds, for protection from HPV infection and HPV-related disease. For teens who have not started the series at 11 or 12 years, it’s not too late and can still be beneficial to get the vaccine as soon as possible.
  • HPV vaccine works best when it is given to boys and girls at age 11 or 12 years. Also preteens need to complete the HPV vaccines series prior to any exposure to HPV. That’s why HPV vaccination is recommended for preteen girls and boys at age 11 or 12 years—the idea is true prevention.
  • Either HPV vaccine (Cervarix® or Gardasil®) can be given to girls or young women. Only one HPV vaccine (Gardasil®) can be given to boys and young men.
  • The HPV vaccine has a very good safety record. More than 67 million doses have been distributed, and vaccine safety studies continue to show that HPV vaccines are safe.
  • Take advantage of any visit to the doctor – checkups, sick visits, even physicals for sports or college – to ask the doctor about what shots your preteens and teens need.
  • For more information about HPV and HPV vaccine: www.cdc.gov/hpv

Influenza: Get the flu vaccine every year.  

  • The single best way to prevent the flu is to get the flu vaccine, which protects against different strains of seasonal influenza.
  • Everyone 6 months and older – including preteens and teens – should get a flu vaccine every year, both to protect themselves and to help keep illness from spreading.
  • Children under the age of 9 may require more than one dose. Talk to your child’s health care professional to find out if they need more than one dose.
  • Flu vaccine protects against flu and the other health problems flu can cause, like dehydration (loss of body fluids), which can make asthma or diabetes worse, or even pneumonia.
  • Children should get the flu vaccine every year as soon as it’s available, usually in the fall. It is very important for children with chronic health conditions like asthma or diabetes to get the flu shot, but the flu can be serious for even healthy children.
  • Flu seasons are unpredictable and can be severe. Annual flu vaccination should begin by September or as soon as vaccine is available, and continue throughout the flu season. Flu season can begin as early as October and last as late as May. Seasonal flu activity usually peaks in January, February or later.
  • It takes about two weeks after vaccination for antibodies to develop for protection against influenza virus infection. Flu vaccines will not protect against flu-like illnesses caused by non-influenza viruses.
  • Complications of flu can include bacterial pneumonia, ear infections, sinus infections, dehydration and worsening of chronic medical conditions, such as congestive heart failure, asthma or diabetes.
  • A 2013 study by CDC flu experts estimated that cumulatively over six flu seasons, from 2005 to 2011, flu vaccination averted approximately 13.6 million illnesses, 5.8 million medical visits, and approximately 112,900 flu-related hospitalizations in the U. S.

For more information: www.cdc.gov/vaccines/who/teens/vaccines/flu.html

Tdap: Help keep whooping cough from spreading.

  • Tdap vaccine is a booster recommended at age 11 or 12 to protect against three serious diseases: tetanus, diphtheria, and pertussis (also called whooping cough). It is also recommended for any teens (13 to 18 years old) who haven’t had this shot yet.
  • The Tdap vaccine takes the place of what used to be called the tetanus booster.
  • If your child has not received any or all of the DTaP vaccine series, or if you don’t know if your child has received these shots, your child needs a single dose of Tdap when they are 7 to 10 years old. Talk to your health care professional to find out if they need additional catch-up vaccines.
  • Tdap vaccine is especially important for older children and adults who will have close contact with newborn babies or infants younger than 1 year.
  • Tetanus, diphtheria, and pertussis are all caused by bacteria.
    • Both diphtheria and pertussis are spread from person to person.
    • Tetanus enters the body through cuts, scratches or wounds.
  • Data show that more than 48,000 cases of pertussis occurred in 2012, a nearly 60-year high. While overall reporting of pertussis declined during 2013, 13 states and Washington, D.C. reported an increase in pertussis cases compared with the same time during 2012.
  • CDC’s current estimate is that Tdap vaccination protects about 65 out of 100 adolescents who receive it.
  • Tdap is an effective vaccine, but it does not protect as well as we would like and may only protect against whooping cough for a few years.

