Public Health Departments Celebrate National Public Health Week
Peoria, Tazewell and Woodford County Health Departments join community members and partner organizations to recognize National Public Health Week during April 3-9, 2017. Public health serves as an invisible shield of protection to promote and protect the health of people in the communities where they live, learn, work and play. National Public Health Week will focus on daily themes that address identified community health priorities and local public health issues.
- Monday, April 3 - Healthy Eating/Active Living
- As identified in the Community Health Improvement Plan for the Tri-County area, physical activity is a major player in public health. Many different forms of activity can include exercise, jogging, housework, and even walking. Join us in starting a walking group at your work or in your neighborhood and walk for 30 minutes a day. Walking can prevent chronic diseases such as heart disease, high blood pressure and type 2 diabetes. The American Heart Association can provide tips on starting a walking club, www.heart.org
- Tuesday, April 4 - West Nile Virus and "Fight the Bite"
- Local warmer temperatures and standing water create the perfect conditions for breeding mosquitoes that carry the disease-causing West Nile virus (WNV). There is no known medication or vaccine to prevent people from becoming infected. About 1 in 5 people who are infected will develop a fever, but some will have a serious, sometimes fatal, neurological illness. While most of the mosquitoes in Illinois don’t carry the Zika virus, we promote the same methods to reduce the risk of any mosquito-borne illness.
- Avoid mosquito bites by using bug repellents, while avoiding contact with your eyes.
- Take extra care during peak mosquito biting hours of dusk to dawn.
- Install or repair window screens that help keep mosquitoes outside.
- Reduce mosquito breeding grounds and empty standing water in flowerpots, gutters, buckets, pool covers, pet water dishes, and even birdbaths.
- Wednesday, April 5 - Lung Cancer
- As a leading cause of death, lung cancer from radon exposure and tobacco use continues to be an issue within the tri-county area. Radon is a colorless, odorless, tasteless, radioactive gas that seeps from the ground and enters houses. Over time, a person exposed to radon is at increased risk of lung cancer. Inexpensive radon test kits for your home are available at Tazewell and Woodford County Health Departments. The EPA website www.epa.gov lists simple solutions to this health hazard.
- Smoking tobacco is the single most important cause of illness and death in the U.S. Tell your friends about the Illinois Department of Public Health's free Tobacco Quitline that provides support, guidance, and methods to help kick the habit. Contact the Illinois Tobacco Quitline at 866-QUIT-YES (866-784-8937) or visit www.quityes.org.
- Thursday, April 6 - Opioid issues in the Tri-County region
- Overdose issues from opioid use have been increasing in our local Tri-County area. Research shows that over 80% of new heroin abusers started with prescription opioids. In the U.S., the Drug Enforcement Administration reported 144 drug overdose deaths per day, with 63% of those deaths from pharmaceutical opioids or heroin. Get rid of any old prescriptions or medications at a safe drop off location, not into the sewer or our water system. Have these safe drug dropbox locations posted in your community:
- Woodford County Sheriff’s Office, 115 N Main St. (Eureka)
- Illinois State Police, 1265 Lourdes Rd. (Metamora)
- Pekin Police Department, 111 S. Capitol (Pekin)
- Washington Police Department, 115 W. Jefferson St. (Washington)
- Minier Police Department, 110 W. Central St. (Minier)
- Peoria Police Department, 600 SW. Adams St. (Peoria)
- Peoria County Courthouse (Main Street entrance), 324 Main St. (Peoria)
- Peoria County Sheriff's Office, 301 N. Maxwell Road (Peoria)
- Peoria Heights Police Department, 1211 E. Sciota Ave. (Peoria Heights)
- Bartonville Police Department, 5918 S Adams St. (Bartonville)
- Chillicothe Police Department, 823 N. Second St. (Chillicothe)
- Friday April 7 - Human Papillomavirus (HPV) Awareness Day
- Did you know that you can help prevent your child from a future cancer diagnosis by getting them vaccinated for HPV? HPV can cause cancers of the cervix, vagina, penis, and anus. Both females and males ages 11-26 years of age should get this important vaccine. Contact your local health department or health care provider about the HPV vaccine.
For more information on important public health issues, visit your local health department website:
Woodford County Health Department, http://woodfordhealth.org
Tazewell County Health department, http://www.tazewellhealth.org
Peoria City/County Health Department, http://www.peoriacounty.org/pcchd