Icy road conditions in north Georgia – Storm Tracker FYN

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Widespread Flu in Georgia – Protect Yourself and Prevent the Spread of Flu

Health

North Georgians Urged to Take Extra Precautions as Viral Illnesses Increase

Health

North Georgians Urged to take Extra Precautions as Viral Illnesses Increase

North Georgia – North Georgia Health District officials report that there has been an increase in the number of stomach virus and influenza outbreaks in north Georgia and warn that the results could be severe, possibly requiring hospitalization.

“It is not too late to vaccinate against the flu,” said Sherry Gregory, RN, North Georgia Health District Infectious Disease Supervisor. “Flu activity is increasing throughout our area. We expect the flu season to reach its peak early this year, within the next few weeks, so it is important to get vaccinated now. Flu vaccination not only protects the person who receives the vaccine but it also keeps them from spreading the flu virus to others.”

Everyone 6 months of age and older should be vaccinated against the flu. Flu vaccination is especially important for people who are at greater risk for complications from flu and those who live with or care for these individuals. Groups of people that are at high risk for flu complications include children younger than 5 years, adults 65 years and older, and pregnant women. Medical conditions such as asthma, chronic lung or heart disease and diabetes can also increase the risk for flu complications.

“Flu vaccine is available at all our health departments in Cherokee, Fannin, Gilmer, Murray, Pickens and Whitfield Counties,” said Gregory. For health department contact information, click on the LOCATIONS tab on the North Georgia Health District website at www.nghd.org.

Flu symptoms may include a fever, cough, sore throat, runny or stuffy nose, muscle or body aches, headaches, fatigue, and/or, possibly, vomiting and diarrhea.

People at higher risk for complications from the flu should seek medical care as soon as they begin to feel ill, even if they have been vaccinated. They could benefit from antiviral drugs, that can reduce the risk of experiencing complications and reduce the severity and duration of illness. Antiviral drugs are most effective when given early in the onset of illness.

Stomach viruses, such as Norovirus, are very contagious and can infect anyone. These viruses can be spread to others by an infected person, through contaminated food or water, or by touching contaminated surfaces. These viruses can cause the stomach and/or intestines to become inflamed, which leads to stomach pain, nausea, diarrhea and vomiting. These symptoms can be serious for some people, especially young children and older adults.

To reduce the spread of influenza and stomach viruses, take everyday preventive actions(https://www.cdc.gov/flu/protect/habits/index.htm) to stop spreading the viruses.

  • Get a flu shot – this will protect you against the flu virus, which will be especially critical if you are infected with some other virus.
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand rub.
  • Try to avoid close contact with sick people.
  • While sick, limit contact with others as much as possible to keep from infecting them, especially avoiding healthcare facilities and long-term care homes.
  • Avoid having children inside healthcare facilities and long-term care homes to protect them from catching viruses and to prevent them from spreading viruses to the people who are there.
  • If you are sick with flu-like illness, the CDC recommends that you stay home for at least 24 hours after your fever is gone except to get medical care or for other necessities. (Your fever should be gone for 24 hours without the use of a fever-reducing medicine.)
  • Cover your nose and mouth with a tissue when you cough or sneeze. Throw the tissue in the trash after you use it.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth. Germs spread this way.
  • Clean and disinfect surfaces and objects that may be contaminated with germs like the flu.

For more information about influenza and its prevention, log onto to the CDC website at https://www.cdc.gov/flu/about/index.html. Learn more about preventing the spread of stomach viruses at https://www.cdc.gov/norovirus/index.html.

Public health delayed openings in North Georgia Health District

Community

For Immediate Release
January 8, 2018

Contact: Jennifer King, (706) 529-5757 / jennifer.King@dph.ga.gov

LATEST UPDATE: Public Health Delayed Openings in North Georgia Health District for Monday, Jan. 8, 2018.

North Ga. – ALL our health departments in Cherokee, Fannin, Gilmer, Murray, Pickens and Whitfield Counties will now delay opening until noon today due to icy road conditions. Now, only the North Georgia Health District office in Dalton will open at 10 a.m. Updates are posted to nghd.org.

Sex Traffickers Will Target Atlanta During National Championship Game Weekend

State & National

SEX TRAFFICKERS WILL TARGET ATLANTA

DURING NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP GAME WEEKEND

          ATLANTA – The U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of Georgia, along with our law enforcement partners, are encouraging both citizens and visitors to be aware of the possibility of sex trafficking during the festivities happening in and around Atlanta this weekend and into next week.  In short, if you believe it might be, tell someone.