Meningococcal Conjugate Vaccine: Protection against meningococcal disease.

  • The meningococcal conjugate vaccine (MenACWY) is recommended for all preteens at age 11 or 12 for protection against some of the bacteria that cause meningococcal disease. The two most severe and common illnesses caused by meningococcal disease are meningitis (an infection of the fluid and lining around the brain and spinal cord) and septicemia (a bloodstream infection).
  • Meningitis can be very serious, even fatal.
  • A second shot is recommended for teens at age 16 to continue providing protection when their risk for meningococcal disease is highest.
  • Teens who didn’t receive meningococcal conjugate vaccine for the first time until age 13 through 15 years will also need a second dose at 16.
  • Older teens who haven’t received any meningococcal conjugate vaccine shots should get one as soon as possible.
  • If your teenager missed getting the vaccine altogether, ask his or her health care professional about getting it now, especially if your teenager is about to move into a college dorm or military barracks.

For more information about the meningococcal conjugate vaccine:  www.cdc.gov/vaccines/who/teens/vaccines/mcv.html


So inform yourself during this back to school season and make the best choice for your children’s health. Lincoln County Public Health carries all recommended and required vaccines for school children. Give us a call at 885-9598 to ask questions or make an appointment for your child.


 

All the information and infographics in this blog post are courtesy of the National Public Health Information Coalition and by the Center for Disease Control.

National Immunization Awareness Month

August in National Immunization Awareness Month and Public Health has all the information you need to inform yourself about vaccine preventable diseases and the benefits of vaccinating yourselves and your families. Join us this month as we share this information with you.

AHealthyStart

Vaccines give parents the power to protect their babies from 14 serious diseases before they turn 2.

 

  • Vaccinating your children according to the recommended schedule is one of the best ways you can protect them from 14 harmful and potentially deadly diseases before their second birthday.
  • Children who don’t receive recommended vaccines are at risk of 1) getting the disease or illness, and 2) having a severe case of the disease or illness. You can’t predict or know in advance if an unvaccinated child will get a vaccine-preventable disease, nor can you predict or know how severe the illness will be or become.
  • Vaccines don’t just protect your child. Immunization is a shared responsibility. Families, health care professionals and public health officials must work together to help protect the entire community – especially babies who are too young to be vaccinated themselves.
  • Most parents are vaccinating their children. Estimates from a CDC nationally representative childhood vaccine communications poll (April 2012 online poll) suggest that most people are vaccinating according to schedule. In fact, 88 percent of parents reported that they are vaccinating according to schedule or are intending to do so.
  • Most young parents in the U.S. have never seen the devastating effects that diseases like polio, measles or whooping cough (pertussis) can have on a family or community. It’s easy to think of these as diseases of the past. But the truth is they still exist.
  • Many vaccine preventable diseases are only a plane ride away. For example, measles is not very common in the U.S. because most people are protected through vaccination, but it is still common in many parts of the world. The disease is brought into the United States by unvaccinated travelers who are infected while abroad. Once reaching this country, measles spreads quickly in unvaccinated populations. This year, the United States is experiencing a record number of reported measles cases. Many of these cases are associated with measles importations from other countries, including the Philippines, where an outbreak began in October 2013. Most of the reported measles cases occurred in people who were not vaccinated or whose vaccination status was unknown.
  • Large outbreaks of whooping cough (pertussis) have also occurred in parts of the U.S. over the past few years. Reported cases of whooping cough vary from year to year and tend to peak every 3-5 years, but not every state peaks at the same time. This pattern is not completely understood, but that’s why it’s important that everyone get vaccinated. If it weren’t for vaccines, we’d see many more cases of whooping cough.

 

Vaccines are recommended throughout our lives.

Following the recommended schedule offers the best protection.

