Arizona Department of Health Services, Director’s Blog

FDA Study Committee Recommends Disapproval of New Opiate Painkiller

Last week an FDA panel unanimously recommended rejecting a new drug that’s a combination of morphine and oxycodone – two very strong painkillers.  The panel, Anesthetic and Analgesic Drug Products Advisory Committee, said the company didn’t provide data to prove that Moxduo is more effective or safer than using one of the already available drugs.  

By | April 29th, 2014|General|0 Comments

“Health Windows” Provide Important Health Information to Hard-to-Reach Populations

Ventanilla de Salud (Health Windows) is a program that improves access to preventive health care, health education, and public health screening at Mexican consular offices throughout the US. There are 5 Ventanillas in AZ (Douglas, Nogales, Phoenix, Tucson, and Yuma).  The Ventanillas are operated jointly by the Department of Health of Mexico (Secretaria de Salud de México) and the Department [...]

By | April 28th, 2014|Prevention|0 Comments

Got drugs?

You may be contributing to one of Arizona’s biggest public health problems and not even realize it.  Arizona has the 6th highest rate in the country for prescription drug misuse and drug overdose death. What’s really frightening is that more than 90% of Arizona youth that misuse prescription drugs get them from family and friends. The best way for you, and [...]

By | April 25th, 2014|Prevention|0 Comments

FDA Bites the E-cigarette Regulation Bullet

It’s no public health secret that tobacco use continues to be a dominant cause of preventable disease and death in the US.  While the trend has been encouraging (Arizona’s smoking rate is down to 17%), there’s still much work to be done- and continued efforts to provide creative and effective ways to help adult smokers kick the habit are a [...]

By | April 24th, 2014|Prevention|6 Comments

Abortion Clinic Inspections Bill

We license and inspect abortion clinics in AZ.  Due to a court settlement agreement (unlike other health care institutions we license) we’re currently required to get an administrative search warrant before conducting an unannounced inspection of an abortion clinic.   For a routine compliance inspection, we need to give them 10 days-notice. On Tuesday, the Governor signed HB 2284, which (when [...]

By | April 24th, 2014|Licensing|1 Comment

Novel Group B Strep Intervention for Babies

Group B Streptococcus bacteria is a leading cause of infection and death within the first week of life. Each year about 40 infants less than 1-week old get early-onset group B strep disease in Arizona.  The bacteria can cause life-threatening infections like sepsis (infection of the blood), pneumonia (infection in the lungs), and meningitis (infection of the fluid and lining [...]

By | April 23rd, 2014|Prevention|2 Comments