Tag Archives: Talbot County Health Department

Free Skin Cancer Screenings Available May 15

Begin your summer by getting a free skin cancer screening on Wednesday, May 15. This service for adults 18 and older is being offered by Shore Health System and the Talbot County Health Department. Appointments are available between 5pm and 8pm at the Talbot County Health Department, 100 S. Hanson Street in Easton.

To schedule an appointment for the May 15 skin cancer screening, call Shore Regional Cancer Center, 410-820-6800.

Talbot and Dorchester County Health Departments Launch Joint Anti-Underage Drinking Campaign

The Talbot and Dorchester County Health Departments announce the launch of their new campaign, “Be the Parent on the Scene!”, a bi-county effort to decrease teen alcohol consumption in the area.

The campaign is a multi-month full marketing and PR initiative with multimedia elements including radio bytes, mail campaign literature, a comprehensive website, social media initiatives, and both print and online advertisements. The target audience of “Be the Parent on the Scene!” is parents, teens, and the community in general.

The visual advertisements present the campaign’s message in a simple question and answer format with inquiries such as, “What are the risks of teen drinking?” and “What can I do to keep my teen from drinking?”

“Be the Parent on the Scene!” is a social norms marketing campaign. A social norms marketing campaign works strategically to shift people’s perception of what is “normal” or socially typical.

“We hope this campaign will help to realign some of the misconceptions of underage drinking,” says Paula Lowry, Prevention Coordinator of the Talbot County Health Department. “It all starts with the parents. By targeting the adults, we hope to heighten awareness of the problem and get the community to work together to prevent underage drinking.”

Underage drinking is a prominent issue among Eastern Shore teens. The Talbot and Dorchester County Health Departments hope to decrease the amount of underage drinking in the area by reviewing the consequences of buying for minors, encouraging parents to actively discuss the issue of drinking with their teenage children, and reiterating the harmful effects of alcohol consumption.

“Kids may drink to look cool or to fit in, but they don’t realize what they’re getting themselves into,” says Ervina Johnson, AOD Abuse Prevention Supervisor of the Dorchester County Health Department. “There are times when the parents need to step in and take over, and this campaign reassures the adults that it’s ok to do that.”

The “Be the Parent on the Scene!” campaign is funded by the Maryland Alcohol and Drug Abuse Administration, the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, the Talbot County Health Department, and the Dorchester County Health Department.

About the Talbot and Dorchester County Health Departments’ Collaboration

For more information about the campaign and its components, please visit www.theparentonthescene.org.

Health Partners Screen Men for Prostate Cancer

During Prostate Cancer Awareness Week, 98 men came to the Talbot County Health Department for free prostate cancer screening. Urologists John Foley, MD, John Knud-Hansen, MD, and Christopher Runz, DO, from Shore Comprehensive Urology conducted the prostate cancer screening, which included a prostate-specific antigen (PSA) blood test and a physical examination.

This health service was sponsored by Shore Health System, the Talbot County Health Department and the NAACP in conjunction with the Prostate Conditions Education Council.

Eastern Shore Parent & Easton’s Junior Jazzercise Team Up for The Great American Smoke Out 2010

With the help of a grant from the Cigarette Restitution Fund from the Talbot County Health Department, Eastern Shore Parent has started an anti smoking campaign drawing contest – through November 30th. Local children are encouraged to create artwork with an anti-smoking message as part of the ongoing contest. The drawings are featured on the EasternShoreParent.com web site and facebook fan page throughout the campaign. The contest coincides with the Great American Smoke-out which occurs on Thursday, November18th.

There are some catchy slogans developed by the kids, who have been encouraged to submit their drawings/scans via email to Eastern Shore Parent. Some of them are meant to deter people from smoking around their pets, “Keep tails wagging …Don’t Smoke” The message being that smokers sometimes forgets smoking also harms animals. Another poster exclaimed, “Don’t Smoke or you will be a joke.”

The kids have enjoyed seeing their posters online and have been given a number of rewards for entering, such as a free kids meals from Applebee’s, Milkshakes from Sonic, gift cards for the Easton Bowling Center, gift cards from PageTronics. The contest continues through November 30th.

