Tuesday, February 26, 2013


US CDC has issued an MMWR describing the growing threat of multidrug-resistant gonorrhea and what public health agencies and partners can do to delay the emergence of cephalosporin-resistant strains, mitigate the public health consequences of expanded resistance, and prevent a return to the era of untreatable gonorrhea. For these strategies and more information, see the MMWR at: http://go.usa.gov/4JY3

A total of 40 confirmed gonorrhea cases have been reported in Maine through Feb. 16, compared to 54 reported cases in 2012 and 19 reported cases in 2011 during the same period. Some cases are reported more than once and may represent reinfection, recurrent infection, or persistent infection.

The majority of cases have been reported in Androscoggin County, followed by Cumberland County. Maine CDC is issuing biweekly gonorrhea surveillance updates. The most recent report is available at: http://go.usa.gov/4JrF

Current treatment guidelines and reporting requirements are included in this Health Alert from Dec. 4: http://go.usa.gov/4JY9

Monday, February 11, 2013

Important public health data now online

Maine CDC is pleased to release the Maine Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS) 2000-2010 Interactive web-query that should make most popular BRFSS public health data easily available. BRFSS non-institutional adult data is available at the State, District, and County levels in a variety of public health categories including General Health, Chronic Disease, Risk Factors, Prevention Activities, and Environmental Health. Since 1987, Maine BRFSS data has been an important surveillance data source for Maine CDC programs, other DHHS programs, and public health entities. A new version with additional data and a new weighting methodology will be available soon. Subsequent yearly updates will be available.

The BRFSS web-query should be intuitive in its use. It has both basic and advanced query functions and there is a "Quick Guide" reference for more information. The web-query, a link to the National BRFSS homepage with additional BRFSS data, and related BRFSS information are available at http://go.usa.gov/4yhm

Any questions regarding this Maine web-query system can be directed to Kip Neale, Maine BRFSS Coordinator at Kip.Neale@Maine.gov or 287-1420.

Thursday, February 7, 2013

Immunization recommendations

Each year, the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) develops recommendations for routine use of vaccines in children, adolescents, and adults in the US. This year, for the first time, recommended immunization schedules for children and adolescents up to age 18 and adults age 19 and older are being published together. Updated schedules are available at http://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/schedules/

The MMWR for children and adolescent immunization schedules is available at http://go.usa.gov/4yJk

The MMWR for adult immunization schedules is available at http://go.usa.gov/4yJP

Adult vaccination is critical to public health. Far too few adults are fully vaccinated, leaving themselves and others at risk of vaccine preventable diseases, including pneumococcal disease, whooping cough, and shingles.

US CDC has issued an MMWR describing the status of vaccination of US adults in 2011. For more information, read the MMWR at http://go.usa.gov/4yzB

Friday, February 1, 2013

American Heart Month

February is American Heart Month. Most of us know someone who has had a heart attack or stroke. In Maine, more than 1 of every 4 deaths is from heart disease or stroke.

You can help protect yourself and your loved ones from heart disease and stroke by understanding the risks and taking these steps
  • Know your ABCS
    • Ask your doctor if you should take an Aspirin every day
    • Find out if you have high Blood pressure or Cholesterol, if you do, work with your doctor to treat it
    • If you Smoke, get help to quit ~ Maine Tobacco Helpline 1-800-207-1230
  • Be physically active at least 30 minutes on most days
  • Eat more fruits, vegetables and other foods low in sodium and transfat
  • Take medicine as prescribed by your doctor
What else can you do?
Heart Month is a great time to learn about the Million Hearts Campaign.
Million Hearts is a national campaign with the goal of preventing 1 million heart attacks and strokes over five years.

For more about heart disease and stroke visit http://www.mainehearthealth.org/