Pardon our Dust: Environmental Health Database Update

The Virginia Department of Health (VDH) will be migrating to a new data system, Environmental Health Database (EHD), starting June 20, 2019.  For about 7 to 10 days, some Environmental Health services that rely on the use of our database will be interrupted.  These services include, but are not limited to:

  • the printing of approval letters and permits,
  • accepting and processing of onsite sewage system operation and  maintenance (O&M) reports,
  • responding to requests for data abstraction or publishing of reports, and/or
  • other general inquiries.

While VDH will work to minimize any interruption in services during and after this data transition period. We thank you in advance for your understanding and patience.

Hepatitis Awareness Month

Illustration depicting a sign with a Hepatitis concept.

May is Hepatitis Awareness Month.  Numerous states across the U.S. have seen an increase in the number of cases of hepatitis A.  This includes the state of Virginia.  It is important to be #HepAware2019 this May.  But what does this mean?  And what can you do to protect yourself and your loved ones?

  • Learn more about viral hepatitis. Knowledge is power.
  • Get vaccinated for hepatitis A and B. If you are in a group that may be at increased risk for hepatitis A or B, protect yourself from infection.  Your primary care provider should provide the vaccine.  Many pharmacies also carry the vaccine.  All local health departments also offer vaccinations.
  • Get tested. There are tests available for hepatitis B and C if you believe you have been exposed.  Find a testing center near you.

Learn, vaccinate, and test.  Follow these suggestions yourself and share this information with your friends and loved ones.

National Infant Immunization Week

Congratulations to the 2019 CDC Childhood Immunization Champions. #ivax2protect

This week, the Virginia Department of Health celebrates National Infant Immunization Week (NIIW).

NIIW is an annual observance that highlights the importance of vaccines for infants. The week celebrates the work of immunization programs and their partners in promoting healthy communities. As part of NIIW, one healthcare provider in Virginia is selected as the state winner of the CDC Childhood Immunization Champion Award. This award recognizes a provider who contributes to public health by promoting childhood immunization.

This year’s CDC Childhood Immunization Champion Award winner is Donna Deadrick of Carilion Children’s Pediatric Medicine.

Congratulations, Donna Deadrick! The hard work of healthcare professionals across the state helps to ensure a healthy start for Virginia’s youngest residents. VDH thanks everyone who serves as an immunization champion for their community!

Virginia Department of Health Warns Residents of Increase in Hepatitis A Cases

Prevention includes Vaccination and Hand Washing

Richmond, Va. – Multiple states across the country are experiencing hepatitis A virus (HAV) outbreaks. Since these outbreaks were first identified in 2016, more than 15,000 cases and 8,500 hospitalizations (57% of cases) have been reported in the United States. Virginia has reported a 132% increase in cases of HAV between January 1, 2019 and April 19, 2019 compared to the same time period in 2018. There have been 45 cases reported in Virginia as of April 22, 2019. more>>

Measles Cases in the US

As you may know, there have been multiple outbreaks of measles in the U.S. So far this year there have been 465 cases in 19 states. This is the second-greatest number of cases reported in the U.S. since measles was eliminated in 2000.  The majority of measles cases are in New York City and New York state, which are primarily among unvaccinated people in Orthodox Jewish communities and associated with travelers who brought measles back from Israel. Read More

National Prescription Drug Take Back Day

DEA National RX TakeBack. Saturnday, April 27 | 10a.m.-2p.m. DEATakeBack.com

April 27 is National Prescription Drug Take Back Day. This day aims to provide a safe, convenient and responsible way of disposing of prescription drugs, while also educating the public about the potential for abuse of medications.

Prescription drug abuse is the fastest growing drug problem in the U.S. When you have unused or expired medications lying around, they could fall into the wrong hands and be abused. Flushing medications down the toilet is dangerous to public health.

Dropping your medications off at a collection site is a quick and safe way to make sure they are disposed of properly.

Virginia will take part Saturday, April 27, 2019. If you have unused, expired or unwanted medications, drop them off at a collection site in your area from 10am-2pm, no questions asked. Drop off is free and anonymous.

NPHW Friday: Climate Change

National Public HealtFriday,. April 5. National Public Health Week. Climate Change. NPHW 2019 Virginia. Virginia Department of Health. Group of people cleaning up a beach.h Week: Creating the Healthiest State: For science. For action. For health.

Today is the fifth day of National Public Health Week, a time to recognize the contributions of public health and highlight issues that are important to improving our nation’s health.

Friday: Climate Change

In the fall of 2018, State Health Commissioner Dr. Norm Oliver, conducted a “Listening Tour” across the Commonwealth. He met with local health officials and community members to understand the health needs and concerns of those VDH serves. Through this tour, it became apparent that the public health effects of climate change are of high concern among Virginians. Climate change has been linked to more frequent and extreme natural disasters, such as hurricanes, flooding and drought. It is expected to negatively affect food security, water and air quality; and can increase the risks of vector-borne diseases, such as West Nile virus and Lyme disease. A VDH working group is working to identify health related impacts of climate change in Virginia, identify vulnerable populations, outline relevant data, programs, and research in collaboration with internal and external partners, and develop recommendations.

View our Toolkit for more information about National Public Health Week.

NPHW Thursday: Technology and Public Health

Thursday. April 4. National Public Health Week. Technology and Public Health. NPHW 2019 Virginia. Virginia Department of Health. someone syncing their fitness watch with their phone.National Public Health Week: Creating the Healthiest State: For science. For action. For health.

Today is the fourth day of National Public Health Week, a time to recognize the contributions of public health and highlight issues that are important to improving our nation’s health.

Thursday: Technology and Public Health

New technologies are quickly transforming the public health landscape and can be a potent public health tool. The Virginia Department of Health Data Portal was developed to provide a convenient, interactive access point for health-related data for the state of Virginia. This portal is a comprehensive source for community health assessment, public health and population health data that is open to all. It provides interactive data at the most granular level available, and is updated continually with new information as it becomes available.

Visit www.vdh.virginia.gov/data/ to access the Data Portal.

View our Toolkit for more information about National Public Health Week.

NPHW Wednesday: Rural Health

Wednesday. April 3. National Public Health Week. Rural Health. NPHW 2019 Virginia. Virginia Department of Health. Child riding a bike.National Public Health Week: Creating the Healthiest State: For science. For action. For health.

Today is the third day of National Public Health Week, a time to recognize the contributions of public health and highlight issues that are important to improving our nation’s health.

Wednesday: Rural Health

Virginia’s rural areas are often tight-knit communities full of mutual respect, hard work, and determination. These communities also face unique challenges such as a lack of health care providers, access to health care and affordability issues. The Virginia State Office of Rural Health within the Office of Rural Health aims to address and rectify health disparities affecting the state’s rural residents by helping develop long-term solutions to rural health problems or their root causes. Learn more about the Virginia State Office of Rural Health.

View our Toolkit for more information about National Public Health Week.