          “Sex traffickers are despicable people, and they use events like the National Championship game to ply their trade,” said U.S. Attorney Byung J. “BJay” Pak.  “These types of events draw large crowds of revelers, and sex traffickers often seek to exploit these types of opportunities. We need everyone’s help in identifying those being trafficked for sex, and in bringing the traffickers to justice.”

          Many times those who are being trafficked are homeless, runaway, or abandoned children, but it is not limited to these groups.  Traffickers also seek out at-risk individuals, i.e. those individuals suffering from sexual/physical abuse, or dependency, while also exploiting women and children from other countries – typically from impoverished nations.

          There are some signs that people should be aware of which may indicate someone is being held against their will and trafficked for sex:

  • They do not hold their own identity or travel documents;
  • They appear to suffer from verbal or psychological abuse designed to intimidate, degrade and frighten the individual;
  • They have a trafficker or pimp who controls all their money – the victim will have very little or no pocket money;
  • They are extremely nervous, especially if the victim’s “translator” is  their trafficker; and
  • They are not allowed to move about by themselves and have little understanding of where they are.

Victims may also lack personal items, possessions, or luggage.  They may not have a cell phone or calling card.  Most may also lack private space – a trafficker or an enforcer is always present.  They most likely will not possess financial records or identification documents, or have any knowledge about how to get around in a community.

The penalties for sex-trafficking are substantial, but can only be enforced with the help of aware citizens.  If you wish to report a potential sex-trafficking incident please contact the FBI at (770) 216-3000.

For further information please contact the U.S. Attorney’s Public Affairs Office at USAGAN.PressEmails@usdoj.gov or (404) 581-6016.  The Internet address for the home page for the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of Georgia Atlanta Division ishttp://www.justice.gov/usao-ndga.

Car Seat Mini Grant Awarded to County Health Departments in North Georgia

Press Release

Car Seat Mini Grant Awarded to

County Health Departments in North Georgia

Buckle Up Right, Every Trip, Every Time

North Georgia – County health departments in the North Georgia Health District were awarded the 2018 Car Seat Mini-Grant by the Georgia Department of Public Health, Injury Prevention Program. Through the Mini-Grant, Cherokee, Fannin, Gilmer, Murray, Pickens and Whitfield County Health Departments and local collaborative partners work together to provide car seats and education to financially eligible families. This program is funded by the Governor’s Office of Highway Safety to help ensure Georgia’s children are safe while riding in motor vehicles.

And it works! Since 2007, the education, car seats and booster seats provided through the mini grant prevented serious injury or death and saved 344 of Georgia’s children who were involved in crashes. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, car seats reduce fatal injuries by 71 percent among infants and by 54 percent among children ages 1 to 4 years in passenger cars. Car seats offer the best protection for children in the event of a crash, and they are most effective when installed and used correctly. Nearly three out of every four car seats are not used properly, placing children at unnecessary risk.

“The Car Seat Mini-Grant helps us meet the responsibility of keeping our children safe here in North Georgia,” said Marie Smith, RN, BSN, North Georgia Health District Nursing Director. “It provides us the opportunity to work with partners in each of our communities to help protect our children from serious injuries or death in motor vehicle crashes.”

In Cherokee, Fannin, Gilmer, Murray, Pickens and Whitfield Counties, the health departments and their collaborative partners, including county EMAs, Georgia State Patrol representatives, local fire departments and law enforcement agencies, educate parents and caregivers on how to properly install and use car seats, offer car seat inspections and provide car seats and booster seats to financially eligible families.

Through the Car Seat Mini-Grant, agencies supporting more than 130 counties are working to keep Georgia’s children safe. These programs help families get their children buckled up right, every trip, every time.

For more information about the car seat program at health departments in North Georgia, log onto www.nghd.org and click on the LOCATIONS tab to find contact information for each county health department in the North Georgia Health District. If you would like information regarding other Georgia counties involved in the program, please contact the Georgia Department of Public Health’s Child Occupant Safety Project via email at injury@dph.ga.gov or by calling 404-463-1487.

Bobcats Claw the Colts

GHS Basketball, Gilmer High School

By Reagan Young, TeamFYNSports Reporter

This past Thursday at the Mountaintop Holiday Classic, the Gilmer Bobcats took on the Coahulla Creek Colts at Fannin County High School. Both teams were battling to redeem themselves from their lost games prior to the matchup at Fannin County. The Colts did not come to “horse around”, they put their all into the game and the Bobcats did the same.

