National Preparedness Month

National Preparedness Month

September is National Preparedness Month

Throughout September, National Preparedness Month highlights hazard-focused themes leading up to the September 30 National PrepareAthon! Day.

Ebola Update- June 2015

Ebola Update- June 2015

Travelers from Liberia are at extremely low risk of exposure to Ebola at this time.  For more than two months, there have been no cases of Ebola virus disease in Liberia.  On May 9, 2015, the World Health Organization (WHO) declared the end of the EVD outbreak in Liberia after 42 days had passed since the last EVD patient was buried.  It has been more than three months since the last case in the border regions between Liberia, Sierra Leone, and Guinea.

Would You Like To Help Your Community?

Medical Reserve Corps Seeking Volunteers

JOLIET – The Will County Health Department is looking for a few good men, and a few good women too.

How Ebola is Spread

How Ebola is Spread

There is no evidence that Ebola is spread by coughing or sneezing. Ebola is transmitted through direct contact with the blood or body fluids of a person who is sick with Ebola; the virus is not transmitted through the air (like measles virus).
What You Need to Know about Ebola

What You Need to Know about Ebola

The Ebola Virus

The outbreak is affecting multiple countries in West Africa and CDC has confirmed the first travel-associated case of Ebola to be diagnosed in the United States. About half of the people who have gotten Ebola in this outbreak have died. 

Although the risk of Ebola spreading in the United States is very low, CDC and its partners are taking actions to prevent this from happening. 

What we know about transmission of the Ebola virus among humans

Ebola situation assessment - 6 October 2014

The Ebola virus is transmitted among humans through close and direct physical contact with infected bodily fluids, the most infectious being blood, faeces and vomit.
Enterovirus D68

Enterovirus D68

What We Know

Enterovirus D68 (EV-D68) is one of more than 100 non-polio enteroviruses. This virus was first identified in California in 1962.

Pandemic Influenza Response

Pandemic Influenza Response

Community Wide Planning and Coordination

Unlike the seasonal flu, a pandemic flu virus poses a unique threat. Since humans have no previously developed immunity against pandemic flu, this new virus strain puts most people at high risk of infection. The result could be that a large percentage of the world's population becomes infected in a very short period of time.

Local health departments like the WCHD and its Emergency Preparedness Division are responsible for community wide planning for an outbreak of an influenza pandemic. The Will County Health Department has developed a pandemic influenza plan for the county and conducts training meetings and exercises with other agencies to build response capabilities. The department also conducts routine disease surveillance activities which can assist in forecasting and monitoring outbreaks of disease. If an outbreak of pandemic influenza should occur, the WCHD will work closely with other Will County emergency agencies, regional partners and the State of Illinois to manage and distribute antiviral supplies and vaccines, along with carrying out other public health, medical and emergency services.

Communicating During an Emergency:I

In an emergency, information will be provided on Twitter at (www.twitter.com/Willcohealth) and the Health Department’s website (www.willcountyhealth.org) as well as local media outlets.  

Other useful information is available for download below.

Useful Links:

Will County Emergency Management Agency

Illinois Department of Public Health

Centers for Disease Control

Illinois Pandemic Flu 

Medical Reserve Corps

Medical Reserve Corps

Volunteers that Assist Agency Personnel during Emergencies

In order to meet the public health needs during critical events, the Will County Health Department, in collaboration with the Will County Emergency Management Agency, has formed a Medical Reserve Corps and we are actively recruiting new members. We welcome all kinds of volunteers with medical and non-medical skills. Healthcare professionals, such as nurses, pharmacists, medical assistants, and physicians are needed as well as people who can serve as registration clerks, health educators, interpreters, etc.

The Medical Reserve Corps supports the mission of the Health Department to prevent disease and promote a healthier environment. It is directed to provide a readied volunteer force that can assist the agency's professionals during times of critical events that threaten the public's well-being. 

The Medical Reserve Corps:

  • will allow the Health Department to extend its professional services and resources in response to increased public health concerns.
  • will provide organizational structure and promote appropriate training of volunteers.
  • provides healthcare professionals and others an organized mechanism through which they can volunteer.
  • provides orientation and position training with hands-on experience through drills and exercises.

For more information about joining the Will County Health Department Medical Reserve Corps, call the Emergency Preparedness & Response program at (815) 727-8802 or fill out a Volunteer Application.

