Public Health Provides COVID-19 Update; No Confirmed Cases in Granville, Vance

THIS STORY IS PRESENTED IN PART BY DRAKE DENTISTRY

Lisa Harrison, Director of Granville Vance Public Health, told WIZS News at 4:48 p.m. that there are no confirmed cases of Coronavirus “at this time.  Still testing regularly in each county.”

She said, “Please remind people to stay at home and give a call if they develop fever and shortness of breath or a really bad cough. Fever has to be present in order for the doctor to take a sample for testing. The social distancing and staying home to keep our health care workers safe is very important. We need to save our ER resources for very sick individuals and not for screening.”

Earlier in the day, Wednesday, March 18, 2020, the following Press Release was issued by Granville County Government: 

Granville Vance Public Health (GVPH) reports that – as of March 18 at 10 a.m. – there have been no confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Granville or Vance County, and that public health officials are currently active in surveillance, testing, monitoring and providing guidance information to individuals and agencies daily.

In partnership with providers and neighboring health departments, the first phase of the response has consisted of intensive containment strategies.

“If we act now, and work together, we can make a difference in preventing extra stress to our health care system from the number of cases that may grow to be more serious,” said Lisa Harrison, Director of Granville Vance Public Health. “There is a lot we still don’t know about this virus, but what we do know clearly is that age and underlying health status make a big difference.”

GVPH has released guidance and information to help focus on those most at risk to develop a more serious strain of COVID-19 and be more likely to have complications. Many of the recommendations are focused on protecting people at higher risk of severe illness, which includes adults over 65 years of age, people with underlying health conditions including heart disease, lung disease, or diabetes, or people with weakened immune systems.

“This time of year it is easy to confuse the symptoms of coronavirus with the common cold, with allergies, or the flu – all of which are prevalent,” Harrison explains. “The symptoms of Coronavirus are fever, cough, or shortness of breath.”

A global dashboard in real-time is available on the Granville Vance Public Health web site,  https://gvph.org/COVID-19/?fbclid=IwAR0OG3rWzcK4EjI4k4-nM-wKmrGy3XjGZjzLILQluBPgvEiIbu14c4h4xlg.

According to Harrison, Coronavirus can be serious, but getting Coronavirus isn’t severe for everyone. “We do not yet understand why, but often children tend to fare well and get a really light version of the virus and get better relatively quickly from what we know so far,” she says.

Harrison adds that it is important to get information about this pandemic from trusted fact-based sources like the CDC, the World Health Organization, the NC Division of Public Health, and your local health department, Granville Vance Public Health.

Harrison advises that if you or a family member has fever AND cough – or difficulty breathing – to call your healthcare provider or an urgent care if you do not have a healthcare provider. If you have fever, cough, and shortness of breath, do NOT show up at your healthcare provider’s office or the urgent care without calling first so they can prepare for your visit.

Do NOT go to the emergency room unless you are in severe distress. Emergency rooms need to be able to serve the most critically ill. If you are having a medical emergency, call 9-1-1 and tell them your symptoms.

“Although we have and are monitoring closely confirmed cases in our state, North Carolina has no indication at this point of widespread community spread of Coronavirus,” Harrison says. “It is so important that we stay home and practice social distancing. If we reduce our chances of getting this virus, we reduce our chances of spreading it to others. Please stay home and if you feel you are getting sick with fever and cough, or shortness of breath, remember to call your provider before coming in.”

You may also call the statewide Coronavirus Helpline at 1-866-462-3821, which is answered 24 hours a day / 7 days a week. People at higher risk include those age 65 and older, those with underlying health conditions including heart disease, lung disease, or diabetes, and those who have weakened immune systems.

Residents are asked to turn to accurate sources of information from the CDC (www.cdc.gov) and State Division of Public Health (https://www.ncdhhs.gov/divisions/public-health/coronavirus-disease-2019-covid-19-response-north-carolina) as well as your own local public health officials.

Granville Vance Public Health will provide the most up-to-date and accurate information for COVID-19 in their district online at https://gvph.org/.

