Introducing Health Bites
Health Bites is an interactive online nutrition education tool designed to help you and your family enjoy healthier lives. The interactive website provides fun, informative videos on nutrition and ideas on simple and healthy recipes. If you are a WIC participant, the site will allow you to complete modules, to receive nutrition education credit for WIC. Visit www.HealthBitesVA.org to have a world of nutrition and health information at your fingertips!
“Meaningful Use” Registration System for Health Care Providers
The VDH Meaningful Use Registration System for health care providers is now available. Health care providers intending to send electronic health records to VDH are required by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) to register and demonstrate “Meaningful Use” of their electronic health records in order to obtain CMS reimbursement. While registration is required only for Stage 2, we also encourage those involved in Stage 1 to register with VDH using this site
Click here for information and to register
‘Tis the Season for Norovirus
With cold weather upon us, people should take note of norovirus infection (also known as the “stomach flu”), which typically increases during winter months. Norovirus is highly contagious and can survive on surfaces for prolonged periods. The Virginia Department of Health reminds everyone to take some simple steps to help prevent the spread of norovirus during the holidays, and year-round:
Virginia Health Information
'Virginia Health Information' is a resource for patients and consumers looking to learn about and compare options on everything from obstetrical services, to heart care, to pricing information on commonly performed medical procedures. Virginians can use VHI information to make informed health care purchasing decisions and as the basis for an informed conversation with their health care providers. Learn more>>
National Women and Girls HIV/AIDS
National Women and Girls HIV/AIDS Awareness Day is a nationwide awareness day that brings attention to the disease’s impact on women and girls. Each year on March 10, and throughout the month, thousands of people host events and share facts. This year Virginia Division of Disease Prevention is inviting you to join others around the state in being Greater than AIDS. For National Women and Girl’s HIV/AIDS Awareness Day join the Empowered movement and host a watch party with Alicia Keys and five amazing HIV-positive women. For more information visit www.greaterthan.org/empowered.
Protecting Virginia’s Health: the Virginia Medical Reserve Corps
The Virginia Medical Reserve Corp (MRC) is a group of dedicated volunteers who stand ready to support the community in the event of a public health emergency. Last year 13,447 volunteers donated over 36,630 hours to prepare for and respond to emergencies and promote healthy living throughout the year. MRC volunteers include medical and public health professionals such as physicians, nurses, pharmacists, dentists, veterinarians, and epidemiologists.Many community members—interpreters, chaplains, office workers, legal advisors, and others—can fill key support positions. Anyone can volunteer!
To become a VA MRC volunteer, apply at www.vamrc.org.
March is National Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month
Among cancers that affect both men and women, colorectal cancer (cancer of the colon or rectum) is the second leading cause of cancer deaths in the United States. The American Cancer Society estimates 3,270 people will be diagnosed with colorectal cancer in Virginia each year. It doesn’t always cause symptoms but it can be prevented. Screening finds precancerous polyps so they can be removed before they turn into cancer. If you are 50 or over, talk to your doctor about being screened for colorectal cancer.
The Virginia Department of Health (VDH) is working with Duke Energy, federal, state and local government agencies to protect the health of residents in Pittsylvania, Halifax and Mecklenburg counties. Click here for information about the recent coal ash spill in Eden, N.C., and up-to-date information on VDH’s role in responding to the event.
Surgeon General’s Report on Smoking and Health: Fifty Years of Progress
Fifty years after the release of the first Surgeon General's report on smoking and health, remarkable progress has been made. Since 1964, smoking prevalence among U.S. adults has been reduced by half. Unfortunately, tobacco use remains the leading preventable cause of disease, disability, and death in the United States. This month the Surgeon General will release the 50th anniversary Surgeon General’s Report (SGR) on smoking and health. The report will highlight 50 years of progress in tobacco control and prevention, present new data on the health consequences of tobacco use and detail new initiatives.
Flu Season: What you Should Know
Winter is the peak season for influenza, and the flu is currently widespread across Virginia. The predominant virus so far this season is H1N1. This virus has continued to circulate as a seasonal flu virus since the 2009 pandemic, but this is the first season since the pandemic that this virus has circulated so widely. The H1N1 virus that emerged in 2009 caused more illness in younger adults and children, particularly people with chronic medical conditions and pregnant women, compared with adults aged 65 and older. If the H1N1 virus continues to circulate widely, this same trend could occur this season. Everyone over the age of 6 months should be vaccinated against the flu, including pregnant women. If you have not been vaccinated yet, it's not too late.