Asthma, Bioterrorism Among New Community Health Concerns for Stanislaus County
Officials from the Stanislaus County Health Services Agency today will release a new report that lists asthma, bioterrorism and excessive weight as some of the county's new "health worries," the Modesto Bee reports. The 2002 Community Health Report also states that heart disease, low birth weight and chlamydia continue to remain health concerns. Among the report's findings:
- The anthrax incidents last fall have "reinforced the need to be ready" for possible bioterrorist attacks. The county has recently reviewed its evacuation plans and boosted training of emergency workers.
- Hepatitis C rates in the county "far excee[d]" the state average. A county task force is working to improve prevention and education efforts.
- Reported cases of chlamydia among 15- to 24-year-olds rose between 2000 and 2001. Health officials attributed the rise to expanded testing rather than to an increase in transmission of the disease.
- Excessive weight was a problem for 11.5% of county children enrolled in a state program in 1999, which is below the state rate "but still a concern."
- The county has one of the highest infant mortality rates for black children in the state.
Dr. John Walker, the county health officer, said that the county has made improvements in several areas, including reducing the incidence of tuberculosis, syphilis, and HIV and improving the rate of child immunizations. "In my opinion, overall indicators are improving," he said (Holland, Modesto Bee, 4/15). The full report is available online. Note: You must have Adobe Acrobat Reader to view the report. This is part of the California Healthline Daily Edition, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.