September is National Preparedness Month and this year’s overall theme is: Disasters Happen. Prepare Now. Learn How. The theme empowers all of us to take an active role in preparing for disasters and emergencies. It is important for us to think about our personal preparedness as we help others protect their lives, property, and belongings in advance of a disaster.
Each week of National Preparedness Month, the Ready Campaign will emphasize a unique aspect of preparedness:
Week 1: Sept 1-8 - Make and Practice Your Plan
Week 2: Sept 9-15* - Learn Life Saving Skills
Week 3: Sept 16-22 - Check Your Insurance Coverage
Week 4: Sept 23-29 - Save For an Emergency
September 15 is a National Day of Action
You can find more resources at www.ready.gov/September.
For more information, contact Ulster County Public Health Preparedness at 845-334-5538 or 334-5540.
NON-ADDICTIVE ALTERNATIVES FOR PAIN RELIEF ARE EFFECTIVE!
Governor Cuomo Signs Law Adding E-Cigarette Use (Vaping) to the Clean Indoor Air Act in NY
Full Text of Law
Click Here for Retailers Who Received Violations for Selling Tobacco Products to Minors in 2017
NYPIRG’s New York State Drinking Water Profiles Project, 2017
Clean water is essential for life and among our most precious resources. While federal and state laws are supposed to protect us, we know that public and private drinking water sources are under constant threat; that crumbling water infrastructure may further contaminate water supplies, and that government monitoring and enforcement resources face significant uncertainties at the federal level. Check out New York Public Interest Research Grop's online searchable database of water contamination in NYS.
Get the Facts - E-cigarettes are Dangerous to Youth and Adults
Is There Anything Tobacco Products Wouldn't Do to Get Their Products in Front of Our Kids? Get the Facts...
Ulster County Cyber-Bullying Ban Signed Into Law
It is now illegal to perform any kind of cyber-bullying in Ulster County. For details, click here
YOU HAVE THE POWER TO HELP PREVENT LYME DISEASE AND OTHER TICK BORNE ILLNESSES BY FOLLOWING THESE STEPS:
- While out walking, stay on clear well traveled paths.
- Cover up and wear light colored clothing to spot ticks easily.
- Keep the grass trimmed and brush cleared around your home, especially where children play.
- Use insect repellant, as directed.
- Shower as soon as possible after spending time outdoors.
- Check everyone for ticks, including pets, frequently and at the end of each day.
- Remove all ticks promptly and properly (and note the date and time if you need to speak with your healthcare provider later).
We’ve all heard the news reports about ZIKA virus, so let’s review the facts and the steps that you can take to help prevent it:
Fact 1: the ZIKA virus is transmitted by a species of mosquito that bites during the day and breeds in containers of standing water near where people live.
Fact 2: SO FAR, none of the affected or suspected mosquito species have been detected in Ulster County.
Fact 3: you can take common sense steps to reduce the chances of mosquitoes breeding and biting near your home by keeping your gutters clean and eliminating sources of standing water such as old tires, barrels, cans and other items and areas where small pools of water can gather. Also, keep your screens in good repair - and use insect repellent as directed.
Fact 4: if you or your partner have traveled to an area where ZIKA is known to be present and you are pregnant or plan on becoming pregnant, practice safe sex and speak to your health care provider about getting tested.
For details, visit/call:
ZIKA Virus Presention by Dr. Carol Smith, Ulster County Commissioner of Health and Mental Health
Centers for Disease Control - CDC ZIKA site
New York State Department of Health - NYSDOH ZIKA site
or call the NYS ZIKA Information Line at: 1-888-364-4723 (you can also obtain free and non-toxic (to humans, pets and wildlife) tablets that kill mosquito larvae by calling this #)
Mosquito Dunks ® (larvicide)- For one free 2-pack of larvicide for private residence use, New Yorkers can call the Zika Information Line or email the completed, attached form directly to b0019w[at]health.ny[dot]gov. Please note: the form must be completely filled out.
Great Video on How to Keep your Home and Yard Mosquito Free - Courtesy of University of California
Less Screen Time + More Play Time Outdoors = Healthier Children
How Much Screen Time is Right for Your Kids?: a new report from the American Academy of Pediatrics
ONLINE AND MOBILE SAFETY:
Children of all ages use the Internet for many things: doing schoolwork, communicating with friends, playing games, and more. That’s why it’s important to help ensure they make good decisions when going online.
