• 29th Sep, 2015

    SPRINGFIELD – The Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) today released the second issue of its Illinois Morbidity and Mortality Bulletin (IMMB).  The IMMB is IDPH’s primary publication for scientific articles of interest to public health communities and professionals in Illinois.  Articles in the IMMB are prepared by IDPH staff from various programs and provide analysis, description, interpretation, and discussion of data. 
    “We are very committed to planning and implementing programming that is data-driven,” said IDPH Director Nirav D. Shah, M.D., J.D.  “One of our core functions is to be a clearinghouse for public health research and the IMMB is an example of how we accomplish that goal.” 
    This bulletin features two articles from staff in IDPH’s Office of Health Protection.
    In the first article, IDPH Data Informatics Manager Judy...

  • 28th Sep, 2015
    Blue-Green Algae May Cause Harmful Algal Bloom

    SPRINGFIELD - The Illinois Department of Public Health and the Illinois Environmental Protection Agency urge residents to use caution while in or on the Illinois portion of the Ohio River due to potential toxins from blue-green algae.  Blue-green algae (also known as cyanobacteria) are microscopic organisms that naturally occur in lakes and streams.  Rapid growth of algae is referred to as a “bloom.” 
    Both Illinois agencies have been working with the Ohio River Valley Water Sanitation Commission to respond to reports of a harmful algal bloom in the Ohio River.  The Commission and partners from various states along the Ohio River have been tracking an algal bloom in the river that stretches from West Virginia to the Illinois/Indiana border.  While a harmful...

  • 23rd Sep, 2015
    Illinois Department Of Public Health Urges Everyone 6 Months And Older To Be Vaccinated

    SPRINGFIELD – Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) Director Nirav D. Shah, M.D., J.D. is recommending that everyone older than 6 months be vaccinated against influenza.  The flu season in Illinois typically starts around October and can last up to May.  The flu vaccine is becoming available at many local health departments, pharmacies, and health clinics around the state.
    “The single most effective way to prevent getting the flu is an annual flu shot,” said Director Shah.  “Influenza is a serious illness and can be fatal.  Even healthy people get the flu each year, so it’s important for everyone to be vaccinated.  Being vaccinated will not only help protect you, but it will help protect people at higher risk of...

  • 23rd Sep, 2015
    El Departamento De Salud Pública Del Estado De Illinois Les Urge A Todas Las Personas De 6 Meses De Edad O Más Que Se Vacunen

    SPRINGFIELD - El director del Departamento de Salud Pública (IDPH) Nirav Shah, MD., JD recomienda que todas las personas mayores de 6 meses se vacunen contra la influenza. La temporada de influenza en Illinois por lo general comienza alrededor de octubre y puede durar hasta mayo. La vacuna contra la influenza se está haciendo disponible en muchos departamentos locales de salud, farmacias y centros de salud del estado.
    "La forma más efectiva de prevenir la influenza es vacunarse cada año contra la influenza", dijo el director Shah. “La influenza es una enfermedad grave y puede ser fatal. Incluso las personas sanas contraen la influenza cada año, así que es importante que todos sean vacunados. Estar...

  • 16th Sep, 2015
    Analysis Indicates Need For Expanded Mental Health Services

    SPRINGFIELD - Every five years the Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) conducts a needs assessment of its federally-funded maternal-child health block grant (Title V) programs to inform our priorities moving forward.  IDPH studies ways to strengthen existing health services, address unmet health needs, and remove barriers to care.  Findings from the latest needs assessment, such as a decline in teen births and a rise in teen suicide attempts, serve as the cornerstone for the development of the state’s maternal-child health priorities for the next five years.
    “As we find improvements in some areas of our maternal-child health program, such as the steady decline of teen pregnancy rates over the last two decades, we are simultaneously...

  • 13th Sep, 2015
    Decreasing Infant Mortality -  A Healthy People 2020 Objective

    SPRINGFIELD –September is Infant Mortality Awareness Month. While Illinois has made great strides in decreasing the rate of infant mortality and improving maternal and child health, Illinois still falls slightly below the national rate.  Illinois’ infant mortality rate is 6.52 per 1,000 live births compared to the national rate of 6.07 per 1,000 live births.
    “Infant mortality continues to be a complex health issue with many medical, social, and economic determinants,” said Illinois Department of Public Health Director Nirav D. Shah, M.D., J.D.  “Infant deaths are a good measure of the health of a community.  By addressing infant deaths and decreasing the rate, we will begin to improve the health of Illinois communities.”

  • 10th Sep, 2015

    SPRINGFIELD - Illinois Department of Public Health Director Nirav D. Shah, M.D., J.D. today announced that new medical conditions and diseases will not be added to the Illinois Compassionate Use of Medical Cannabis Pilot Program Act at this time.  The pilot program will continue with the 39 conditions and diseases listed in the Act. 
    The pilot program runs through April 2018.

  • 9th Sep, 2015

    SPRINGFIELD – On and after September 11th, 2001, our nation witnessed the selfless and life-saving acts of first responders and countless volunteers at Ground Zero, the Pentagon, and Shanksville, PA. Each year, through the 9/11 Day of Service and Remembrance, thousands of Illinois volunteers join Americans across the nation in tribute to those we lost.
    Launched in 2002, this day of service is an annual tribute to the 9/11 victims, survivors, and responders. The 2009 Kennedy Serve America Act formally designated September 11 as a national day of service.
    “Among the eight largest states, Illinois leads in number of volunteers,” said Scott McFarland, Executive Director of...

  • 3rd Sep, 2015

    28 grantees will place 1,682 AmeriCorps volunteers in communities

    SPRINGFIELD – The Serve Illinois Commission on Volunteerism and Community Service today announced $8.6 million in Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS) federal grants to enable 1,682 volunteers in 28 AmeriCorps programs to better serve Illinois communities. An additional $7 million is available for college education awards.

    “AmeriCorps members make a powerful impact on the toughest challenges facing our nation,” said CNCS CEO Wendy Spencer. “Building on Illinois’s strong tradition of neighbor-helping-neighbor, AmeriCorps members will improve lives and strengthen communities across the state. As they serve others, AmeriCorps members will also expand opportunities for themselves - gaining skills and experience to jumpstart their careers.”

    These federal grants...

  • 2nd Sep, 2015

    SPRINGFIELD – The Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) and the Adams County Health Department (ACHD) are reporting four confirmed cases of Legionnaires’ disease, including one death in Quincy.  At this time there is no evidence they are connected to the Illinois Veterans’ Home-Quincy.
    “As part of our investigation of the Legionnaires’ disease outbreak at the Illinois Veterans’ Home-Quincy, we asked our local health care providers to help us with surveillance of the disease and test individuals in the community who have symptoms related to Legionnaires’ disease,” said ACHD Administrator Jerrod Welch.  “We have thoroughly investigated each confirmed case for a connection with the outbreak, as well as any possible connection to one another.  At this time, we have found no connections.”
    Because of the increase in testing, public health officials...