A grand prize of a $50 Gift Card to the Easton Movie Theatre will be given to one lucky poster submission. You can send your child’s images to mary@easternshoreparent.com or go to www.easternshoreparent.com and click on Cool Cat Contest.

Eastern Shore Parent is online resource for local parent that consist of a website, e-newsletter and Facebook page with Articles, Directory, Resources & Coupons. Junior Jazzercise is a perfect program to get kids active and learn the importance of exercise and health.

Those who are feeling inspired by these young people and would like to quit smoking, the third Thursday in November is The Great American Smoke-out, sponsored by the American Cancer Society. Make a pledge to quit for the day and see if you can make it last a lifetime. There are lots of resources to help you here a but a few:

The Talbot County Health Department Cessation Program
Quit Now- a free hotline with real people to help call 1-800-quitnow (1-800-784-8669)
Quit Net- a terrific web-site dedicated to helping you quit
National Cancer Institute web site www.cancer.gov or call 1-800-422-6237
The American Lung Association web site www.lungusa.org/ or call 1-800-586-4872

And the Flu Battle Begins

By Sandra Zunino

The leaves are just starting to turn, cooler weather will soon be upon us… and, unfortunately, so will flu season.

High fever, headaches, muscle aches, chills, cough and congestion to the Nth power – there’s nothing pretty about influenza nor its symptoms. Starting around October and plaguing us all the way through May with peak times from December through March, the flu is a highly contagious respiratory infection that packs a punch of misery.

While we don’t know exactly why influenza rages this time of year, common thought is, people are indoors more during cooler temperatures, promoting closer contact and more chances of spreading the virus. Because germs survive longer during cooler temperatures, hard surfaces such as doorknobs, desks and countertops turn into virtual Petri dishes. Dry air dehydrates mucus membranes, preventing us from effectively warding off virus particles. Influenza outbreaks also suspiciously coincide with the seasonal beginning of public schools. Go figure.

Statistically, about 25–50 million influenza cases are reported every year in the United States, leading to 150,000 hospitalizations and 30,000–40,000 deaths annually. Older adults, young children and people with specific health conditions are at higher risk for contracting serious flu complications.
There are some simple steps you can take to minimize the chances of getting the flu, or any cold for that matter. Obviously, stay away from people who are sick. Wash hands frequently and avoid needlessly touching your face, nose or eyes. Do away with bad habits like nail biting. Keep up with regularly maintaining good overall health like getting plenty of sleep, staying physically active, managing stress, drinking lots of fluids and eating nutritious foods.

The Center for Disease Control and Prevention; however, recommends to really prevent any chances of getting the flu, everyone over the age of six months should get a flu vaccine. According to their website at www.cdc.gov/flu, “While flu is unpredictable, it’s likely that 2009 H1N1 viruses and regular seasonal viruses will cause illness in the U.S. this flu season. The 2010-2011 flu vaccine will protect against three different flu viruses: an H3N2 virus, an influenza B virus and the H1N1 virus that caused so much illness last season.”

There are two types of influenza vaccines. Flu mist, which is live, attenuated influenza vaccine (LAIV) containing live but weakened influenza virus, is sprayed into the nostrils. Flu shots, which are killed influenza vaccine, are injected into the muscle.

Because Influenza viruses are always changing, annual vaccination is recommended. Each year scientists try to match the viruses in the vaccine to those most likely to cause flu that year. It takes up to two weeks for protection to develop after the vaccination, but the protection lasts about a year.

Flu mist is not recommended for everyone. Check with your healthcare provider to make sure you can receive LAIV.

The Talbot County Health Department will be holding a Flu Clinic on Wednesday, October 6 from 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. at the Talbot County Community Center located on Rt. 50 in Easton. A drive-thru area will be available from 9:00 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. for those with physical limitations or special needs

The cost for the adult flu vaccine is $20. Pneumococcal will be available for $57.
Medicare or straight Medical Assistance will be the only insurance accepted, so remember to bring your card. Receipts will also be issued for individuals paying by cash or personal check wishing to submit a claim to their own insurance company.

