2017 Statewide News Releases

November 20, 2017

Governor’s EMS Award Winners Announced at 38th Annual Virginia EMS Symposium

(RICHMOND, Va.) – The 2017 Governor’s Emergency Medical Services (EMS) Award winners were announced recently at the 38th Annual Governor’s EMS Awards Ceremony in Norfolk, Virginia. Governor Terry McAuliffe recognized 11 outstanding EMS providers and organizations from across the Commonwealth for their demonstrated level of excellence and dedication to the EMS system. more>>

October 30, 2017

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State Health Commissioner Conditionally Approves Cooperative Agreement

(RICHMOND, Va.) – State Health Commissioner Marissa J. Levine, MD, MPH, FAAFP, today, October 30, 2017, signed the order to conditionally approve the application for a Cooperative Agreement between Wellmont Health System and Mountain States Health Alliance.

In recognition of the unique healthcare challenges in southwest Virginia, in 2015, the General Assembly enacted House Bill 2316, which amended Virginia law to provide authority for cooperative agreements among hospitals and health systems to foster improvements in the quality of health care, moderate increases in cost, improve access to needed services, and enhance the likelihood that smaller hospitals in the region would remain open in beneficial service to their communities.

The amended Virginia law authorizes the State Health Commissioner to approve or deny an Application for a Cooperative Agreement following receipt of a recommendation for approval of the application by the Southwest Virginia Health Authority.

The order can be found at https://www.vdh.virginia.gov/licensure-and-certification/cooperative-agreement/.

September 13, 2017

State Health Leaders Urge Virginians to Get Annual Flu Vaccine

(Richmond, Va.)—As the start of the 2017-2018 flu season approaches, the Virginia Department of Health (VDH) encourages all people in Virginia six months and older to receive their annual influenza vaccine. At an event in Richmond today, state and local health leaders joined together to highlight the importance of the vaccine, especially for health care workers, and to receive a flu shot themselves. more>>

May 25, 2017

VDH Awards Hospitals With Breastfeeding-Friendly Designation

Six facilities recognized for their efforts to support a breastfeeding-friendly environment for patients

(Richmond, Va.)—The Virginia Department of Health (VDH) today announced it is recognizing six hospitals from across the Commonwealth with a Virginia Maternity Center Breastfeeding-Friendly Designation for their efforts in implementing policies and practices that support a breastfeeding-friendly environment for patients. The designation is based on the World Health Organization’s Ten Steps to Successful Breastfeeding. These steps support initiation, exclusivity and continuation of breastfeeding. more>>

May 23, 2017

Health Officials Offer Comprehensive Tips for Preventing Summer Illness & Injury 

May 22-28, 2017 is Healthy and Safe Swimming Week

(Richmond, Va.)— This time of year marks the unofficial start of summer with the opening of pools and water parks. As water temperatures rise, so do visits to Virginia’s beaches, lakes and rivers. The week leading up to Memorial Day is designated Healthy and Safe Swimming Week (HSSW) in Virginia and the nation. HSSW focuses on the steps everyone can take to have a healthy and safe swimming experience. more>>

May 22, 2017

Emergency Medical Services Week Honors Providers’ Lifesaving Efforts And Service To Their Communities

May 21 – 27 is National EMS Week

(RICHMOND, Va.) – Emergencies happen when you least expect it. It may be something unthinkable that unfolds in front of you or a medical event that you experience. Emergencies can be scary, frantic and often a matter of life or death. During these times, you rely on medical professionals to respond quickly to your request for help and to provide lifesaving care to you or your loved one. Last year, Emergency Medical Services (EMS) providers responded to nearly 1.5 million calls for help in Virginia, approximately 4,063 incidents per day. more>>

May 12, 2017

Health Officials Investigate Rare Human Case of Rabies
Individual contracted disease while traveling abroad.

(Richmond, Va.) – The Virginia Department of Health (VDH) is investigating a confirmed case of human rabies. The Virginia resident was bitten by a dog while traveling in India.

