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SDHD's mission statement: "leading a collaborative effort to build a healthier community through improved access to health services, education and disease prevention."
Vision statement: “A healthy community for all”.
Woodbury County/Siouxland District Health Department Awarded $120,458 to Drive Down Chronic Diseases in Woodbury County, Iowa
New program will help create healthier communities in the U.S.
Today Woodbury County/Siouxland District Health Department (SDHD) was awarded a grant of $120,458 to increase the number of people with access to healthy food and beverage options, and physical activity opportunities in Woodbury County, Iowa.
The Partnerships to Improve Community Health (PICH) awards are part of a U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) initiative to support public health efforts to reduce chronic diseases, promote healthier lifestyles, reduce health disparities, and control health care spending. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) will administer the grants, which will run for 3 years, subject to availability of funds.
Overall, HHS awarded $50.3 million in new grant awards to 39 local health agencies. PICH is the newest generation in CDC’s long history of community efforts to create and strengthen healthy environments that make it easier for people to make healthy choices and take charge of their health.
Governmental agencies and nongovernmental organizations will work through multi-sector community coalitions to reduce tobacco use and exposure to secondhand smoke, improve nutrition, increase physical activity, and improve access to programs for preventing and managing chronic diseases. Projects will serve large cities and urban counties, small cities and counties, and American Indian tribes.
“We are very excited to have this opportunity to work with residents throughout Woodbury County on improving their health and wellbeing, through a variety of different health initiatives,” said Michelle Lewis, SDHD Health Planner and PICH Project Director.
Specifically, the work that SDHD will be doing includes working with worksites, childcare centers, physician offices, and rural communities to implement a variety of policy, system, and environmental changes to improve the health of Woodbury County residents. On-site gardens and Community Supported Agriculture drop sites will be developed, along with improvements in cafeteria and vending machine options will occur at worksites. Childcare centers will improve physical activity and nutrition programing by completing the Nutrition and Physical Activity Self-Assessment for Child Care (NAP SACC) program, and physician offices will be contacted about adopting a program similar to the Fruits and Vegetable Prescription ™ model, with having on-site produce available. Finally rural communities will be provided assistance in developing Safe Routes to School routes and implementing Complete Streets principals throughout their towns.
“The cost of managing chronic diseases in Woodbury County continues to grow,” said Kevin Grieme, SDHD Director and PICH Project Investigator. “In this country, chronic diseases such as heart disease, cancer, and diabetes are the leading causes of death, disability, and health care costs, accounting for 7 of 10 deaths among Americans each year, and more than 80 percent of the $2.7 trillion our nation spends annually on medical care.”
To learn more about Siouxland District Health Department’s prevention and wellness projects, visit www.livehealthysiouxland.org .
Mosquitoes & West Nile Virus
Mosquitoes are not JUST a nuisance. They sometimes carry diseases like West Nile Virus. Now is the time of year when the disease-carrying mosquitoes are starting become more common and there have been reported cases of West Nile Virus reported in Northwest Iowa already this year. So take precautions to prevent mosquito bites!
How is West Nile virus spread?
Mosquitoes can get West Nile virus when feeding on infected birds. Mosquitoes can then spread the virus to people through a bite. West Nile virus cannot be spread by person-to-person contact such as kissing, touching, or caring for an infected person. West Nile virus can also rarely be transmitted to humans who receive infected organs by transplantation or who receive transfusions of infected blood or blood products.
Is a person that is bitten by a mosquito in an area known to have West Nile virus likely to
No. The chance of getting infected with the virus is low. Even in areas where the virus is circulating, very few mosquitoes are infected with the virus and not all mosquitoes can successfully transmit the virus. Most people who become infected with West Nile virus following a mosquito bite do not develop any symptoms.
What are the symptoms of West Nile virus?
Most people who are infected with West Nile virus either have no symptoms or experience mild illness such as fever, headache, and body aches before fully recovering. Some persons may develop a skin rash and swollen lymph glands. In <1% of infections, particularly in those persons over age 50, West Nile virus can cause serious disease, such as encephalitis (inflammation of the brain) or meningitis (inflammation of the lining of the brain and spinal cord). These conditions may result in permanent brain damage, or on rare occasions, can be fatal. Symptoms of severe disease can include severe headache, high fever, stiff neck, confusion, loss of consciousness, tremors, muscle weakness, and paralysis.
How is an infection with West Nile virus diagnosed and treated?
A healthcare provider can diagnose West Nile virus through special tests. There is no vaccine or specific treatment, though a physician may prescribe medications to reduce symptoms. In severe cases, hospitalization may be required. Persons who have been exposed (i.e. bit by a mosquito), but have not developed symptoms do not need to be tested. Your healthcare provider should be contacted if you develop severe symptoms.
How can an infection with West Nile virus be prevented?
- Protect yourself from mosquito bites and eliminate mosquito breeding sites
- Insect repellents containing DEET, permethrin, picaridin, IR3535, or oil of lemon eucalyptus have shown to be effective against mosquitoes. Permethrin repellants should be applied to clothing onlyand should not be used on the skin. Products containing up to 30% DEET have been shown to be the most effective and are safe for adults, including pregnant women and children over 2 months of age. DEET should be applied sparingly only to exposed skin and should not be used underneath clothing.
- Repellent products must state any age restriction. If there is none, EPA has not required a restriction on the use of the product. The American Academy of Pediatrics has recommends that repellents with Iowa Dept. of Public Health Reviewed 01/14 West Nile Virus Fact Sheet 1 DEET should not be used on infants less than 2 months old. According to the label, oil of lemon eucalyptus products should NOT be used on children under 3 years.
- Wear light colored, long-sleeved shirts and long pants whenever you are outdoors for long periods of time or when mosquitoes are most active.
- Make sure doors and windows have tight fitting screens. Repair or replace screens that have holes or tears.
- Eliminating mosquito-breeding sites (they breed by laying eggs in standing water) by removing sources of standing water in outdoor areas where you work or play. Specific activities include the following:Turning over or removing items where rainwater can collect, such as ceramic pots, toys, buckets, tires, wading pools, and tarps covering firewood and boats; Changing water in birdbaths and pet bowls every 3-4 days; Making sure roof gutters are clean and in good repair; Repairing leaky outdoor faucets, air conditioners, and hoses; and Stocking ornamental ponds with mosquito dunks or fish that eat mosquito larvae.
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