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

Glynn News

Some Public Health Services to Stop Early on Dec. 8

Health Departments and HIV CARE Centers in Bryan, Camden, Chatham, Effingham, Glynn, Liberty, Long, and McIntosh counties will suspend operations at 11 a.m. on Friday, December 8, for a software upgrade.

Environmental Health offices in Bryan, Camden, Effingham, Glynn, Liberty, Long, and McIntosh counties will also suspend operations at 11 a.m. on Friday, December 8.

The Vital Records office at the Chatham County Health Department will remain open on Friday, December 8.

The Vital Records office at the Glynn County Health Department will be closed on Friday, December 8.

The Chatham County Environmental Health office will remain open on Friday, December 8.

We sincerely apologize for any inconvenience this may cause. All services will be available at 8 a.m. on Monday, December 11.

Georgia WIC Program Public Comment, Dec. 1 – Dec. 31, 2017

ATLANTA – The Georgia Department of Public Health’s (DPH) Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants and Children (WIC) will hold its annual public comment period from Dec. 1 – Dec. 31, 2017. During this period, Georgians are invited to comment on the program’s successes and identify opportunities to improve WIC services.

A federally-funded health and nutrition program, Georgia WIC promotes good health and positive food choices by providing its participants with nutrition education and food selections based on their nutrient content, availability throughout the state and cost. WIC food packages can include infant formulas and medical foods, milk, cheese, eggs, fruits, vegetables, juice, whole grain foods, fish, peanut butter, soy products and beans. Food packages are tailored to meet the needs of the participant.

The Georgia WIC program’s food packages are aligned with the Dietary Guidelines for Americans and infant feeding practice guidelines of the American Academy of Pediatrics. The guidelines reflect recommendations made by the Institute of Medicine. There are more than 1,400 authorized food retailers that participate in the Georgia WIC program food delivery system.

To make comments or provide suggestions, visit, click on the public comment link located on the Georgia WIC home page, and complete the appropriate survey. To learn more about Georgia WIC, please visit or call 1-800-228-9173 or 1-800-225-0056 (TTY).

In accordance with Federal civil rights law and U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) civil rights regulations and policies, the USDA, its Agencies, offices and employees, and institutions participating in or administering USDA programs are prohibited from discriminating based on race, color, national origin, sex, disability, age, or reprisal or retaliation for prior civil rights activity in any program or activity conducted or funded by USDA.

Persons with disabilities who require alternative means of communication for program information (e.g., Braille, large print, audiotape, American Sign Language, etc.), should contact the Agency (State or local) where they applied for benefits.  Individuals who are deaf, hard of hearing or have speech disabilities may contact USDA through the Federal Relay Service at (800) 877-8339.  Additionally, program information may be made available in languages other than English.

To file a program complaint of discrimination, complete the USDA Program Discrimination Complaint Form, (AD-3027) found online at:, and at any USDA office, or write a letter addressed to USDA and provide in the letter all of the information requested in the form. To request a copy of the complaint form, call (866) 632-9992. Submit your completed form or letter to USDA by:


Mail:  U.S. Department of Agriculture
Office of the Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights
1400 Independence Avenue, SW
Washington, D.C. 20250-9410

Fax: (202) 690-7442


This institution is an equal opportunity provider.

Free Diabetes Risk Assessments November 29

The Coastal Health District Chronic Disease Prevention Program will offer free diabetes risk assessments from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. on Wednesday, November 29, at the Chatham County Health Department located at 1395 Eisenhower Drive in Savannah.

More than 29 million people in the United States have diabetes and more than 84 million people over the age of 18 in the United States have pre-diabetes. In Georgia alone, more than one million people have diabetes and about 44,000 Georgians are diagnosed with diabetes every year. There are different risk factors for different types of diabetes.

In recognition of National Diabetes Awareness Month and in an effort to identify those who may be pre-diabetic, the Coastal Health District’s Chronic Disease Prevention Program will offer free diabetes risk assessments at the Chatham County Health Department. Information on diabetes prevention and management will also be available. This event is free and open to the public.

Free & Confidential HIV Testing Events Scheduled

The Coastal Health District Prevention Program will provide free and confidential HIV testing on November 29 and December 1 in observance of World AIDS Day. All events are open to the public. The following events have been scheduled:

Wednesday, November 29
10 a.m. – 3 p.m.
The Union Event Room “C” (upstairs), Savannah State University*
(In conjunction with Savannah State University’s “Know to Live” HIV & Substance Abuse Program)

Friday, December 1
10 a.m. – 3 p.m.
Health department locations in Bryan, Camden, Chatham, Effingham, Glynn,  Liberty, Long, and McIntosh counties.

Friday, December 1
6 p.m. – 8 p.m.
Brunswick Job Corps Center, 4401 Glynco Pkwy, Brunswick, GA 31525
(Also during that time there will be a free screening of the film  “Wilhelmina’s War” to raise awareness of HIV/AIDS and World AIDS Day, and to challenge the stigma and discrimination of people living with HIV. Q & A panel discussion will follow).