While the only documented cases of human-to-human transmission of rabies have been via organ transplantation, acting out of an abundance of caution, VDH is assessing those who had direct contact with this patient to see if there is any concern that they may have been exposed to rabies. more>>

May 11, 2017

Virginia Department of Health Announces Public Health Nurse of the Year
Award presented as part of National Nurses Week 2017

(Charlottesville, Va.)— The Virginia Department of Health (VDH) today presented its 2017 Public Health Nurse of the Year award to Clare Ruday, RN, MSN, who works for the Charlottesville-Albemarle Health Department (CAHD) in the Thomas Jefferson Health District. Ruday serves as the focus nurse in the Family Planning and Sexual Health programs, in addition to working in the Immunization, Refugee, Tuberculosis (TB), Communicable Disease and Pre-Admission programs. more>>

April 27, 2017

State Officials Urge Virginians to Protect Themselves during Mosquito Season

(RICHMOND, Va.) – Governor Terry McAuliffe today announced that as mosquito season begins May 1 in Virginia, it is important for people across the Commonwealth to be reminded of Zika virus, a mosquito-borne illness that can seriously affect the health of pregnant women and their unborn babies. The Virginia Department of Health (VDH) has created a Zika website (www.ZikaVa.org) to ensure the most up-to-date information is readily available to Virginians and anyone who might be traveling to Virginia, to help them take necessary precautions against Zika virus. more>>

April 26, 2017

Virginia Department of Health Urges Caution Following Heavy Rains

(Richmond, Va.)— Following heavy rain events in parts of the state this week, the Virginia Department of Health (VDH) reminds people to take precautions to avoid flooded areas, and once the sun comes out, be aware of potential health risks before you participate in recreational water activities. more>>

March 7, 2017

Virginia Department of Health Extends Closure of Perrin River to Shellfish Harvesting

(RICHMOND, Va.)— The Virginia Department of Health announced today that the emergency closure to shellfish harvesting established for the Perrin River on February 21, 2017 will be extended. more>>

February 21, 2017

Virginia Department of Health Closes Perrin River to Shellfish Harvesting

(RICHMOND, Va.)— The Virginia Department of Health announced today that the Perrin River will be closed to shellfish harvesting due to the release of an unknown quantity of diesel fuel from a sunken vessel. more>>

January 31, 2017

Funding Available for Organizations to Serve Summer Meals to Virginia Children

(Richmond, Va.) — The Virginia Department of Health (VDH) is looking for financially viable organizations that can serve meals to children during the summer months. Organizations that participate in the Summer Food Service Program (SFSP) will be reimbursed by VDH for the meals that are served. Participating sponsors will also be reimbursed for certain allowable administrative costs associated with serving the meals. In addition, all participating organizations receive technical assistance from VDH staff. All participating sponsors are required to attend the SFSP State agency training provided by VDH. Training dates will be publicized on VDH’s SFSP website and on the CHAAMPS homepage when finalized. more>>

January 7, 2017

Virginia Department of Health Provides Guidance on Preventing Snow-Related Injury & Illness

(Richmond, Va.) – With the arrival of the first significant Winter Storm of 2017, the Virginia Department of Health offers these tips for staying safe whether enjoying the snow or doing cleanup activities. more>>

January 4, 2017

Charlottesville/Albemarle Health Department to Host Saturday Sexual Health Testing Clinic

(Charlottesville, Va.) – In an effort to help people take control of their health in the New Year, the Thomas Jefferson Health District’s (TJHD) Charlottesville/Albemarle Health Department will host a Free Sexual Health Testing Clinic on Saturday, January 7, 2017, from 11:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. Community members can walk-in to this clinic to receive free screenings for common Sexually Transmitted Infections (STIs) such as Chlamydia, Gonorrhea, HIV, Syphilis, and in certain instances, Hepatitis B and C virus. Rapid HIV and Hepatitis C testing will also be available with results in twenty minutes. more>>