G-V Public Health Recommends Canceling, Modifying Events of 100+ People

THIS STORY IS PRESENTED IN PART BY DRAKE DENTISTRY

-Press Release, Granville Vance Public Health

To help prevent the spread of COVID-19, Granville Vance Public Health recommends that organizers of events that draw more than 100 people cancel, postpone, or modify these events, or offer online streaming services beginning March 13, 2020, until further notice. These events include large gatherings where people are in close contact (less than 6 feet), such as concerts, conferences, sporting events, faith-based events and other large gatherings.

Organizations that gather up to 100 people should create an emergency plan and prepare for COVID-19 in their communities by taking the following steps:

  • Consider alternative options to gathering large groups of people, such as streaming video of the event or having patrons participate online.
  • Instruct participants to stay home if they are sick.
  • Encourage people who are at a higher risk for complications from COVID-19, including people over 65 and those with pre-existing medical conditions, to consult with their doctor before attending.
  • Have hygiene supplies available for employees and participants, including hand sanitizer containing at least 60% alcohol, tissues, and lined trash cans.
  • Promote behaviors that prevent the spread COVID-19 among participants and employees using the enclosed resources.
  • During and after the event, disinfect frequently-touched surfaces with a cleaning agent that is effective against coronaviruses.
  • Decrease close contact between attendees at the event. For example, place seats farther apart or reduce the number of attendees.

Please let us know if you would like additional educational information for distribution or you may access these materials online through the CDC website here: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/communication/factsheets.html or through the NC DHHS website here: https://www.ncdhhs.gov/divisions/public-health/coronavirus-disease-2019-covid-19-response-north-carolina/materials-and

 The local risk of contracting COVID-19 remains low; however, we still encourage you to protect yourself and your loved ones from COVID-19 and any other flu-like illness by taking the following steps:

  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.
  • If soap and water are not available, use a generous amount of hand sanitizer which is at least 60% alcohol on all surfaces of the hands and wrists.
  • Don’t touch your eyes, nose or mouth.
  • Stay away from sick people.
  • Clean and disinfect surfaces – especially ones that are frequently touched – using regular household cleaning spray or wipes.
  • Cover coughs and sneezes with a tissue, throw the tissue in the trash and wash your hands.
  • Stay home if you’re sick and don’t send sick children to school or childcare.
  • High-risk individuals should avoid large gatherings such as concerts, church services, and sporting events.

As questions and concerns about coronavirus (COVID-19) increase across North Carolina, we’d like to encourage the promotion of the statewide Coronavirus Helpline (1-866-462-3821) for the public, which is answered 24 hours a day / 7 days a week.

Town Talk 03/04/20: Harrison, G-V Public Health Director, Discusses Coronavirus

THIS STORY IS PRESENTED IN PART BY DRAKE DENTISTRY

Lisa Harrison, director of Granville-Vance Public Health, appeared on WIZS Town Talk Wednesday at 11 a.m.

In light of recent news that North Carolina’s first case of confirmed coronavirus (COVID-19) was reported in nearby Wake County, Harrison addressed the local health department’s response to the disease.

“Viruses change over time, and this is an emerging situation,” explained Harrison. “We at Granville-Vance Public Health are paying close attention daily to information that comes from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the Division of Public Health, the State Health Director and our whole epidemiology team who are very involved right now with our response in the United States and in North Carolina.”

According to the CDC, coronavirus, much like a cold or the flu, can spread between people who are in close contact with one another and through respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs or sneezes. Those suffering from the virus are thought to be at least mildly contagious before showing symptoms but are more likely to infect others when they are the most symptomatic.

Reported illnesses have ranged from mild symptoms to severe illness and death for confirmed cases. Symptoms, including fever, cough and shortness of breath, may appear 2-14 days after initial exposure.

The CDC recommends contacting a healthcare provider if you develop a fever and symptoms of respiratory illness and have been in close contact with a person known to have COVID-19 or if you have recently traveled to an area with an ongoing spread such as China, Iran, Italy, Japan or South Korea. Your healthcare provider will work with the public health department and CDC to determine if you need to be tested for COVID-19.

