Page 23 - Volume 69 Number 1
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Executive Council Meeting Highlights
Washtenaw County Medical Society
JANUARY 5, 2017
Influenza: Reports of cases of lab-confirmed Influenza A are increasing in Washtenaw County. Of the cases that have been subtyped, all have been A/H3. Generally in A/ H3 seasons we see more complications among older adults and increased hospitalizations, as evidenced by our County trends.
Overall, 37% of Washtenaw residents 6 months and older were vaccinated against flu, compared to 25% statewide for 2015-16. Yet, 18-24 year olds only placed 13th among their peers in flu vaccination rates, as measured by the Michigan Care Improvement Registry (MCIR). To address these low rates among young adults, the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) partnered with Alana’s Foundation for the third year in a row to host the College and University Flu Vaccination Challenge. The Challenge is a friendly competition between schools to encourage increased flu vaccination rates. 2016-17 winners were: Calvin College, Wayne State University, and the University of Michigan for small, medium, and large-sized schools, respectively.
Although Washtenaw County is the highest in the state for vaccinating children against flu, the current rate of vaccination in 5-12 year olds (40%) has fallen from the 2013-14 flu season when the rate was 50% locally.
*Flu Season starting Oct 2, 2016
Zika: Local public health departments (LHD) will no longer be the gatekeeper for Zika testing at the State Lab. Providers will have to fill out the Zika clinical form and send it along with specimens. If the individual does not meet CDC criteria for testing, it will not be tested by the State Lab. Commercial labs are available for individuals who do not meet CDC criteria. However, the commercial assays are not as accurate and a positive test at a commercial lab has to be confirmed at the State Lab.
SUBSTANCE ABUSE: The Opioid Epidemic: Washtenaw County has continued to see deaths related to the opioid epidemic. In September 2016 there were 6 deaths (four involved fentanyl, one involved carfent- anyl). In October 2016, there were 4 deaths (two involved fentanyl). Locally, the Opioid Project is a collaboration promoting effective solutions based on local data that was formed in response to the opioid epidemic. It brings together law enforcement, public health, hospitals, community mental health, treatment facilities, other
providers, the recovery community and community leaders to share resources, build partnerships and combat the epidemic. For more information
or to attend an upcoming meeting, please contact Angy Perez-Martinez at
MENTAL HEALTH: Suicide Completion Rates Have Steadily Increased over the Last Two Decades: 2016 (as of November) saw further increases with 10 reported suicide completions compared to 2 completions in 2015, among 15-24 years old individuals. Washtenaw County Public Health (WCPH) along with Community Mental Health (CMH) put out a joint press release regarding the Suicide Death Review Team (SDRT) recommendations for prevention. More details can be found on the WCPH homepage: departments/public_health.
WCPH along with other community partners will sponsor a countywide town hall on suicide prevention on Tuesday, February 7, 2017 from 6:00pm to 8:0pm at the Learning Resource Center, 4135 Washtenaw Ave, Ann Arbor, MI 48108. This town hall will be a community event that aims to increase suicide awareness and prevention; also, information on local resources will be provided. Mental and behavioral health experts will be available to answer general community questions about prevention
COMMUNITY ENGAGEMENT: Community Conversations: WCPH continues to work with its previously identified communities in need: the south of Michigan Avenue (SOMA) neighborhood in the City of Ypsilanti, the West Willow neighborhood in Ypsilanti Township, Whitmore Lake/Northfield Township, and the Latino community. Each of these communities have begun work on projects centered on several identified priorities which include: youth employment, health nutrition/physical activity promotion, health care access expansion, and leadership development/capacity building, respectively.
ENVIRONMENTAL HEALTH: 1,4-Dioxane Contamination: Washtenaw County, WCPH, and Health Officer Ellen Rabinowitz are using the authority of the health officer to take legal action on the 1,4-dioxane contamination issue. To protect the public’s health, Rabinowitz, the department and the county filed a motion in Washtenaw County Circuit Court, last month, seeking to intervene in the litigation between the State of Michigan and Gelman Sciences, Inc. The motion was granted on December 16, 2016.
Influenza-Associated Hospitalizations and Deaths in Washtenaw Residents: 2016-17*
Total Hospitalizations
Hospitalizations week ending 12/31/16
Total adult deaths
Total child deaths
Volume 69 • Number 1 Washtenaw County Medical Society BULLETIN 23

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