 

Emergency Pharmaceutical Distribution

Emergency Pharmaceutical Distribution

Utilizing Points of Dispensing Locations in the Event of an Emergency

In the event of a public health emergency, the Health Department is the Will County agency responsible for distribution of pharmaceuticals (antibiotic medications) to the entirety of Will County and any other areas of responsibility by utilizing Points of Dispensing (POD) centers. Points of Dispensing are locations throughout the County which could be used to distribute medications in the event of a health emergency. The Emergency Preparedness and Response Division will undertake a leading role in that process. The staff of the Emergency Preparedness and Response Division has also played a key role in developing The Will County Pharmaceutical Distribution Plan. This plan serves as the protocol for the request, receipt, staging, public notification, and distribution of pharmaceuticals from both the Illinois Pharmaceutical Stockpile and the Strategic National Stockpile provided via the Illinois Department of Public Health and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention respectively. The WCHD reserves the right to enact only portions of this plan if a full-scale distribution is not required.

Since the full support of Will County municipalities and government agencies is paramount in order to effectively carry out the operation of this plan. The Health Department's Emergency Preparedness & Response staff has offered numerous presentations to these government entities in an effort to forge the necessary relationships which will facilitate a smooth operation in the event the plan is activated. Support has been overwhelming from these agencies..

Useful Links:

CDC Strategic National Stockpile

HHS Public Health Emergency; Medical Countermeasures

 

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Health Department Divisions

Authors

Emergency Preparedness News
Springfield - IL Dept of Public Health Reassures Illinoisans

Springfield - IL Dept of Public Health Reassures Illinoisans

First Ebola Case Confirmed in the U.S.

For Immediate Release: September 30,2014 the Illinois Department of Public Health reassures Illinoisans after first Ebola case confirmed in the U.S.  For the most up to date information on the Ebola virus, visit http://www.cdc/gov/vhf/ebola/index.html.

 

Enterovirus D68

New and Emerging

 Enterovirus D68 (EV-D68) is one of many non-polio enteroviruses. Enterovirus D68 (EV-D68) infections are thought to occur less commonly than infections with other enteroviruses. EV-D68 was first identified in California in 1962. Compared with other enteroviruses, EV-D68 has been rarely reported in the United States for the last 40 years.

H7N9 and MERS-CoV Update: Week of July 19, 2013

No new H7N9 Cases; MERS-CoV Not Yet a Public Health Emergency

The Saudi Ministry of Health recommendations are designed to minimize health risks.  There have been no new cases of H7N9 infection. In addition, no one knows whether MERS-CoV will develop into a worldwide emergency, but the Saudis recognize that an ounce of prevention may be worth several pounds of cure.
H7N9 Flu Update: June 28, 2013

H7N9 Flu Update: June 28, 2013

40th fatality linked to H7N9 since late March

Disturbing news emanated from eastern China June 26, when the Shanghai Provincial Branch of the National Health and Family Planning Commission announced the death of a 56-year-old man infected with the novel H7N9 Avian Flu virus.
Health Department Offers Power Outage Safety Tips

Health Department Offers Power Outage Safety Tips

Here are helpful tips you can use if your power goes out.

Recent thunderstorms have produced scattered power outages across Will County.  Here are helpful tips you can use if your power goes out.

H7N9 Flu Update:  June 14, 2013

H7N9 Flu Update: June 14, 2013

No new cases reported since May 17; three additional H7N9 fatalities confirmed.

The Chinese suspended emergency responses in the areas affected by H7N9 May 28, but health officials from 15 countries spanning three continents remain keenly interested in measures capable of thwarting a potential pandemic. 

 

H7N9 Update: May 31, 2013

H7N9 Update: May 31, 2013

Just one new case and two fatalities from May 17-31.

There is good news and less than encouraging information regarding the H7N9 avian flu virus.  On the positive side, Chinese health authorities reported just one new case of human infection and two fatalities from May 17-31. 
H7N9 Update: May 10, 2013

H7N9 Update: May 10, 2013

Authorities from across the globe are closely monitoring the situation.

So far, there is no evidence of sustained human-to-human virus transmission, but health authorities from across the globe are closely monitoring the situation. On April 28, Chinese Premier Li Keqiang said his government would continue to cooperate with international health organizations, release information openly, and work to promote public awareness of the virus

Flooding Resource Booklet

Flooding Preparedness and Response

The Flooding Resource Booklet contains information for preparing and recovering from a flood.  
Health Department's Medical Reserve Corps Helps Feed the Joshua Arms Seniors

Health Department's Medical Reserve Corps Helps Feed the Joshua Arms Seniors

Northern Illinois Food Bank Supplies Food Paid for by Presence St. Joseph Medical Center

Health Department’s Medical Reserve Corps, Senior Services of Will County, and the Northern Illinois Food Bank teamed up to make it all happen.
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