Check out Living Life Online, a guide from the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), to help kids stay safe, use critical thinking skills, and more.
To help protect your family online, we've put together this agreement that parents and kids can use to make the rules of use clear and easy - and that will keep kids safe in the mobile/online world. Feel free to modify per your specific family circumstances.
Is Your Sedentary Lifestyle Harming You? THE ANSWER IS "YES"
The sedentary lifestyle is easy to fall victim to.
Research has shown that a sedentary lifestyle—sitting for long periods of time on a daily basis—leads to obesity, cancer, and risk of death from cardiovascular disease. Just sitting in front of your TV for more than 4 hours a day increases your mortality risk by any cause by nearly 50 percent! And it’s not just channel surfing. Any extended sitting, such as behind a desk or driving all day—can be harmful to your health. And spending a few hours at the gym each week doesn’t seem to significantly offset the risk of a sedentary lifestyle.
So, what to do? Sit less, move more—all day long. If you’re reading this, stand up! If you’re listening to music, stand up and move! The muscular effort you use will help burn calories and trigger the important breakdown of fats and sugars in the body. Every time you stand or actively move, you kick those fat-burning processes into gear. When you sit, they stall!
Here are some simple ways to combat your sedentary lifestyle and help you stand up for a longer, healthier life:
– Set your smart phone alarm, computer or clock to ring on the hour to remind you to stand up, refill your cup of water, and take a short walk.
– Do this quick yoga routine several times a day.
– Stand up and do some leg raises.
– Take all phone calls on your feet.
– Schedule a “walking date” or learn to take meetings walking.
– Park your car further away and walk to your destination!
– Always take the stairs, instead of the elevator. Even one floor will do your body good.
70 of the Most Popular Sodas: Ranked by How Toxic They Are
Are You Eating as Healthy as You Think? What 2000 Calories Looks Like
Colorectal Cancer is One of the Few Preventable Cancers - Talk to Your Doctor Today!
Free Diabetes Management Classes - Sign Up Today!
In order to make this happen in your community we need your help by:
Signing up yourself if you are a diabetic or have a family member who is diabetic
Putting the information in your organization's calendar of events (if applicable)
Bringing the information to group meetings
Talking about it
We need a minimum of 8 participants to schedule the workshop and can accommodate a total of 15.
Call the UCOFA to register 845-340-3456, e-mail rwcscrc[at]aol[dot]com or call 845-706-6459 if you would like more information.
Free Catholic Charities Immigrant and Refugee Services Hotline
IF YOU OR SOMEONE YOU KNOW IS EXPERIENCING A SUBSTANCE ABUSE CHALLENGE, ULSTER COUNTY HAS NOW PUT INTO PLACE A FAMILY ADVOCATE WHO CAN HELP CONNECT PEOPLE TO AVAILABLE TREATMENT AND RECOVERY SERVICES, AS WELL AS HELP THEM TO OBTAIN ALL OF THE INSURANCE BENEFITS THAT THEY MAY BE ENTITLED TO. FOR MORE INFORMATION CALL CAROL SUTCLIFFE, FAMILY ADVOCATE, AT ULSTER PREVENTION COUNCIL - 845-458-7455.
Due to a spike in hate related activity and crimes over the last several months, NYS had created a special toll free number that can be called by those who may have been victims of such activity or may have witnessed the same. Residents who have experienced bias-motivated threats, harassment or discrimination are encouraged to call the toll-free hotline at (888) 392-3644 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday - Friday.
If you want to report a crime or fear for your safety, call 911 immediately.
IF YOU OR SOMEONE YOU KNOW IS STRUGGLING AFTER A DISASTER
Call the Disaster Distress Hotline at: 1-800-985-5990
or Text 'TalkWithUs' to 66746
FROM THE CDC: FREE MOBILE APPS (iOS and Android) ON TICK BORNE DISEASES
Tick identification with vivid photos and illustrations
Summarized information about signs and symptoms of the most common tickborne diseases
Information about diagnostic tests and supporting lab tests
Treatment table summaries
Live links to additional journal articles and resources
Prevention and prophylaxis recommendations
Legislation is now pending in the NYS Assembly and NYS Senate that would require pharmacies to take back unused medications. Since we know that over 1/2 of the highly addictive opioid pills on the streets come from our medicine cabinets, we are urging everyone to write their representatives to support this important public health measure. Click here for details and a list of NYS representatives.
