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Health & Environment

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health and environment

Johnson County Department of Health and Environment
Vision: The Innovative Leader for Community Health and Environmental Protection.
Mission: To Protect the Health and Environment, Prevent Disease and Promote Wellness for All who Live, Work and Play in Johnson County through Exceptional Public Service.

Department News

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Zika Virus
June 30, 2016

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is alerting the public of the potential to contract Zika virus while traveling abroad. Although sexual transmission of Zika virus infection is possible, mosquito bites remain the primary way that Zika virus is transmitted. Because there currently is no vaccine or treatment for Zika virus, the best way to avoid Zika virus infection is to prevent mosquito bites. While illness is usually mild, and severe disease requiring hospitalization is uncommon, Zika virus infection in pregnant women can cause severe birth defects of the brain, including microcephalyPregnant women should not travel to areas with Zika virus.

The most common symptoms of Zika virus disease are fever, rash, joint pain, and conjunctivitis (red, watery eyes) lasting from several days to a week. If you are experiencing Zika virus symptoms and have traveled to/lived in an area with Zika within the past 2 weeks, contact your healthcare provider immediately so you can be tested for Zika virus. Tell your healthcare provider when and where you traveled.

Kansas physicians and laboratories should be aware of the diagnostic testing guidance for Zika virus. Additional guidance for healthcare providers is available here. Call the Kansas Department of Health and Environment at 1-877-427-7317 to report persons with suspected Zika virus infection or to request Zika virus testing. 

Zika Virus in Pregnancy

Zika virus infection can cause microcephaly (meaning small head and brain) and other severe brain defects in babies of mothers who are infected with Zika virus while pregnant. This means that a woman who is infected with Zika during pregnancy has an increased risk of having a baby with these health problems. Therefore, pregnant women should not travel to areas with Zika virus.

Men with a pregnant sex partner who have traveled to or lived in an area of active Zika virus transmission should consistently and correctly use condoms during sex (vaginal, anal, or oral) or abstain from sexual activity for the duration of the pregnancy to avoid giving the virus to the mother and baby.

If you are pregnant and had exposure to Zika virus in the last 2-12 weeks either from travel to a place with ongoing Zika virus transmission or unprotected sex with someone who has traveled to or lived in a place with ongoing Zika virus transmission, contact your healthcare provider immediately so you can be tested for Zika virus. Tell your healthcare provider when and where you and/or your sex partner traveled/lived.

Prevention

There is no vaccine to prevent or medicine to treat Zika. Until more is known, CDC is recommending when traveling to countries where Zika virus has been reported, travelers should take steps to prevent mosquito bites. All travelers, including pregnant women and women who are breastfeeding, can and should use an EPA-registered insect repellent and use it according to the product label.

Some travelers to areas with ongoing Zika virus transmission will become infected while traveling but will not become sick until they return home and they might not have any symptoms. Travelers should use insect repellent for three weeks after travel to prevent mosquito bites and stop the spread of Zika.

Zika virus can be spread by an infected man to his sex partners. Men with a pregnant sex partner who reside in or have traveled to an area of active Zika virus transmission should consistently and correctly use condoms during sex (vaginal, anal, or oral) or abstain from sexual activity for the duration of the pregnancy to avoid giving the virus to the mother and baby. Men and their nonpregnant sex partners may want to consider the following recommendations from the CDC. Women trying to get pregnant and their male partners, should talk to their healthcare providers about their travel plans, the risk of Zika virus infection and strictly follow steps to prevent mosquito bites.

Local residents can protect themselves from Zika and other mosquito-borne diseases (West Nile, Chikungunya, Dengue) by wearing an EPA-registered insect repellent, long-sleeved shirts and long pants when working or playing outdoors. Install or repair screens on windows and doors to keep mosquitoes outside. Use air conditioning, if you have it. Empty standing water from flower pots, buckets, gutters/downspouts, small pools and pool covers, pet dishes, discarded tires and birdbaths on a regular basis to reduce the number of mosquitoes around the home. Tightly cover water storage containers so that mosquitoes cannot get inside to lay eggs.

Health and Environment employees recognized for innovation
June 20, 2016

Johnson County Governemnt encourages employees to innovate and improve processes through a program called "Project Impact" which recognizes employees who bring their ideas for improvement forward and seem them through implementation. During a recent Board of County Commissioners meeting, three employees from the Department of Health and Environment were presented a Certificate of Recognition from Chairman Eilert. Julie Davis, Kalenna Coleman, and Nolan Kappleman were all recognized for their innovate approach to recycling paint at the Johnson County Household Hazardous Waste Facility. Click here to watch a video that explains how Nolan, Kalenna, and Julie took a program that originally cost the county money to one that now generates revenue.

Hazardous Waste & Electronic Recycling Event- Saturday, July 9th
June 14, 2016

Join us for our next HHW Collection Event on Saturday, July 9th from 8-11:30 a.m. You can dispose of all of your household hazardous waste, paint, stains, as well as your old and unwanted electronics. Last month we recycled tons of chemicals and reblended over 400 gallons of latex paint. Charges apply for CRT monitors only ($20-40 depending on size) cash or check only. To schedule your appointment click here.

Healthy Cooking Classes Offered
May 24, 2016

LIVEWELL Johnson County, an initiative of the Johnson County Department of Health and Environment, is collaborating with community partners Hy-Vee and Balls Foods to offer healthy cooking classes and a Pharmer's Market. For more details:

Gestational Diabetes, Heart Healthy and Family Friendly Cooking Classes schedule (Olathe)

Gestation Diabetes Cooking Classes schedule (Mission)

Heart Healthy Cooking Classes schedule

Pharmer's Market schedule

Clinic Hours Change Effective May 31, 2016
May 5, 2016

Effective May 31, 2016 the walk-in services evening hours are changing from Tuesdays to Wednesdays at JCDHE's Olathe location (11875 S. Sunset) and Mission location (6000 Lamar). Walk-in services (Immunizations, Family Planning and Sexually Transmitted Disease) will be available every Wednesday from 10:00 a.m. to 6:30 p.m.

