For Cervical Health Awareness Month, DHMH Urges Maryland Women to get Pap Tests, HPV Vaccinations for Boys and Girls

Baltimore, MD (January 16, 2015) – Of all cancers that affect women, cervical cancer is one of the most preventable. The human papillomavirus (HPV) causes cervical cancer and other cancers. For Cervical Health Awareness Month, Maryland is recommending that women get Pap tests and that preteens get HPV vaccinations.
 
In 2015, an estimated 230 women in Maryland will be told that they have cervical cancer. Seventy-three Maryland women will die from the disease this year. In order to eliminate these preventable illnesses and deaths, it is essential that individuals, families, healthcare providers and public health focus on promoting regular Pap tests among women 21 and older, as well as HPV vaccinations of preteen boys and girls.
 
“There is a great opportunity in Maryland to prevent even more cervical cancer diagnoses each year, by increasing cancer screening and HPV vaccination rates,” said Dr. Laura Herrera Scott, Acting Secretary of the Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene. “HPV vaccinations amount to cancer prevention.”
 
In Maryland, the majority of women aged 21 to 65 years, about 88 percent, have had a Pap test in the past three years. However, younger women (aged 21 to 29 years) and non-white and non-black women are not getting screened as often as their counterparts. The HPV vaccine is highly recommended for girls and boys, 11 or 12 years old (and up until age 26 for those who have not been vaccinated yet). However, here in Maryland, only 31 percent of girls have had all three doses of the vaccine. Only 20 percent of boys have had their first dose.
 
There are many options for obtaining and paying for Pap tests and the HPV vaccine. Health insurance can cover this cancer screening and vaccine. For example, lower-income women 40 to 64 years old who do not have health insurance or who have out-of-pocket costs might be eligible for a Pap test at no cost. Call 1-800-477-9774 to discuss the eligibility requirements. Medicaid enrollment through Maryland Health Connection is available year-round, if Marylanders qualify.
 
The Center for Cancer Prevention and Control works to promote cervical cancer screening and is dedicated to the implementation of initiatives aimed at decreasing cervical cancer mortality rates in Maryland. For informative videos and other materials, please call 1-800-477-9774 or click here.
 

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WCHD News

As part of Pocomoke City’s 4th Friday on Sept. 27, the Worcester County Health Department will lead a free 1-mile fun walk through the historic downtown district. Registration begins at 5 pm and the walk starts at 5:30 pm.

Click the image below to register for the walk. 

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The Out of the Darkness Suicide Awareness Walk. Movement of a quarter of a million people joined by local participants in Ocean City, MD.

Ocean City, MD − Suicide is the 10th leading cause of death in the United States, yet suicide can be prevented. Volunteers from Worcester County are joining the quarter of a million people who are walking in towns across the United States to draw attention to the fight for suicide prevention. The 8th annual Out of the Darkness Walk, hosted by the Worcester County Health Department (WCHD) will be held on Saturday, September 21, 2019. As in years past, walkers will gather at Caroline Street and the Boardwalk, with registration beginning at 9am. After opening remarks, the procession will walk to the Inlet, turn and walk to 5th Street, then back to Caroline Street.

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Worcester Health partners with Ocean City Fire Department on “Safe Station” project
Station offers 24/7 access to recovery services

Ocean City, MD- Where would you go if you needed help with addiction right now? The Worcester County Health Department, in partnership with the Town of Ocean City Fire Department, has launched a “Safe Station” in Ocean City at the 15th Street Fire Station for those seeking immediate help getting into recovery. The station is open 24-hours a day, 7 days a week for any individuals seeking treatment services.

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In the event of a storm or power outage, it is important to know safety information about food storage and operating generators. Follow the links below for tips about food and generator safety.

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(July 31, 2019 Snow Hill, MD) – The Worcester County Health Department received notification from the State of Maryland that a mosquito pool in the Whaleyville area of Worcester County recently tested positive for Eastern Equine Encephalitis (EEE). This is the first positive test for EEE in Worcester in 2019.

Arboviruses, such as the EEE virus, are most common during the summer and fall months. The viruses are transmitted by infected mosquitoes and spread to humans, birds, horses and other animals. Since mosquitoes can breed in as little as a quarter inch of water, eliminating standing water is critical for the control of mosquito populations. Many factors impact when and where outbreaks occur, such as weather, numbers of mosquitoes that spread the virus, and human behavior.

The Worcester and Wicomico County Health Department provides the following tips to help prevent contact with mosquitoes and reduce risk of infection with EEE or other mosquito borne illnesses:

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