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The Coastal Health District of Georgia serves the counties of Bryan, Camden, Chatham, Effingham, Glynn, Liberty, Long & McIntosh

Chatham News


Georgia WIC Comment Survey

Let us know what you think about WIC! We want to make the program better but we need your help. Please go to wic.ga.gov to give us your feedback. The survey will be open through June 30.

Potential Hepatitis A Exposure from Restaurant Worker

A case of hepatitis A has been diagnosed in a food handler at the Zaxby’s located at 5971 Ogeechee Road. A public health investigation found that this employee worked while infectious, March 29 through April 3.

It is relatively rare for restaurant patrons to become infected with hepatitis A virus due to an infected food handler. However, anyone who consumed food and/or drink at the restaurant between March 29 and April 3 should watch for the symptoms of hepatitis A infection.

Hepatitis A is a viral infection of the liver, and symptoms may include:

  • Loss of appetite
  • Nausea
  • Tiredness
  • Fever
  • Stomach pain
  • Brown-colored urine and light-colored stools
  • Yellowing of the skin of eyes

Symptoms can appear up to 50 days after exposure to the virus. If anyone develops these symptoms, they should stay at home and contact their healthcare provider immediately.

There is also a safe and effective vaccine for hepatitis A that is available through some healthcare providers and all health departments. Even if the vaccine is given after the person was exposed, it can provide protection against developing hepatitis A.

Careful hand washing, including under the fingernails, with soap and water, is always an important tool to prevent the spread of this and many other diseases. Hepatitis A usually spreads when a person unknowingly ingests the virus from objects, food, or drinks contaminated by small, undetected amounts of stool from an infected person. The virus spreads when an infected person does not wash his/her hands adequately after using the toilet or engages in behaviors that increase risk of infection.

The following flyer has more information about hepatitis A.

Hepatitis A Information

Additional information can be found at cdc.gov/hepatitis.

Ladies Who PrEP Summit Scheduled for April 13

The Georgia Department of Public Health Office of HIV/AIDS, Sister Love, Inc., and the Coastal Health District will host the “Ladies Who PrEP Summit” in Savannah on April 13 at the Savannah Marriott Riverfront.

WHO: The Georgia Department of Public Health Office of HIV/AIDS, Sister Love, Inc., and the Coastal Health District

WHAT: Ladies Who PrEP Summit

WHEN: 10 a.m. – 3 p.m., Saturday, April 13

WHERE: Savannah Marriott Riverfront, 100 General McIntosh Blvd., Savannah

WHY: Attendees will be empowered to take control of their sexual health as they discuss women’s sexual health issues and learn about Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis (PrEP) as an HIV prevention option. The day will be a great blend of education and fun as attendees will enjoy food, celebrity guest panels, music, and interactive skill building activities from health experts.

This event is free and open to the public but registration is required:
https://ladieswhoprepsavannah.eventbrite.com

Click here for more information about PrEP.

Free Mammograms in Chatham Co. for Women Who Meet Eligibility Criteria

The Chatham County Health Department’s Breast and Cervical Cancer Program (BCCP) is partnering with St. Joseph’s/Candler Mobile Mammography Program to offer free mammogram screenings for women who meet eligibility guidelines from 8:30 a.m. – 3 p.m., on Tuesday, March 26, at the health department’s midtown location, 1602 Drayton Street.

Women who meet certain annual income guidelines and are 40-64 years of age without insurance will be eligible to receive a screening mammogram at no cost. More information on eligibility requirements can be found at gachd.org/bccp.

Appointments are preferred but walk-ins will be accepted. To make an appointment, please call 356-2946.

Raccoon on Wilmington Island Tests Positive for Rabies

A raccoon in the Oemler Loop area of Wilmington Island has tested positive for rabies. A family dog that came into contact with the raccoon does not have a history of receiving the rabies vaccine and will be under quarantine for four months to make sure he does not exhibit any symptoms.