NYS ATTORNEY GENERAL SCHNEIDERMAN OFFERS ASSISTANCE FOR INDIVIDUALS AND FAMILIES SEEKING SUBSTANCE ABUSE AND MENTAL HEALTH TREATMENT
New York State Residents Encouraged To Call Attorney General’s Health Care Helpline For Assistance Obtaining Treatment
Helpline Aims To Hold Health Insurers To Legal Obligation To Provide Necessary Medical Care
NEW YORK – Attorney General Eric T. Schneiderman today announced that his office is offering assistance for individuals and families seeking substance abuse and/or mental health treatment. New York’s mental health parity law, known as Timothy’s Law, was enacted in 2006 and requires that insurers provide broad based coverage for the diagnosis and treatment of mental health disorders at least equal to coverage provided for other health conditions. The New York Insurance Law also requires health plans to administer substance abuse treatment coverage consistent with the federal Mental Health Parity and Addiction Equity Act, which was enacted in 2008, and prohibits health plans from imposing greater financial requirements or treatment limitations on mental health or substance use disorder benefits than on medical or surgical benefits.
In order to help protect the rights of patients, Attorney General Schneiderman today issued an alert encouraging those seeking treatment or facing barriers with their health insurer to call his office’s Health Care Helpline at 1-800-428-9071.
Family of Woodstock’s textmeback.org textline is a dynamic new textline service for youth and adults to access help via text messaging on mobile devices or chat via web browser on any platform. Contact textmeback.org for issues involving drug abuse, domestic violence, bullying and other issues involving personal safety, mental health services, housing (or shelter), concerns about the well-being of loved ones, crisis situations, education, and questions about resources in the Ulster County community.
GOVERNOR CUOMO LAUNCHES VIDEO SERIES TO EDUCATE AND INFORM NEW YORKERS ABOUT ADDICTION TREATMENT SERVICES
Help Keep Your Unused Medications Off the Street and Out of the Wrong Hands. Click here for Medication Collection Box Locations Throughout Ulster County.
EXPERIENCING A MENTAL HEALTH CHALLENGE OR CRISIS? HELP IS ONLY A PHONE CALL AWAY - ULSTER COUNTY MOBILE MENTAL HEALTH
Mobile Mental Health is operated by ACCESS: Supports for Living, between the hours of 1PM - 11PM. Call 1-844-277-4820. Connect with a trained counselor when stress, depression or other mental health issues create a personal crisis. Help is only a phone call away. Your call with a trained counselor will be kept confidential. This service is available to all Ulster County residents at NO CHARGE.
Smokers: Check out American Lung Association's Freedom from Smoking Online
Freedom From Smoking® Online, or FFS Online, is a program specifically designed for adults, like you, who want to quit smoking. It’s an adaptation of the American Lung Association’s gold standard, group clinic that has helped thousands of smokers to quit for good.
Tobacco Companies Spent 2 1/2 Million Dollars a Day Marketing Their Products to Kids in Order to Recruit New Smokers. Get the Facts...
See Aaliyah's Award Winning Video Poem that She Wrote After Losing Her Father to Cancer as a Result of Smoking
Sign up for SmokefreeTXT
SmokefreeTXT is a mobile text messaging service designed for adults and young adults across the United States who are trying to quit smoking. The program was created to provide 24/7 encouragement, advice, and tips to help smokers quit smoking and stay quit. Start here...
The New York State Smokers' Quitline
Provides free, confidential services that include information, tools, quit coaching and support in English and Spanish. Provides FREE starter kits of nicotine replacement therapy (NRT) patches to eligible New Yorkers. The Quitline also works with employers, health plans and health care providers to ensure New York tobacco users have access to effective cessation treatments. To learn more:
Call 1-866-NY-QUITS (1-866-697-8487) toll free, or
WANT TO STOP SMOKING TODAY AND ENJOY A HEALTHIER LIFE?
Check out the great resources on this site.