 

  • Following the recommended schedule protects as many children as possible, before they are exposed to potentially life-threatening diseases.
  • Depending on the vaccine, more than one dose is needed to build high enough immunity to prevent disease, boost immunity that fades over time, help to make sure people who did not get immunity from a first dose are protected, or protect against germs that change over time, such as the flu.
  • Every dose of a vaccine is important because they all protect against infectious diseases that are threats today. These diseases can be especially serious for infants and very young children.
  • Children do not receive any known benefits from following schedules that delay vaccines. Delaying vaccines puts children at known risk of becoming ill with vaccine-preventable diseases.

 

Talk to your doctor or other health care professional to make sure your children get the vaccinations they need when they need them.

 

 Health care professionals are parents’ most trusted source of information about vaccines for their children. They play a critical role in supporting parents in understanding and choosing vaccines.

 

 Parents are encouraged to talk to their health care professionals about their vaccine-related questions and concerns.

 

 

  • Families who need help paying for childhood vaccines should ask their health care provider about the Vaccines for Children program, which provides vaccines at no cost to eligible children who do not otherwise have access to immunization.

 

Vaccines are very safe.

 

  • Vaccines are thoroughly tested before licensing and carefully monitored after they are licensed to ensure that they are very safe.

 

  • Vaccines are among the safest and most cost-effective ways to prevent disease. They not only protect vaccinated individuals but also help protect entire communities by preventing and reducing the spread of infectious diseases.

 

  • Currently the U.S. has the safest, most effective vaccine supply in its history. The country’s longstanding and effective vaccine safety system ensures that vaccines are as safe as possible.

 

 

journey-of-child-vaccine_sm


 

These are the most common diseases we vaccinate children for: 

Hep B vaccine protects against hepatitis B.
Doctors recommend children get 3-4 doses of the hepatitis B shot for best protection. Typically, children need one dose at each of the following ages: birth, 1 through 3 months, and 6 through 18 months.

  • Hepatitis B is spread by contact with bodily fluids.
  • Symptoms: There may be no symptoms, or there may be fever, stomach pain, loss of appetite, vomiting, fatigue, jaundice (yellowing of skin and eyes) and dark urine.
  • Complications: liver failure, joint pain, kidney, pancreatic or blood disorders.

RV vaccine protects against rotavirus.
Doctors recommend children get 2 or 3 doses of the vaccine (depending on the brand of vaccine) for best protection. Babies should get the first dose at 2 months of age. For both vaccine brands, babies get a second dose at 4 months. If getting RotaTeq, babies need a third dose at 6 months.

  • The virus is in the stool (feces) of people who are infected with the virus. It is spread by hands, diapers, or objects like toys, changing tables, or doorknobs that have a small amount of the stool on them. The disease commonly spreads in families, hospitals, and child care centers.
  • Symptoms: diarrhea, fever and vomiting.
  • Complications: diarrhea, dehydration.

 

DTaP vaccine protects against diphtheria / tetanus / pertussis.
Doctors recommend children get 5 doses of the DTaP vaccine for best protection.  Children need one dose at each of the following ages: 2 months, 4 months, 6 months, 15 through 18 months, and 4 through 6 years of age.

  • Diphtheria is spread through the air and direct contact with an infected person.
  • Symptoms: sore throat, mild fever, weakness, sore glands in neck
  • Complications: swelling of the heart muscle, heart failure, coma, paralysis, death.
  • Tetanus is spread from exposure through cuts in the skin.
  • Symptoms: stiffness in neck and abdominal muscles, difficulty swallowing, muscle spasms, fever.
  • Complications: broken bones, breathing difficulty, death.
  • Pertussis (whooping cough) is spread through the air and direct contact with a person who was whooping cough
  • Symptoms: severe cough, runny nose, apnea (pause in breathing) in infants
  • Complications: pneumonia (infection in the lungs), death

 

Hib vaccine protects against Haemophilis influenzae type b.

