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CDPH Testing Confirms Botulism Linked to Nacho Cheese Sauce Sold at Sacramento County Gas Station

SACRAMENTO – The California Department of Public Health (CDPH) tested and confirmed that nacho cheese sauce that was sold at a gas station in Sacramento County has tested positive for the toxin that causes botulism. The toxin found in the cheese sauce is the same type identified in patients for whom CDPH has results.

CDPH has received reports of 10 cases of botulism linked to this outbreak, and has learned that one patient has died. The nacho cheese sauce was removed from sale on May 5. CDPH believes there is no continuing risk to the public.

“While there are still unanswered questions about this outbreak, these tragic illnesses are important reminders to be vigilant about food safety,” said CDPH Director and State Public Health Officer Dr. Karen Smith. “As we head into the summer barbecue season, both indoor and outdoor chefs need to be on guard against all foodborne illnesses.”

Botulism cases are reported to CDPH so that appropriate action can be taken to protect public health. For botulism and other foodborne diseases, CDPH and local public health departments receive case reports, conduct investigations to determine possible sources of exposure, test laboratory specimens to identify and link foodborne illnesses, take action to ensure food items that pose a risk to public health are no longer available, provide information to the public about how to prevent disease, and publish data about overall disease trends and risks.

For foodborne diseases, CDPH does not track patient conditions or outcomes. To protect patient privacy, CDPH is not sharing information about the patients affected in this botulism outbreak, their conditions or the four counties that have reported cases.

CDPH and local health departments have notified health care providers to be aware of the symptoms of botulism, including:

· Double or blurred vision

· Drooping eyelids

· Slurred speech

· Difficulty swallowing

· Dry mouth

· Muscle weakness

People experiencing these symptoms should contact their health care provider immediately.

Foodborne botulism is a rare but serious paralytic illness caused by a nerve toxin produced by the bacterium Clostridium botulinum. Botulism can be treated with antitoxin and supportive care, often in an intensive care unit. Botulism is fatal in about 5 percent of cases. The toxin that causes botulism can be found in foods that are not properly processed or stored. It is odorless and colorless, so it is not possible to tell if a product is contaminated just by looking at it.

In the kitchen or at your backyard grill, simple steps can prevent many types of foodborne illnesses, including:

· Cook - Make sure foods are cooked to the right temperature.

· Clean - Wash hands and surfaces often.

· Chill - Refrigerate foods properly.

· Separate - Separate raw meats from other foods.

Consumers can find more food-safety information on the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) website. Botulism information and data can be found on the CDPH website and the CDC website. www.cdph.ca.gov

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Inland Health Professions Coalition offers FREE health science summer camp to 9th graders

IHPC cares about what kids are doing this summer! Incoming high school freshmen can register to attend this completely free two-week Health Occupations 101 summer camp offered Monday - Friday from 7:30 AM - 2:00 PM, June 5th - 16th at Fontana High School. This is the first time IHPC, in collaboration with Fontana High School, has offered this camp, designed to excite and inform kids interested in health science and medical technology - a major California STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) educational initiative.

Summer camp students will hear from and interact with local healthcare professionals while learning about a variety of health-related careers needed to address shortages in the region, and the health pathway programs available at Fontana High School (FOHI). Site visits to local health facilities have also been arranged to provide students a more in-depth exploration of the health industry.

The summer camp ultimately hopes to encourage students to join the healthcare workforce in the Inland region after high school, by choosing one of the Health Science or Medical Technology programs (Medical Assistant, CNA Prep, CNA Acute Care, and Sports Medicine) offered at FOHI in the Fall. The high school is offering 5 elective credits to students who complete the summer camp and enroll at Fontana High next school year.

What: Health Occupations 101 Summer Camp

Location: Fontana High School 9453 Citrus Ave, Fontana, CA 92335

When: June 5th - 16th, 2017

Time: 7:30 AM - 2:00 PM

RSVP by May 31st at www.inlandcoalition.org/events

The Inland Health Professions Coalition is part of Reach Out, a non-profit organization that strengthens communities through programs, youth development, education, and policy initiatives that address the region's toughest barriers to healthy populations. For more information, visit www.inlandcoalition.org

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Women’s Health: Supporting Community-Based Efforts to Help Families Eat Healthy Food

May is Women’s Health Month and it's never too early or late to make healthy changes so you look and feel your best! You can take control of your health and help others in your family too!

