Maryland Shows Significant Progress in Reducing Infant Mortality, Obesity, Tobacco Use and Other High-Priority Health Measures

Baltimore, MD (February 5, 2015) – The Department of Health and Mental Hygiene has released a report showing significant improvement  on several priority health measures as part of its ongoing State Health Improvement Process (SHIP).
 
Of the 41 SHIP measures, 28 either met the target goal for 2014 or showed significant improvement toward the goal. Improvement goals were surpassed for infant mortality, which declined by 13 percent in the four-year measurement period, and child and adolescent obesity, which declined by 6 percent. Goals for reducing tobacco use also were surpassed, with adults having an 18 percent decrease in use and youths having a 32 percent decrease in use in three years.
 
“It is heartening to see Maryland’s progress on key health measures,” said DHMH Secretary Van T. Mitchell. “The healthier we are, the better our collective quality of life and the more valuable our contributions to society can be.”
 
The 2014 target goals also were surpassed for teen birth rates, healthy weight in adults, alcohol-related vehicle fatalities, HIV infections, domestic violence, children receiving dental care, adolescent wellness checkups, and deaths from heart disease and cancer.  These improvements contributed to Maryland making the largest jump among all states in the United Health Foundation’s America’s Health Rankings (here) released last year. The annual rankings compare states on many of the same health measures used in SHIP. 
 
As part of SHIP, Local Health Improvement Coalitions – which cover all Maryland counties – use these measures to establish priorities for health improvement, to develop strategies and to track progress. These coalitions include hospitals, local health departments, primary care providers and other health professionals, as well as community-based organizations, schools, faith-based organizations and other community groups.   
 
The report is available here. The Office of Population Health Improvement at DHMH, which administers SHIP, will release target goals for 2017 in the coming weeks.

 
 

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WCHD News

Snow Hill, MD – The Worcester County Health Department is requesting mini-grant proposals from community-based organizations, workplaces, churches, or other interested organizations for youth teen pregnancy and sexually transmitted infection (STI) prevention education: Promoting Health Among Teens-Comprehensive education (PHAT-C). To be eligible for up to $2,500 in grant funding, your program must be an organization which serves young people in Worcester County. Funded organizations will be expected to deliver the PHAT-C education program to a minimum of 12-15 Worcester County youth ages 12-19.

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Snow Hill, MD-The Worcester County Health Department (WCHD) requests smoking cessation, education and enforcement proposals for grant funding through Cigarette Restitution Funds by way of the Maryland Department of Health. Community-based organizations, churches, private groups, non-profits, and workplaces are encouraged to apply.

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(July 31, 2019 Snow Hill, MD) – The Worcester County Health Department received notification from the State of Maryland that a mosquito pool in the Whaleyville area of Worcester County recently tested positive for Eastern Equine Encephalitis (EEE). This is the first positive test for EEE in Worcester in 2019.

Arboviruses, such as the EEE virus, are most common during the summer and fall months. The viruses are transmitted by infected mosquitoes and spread to humans, birds, horses and other animals. Since mosquitoes can breed in as little as a quarter inch of water, eliminating standing water is critical for the control of mosquito populations. Many factors impact when and where outbreaks occur, such as weather, numbers of mosquitoes that spread the virus, and human behavior.

The Worcester and Wicomico County Health Department provides the following tips to help prevent contact with mosquitoes and reduce risk of infection with EEE or other mosquito borne illnesses:

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Snow Hill, MD – The Worcester County Health Department will host a free summer program for girls entering middle school, grades 6 and 7. The Just for Girls summer program will be held Tuesday, August 13 through Friday, August 23 from 8:30am - 4:30pm at the Worcester County Health Department, located at 6040 Public Landing Road, Snow Hill, MD 21863. Participants will learn life skills, ways to improve their self-esteem, attend field trips, receive abstinence only education and much more.

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(Snow Hill, MD)- Worcester County Emergency Service officials urge residents to exercise extreme caution and check on elderly and infirm neighbors during the heatwave forecasted to last through Sunday. Heat indexes for the shore are expected to rise above 100 degrees this week and exposure to extreme heat can be dangerous for humans and animals, even deadly.

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