During the first quarter of the game, Gilmer relied heavily on inside passes for shots under the basket which was how they scored the majority of their points. This allowed Bobcat, Kell Weaver, to be the main man inside throughout the game and lead Gilmer in scoring with twenty-five points. The Colts did most of their scoring from the outside thanks to their point guard, Maddox Adams. Adams led his team in scoring with twenty-eight points overall. Although the teams had different methods of scoring, it didn’t mean that one was better than the other. As the buzzer sounds for the first quarter to end, the Gilmer Bobcats and Coahulla Creek Colts were tied with a score of 14-14.

Both teams were fighting for the lead as soon as the second quarter began. The Bobcats gained more confidence in their shooting and started making outside shots. Bobcat, Tyler Sims, contributed twenty points for Gilmer with his outside shots. Another Bobcat, David Smith, followed the trend by scoring a three point shot for his team. Bobcat number two, Carter Hice, started driving the lane and put eight more points on the board. Gilmer took the lead over the Colts after the second quarter with a score of 30-24.

With the Colts making fakes left and right, Gilmer also found an opportunity for more points. The Bobcats had the determination to look up the court and see the open lane as a perfect chance for layups. Bobcat, Coady Cobb, had the speed to make the layups and contribute six points for Gilmer. Another Bobcat, Austin Daman, contributed four more points to put on the board for his team. Gilmer doubled their lead over the Colts at the end of the third quarter with a score of 46-34.

Although the Colts lead strayed farther from the Bobcats, they were not giving up. Both teams started getting after it on defense and drawing fouls. Towards the end of the game, Gilmer started driving the defense inside, leaving teammates on the outside open where they would score more points. The Colts proved to have outstanding determination and hustle by going after loose balls and getting steals on defense. However, it was not enough for them to trot away with a win. Being the last game of the night, the Gilmer Bobcats closed out the first day of the tournament with a 66-54 win over the Coahulla Creek Colts.

The Bobcats win puts their overall record at 4-8 while the Colts stand at 3-7. Catch the Gilmer Bobcats next region game on January 5 at 8:30 as they travel to take on Northwest Whitfield!




Author

Don’t Let The Flu Catch Up To You

Health

Don’t Let The Flu Catch Up To You:

Georgia Dept. of Public Health Encourages Yearly Flu Shot

North Georgia – The holidays are almost here, and that means family gatherings and holiday parties where people tend to be in close personal contact. Don’t bring flu to the festivities. National Influenza Vaccination Week is December 3-9, and the Georgia Department of Public Health (DPH) encourages all Georgians to get their flu vaccine. The flu shot is the best protection against the flu.

“Flu season is here until possibly as late as May, and we anticipate an active flu season this year,” said Sherry Gregory, RN, Infectious Disease Supervisor of the North Georgia Health District, based in Dalton. “It’s important that North Georgians understand the best way to protect against influenza is to receive an annual flu vaccine. As long as the virus is circulating, it’s never too late to vaccinate.”

Influenza can be a serious disease that leads to hospitalization and sometimes death. On average, more than 200,000 people in the United States are hospitalized each year for illnesses associated with seasonal influenza virus infections.[1] Regardless of race, age, gender or ethnicity, anyone can get sick from the flu. Those especially at risk are adults 65 years of age and older, children younger than 5, pregnant women, people with certain chronic diseases such as asthma, diabetes, heart disease or other long-term medical conditions. Preventive actions such as simply washing hands and covering the nose and mouth when sneezing or coughing can guard against the flu.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends everyone 6 months and older receive a flu vaccine. Getting a flu vaccine is more convenient than ever. Public health departments in Cherokee, Fannin, Gilmer, Murray, Pickens and Whitfield Counties have flu vaccine for people of all ages, including pediatric and quadrivalent vaccine as well as Fluzone High Dose for people 65 years old and older. Log onto nghd.org to find these North Georgia Health District county health departments’ contact information by clicking the LOCATIONS tab at top of the home page. Many physicians, pharmacies, employers, schools, colleges and universities also offer flu vaccines. CDC’s Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) recommends that live attenuated influenza vaccine (LAIV), also known as the “nasal spray” flu vaccine, should not be used during the 2017-2018 flu season.

National Influenza Vaccination Week emphasizes the importance of receiving an annual flu vaccination. Even healthy children and adults can get very sick from the flu. So be wise and get immunized against the flu. For more information on immunization, visit http://dph.georgia.gov/influenza-what-you-need-know.

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