The 2016 NYS Health Benefit Exchange is OPEN and Shopping for Health Insurance Plans is More Important than Ever
From the Wall Street Journal: The Price We Pay for Sitting. If you sit all day your health may be at risk. Office workers should sit for 20 minutes, stand for eight and stretch for two, then repeat.
Confidential Disposal of Unwanted Medications Now Available at These Locations
AMERICAN HEART ASSOCIATION ANNOUNCES NEW "HANDS ONLY" CPR GUIDELINES
Keep the Beat with Hands-Only CPR
Would you know what to do if you witnessed a cardiac emergency? You can help victims of sudden cardiac arrest by keeping the beat of their heart going using Hands-Only CPR. A recent survey suggests that 70 percent of Americans feel helpless to act during a cardiac emergency because they don’t know how to administer CPR or they’re afraid of hurting the victim. The American Heart Association (AHA) encourages everyone to learn Hands-Only CPR by watching this video:
Help Keep Our Groundwater and Waterways Healthy and Clean:
If you have a Septic System, download this free Homeowner's Septic Care and Maintainence Guide
FREE, FRESH LOCAL PRODUCE AVAILABLE NOW - STRETCH YOUR BUDGET AND EAT HEALTHY - NO INCOME REQUIREMENTS. SEE DETAILS BELOW:
Ulster County Community Action (English)
Ulster County Community Action (Espanol)
American Heart Association Launches New Online Support Network for Heart and Stroke Survivors and Their Families
Do you know someone who would be interested in nutritious, well-balanced home delivered meals at NO or low COST?
Ulster County's Office for the Aging has openings in their home delivered meals program. Qaulification criteria include the following:
- Monthly individual income near or below $1, 345.
- Not able to cook for themselves
- Over 60 years old or a caregiver of someone over 60.
For more information and to determine eligibility for a specific person, please call Ulster County Office for the Aging at: 845-340-3456
Spotlight Injury Prevention Topic: Child Food Choking
There is a general perception that children most often choke on small parts of toys, pen tops, balloons, round batteries, and other small objects; however food also poses a choking hazard that is sometimes overlooked.
Food choking is a significant public health problem among children in NYS. Choking on food can lead to serious injuries and death, especially for young children. In recent years, an average of 331 children were treated each year at hospitals due to choking on food; 62 of whom sustained injuries severe enough to require hospitalization. Younger children continue to be at the most risk for choking injuries and death, especially those ages birth to age four.
Risk for children under 5 is especially high because their swallowing mechanisms and teeth are not fully developed and their airways are very narrow.
Foods that pose a risk of choking hazard include:
• Candy (especially hard or sticky candy), cough drops, gum, lollipops, marshmallows, caramels, hard candies, and jelly beans.
• Combinations of food size, texture, and shape can pose a threat. For example, a slippery hard candy with a round shape about the size of a drinking straw could block an airway (windpipe). Foods that clump, are sticky or slippery, or dry and hard textured are also a concern.
• Dried fruits, sunflower seeds, all nuts, including peanuts.
• Hot dogs (especially cut into a coin shape), meats, sausages, and fish with bones.
• Ice cubes and cheese cubes.
• Peanut butter (especially in spoonfuls or with soft white bread).
• Popcorn, chips, pretzel nuggets, and snack foods.
• Whole grapes, raw vegetables, raw peas, fruits, fruits with skins, seeds, carrots, celery, and cherries.
For more information please see the following resources:
Ulster County's Food Service Waste Reduction Act bans all food service establishments from using expanded polystyrene foam (commonly referred to as Styrofoam) when preparing, selling or providing food and beverages in Ulster County. Learn more...
SuperTracker can help you plan, analyze, and track your diet and physical activity. Find out what and how much to eat; track foods, physical activities, and weight; and personalize with goal setting, virtual coaching, and journaling:
- Get your personalized nutrition and physical activity plan.
- Track your foods and physical activities to see how they stack up.
- Get tips and support to help you make healthier choices and plan ahead.
Anatomy of Unhealthy Food Purchase Choices
For a great online source of all things preventative health in Ulster County, visit the new Healthy Ulster County Network site:
When Disaster Strikes Ulster County Needs Volunteers Like You!
How can I help my community?
Have you ever thought about volunteering, but didn't know how you could help your community? Or are you an experienced volunteer looking to expand your skills and opportunities? Become a volunteer to help Ulster County to get ready for and respond to emergencies!
