The Department of Health and Hospitals announced Monday that it is enacting major changes in its administration of the State's Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC), following a DHH-requested audit of its operations, including enhanced procedures for monitoring vendors, their prices and their performance.
Department of Health and Hospitals Secretary Kathy Kliebert and Public Health Assistant Secretary J.T. Lane joined industry leaders today in downtown Baton Rouge to highlight major changes to the Retail Food Inspection Program. Program improvements over the last year have allowed health inspectors who survey restaurants, grocery stores, cafeterias and other retail food vendors to conduct timely inspections at all permitted locations, track compliance orders and post survey results quickly to the EatSafe.La.gov website. This dramatic overhaul was identified by Office of Public Health staff through an internal review and with DHH’s requested assistance of recommendations from the Louisiana Legislative Auditor.
Today, the Department of Health and Hospitals officially kicked off its annual "Fight the Flu" campaign urging Louisianians in every corner of the state to get a flu vaccination. DHH Secretary Kathy Kliebert reminded residents that a flu shot might be the difference between a happy or miserable holiday season.
The Department of Health and Hospitals on Wednesday issued an emergency rule requiring that water systems in the state maintain a higher residual disinfectant level and increase their number of sampling sites by 25 percent. Most drinking water systems in Louisiana will be required to meet this new higher standard by February 1, 2014.
Despite the cooler temperatures, the Louisiana Department of Health and Hospitals (DHH) is reminding folks that West Nile virus is still a threat. This week, the state's health department confirmed three new cases of West Nile virus, bringing this year's total to 58 cases. This week's new infections are West Nile fever cases, with one each in Ascension, Lafayette and Ouachita parishes.
The Louisiana Department of Health and Hospitals (DHH) has confirmed the state's fourth West Nile virus death this year. The death is from Ouachita Parish, the second death from Ouachita Parish this year. The state's health department is also confirming four new West Nile virus cases this week, bringing this year's total to 55 cases. This week's new infections include two cases of neuroinvasive disease, one each in Acadia and Rapides parishes, and two cases of West Nile fever, with one each in Bossier and Caddo parishes.
Starting this week, parish health units around the state began offering flu vaccinations to all Louisiana residents of age to be vaccinated, the Department of Health and Hospitals announced Monday. In addition to protecting against the seasonal flu, new studies suggest the vaccine may also protect against heart attacks and stroke.