While not a time to panic, Harrison said it is important that residents seek credible sources for COVID-19 updates and take precautions to avoid exposure including:

  • Wash hands frequently with soap and water (at least 20 seconds each time)
  • Avoid touching eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed or washed hands
  • Avoid close contact with anyone who is sick
  • Cover mouth and nose with a tissue or bend of the arm when sneezing or coughing
  • Clean and disinfect surfaces that are frequently touched

“I have a tremendous amount of confidence in the knowledge of your public health service,” Harrison said. “The most important thing to stress to individuals and families in Vance and Granville County is that everyone needs to continue to take precautions to protect themselves from the spread of any respiratory illness, including the flu and colds.”

A toll-free helpline has been established for those with questions about COVID-19 and can be reached by calling 1-866-462-3821.

You may also find additional information by visiting the Granville-Vance Public Health website at www.gvph.org and the CDC website at www.cdc.gov.

To hear the interview with Harrison in its entirety, go to WIZS.com and click on Town Talk.

Triangle North Healthcare Foundation Awards Over $250,000 in Health Grants

100.1 FM / 1450 AM WIZS; Local News broadcasts M-F 8am, 12pm, 5pm

-Press Release, Triangle North Healthcare Foundation

Triangle North Healthcare Foundation’s Board of Directors has awarded $258,500 in grants to local organizations in the Foundation’s seventh annual grant cycle. With the 2019 grant award, the Foundation’s contributions to the community total over $1.8 million since the Foundation began grantmaking in 2013.

“The primary purpose of our grantmaking is to invest in organizations that share our mission to improve health in our region,” said Val Short, executive director for the Foundation. “Our hope is that these grant awards will result in improved health and healthier outcomes for children and adults in Vance, Warren, Granville, and Franklin counties,” said Short.

The eight grants approved by the board fall under one or more of the five funding priorities established by the Foundation in 2013, including chronic disease, mental health and substance abuse, nutrition and physical activity, reproductive health, and success in school as related to health and wellness.

“In all of our grant programs, health and wellness are at the heart of the work they will do,” said Short.

The list of the grant recipients and their projects for 2019-20 includes:

  • Alliance Rehabilitative Care (ARC) Access to Dental Care – Residents entering the substance abuse halfway house in Henderson will receive dental screening and preventive care and, when necessary, more extensive dental treatment to prevent further decay and to promote overall health.

 

  • Henderson Family YMCA – 1) Girls on the Run – a self-esteem and healthy lifestyles program for girls & boys culminating in a 5k run/walk at the end of each semester; 2) Safety Around Water – teaches water safety and drowning prevention skills to 2nd graders in Vance County.

 

  • NC Med Assist – Free Pharmacy Program & Over-the-Counter Giveaways –– provides free medications and support for low income and uninsured individuals in the Triangle North Region.  In addition, two over-the-counter medicine giveaways will be implemented this year in Vance and Granville counties.

 

  • Shepherd Youth Ranch Trail to Success – Provide skill building for youth suffering from grief, loss, abandonment and abuse. Partial scholarships will be provided to 10 youth who are referred by the school system or law enforcement who will enter into an intensive 24-week program, which consists of weekly group and monthly family sessions in a unique program that uses horses to help with therapy.

 

  • Strength and Mending (S.a.M) Child Advocacy CenterChild Forensic Interviews – provides a centralized, child-centered approach to investigation that reduces the risk of trauma to the children who are victims of abuse; increases opportunities for healing for the child and non-offending family members.

 

  • TROSA (Triangle Residential Options for Substance Abusers, Inc.)Rebuilding Lives: Mental Health & Substance Abuse Recovery – provides a two-year residential recovery program with treatment, education, vocational training and care for residents of the Triangle North region who suffer from alcohol and substance abuse, free of charge.

 

  • Working LandscapesWhat’s Growing in Granville County— in partnership with Granville Vance Public Health & Granville County Schools, this program aims to improve the health of students in Granville County Schools by learning about and consuming healthy, locally grown food.