The South has an extremely disproportionate burden of HIV disease when compared with other regions of the U.S. In 2015, the Southern region accounted for an estimated 38 percent of the total U.S. population,1 yet an estimated 50 percent of all new HIV diagnoses (at any stage of the disease) occurred in the South; a rate that is alarmingly disproportional to its population. The South also has the highest rate of stage-three HIV infections (AIDS) as an estimated 9.2/100,000 people living with HIV in the South are living with AIDS, and survival rates from AIDS are also the lowest nationally. Nationally, 40 percent of all people living with AIDS reside in the South.

World AIDS Day is observed each year on December 1 and is an opportunity to bring awareness to HIV and HIV prevention, show support for people living with HIV, highlight efforts to combat HIV, and remember those who have died from the disease.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), an estimated 36.7 million persons are living with HIV/AIDS around the world. Each year, more than 1 million people die from AIDS-related causes and 2.1 million people become newly infected by HIV. Global efforts to prevent and treat HIV/AIDS are helping but it continues to pose a serious public health threat. The Coastal Health District HIV/AIDS program currently serves 1,398 clients living with HIV/AIDS throughout the eight-county district (Bryan, Camden, Chatham, Effingham, Glynn, Liberty, Long, and McIntosh counties).

Flu Vaccination: The Best Protection Against the Flu

ATLANTA – The Georgia Department of Public Health (DPH) is urging Georgians to get vaccinated against flu. It takes about two weeks after vaccination for antibodies to develop in the body and provide protection against the flu, so it’s important to take preventive measures now.

“The single most effective way to prevent the flu is the flu vaccine. Every healthy individual over the age of six months should get a flu vaccine, unless there are underlying medical conditions. In those cases, patients should consult their physician,” said Dr. J. Patrick O’Neal, commissioner, Georgia Department of Public Health. “The holidays bring gatherings with family and friends and increase the likelihood of spreading the flu. Now is the time to get vaccinated.”

Even if the vaccine is not a perfect match, it can still help lessen the severity and length of flu symptoms if you do get sick, according to Dr. O’Neal.

Symptoms of flu include fever, cough, sore throat, runny or stuffy nose, headache, chills and fatigue. One of the most pronounced flu symptoms is an overall feeling of achiness and malaise that comes on quickly.

There are other things you can do to help protect against flu, including:

  • Frequent and thorough hand-washing. Alcohol based gels are the next best thing if there is no access to soap and water.
  • Covering your nose and mouth when coughing and sneezing to help prevent the spread of the flu. Use a tissue or cough or sneeze into the crook of your elbow or arm.
  • Avoid touching your face as flu germs can get into the body through mucus membranes of the nose, mouth and eyes.
  • If you are sick, stay home from school or work. Flu sufferers should be free of fever without the use of a fever reducer for at least 24 hours before returning to school or work.

If you do get sick and think you may have the flu, contact your health care provider right away. There are medications that can be used to treat flu but they are most effective when taken within 48 hours of the onset of flu symptoms.

You can also track flu activity in Georgia at The page is updated weekly. For more information about flu and how to prevent it, log on to

Glynn County Health Dept. Blood Drive Scheduled for November 14

Glynn County Health Department and OneBlood will hold a community blood drive from 12 p.m. to 4 p.m., Tuesday, November 14, at the Glynn County Health Department at 2747 Fourth Street in Brunswick.

Donating blood takes less than an hour and each blood donation has the potential to save up to three lives. Everyone who donates will receive a FREE OneBlood Fleece blanket. In addition, all donors will receive a wellness check including blood pressure, temperature, iron count, pulse, and cholesterol screening. If you want to save time and make an appointment in advance, please call 912-279-3351.

Flu Vaccine Available at Health Departments

Health departments in Bryan, Camden, Chatham, Effingham, Glynn, Liberty, Long, and McIntosh counties now have injectable flu vaccine available. Getting the flu vaccine is the best way to protect yourself, your family, and your community from the flu.

Getting vaccinated against the flu is recommended for everyone six months of age and older. It takes about two weeks after getting a flu shot for the vaccine to provide the body protection against the flu. While getting the flu vaccine is the best way to prevent the flu, there are other things we can all do every day to prevent getting or spreading the flu:

  • Avoid close contact with sick people.
  • If you get sick with flu-like illness, stay home for at least 24 hours after the fever is gone except to get medical care or for other necessities. The fever should be gone without the use of a fever-reducing medicine.
  • While sick, limit contact with others as much as possible to keep from infecting them.
  • Try to cough or sneeze into the corner of your elbow and not your hand or cover your nose and mouth with a tissue when you cough or sneeze. Throw the tissue in the trash after you use it.
  • Wash your hands with soap and water. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand rub.
  • 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 or to download the consent form ahead of time, go to your county health department web page and click on the Flu Vaccination Information link under County Information.

Post-Irma Beach Water Testing Update

Testing for elevated levels of enterococcus (pronounced: en·ter·o·coc·cus), bacteria which is found in warm blooded animals including humans but also birds, raccoons, deer, dolphins and other wildlife, resumed this week after testing was suspended due to Hurricane Irma. Beaches in Chatham and Glynn counties showed results that are within normal limits; therefore, advisories for these areas have been lifted.  There is one exception: North Beach at Dexter Lane (from the old North picnic area to Brice Lane). Beach access was blocked in that area so no testing could be performed.