ServNY is a New York State registry for people who wish to volunteer during an emergency or major disaster or an emergency exercise. Your role as a volunteer will help ensure that people affected by a disaster will receive the care they need. Registering simply tells us that you are open to the idea of volunteering in case of an emergency. Please consider volunteering to help your local community.
Invitation Letter from UC Commissioner of Health, Dr. Carol Smith
BE PREPARED....and learn how to protect your family, home, pets and community in the event of a natural disaster. Download FREE informational brochures here.
Is the Airbag in Your Car Safe? Japanese airbag manufacturer, Takata, has just announced that 34 million cars in the US have potentially defective airbags. To find out if your car may be subject to a recall for a faulty airbag or any other defect, click here
FDA continues to warn consumers not to use Eu Yan Sang (Hong Kong) Ltd.’s “Bo Ying compound"
The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is working with Maryland and other states to continue to warn consumers and caregivers not to use Eu Yan Sang (Hong Kong) Ltd.’s “Bo Ying compound” because of the possible lead poisoning risk associated with the product. This reminder comes after the Maryland’s DHMH found elevated levels of lead in these products....read more
Important Measles Information
Measles in a serious and highly contagious viral disease, which was thought to have been eradicated, however, it has remerged in outbreaks across the nation. These FAQs are provided courtesy of our colleagues at the Centers for Disease Control and the Dutchess County Department of Health.
MEASLES: Frequently Asked Questions
FOR A COMPLETE LIST AND MAP OF ALL FOOD PANTRIES IN ULSTER COUNTY, CLICK HERE
HAVE A PLAN...AND HELP PREVENT NEEDLESS DWI INJURIES AND FATALITIES
The New York State Governors Traffic Safety Committee and the NYS STOP-DWI Foundation are proud to release their Have A Plan mobile app. This app provides you with a timely and convenient resource that enables you to locate and call a taxi service, program a designated-driver list, educate yourself on Blood Alcohol Content levels as well as information on DWI laws and penalties or even report a suspected impaired driver. Available for Apple, Droid, and Windows smart phones.
LET'S MOVE HEALTHY LUNCHTIME CHALLENGE COOKBOOK - free access to great healthy recipes, submitted by families and kids, from around the nation.
ULSTER COUNTY HEALTHY SCHOOL LUNCH RECIPE BOOK - get great, award-winning ideas, from friends and neighbors across Ulster County, for preparing healthy and delicious school lunches.
Before heading to the grocery store, developing a “game plan” can help you get organized and save money. It also allows you to rethink your food choices and pick healthier options.
How Safe is your Hospital? Find out here
College Student Nutrition Guide - an excellent resource with practical tips for healthier eating
Important Information on Ebola
Governor Cuomo has launched a State information line to answer questions about Ebola. 1-800-861-2280 is free and trained operators are available 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
This line is for public health information purposes only. If you require medical attention, call your health care provider or 9-1-1 immediately
You Have the Power to Help Prevent Lyme Disease and other Tick Borne Illnesses
How Exercise Can Boost Young Brains - Learn how exercise can improve your child's cognitive ability and academic performance
GETTING THE FLU IS MISERABLE - AND PREVENTABLE! FOR A DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH FLU VACCINATION CLINIC NEAR YOU, CLICK HERE
Protect Your Family from the emerging Enterovirus
If you have a complaint about health insurance or healthcare provider billing practices, call the NYS Attorney General's Hotilne at: (800) 428-9071
Android Version available for download on Google Play
Check out Ulster County's Comprehensive Healthy Snack Food Guidelines
Obesity: Complex but Conquerable
Important Legionnaires' Disease Information
Preventing and Getting Rid of Bed Bugs Safely
Reducing Environmental Cancer Risk What You Can Do Now to Help Protect Your Family
Obesity in Ulster County
Fight the Flu! - NYSDOH
Information from the NYS Department of Health
Information from the NYS Department of Health
NYS Clean Indoor Air Act
Public Health Preparedness
Bioterrorism Readines from the NYS Health Department
Information from the Center for Disease Control
American College of Physicians
Johns Hopkins Center for Civilian Biodefense
Infectious Diseases Society of America
US Army Medical Research Institute of Infectious Diseases