Doctors recommend children get 4 doses of the Hib vaccine for best protection.  Children need one dose at each of the following ages: 2 months, 4 months, 6 months (for some brands), and 12 through 15 months.

  • Haemophilis influenzae type b is spread through the air and direct contact with a person who has Hib.
  • Symptoms: There may be no symptoms unless bacteria enter the blood.
  • Complications: meningitis (infection of the covering around the brain and spinal cord), intellectual disability, epiglottis (life-threatening infection that can block the windpipe and lead to serious breathing problems), pneumonia (infection in the lungs), death.

 

PCV13 vaccine protects against pneumococcal disease.

Doctors recommend children get 4 doses of the pneumococcal vaccine for best protection.  Children need one dose at each of the following ages: 2 months, 4 months, 6 months, and 12 through 15 months of age.

  • Pneumococcal disease spreads through the air and direct contact with an infected person.
  • Symptoms: There may be no symptoms, or there may be pneumonia (infection in the lungs).
  • Complications: bacteremia (blood infection), meningitis (infection of the covering around the brain and spinal cord), death.

IPV vaccine protects against polio.

Doctors recommend children get 4 doses of the polio vaccine (also called IPV) for best protection.  Children need one dose at each of the following ages: 2 months, 4 months, 6 through 18 months, and 4 through 6 years.

  • Polio is spread through the air, by direct contact with a person who has polio, and through oral/nasal secretions.
  • Symptoms: There may be no symptoms, or there may be sore throat, fever, nausea, headache.
  • Complications: paralysis, death.

 

Flu vaccine protects against influenza.

Doctors recommend children get the flu vaccine every year starting when they are 6 months old.  Some children 6 months through 8 years of age may need 2 doses for best protection.

 

  • Influenza is spread through the air and direct contact with a person who has influenza.
  • Symptoms: fever, muscle pain, sore throat, cough, extreme fatigue.
  • Complications: pneumonia (infection in the lungs).

 

MMR vaccine protects against measles / mumps / rubella.

Doctors recommend that children get 2 doses of the MMR shot for best protection. Children need one dose at each of the following ages: 12 through 15 months and 4 through 6 years.  Infants 6 months to 11 months old need 1 dose of MMR vaccine before traveling abroad.

  • Measles is spread through the air and direct contact with a person who has measles.
  • Symptoms: rash, fever, cough, runny nose, pinkeye.
  • Complications: encephalitis (brain swelling) pneumonia (infection in the lungs), death.

 

  • Mumps is spread through the air and direct contact with a person who has mumps.
  • Symptoms: swollen salivary glands (under the jaw), fever, headache, tiredness, muscle pain.
  • Complications: meningitis (infection of the covering around the brain and spinal cord), encephalitis (brain swelling), pneumonia (infection in the lungs), inflammation of testicles or ovaries, deafness.
  • Rubella is spread through the air and direct contact with a person who has rubella.
  • Symptoms: Children infected with rubella virus sometimes have a rash, fever, swollen lymph nodes.
  • Complications: very serious in pregnant women – can lead to miscarriage, stillbirth, premature delivery, birth defects.

 

Varicella vaccine protects against chickenpox.

Doctors recommend children get 2 doses of the chickenpox shot for best protection. Children need one dose at each of the following ages: 12 through 15 months and 4 through 6 years.

  • Chickenpox is spread through the air and direct contact with a person who has chickenpox.
  • Symptoms: rash, tiredness, headache, fever.
  • Complications: infected blisters, bleeding disorders, encephalitis (brain swelling), pneumonia (infection in the lungs).

 

Hepatitis A vaccine protects against hepatitis A.

Doctors recommend children get 2 doses of the hepatitis A shot for best protection.  Children need the first dose at 12 through 23 months and the second dose 6 to 18 months after the first.

