This page is intended to provide a location for media agencies and affiliated individuals to access detailed information concerning regional public health planning and response activities. If you require more media oriented materials, or would like information on programs and activities not specifically covered by this website, please contact the Southwest Ohio Region Public Health Coordinator at 513-946-7901.
For information relating to individual health jurisdictions, please use the links provided on the bottom left of the page to navigate to the appropriate agency. For those agencies without websites, contact information has been provided.
In the event of an emergency involving public health response, this page will be used to disseminate important information to the media. Through this site, the most accurate and appropriate information can be provided to the media without tying up phone lines and resources. Please bookmark this page and return often for media related resources from the Southwest Ohio Public Health Region.
National Preparedness Month-2015
September is National Preparedness Month. This year’s theme is “Don’t Wait. Communicate. Make Your Emergency Plan Today.” Each week of September will provide a variety of preparedness tools and information specifically focusing on a different hazard. Stay tuned for more information on how you can participate in National Preparedness Month.
Cities Readiness Initiative (CRI)
The Cities Readiness Initiative is a federally funded program through the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) designed to enhance preparedness in the nation’s largest cities and metropolitan statistical areas (MSA) where more than 50% of the U.S. population resides. Through CRI, Cincinnati Health Department, serving as lead, and its regional partners have developed plans to respond to a large-scale bioterrorist event by dispensing antibiotics or other needed medications to the entire population of an identified MSA within 48 hours. The SWOPHR has been participating in the CRI program since its inception in 2004. Regional CRI partners include the following county and city health departments: Brown, Butler, Clermont, Hamilton, and Warren counties; Cincinnati, Hamilton City, Middletown, Norwood, and Springdale Health Departments. The county jurisdictions undergo annual evaluation by CDC and/or the Ohio Department of Health to ensure their readiness. For more information about the CRI program, please log on to the CDC website: http://www.bt.cdc.gov/cri/.
Public Health Emergency Preparedness (PHEP)
The Public Health Emergency Preparedness (PHEP) cooperative agreement is a critical source of funding for state and local public health departments. Since 2002, the PHEP cooperative agreement has provided nearly $9 billion to public health departments across the nation to upgrade their ability to effectively respond to a range of public health threats, including infectious diseases, natural disasters, and biological, chemical, nuclear, and radiological events. Hamilton County Public Health provides the means by which regional coordination is facilitated through a regional public health coordinator whose primary responsibility is to facilitate coordination and collaboration between the 13 public health jurisdictions. For more information about the PHEP Cooperative Agreement log on to the CDC website: http://www.cdc.gov/phpr/coopagreement.htm
Public Health Preparedness Capabilities
In March 2011, CDC published national capability standards to guide the development of state and local public health emergency preparedness efforts. These standards describe the 15 preparedness capabilities necessary for a robust state and local public health emergency response. This document guides the SWOPHR in all aspects of both local and regional planning. To review the capabilities document please click on the following link: http://www.cdc.gov/phpr/capabilities/index.htm
The 2014 Ebola outbreak is the largest Ebola outbreak in history and the first Ebola outbreak in West Africa. Although the risk of an Ebola outbreak in the United States is very low, CDC and its partners are taking precautions to prevent this from happening. The Southwest Ohio Public Health Region and select area hospitals have received grant funding to assist us in preparing for and responding to an Ebola outbreak. In this effort, both area hospitals and public health departments will work together on a regional plan with particular focus on the following capabilities:
For more information regarding Ebola preparedness, please log on to the following website: http://www.cdc.gov/vhf/ebola/outbreaks/preparedness/planning-tips-top10.html
For up to the minute news on the status of Ebola click on the following website: http://www.cdc.gov/vhf/ebola/outbreaks/2014-west-africa/whats-new.html
Flu Near You
The 2015-2016 flu season is right around the corner and you can assist your local health department by participating in the online health reporting system, Flu Near You. Volunteers answer a brief, weekly digital questionnaire about their health to benefit their community’s flu awareness and tracking. Flu Near You maps flu-like symptoms in your area and links you to nearby locations offering flu vaccines. Flu Near You is administered by HealthMap of Boston Children’s Hospital in partnership with the Skoll Global Threats Fund and the American Public Health Association. The more people who enroll in Flu Near You, the greater the ability to outline regional flu trends more accurately and will complement existing public health surveillance systems.
Pandemic preparedness efforts are enhanced with community participation in Flu Near You. The local health department can assess for an increasing presence of flu-like symptoms in their respective jurisdictions and can respond accordingly. This system tracks flu-like illness and not actual influenza, so the system can provide data for other threats that present with flu-like symptoms and will provide public health responders with data to prevent pandemics by responding faster to the source of an outbreak.
To enroll, log onto the following website: https://flunearyou.org
This site is intended to provide information to the general public regarding past, current, and future activities of the Southwest Ohio Public Health Region. In an emergency, this site will also be used to provide information directly from the health departments of the region to the public.