All Talbot County schoolchildren in Pre-K through 5th grade (ages 4 through 11 years) will have the opportunity to be vaccinated at school later this fall. Alternatively, children meeting those age/grade requirements who are Talbot County residents are eligible to receive the seasonal flu shot free of charge at the Talbot County Health Department Clinic on October 6th. Flu mist will not be available at the clinic, but will be brought to the schools. For all other ages and/or out-of-county residents, the cost of the seasonal flu vaccine is $20.

Please wear a short-sleeved shirt to receive the flu shot. For more information, visit www.talbothealth.org/fluor or call the flu hotline at 410-819-5681 (English) or 410-819-5674 (Spanish)

The Queen Anne’s County Department of Health will be holding their 2010-2011 Flu Vaccination Clinics every Tuesday from 9:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. and every Thursday from 1:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. with extended hours on October 7th, November 4th and December. 2nd from1:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. The QAC Department of Health is located at 206 N. Commerce Street in Centreville.

This season, people 65 years old and older will have two flu shots available to choose from – a regular-dose flu vaccine and a new higher-dose flu vaccine designed specifically for people 65 and older, which should result in a stronger immune response. Both vaccines will protect against the same three viruses. The health department recommends discussing the best options with your healthcare provider.

Seasonal Flu Vaccine Shots for children and adults are $20, Seasonal Flu Vaccine Shot High Dose is $35 for persons 65 years and older. Seasonal FluMist® Nasal-Spray is $26. Only healthy persons ages 2 – 49 who are not pregnant should receive the flu mist. Flu Shot or FluMist are free of charge for children in grades K through five.

Pneumonia shots will also be available for eligible adults. The QAC Health Department accepts cash, checks, Visa and MasterCard. They will bill Medicare Part B primary insurance cardholders only. No other insurance will be accepted. Please wear a short sleeve shirt to receive the shot.

For additional information, contact the Queen Anne’s County Department of Health at 410-758-0720, 410-778-0993, DHMH Toll Free 877-463-3464 or Maryland Relay 800-735-2258.

Free H1N1 Flu Clinics Available for Worksites and Community Organizations

The Talbot County Health Department invites Talbot County businesses and community groups to host free H1N1 Flu Clinics for their workers and members, including families and friends.

Workplaces, places of worship, clubs, and other organizations may call 410-819-5634 to make arrangements for the Health Department to provide flu shots at their locations.

People are encouraged to have H1N1 flu shots for these reasons.

•    The H1N1 flu is a serious disease and it is likely to spread. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimates that between mid‐April and November 14, 2009, 47 million people in the United States were infected with the 2009 H1N1 flu, more than 200,000 people were hospitalized, and over 9,800 people died
•    Flu takes a big toll on children, especially young children. With the 2009 H1N1 flu virus, more hospital stays and deaths among children have already been reported this year than in any recent flu season.  Children easily spread flu germs among themselves and others; we have a long way to go before flu season is over.
•    H1N1 is unpredictable.  We do not know if there will be a future wave of H1N1 flu, but we do know that vaccination is the most important step in protecting against flu.
•    Flu vaccines are very safe. Flu vaccines cannot give adults or children the flu. Hundreds of millions of people in the U.S. have received seasonal flu vaccines over the years, and the 2009 H1N1 flu vaccines are produced just like the annual seasonal flu vaccines. Nearly 60 million people have already received the H1N1 vaccine with no increased side effects.  Plus, CDC closely monitors all vaccines for safety with its long‐established systems.
•    The flu can be far worse than the common cold.  H1N1 flu may cause fever, cough, sore throat, runny or stuffy nose, body aches, headache, chills and fatigue, and sometimes vomiting and diarrhea. People may be infected with the flu and have respiratory symptoms without a fever. Dangerous complications can include pneumonia, dehydration, and worsening of chronic medical conditions, such as congestive heart failure, asthma, or diabetes.