Several species of wild animals that are native to coastal Georgia – including raccoons, foxes, and bats – can carry rabies. Rabies is a potentially deadly virus that is primarily spread by infected animals. The Chatham County Health Department Environmental Health office offers these tips to protect you and your family from rabies:

  • Avoid contact with animals you don’t know.
  • Make sure your pets receive the proper immunizations. Dogs and cats should get rabies vaccines after 12 weeks of age, followed by a booster shot within one year and vaccination every 1-3 years depending on veterinary recommendation and vaccine used.
  • Do not handle, feed, or unintentionally attract wild animals with open garbage cans or by leaving pet food out at night.
  • Never adopt wild animals or bring them into your home. Do not try to nurse sick animals to health. Call animal control or a properly licensed animal rescue agency for assistance.
  • Teach children to never handle unfamiliar animals, wild or domestic, even if they appear friendly. “Love your own, leave other animals alone” is a good principle for children to learn.


Symptoms of rabies in animals include a change in behavior, biting, aggression, showing no fear of natural enemies (such as humans), foaming at the mouth, and paralysis.

If an animal ever bites you, seek medical care immediately and contact Chatham County Animal Services at 912-652-6575 and the Chatham County Environmental Health office at 912-356-2160.

County Health Departments Awarded Car Seat Mini-Grant; Buckle Up Right, Every Trip, Every Time


Health departments in Bryan, Chatham, Glynn, Liberty, Long, and McIntosh counties were awarded the 2019 Car Seat Mini Grant by the Georgia Department of Public Health, Injury Prevention Program. Health departments in those counties will use the Mini-Grant funding to educateparents and caregivers on how to properly install and use car seats, offercar seat inspections, and providecar seats and booster seats to financially eligible families.

The program is funded by the Governor’s Office of Highway Safety to help ensure Georgia’s children are safe while riding in motor vehicles. Since 2007, the education, car seats, and booster seats provided through the Mini-Grant prevented serious injury or death and saved over 300 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.

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 on the car seat program in the six Coastal Health District counties that received funding, please contact the local health department directly.  Contact information for Coastal Health District health departments can be found at gachd.org/counties.

                                                                 

Free Screening of Acclaimed Film, “25 to Life,” in Savannah & Brunswick

The Coastal Health District Prevention Program, the Savannah and Brunswick Chapter of The Links, Incorporated, and Savannah State University Student Development will host a free screening of the acclaimed film, “25 to Life,” in Savannah and Brunswick on the following days and times:

7 p.m. (doors open at 6 p.m.), Wednesday, January 23, Savannah State University Union, Ballrooms A&B.

7 p.m. Thursday, January 24, Brunswick Job Corps Center, 4401 Glynco Parkway.

The events are free and open to the public. The film’s creative team along with William Brawner, whose story is told in the film, will attend the screening and participate in an interactive audience discussion following the screening. Brawner, national speaker and HIV/AIDS activist and Executive Director of the Haven Youth Center, will lead the discussion about ending HIV/AIDS stigma though education, awareness, and Pre-exposure prophylaxis *(PrEP). There will also be free giveaways and refreshments.

*PrEP is a medication taken daily for those identified as high risk for HIV infection.

The mission of the Coastal Health District Prevention Team is to educate communities about the threat of HIV/AIDS and its social impact; advocate for increased HIV/AIDS programs within the community that help improve treatment, provide support and prevention of HIV/AIDS; and eradicate HIV/AIDS stigmas and discrimination.  “25 to LIFE” will help bring awareness to the ongoing fight against HIV/AIDS and will address the tough issues of sex, race, and manhood as well as the effects of silence and secrecy surrounding HIV positive people. William will share his personal story of keeping his HIV positive status a secret for over 25 years and his tireless efforts to end HIV/AIDS stigmas.

 

 

Potential Hepatitis A Exposure from Restaurant Worker

A case of hepatitis A has been diagnosed in a food handler at Gryphon Tea Room located in downtown Savannah. An investigation found that this employee worked while ill Jan. 2, 5, 8, 10 and 12. It is relatively rare for restaurant patrons to become infected with hepatitis A virus due to an infected food handler, but anyone who consumed food or drink at the Gryphon Tea Room on the above dates should contact their healthcare provider to determine if a hepatitis A immunization is needed to prevent the disease.