To improve your physical and mental health, you can:

- Visit a doctor or nurse for a well-woman visit (checkup) and preventive screenings.

- Get active.

- Eat healthy.

- Pay attention to mental health, including getting enough sleep and managing stress.

- Avoid unhealthy behaviors, such as smoking, texting while driving, and not wearing a seatbelt or bicycle helmet.

In some communities, it’s hard to get healthy food. “In many parts of our country, food deserts make it harder for women and their families to access healthy food options,” said Elaine Auld, president and CEO of the Society for Public Health Education (SOPHE). “If your local convenience store offers very little fresh fruit and vegetables, and you don’t have easy transportation to a grocery store, it’s much more difficult to purchase healthy food.”

To help address disparities like this, SOPHE partnered in a three-year national project, Partnering4Health. There are projects in 97 communities across the country assisting people and communities to live healthier.

A third of the projects are supported through the National WIC Association (NWA). The American Heart Association, the American Planning Association and the Directors of Health Promotion & Education, are also involved.

USDA provides Federal grants to States for WIC. These programs provide breastfeeding support, supplemental foods, health care referrals, and nutrition education for low-income pregnant and postpartum women, and to infants and children up to age five who are found to be at nutritional risk. Here are a few examples of WIC programs that are working in their communities to help women and families access nutritious food and breast milk

Helping infants get a healthy start and mothers feel supported by breastfeeding friendly policies in their community. In Georgia, the Southeast Health District & Meadows Regional Medical Center Partner for Health started a program called, “Mommy & Me, Healthy as Can Be!” They worked to make Tattnall County a breastfeeding friendly community.

Through their efforts, over 50 business have become breastfeeding friendly or have adopted policies to enable breastfeeding mothers to feed in peace. The program also improved the relationship between the area WIC program and Meadows Regional Medical Center, ensuring that more families who qualify are referred for WIC program support if needed.

Improving the shopping experience for WIC participants. In Wichita County, Texas, enrollment in the WIC program began to drop. WIC staff learned that recipients were frustrated when they shopped because it was difficult to know which food they could buy with their benefits. Store staff often did not know either.

"Depending on what store you go to, everything is different. There are different brands. Fruit is a big one, it is different at every store. Some have the pink WIC tags and some are not tagged. It would be a lot easier with the shopping guide,” said Caroline Stansbury, WIC mom and cashier at a big box store.

The county’s public health district and local WIC office worked with community partners to develop store specific guides. They also trained store staff and WIC recipients on the products available for purchase.

The training eased confusion and stress for store staff and fostered a better relationship with WIC clients and grocers.

Getting healthier options into convenience stores Cochiti Pueblo is located in a remote area in New Mexico and residents drive at least 45-minutes to get to a full service grocery store.

The Five Sandoval Indian Pueblos WIC Program worked with Cochiti Mini Mart on the pueblo to stock healthier food options with the eventual goal of having the store become a WIC authorized vendor.

Educating employers about breastfeeding-friendly policies. In Loudoun County, Virginia, outside Washington, D.C., a community coalition working with the local WIC agency developed a toolkit to encourage area employers to improve policies for lactation support programs.

The toolkit was promoted at several events for area employers. The County government designated and equipped two lactation support rooms as a result of the program. The coalition also offered certified lactation counselor training, so new mothers could be better educated about breastfeeding.

Working to improve healthy choice options in area restaurants and cafeterias. Working with community partners, Chefs Cooking Healthy Covington and Mandeville, and area mayors, St. Tammany Parish Hospital Community Wellness Center, launched Eat Fit Northshore in Louisiana.

The initiative encourages restaurants to offer healthy options on their menus. Participating restaurants displayed an Eat Fit logo on their menus and listed a free app for area residents. Eat Fit Northshore is modeled on Eat Fit NOLA, a program developed by Ochsner Health System dietician, Molly Kimball.

Learn more about #Partnering4Health :www.partnering4health.org and #Gr8rwithWIC: http://www.greaterwithwic.org

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