The following areas are only tested once a month and have not been tested since August:

  • Skidaway Narrows (Butterbean Beach) in Chatham County
  • Contentment Bluff Sandbar and Dallas Bluff Sandbar in McIntosh County
  • Reimolds Pasture, Sea Island North, Sea Island South, and Blythe Island Sandbar in Glynn County.

Since no testing has been performed at North Beach at Dexter Lane on Jekyll Island or at any of the areas mentioned in bullet points above, The Coastal Health District recommends you do not swim or wade in the water in those areas. Fish and other seafood caught from those areas should be thoroughly washed with fresh water and thoroughly cooked before eating as should fish or seafood caught from any waters.

The areas will be retested and results will be shared once that happens. For more information about beach water testing, click HERE.

DPH Urges Safety Precautions After Irma

Keep Yourself and Your Loved Ones Safe By Following Basic Safety Tips

ATLANTA – Hurricane/tropical storm Irma is no longer a threat but recovering from the storm will take weeks, and even longer in some parts of the state. The Georgia Department of Public Health (DPH) is urging Georgians to use extreme caution particularly in the next few days as residents return to their homes, power is restored and damage assessments are made. The storm may be over, but that doesn’t mean the danger is.

Be careful near damaged buildings

  • Do not return to your home until you are told it is safe to do so.
  • Return during daylight hours, when it is easier to avoid hazards, particularly if the electricity is off.
  • Do not enter your home if you are unsure of structural integrity.
  • Leave immediately if you hear shifting or unusual noises.
  • If you smell gas or suspect a leak, notify emergency authorities or the gas company immediately and leave the area.

Stay away from power lines

  • Stay clear of fallen power lines – be particularly careful of power lines that may be hidden in fallen trees and branches.
  • Watch out for power lines dangling overhead.
  • Report downed power lines to emergency authorities or the power company immediately.

Avoid floodwater

  • Always follow warnings about flooded roads.
  • Don’t drive through floodwater – it may be deeper than you think.
  • Keep in mind that floodwater often carries germs. If you touch it, be sure to wash your hands with soap and water. If you don’t have soap or water, use alcohol-based wipes or sanitizer.

Prevent Carbon Monoxide Poisoning

  • Never use a generator inside your home or garage, even if doors and windows are open.
  • Only use generators outside, more than 20 feet away from your home, doors and windows.
  • Install battery-operated or battery backup CO detectors near every sleeping area in your home.

Identify and throw away food that may not be safe to eat

  • When in doubt, throw it out.
  • Throw away food that has an unusual odor, color or texture.
  • Throw away perishable foods (including meat, poultry, fish, eggs and leftovers) in your refrigerator when the power has been off for four hours or more.
  • Thawed food that contains ice crystals can be refrozen or cooked. Freezers, if left unopened and full, will keep food safe for 48 hours (24 hours if half full).
  • Throw away canned foods that are bulging, opened or damaged.

Check water quality

  • Listen and follow all drinking water advisories and use bottled water when in doubt.
  • Do not drink water from private wells that have/may have been flooded.
  • Disinfect all private wells that may have been flooded before drinking water.

Protect yourself from animals and pests

  • Floods can bring mosquitoes that carry disease – use insect repellent with DEET or Picaridin, IR3535, and some oil of lemon eucalyptus. Follow label directions.
  • Wear long sleeves, pants and socks when you’re outside.
  • Stay away from wild or stray animals after a storm – call 911 or your local public health department to report them.

Prevent mold

  • Protect yourself by wearing gloves, masks and goggles.
  • Remove and discard items that cannot be washed and disinfected (such as mattresses, carpeting, carpet padding, rugs, upholstered furniture, cosmetics, stuffed animals, baby toys, pillows, foam-rubber items, books, wall coverings and paper products) within 24-48 hours.
  • Remove and discard drywall and insulation that has been contaminated with sewage or floodwaters within 24-48 hours.
  • Ventilate by opening all doors and windows.
  • Thoroughly clean all hard surfaces (such as flooring, concrete, molding, wood and metal furniture, countertops, appliances, sinks and other plumbing fixtures) with hot water and laundry or dish detergent.


For more information go to:

About the Georgia Department of Public Health

The Georgia Department of Public Health (DPH) is the lead agency in preventing disease, injury and disability; promoting health and well-being; and preparing for and responding to disasters from a health perspective. For more information visit:

Swimming in the Ocean Not Advised Under Current Conditions

The Coastal Health District and Georgia Department of Natural Resources, Coastal Resources Division, advise against swimming or wading in the ocean due to the possibility of hazards including rip currents, elevated bacteria levels, and debris in the water.

Testing for elevated levels of enterococcus (pronounced: en·ter·o·coc·cus), bacteria which is found in warm blooded animals including humans but also birds, raccoons, deer, dolphins and other wildlife, is currently suspended/temporarily unavailable. Testing will resume as soon as possible.

For more information about beach water testing, click HERE.