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Neglected Global Tropical Disease Initiative

By | February 8th, 2012|General|

Last week marked an important milestone toward better controlling 10 neglected tropical diseases by 2020. The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, the World Bank, 13 pharmaceutical companies, the U.S., U.K. and U.A.E. governments and other global health organizations announced a new, coordinated push to defeat diseases like Dengue, rabies, blinding trachoma, Buruli ulcer, endemic treponematoses (yaws), leprosy (Hansen disease), Chagas [...]

Public Health Preparedness Milestone

By | February 7th, 2012|Preparedness|

Back in 2008 we set the ambitious goal of becoming a “Public Health Ready” state- and we’ve worked hard over the last 3 years or so to accomplish our goal.  We made it last month- and Arizona became one of only a couple of states to have all county health departments recognized by Project Public [...]

Dispensary Application Timeline Forecast

By | February 6th, 2012|Uncategorized|

As you know from earlier blog posts a judge ruled in a state case that had challenged our dispensary applicant selection criteria.  The judge’s decision basically struck down several of the selection criteria we had been planning to use to for competitive areas of the state (areas where there will be more than 1 applicant [...]

AZ Smallpox Outbreak

By | February 6th, 2012|Prevention|

Smallpox broke out in southeast Arizona almost exactly 100 years ago last week (co-incident with the Statehood activities).  The first cases were in Tucson and Douglas with a few dozen cases and several deaths… and there were a few additional cases in Nogales and Globe.  Of course, all the cases were among folks that hadn’t been vaccinated.  [...]

EMS Overdrive

By | February 3rd, 2012|General, Preparedness|

This month has been a doozy for our Bureau of Emergency Medical Services and Trauma System team.  This week we finished the 2nd of 2 high-profile and important decisions.  A couple of weeks ago I made a decision to let Yuma City take over part of the ambulance response in that town.  I thought the city [...]

Referee a Safe Super Bowl Party

By | February 2nd, 2012|Prevention|

When it comes to the Super Bowl, defense matters. When it comes to planning a Super Bowl XLV party, good defense against foodborne illness matters even more. Food Safety Playbook Fans should follow the food safety play book at the Super Bowl parties that they host. Large gatherings can increase the chance of becoming ill, [...]

Doing the Right Thing

By | February 1st, 2012|General|

Our Assisted Living Licensing shop received a complaint about physical and verbal abuse of vulnerable adults in an assisted living facility in Casa Grande a couple of weeks ago.  Surveyors Matthew Deise and Doris Laidlaw responded to the facility and interviewed several residents and caregivers at the home, who confirmed that some employees treat the residents [...]

New School Lunch Standards on the Way

By | January 31st, 2012|General, Prevention|

The USDA released a new final rule that will set new nutrition standards for the federal child nutrition programs that serve millions of children across the country every day. The new rule fleshes out the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act of 2010. It’ll increase how many fruits, vegetables, and whole grains that are in school lunches [...]

SNAP Up Healthier Food

By | January 30th, 2012|General|

Maybe you’ve heard the words “The Farm Bill” in the news over the years.  The Farm Bill is a very large bill that guides the mission of the USDA- including the “food stamps” program- now known as the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program or SNAP.  The USDA law undergoes review and reauthorization about every 5 years- and [...]

100 Years of AZ Public Health Lab Science

By | January 27th, 2012|General|

I thought it would be fun to give some perspective on public health and the Department’s activities 100 years ago as we approach our Centennial in a few weeks.   Our AZ Public Health Laboratory is celebrating its 100th birthday shortly- just like the State.  Our Lab was one of the first parts of state government- it created by the [...]