  • Hepatitis A is spread through direct contact with a person who has hepatitis A and contaminated food or water.
  • Symptoms: There may be no symptoms, or there may be fever, stomach pain, loss of appetite, fatigue, jaundice (yellowing of skin or eyes), dark urine.

Complications: liver failure, joint pain, kidney, pancreatic and blood disorders.

Click this link for an easy to read Immunization Schedule for children: parent-ver-sch-0-6yrs

 

 


All the information and infographics in this blog post are courtesy of the National Public Health Information Coalition and by the Center for Disease Control.

 

 

 

Happy Summer from Lincoln County Public Health

Public Health had an excellent time at this year’s Fossil Fest in Kemmerer. We handed out a lot of free water and a lot of free sunscreen. Thanks to everyone who stopped by to see us!

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Make sure you come say hello to us at the Lincoln County Fair August 5th through 9th. We’ll have free water, sunscreen, mini first aid kits, and a raffle for larger first aid supplies kits that are super handy to keep in your family emergency readiness stash at home!

 

Healthier You Tip #9

We deal with thunderstorms every summer.  They can be deadly.

lightning_safety_456px

Some points to remember:

  •  Lightning can strike you even with the main thunderstorm 10 miles away.
  •  Lightning can travel through sprinkler pipe, fences and anything metal.
  • Take cover during a thunderstorm.

 

More information on lightning safety can be found at the following website:

http://www.cdc.gov/features/lightning-safety/

Check out the “more information” portion of that site for additional resources about lightning and thunderstorm safety.

 

So all of  you with outdoor activities remember to “Read and Heed.”  Are you taking a scout or youth  group out camping?  Know the dangers of lightning and what you can do to be safe.

 

–written by Dean Burnham

Flood Water Health Risks

News from the Wyoming Department of Health

 

Health Risks associated with Floodwaters:

 

1. Floodwaters may contain bacteria from human and animal wastes; they can also transport disease-carrying materials from barnyards, feedlots or sewage disposal systems.

  •  The most likely symptoms from an infection are stomach-ache, fever, vomiting and diarrhea.
  • It is important to remember to wash your hands after having contact with floodwaters or other contaminated materials.

2. Food Safety may be a concern if food or food containers come in contact with floodwater or other contaminated materials, or if it was not stored at correct temperatures.

  • Clean surfaces that hold food. (1. Use soap and warm, safe water; 2. Rinse with safe water; 3. Soak 1 minute with a mix of 1 Tablespoon household chlorine bleach per gallon of safe water; 4. Allow to air dry.)
  • If you lose power, a refrigerator will keep food cool for 4-6 hours if you keep it closed. Food will stay frozen for one day in a freezer that is half-full and kept closed; or up to 2 days if it is full.

3.  Safe drinking water concerns:

  •  Residents who receive their water from a city or other public water supply source should watch and listen for public announcements about the safety of their water and follow the specific advice offered.
  •  Flooded private water wells can sometimes make the water drawn from that well unsafe.

People who receive their water from a private well that has been flooded should not drink the water or use it to wash dishes, brush teeth, wash and prepare food, make ice, make baby formula or otherwise use for human consumption without taking precautions.

Flooded, private water wells will need to be tested and disinfected after flood waters recede. Below are things that a well owner can look for, any one of these signs may indicate that a well is contaminated. Most private wells have the pump located inside the well casing and submerged, so well owners will probably not be able to inspect the pump. Well owners should contact a qualified professional, registered well driller or pump contractor, to evaluate and service well pumps.

  • Is the well located in or near the area that was flooded? If you did not see the area during the flood, debris and mud in the area and water or mud stains on the well can indicate that the well was flooded.
  •  Is the ground surface around the well intact and stable? During flooding the ground around the well may erode, possibly creating unsafe conditions or a pathway for surface water and contaminants to enter the well.
  • Are there any electrical components or wires visible? Visible electrical wires may be dangerous and should be avoided due to electrical shock. If electrical connections or controls located outside the well casing remain submerged,turning on the pump may cause electrical shock or damage to the system. A qualified electrician should be contacted.
  •  Is any damage to the well casing visible? A bent or cracked well casing may allow surface water, sediment and debris to enter the well and will increase the risk of contamination.
  •  Is the well cap and seal securely fastened to the well casing? A loose well cap canallow sediment and debris to enter the well and contaminate it.

o Safe water for human consumption includes bottled water or water that has been boiled
for at least three minutes.

