Cara M. Christ

/Cara Christ

About Cara Christ

Cara M. Christ, MD, Director Arizona Department of Health Services

Arizona Immunization Coverage Rates Continue to Fall with Increased Use of Exemptions in 2017

By | July 3rd, 2018|Preparedness|

For the second year in a row, exemption rates, the percentage of students exempt from one or more vaccines, increased across all age categories. In the last year, exemptions rose from 3.9% to 4.3% for child care, from 4.9% to 5.4% for kindergarten, and from 5.1% to 5.4% for 6th grade. This increase in exemption rates led [...]

New Tool to Help Communities Develop Strategies to Prevent and Control Diabetes

By | June 5th, 2018|Prevention|

Diabetes is a serious health condition attributing to nearly 14,000 Arizona emergency department visits and 11,000 local hospital admissions in 2016. Diabetes, the sixth leading disease-related cause of death in Arizona, is also a major risk factor for heart disease and stroke. Uncontrolled diabetes can lead to significant disability including blindness, kidney failure and amputation. In [...]

Work Continues to Reduce Opioid Deaths as Emergency Declaration Comes to an End

By | June 1st, 2018|General, Prevention|

Governor Doug Ducey has officially ended the formal emergency public health declaration he issued last year that directed our department to lead a statewide response to the opioid epidemic. We have made tremendous strides, but the work we started last June is far from complete. The list of accomplishments over this last year is long [...]

Stay Safe from the Summer Heat

By | May 29th, 2018|Preparedness|

Memorial Day signals the start of summer break for many kids in Arizona as well as triple digit temperatures. Many people are preparing for upcoming outdoor activities with friends and family. While enjoying the holiday grilling or relaxing by the pool, it is important to remember safety tips to protect yourself from the Arizona heat and sun. Despite heat-related illnesses being [...]

Annual Student SunWise Poster Content Winners Showcase Sun Safety Prevention Tips

By | May 25th, 2018|Preparedness|

The SunWise Program held its annual presentation of the “Be SunWise & Play Sun Smart Skin Cancer Prevention Poster Contest” on Saturday, May 5 at the Arizona Diamondbacks vs. the Houston Astros baseball game. This year marked the 15th year of the annual poster contest, which invites students from all over the state of Arizona to showcase their [...]

Controlling Unusual Resistance Germs

By | May 14th, 2018|Preparedness|

CDC’s Vital signs publication recently highlighted unusual antibiotic resistance germs, which are resistant to all or most antibiotics tested and are uncommon or carry special resistance genes. Antibiotic-resistant germs can spread very easily. Germs constantly develop resistance against new and older antibiotics. Examples of unusual resistance include: Vancomycin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (VRSA), Candida auris and certain types of “nightmare bacteria” such as [...]

Public Health Advancements 100 Years After the 1918 Influenza Pandemic

By | May 11th, 2018|Preparedness|

The 1918 influenza pandemic was a devastating global event responsible for up to 100 million deaths. While it is widely known as the “Spanish Flu”, it likely did not originate there. Although most people first learned of the pandemic from Spanish news, some of the earliest documented cases were in the Midwestern U.S. In Arizona [...]

Arizona Celebrates the 2018 CDC Childhood Immunization Champion

By | May 8th, 2018|Preparedness|

The Arizona Department of Health Services and The Arizona Partnership for Immunization are proud to announce that Lieutenant Commander Greg Sarchet, from White River Indian Hospital/Indian Health Service/Unites States Public Health Service has been selected as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Childhood Immunization Champion for Arizona. The annual CDC Childhood Immunization Champion Award, given jointly [...]

Arizona Efforts to Combat Vector-Borne Diseases

By | May 1st, 2018|Preparedness|

A recent Vital Signs report from the CDC highlights the increasing threat of “vector-borne” diseases—illnesses spread by mosquitoes, ticks, and fleas. Between 2004 and 2016, reported cases of vector-borne diseases tripled, and over half a million people became ill from diseases such as Lyme, West Nile, Rocky Mountain spotted fever, and plague. In addition, nine new diseases were introduced or discovered [...]

Several Components of the Arizona Opioid Epidemic Act Go into Effect

By | April 26th, 2018|Prevention|

Many of the provisions of the Arizona Opioid Epidemic Act, or Senate Bill 1001, go into effect on April 26. Governor Ducey signed the law on January 26, just four days after a special session was held with unanimous support for passage of the landmark legislation to reduce overdoses and improve patient safety. Some of the [...]