Hours for walk-in services at both locations on Tuesdays will be from 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.

Walk-in services will be available on Fridays only at the Olathe location (11875 S. Sunset). Hours for the 1st, 3rd and 5th Fridays of the month are from 8:00 a.m to 4:00 p.m. Hours for the 2nd and 4th Fridays of the month are 8:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m.   

Norovirus investigation at New Theater Restaurant
February 5, 2016

The Kansas Department of Health and Environment (KDHE) is working with the Kansas Department of Agriculture and the Johnson County Department of Health and Environment (JCDHE) to investigate an outbreak of norovirus among individuals who attended performances at the New Theatre Restaurant in Overland Park beginning on Friday, Jan. 15 to the present date.

In order to determine the extent and cause of the outbreak, KDHE is conducting a secure, confidential online survey among all persons who have attended performances at the New Theatre Restaurant since Jan. 15, including those who became ill and those who did not become ill. The online survey is available at http://tinyurl.com/newtheatre2016. Personal information provided to KDHE will be held confidential, and this information is protected by state law. Persons who have already participated in a telephone interview do NOT need to complete an online survey. If you have questions or concerns regarding the outbreak, call the KDHE Epidemiology Hotline at 877-427-7317.

Norovirus is very contagious. Symptoms include diarrhea, vomiting, nausea and stomach pain. A person develops symptoms 12 to 48 hours after being exposed and most people get better within one to three days. The best way to prevent norovirus is proper handwashing.

Norovirus causes an estimated 19 to 21 million persons to become ill each year, and is more common in the winter months. Norovirus is spread from person to person, by touching contaminated surfaces or infected people, or through contaminated food or water. It is NOT spread through the air by coughing, sneezing or talking. Persons who are ill with norovirus symptoms should not prepare food or care for other persons. 

Clinical Services Closed Tonight
January 19, 2016

JCDHE will close tonight at 5 p.m. due to inclement weather. Clinical services at the Olathe location (11875 S. Sunset) and Mission location (6000 Lamar) will not be available this evening.

Shigella cases in Johnson County
December 23, 2015

The Johnson County Department of Health and Environment (JCDHE) confirms 10 cases of Shigella in the county. This time last year only one case was reported. JCDHE is asking health care providers to review the following testing requirements and school/child care exclusions:

Child care/preschool children must have 2 negative stool cultures 24 hours apart in order to return to preschool or a child care facility. Samples should be collected 48 hours after stopping antibiotics. JCDHE can provide the specimen containers and send them to the Kansas Department of Health and Environment Laboratories for testing, but faster results can be obtained if testing is done at the heath care provider's facility.

If the child attends preschool or a child care facility in Missouri, only 1 negative stool speciment is required.

School-age children can return to school once they are diarrhea,vomit and/or fever-free for 24 hours without the aid of medication. No stool culture is required.

Additional information about Shigella, symptoms, treatment and how to prevent it can be found at http://www.cdc.gov/shigella/index.html

 

 

Go Green this Holiday Season- Recycle your lights & more
December 9, 2015

This holiday season there are several ways that you and your family can go green. Whether it is purchasing a native Cedar Christmas tree or recycling your broken holiday lights; programs around Johnson County and Kansas City offer the opportunity to green your holidays.

Recycle your holiday lights: Southwest Enterprises will be collecting your old holiday lights at participating locations from November 14th through January 16th. They will be accepting any Christmas tree lights, shatterproof plastic bulb ornatments, tree toppers, and Christmas tree bags. They also accept donations. For more information.

Get a native Cedar Christmas tree. Join Bridging The Gap, KC WildLands, and the Johnson County Park & Recreation District on Saturday December 12th from 10am-3pm at Mildale Farm, located at 35250 W. 199th St. Edgerton, KS 66021. This event offers the public an opporutinty to remove invasive red cedars and take them home to decorate for the holidays, plus they smell great!! 

Health insurance enrollment event takes place Dec. 7 in Olathe
December 4, 2015

The Johnson County Department of Health and Environment (JCDHE) is hosting a health insurance enrollment event to assist Kansans in enrolling in health care plans.

The event will be held Dec. 7 from 12 p.m. to 6 p.m. at the Sunset Drive Office Building, 11811 S. Sunset Drive, Olathe, Room 1055. The Health Partnership Clinic and El Centro are co-sponsoring this event.

Certified HealthCare.gov navigators will be available to help individuals and families renew their existing coverage or find plans that meet their health and financial needs.

In order to enroll, individuals must bring the following items:

  • An active email address and password
  • Birth dates and social security numbers for everyone in household
  • 2016 projected income
  • Tax information (W-2, 2014 tax return, pay stubs, self-employment records)
  • Immigration documents
  • Any info about employer offered coverage

If you have any questions, please call 913-826-1239 or 913-826-1974 to speak to a health navigator.

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Upcoming Events

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July 4, 2016 | 8:00 am to 5:00 pm

JCDHE Closed on Independence Day

July 9, 2016 | 8:00 am to 11:30 am

Household Hazardous Waste & Electronic Recycling Event

July 13, 2016 | 6:00 pm to 9:00 pm

Solid Waste Management Committee Meeting

August 13, 2016 | 8:00 am to 11:30 am

Household Hazardous Waste & Electronic Recycling Event

September 5, 2016 | 8:00 am to 5:00 pm

JCDHE Closed on Labor Day