Anyone who consumed food and/or drink at the restaurant on the dates that employee worked is also asked to:

  1. Monitor their health for symptoms of hepatitis A infection up to 50 days after exposure.
  2. Wash their hands with soap and warm water frequently and thoroughly, especially after using the bathroom and before preparing food.
  3. Stay at home and contact their healthcare provider immediately if symptoms of hepatitis A infection develop.

Careful hand washing, including under the fingernails, with soap and water, along with vaccination of anyone at risk of infection, will prevent the spread of this disease.

Hepatitis A is a viral infection of the liver that can cause loss of appetite, nausea, tiredness, fever, stomach pain, brown colored urine and light-colored stools. Yellowing of the skin or eyes may also appear.  People can become ill up to 7 weeks after being exposed to the virus.

Hepatitis A usually spreads when a person unknowingly ingests the virus from objects, food, or drinks contaminated by small, undetected amounts of stool from an infected person. The virus spreads when an infected person does not wash his/her hands adequately after using the toilet or engages in behaviors that increase risk of infection.

For more information on hepatitis A, go to cdc.gov/hepatitis.

Downtown Port Wentworth Under Boil Water Advisory

January 16, 2019

Precautionary Boil Water Notice

TO: RESIDENTS OF PORT WENTWORTH, GA LIVING IN THE DOWNTOWN AREA, BOUNDED BY EAST OF AUGUSTA RD. (HIGHWAY 21); AND SOUTH OF JIMMY DELOACH.

 A TEMPORARY LOSS OF WATER PRESSURE HAS BEEN EXPERIENCED DUE TO EQUIPMENT MALFUNCTION IN THE DOWNTOWN PORT WENTWORTH AREA. AS A PRECAUTION,WE ARE ADVISING THAT ALL WATER USED FOR DRINKING/CONSUMPTION OR COOKING TO BE BOILED.

THE WATER SHOULD BE BOILED FOR 1-3 MINUTES AFTER REACHING A ROLLING BOIL POINT. BOTTLED WATER MAY BE USED AS AN ALTERNATIVE.

ANY RESTAURANTS IN THE IMPACTED AREA WILL NEED TO SUSPEND OPERATIONS, UNLESS THEY HAVE A PRE-APPROVED EMERGENCY OPERATION PLAN ON FILE WITH THE CHATHAM COUNTY HEALTH OFFICE.

THIS “PRECAUTIONARY BOIL WATER NOTICE” WILL REMAIN IN EFFECT UNTIL THE WATER SYSTEM IS BACK TO NORMAL OPERATIONS AND BACTERIOLOGICAL TESTING IS COMPLETED.

IF YOU HAVE ANY QUESTIONS, YOU MAY CONTACT CHRIS LEE (PROJECT MANAGER – PORT WENTWORTH) AT 864-293-5822.

Raccoon on Wilmington Island Tests Positive for Rabies

A raccoon in the Druid Circle area of Wilmington Island has tested positive for rabies. A family dog that came into contact with the raccoon is up to date on his rabies vaccination and has received a booster vaccine.

Several species of wild animals that are native to coastal Georgia – including raccoons, foxes, and bats – can carry rabies. Rabies is a potentially deadly virus that is primarily spread by infected animals. The Chatham County Health Department Environmental Health office offers these tips to protect you and your family from rabies:

  • Avoid contact with animals you don’t know.
  • Make sure your pets receive the proper immunizations. Dogs and cats should get rabies vaccines after 12 weeks of age, followed by a booster shot within one year and vaccination every 1-3 years depending on veterinary recommendation and vaccine used.
  • Do not handle, feed, or unintentionally attract wild animals with open garbage cans or by leaving pet food out at night.
  • Never adopt wild animals or bring them into your home. Do not try to nurse sick animals to health. Call animal control or a properly licensed animal rescue agency for assistance.
  • Teach children to never handle unfamiliar animals, wild or domestic, even if they appear friendly. “Love your own, leave other animals alone” is a good principle for children to learn.

Symptoms of rabies in animals include a change in behavior, biting, aggression, showing no fear of natural enemies (such as humans), foaming at the mouth, and paralysis.

If an animal ever bites you, seek medical care immediately and contact Chatham County Animal Services at 912-652-6575 and the Chatham County Environmental Health office at 912-356-2160.