  • Chemical contamination of floodwaters can also occur and contamination levels may be higher nearer to sources such as industrial locations.

o Possible symptoms from chemical contamination are headache, nausea, burns, and skin irritation.


4. Tetanus – widespread in environment; even more so in warm, wet conditions. Workers and volunteers involved in flood mitigation or clean-up efforts may be at higher risk for injury and should assess if they are up-to-date on their tetanus immunizations.

  • Adults should have routine boosters every 10 years; if injured, maybe sooner.
  •  Post-injury: If minor and clean wound, booster needed if > 10 years since last booster, OR if patient has not had at least 3 previous boosters

If wound dirty, severe, or puncture, booster needed if > 5 years since last booster, OR if patient has not had at least 3 previous boosters.  In certain situations your healthcare provider may determine that additional treatment in the form of tetanus immune globulin (TIG) is needed.


5.  The improper use of alternative power sources such as portable generators can cause carbon monoxide poisoning.

  •  If using portable generators, place outside in well ventilated areas away from doors, windows, or ventilation intake ports to enclosed spaces.

6.  Work in and around moving or standing water in flooded areas presents a risk of drowning.

7. Standing or working in water which is cooler than 75 degrees F (24 degrees C) will remove body heat more rapidly than it can be replaced, resulting in hypothermia.


8. Electrical, overhead power lines, power junctions, and downed electrical wires and cables can cause electrocution and burns.


9. Mold can grow within 12 to 24 hours after a flood.

  •  May be visible, or not visible and only detected by odor or adverse reactions.
  • May cause allergic or respiratory type symptoms in sensitive people.
  • Suggest wearing respiratory protection, such as high-efficiency mask (e.g. N95) if see mold in working space, and also if experiencing allergic or respiratory symptoms while working in dirty, dusty conditions. Can buy these high-efficiency masks at home improvement stores (often in painting section).

Avoid stray/wild animals. Bites from such animals can pose many health hazards, including rabies. If bitten, seek immediate medical attention. 10. Standing water left by a flood can make mosquito numbers rise. Greater river flow can lead to larger numbers of biting flies. Other insects, such as wasps, may become very aggressive.

  • Wear insect repellent containing DEET, and long sleeves and long pants to avoid insect (particularly mosquito) bites.
  • If you need any additional resources for West Nile, refer to the following website: http://www.health.wyo.gov/phsd/skeeter/index.html

For More Information: Contact your local public health unit, or call the Wyoming Department of Health at 877-996-9000. To Download a PDF copy of this information, click this link: Health Risks floodwaters

Healthier You Tip#8: Wood Tick Season

written by: Dean Burnham

Wyoming and its Spring Time!!!

 

You just got to love it!    Wyoming has a rough time jump starting into spring.  It can be sunny and warm, cloudy and rainy, cold, cloudy and snowing all within a few hours.

You have been waiting for the warmer weather so you can get out and go hiking, enjoying the out-of-doors, taking photos of nature, yard work or just plain kicking back and enjoying the change in the weather.

Boy and Girl Running in Tall Grass

Remember it is wood tick season.  Make sure you use an insect repellent with “deet” and make sure you spray areas  where wood ticks can enter.  Waist and leg openings, shirt collar, arm openings.  Wood ticks can hitch a ride when you brush up against vegetation.  Open ridges, side slopes, aspen stands and forested areas are home to wood ticks.

RockyMtWoodPair

 

So have fun outdoors this spring and summer but take care not to bring any of these little guys back with you.