Located in Henderson, Triangle North Healthcare Foundation provides grants to nonprofit organizations, governmental agencies, and schools in Vance, Warren, Granville, and Franklin counties. The Foundation’s grant funding mission has been made possible by the endowment that was established after Maria Parham Health merged with the for-profit Duke-Lifepoint in 2011.

The Foundation will launch a new grant cycle in the spring of 2020, but in the meantime, the Foundation staff is available to discuss ideas for grant projects or to provide assistance with grant writing.  Call the Foundation office at 252-430-8532 for information about future grant opportunities or visit the Foundation’s website at www.tnhfoundation.org .

Individual & Community Health Topics of GVPH Door-to-Door Health Survey

Lindsey Bickers Bock, health education supervisor for Granville Vance Public Health (GVPH), was on Tuesday’s edition of WIZS’ Town Talk to discuss the health department’s current Community Health Assessment survey.

Conducted once every three years and required by all counties in North Carolina, this assessment is designed to identify the health needs of the community and to use the collected information to prioritize the various issues that receive attention and funding.

“All of the work Granville Vance Public Health does is really related to the Community Health Assessment,” said Bickers Bock.

The door-to-door process is nearing completion in Granville County, with surveying to begin in Vance County on Thursday, July 26 at 12 p.m. and concluding on Saturday, July 28.

The assessment includes questions on individual health behaviors, nutrition, physical activity, access to health care and awareness or opinions on community issues.

“The Community Health Assessment is the way we receive feedback from individual members across the county about their experiences related to their own personal health and how they view resources that either are or are not in place to support community health needs,” Bickers Bock said.

GVPH’s prior assessment, conducted in 2015, identified three major areas of need for Vance County: nutrition and physical activity, mental health and substance use disorders and education.

Results also demonstrated that poverty and health equity were two cross-cutting themes of the previous survey. “As a part of the [2015] health survey, we got feedback from both individuals and organizations in the county saying they saw poverty as an issue that impacts health and safety in the community,” said Bickers Bock.

To complete the 2018 survey process, the health department needs approximately 30 volunteers to serve over the three-day period. While Thursday and Friday are covered, there is a need for additional volunteers on Saturday from 10 a.m. until 6 p.m.

According to Bickers Bock, survey volunteers are paired up and visit homes in randomly identified neighborhoods to ensure a cross-section of data from all areas of the county. Volunteers may be identified by a GVPH visor and will collect survey information on a tablet.

“We will provide training for interested volunteers,” said Bickers Bock. “Volunteers need to feel comfortable talking with community members, asking survey questions or supporting the person conducting the survey.”

Volunteers are provided lunch, a visor and a gas card if driving their own vehicle to conduct the survey. Those wishing to ride with someone else can be paired with a driving volunteer.

“If you’re not available to work as a surveyor, we hope people who are at their homes on Thursday, Friday and Saturday and receive a knock on the door will be available to spend 10 minutes answering questions and sharing their experiences with our volunteers.”

Bickers Bock assured listeners that the information provided to surveyors is kept anonymous and participants are free to answer only the questions with which they feel comfortable.

A Steering Committee consisting of representatives from civic organizations, churches, hospitals and primary care physician offices will meet monthly through March 2019 to review data and provide feedback on survey results. The next committee meeting is scheduled for Thursday, August 9 at the Vance-Granville Community College Civic Center in Henderson.

Survey results will also be shared via community forums to be held in early 2019. Community members will have a chance to view the findings, ask questions and provide feedback.

If interested in volunteering as a surveyor or in joining the Steering Committee, please contact Bickers Bock at (919) 693-2141 – ext. 148. For more information on the Community Health Assessment, including reports from previous years, please visit the GVPH website.

Kerr-Tar Area Agency on Aging to Host Dementia Education Conference

-Press Release, Kerr-Tar Regional Council of Governments

The Kerr-Tar Area Agency on Aging (AAA) and Dementia Alliance of North Carolina will host a Dementia Education Conference on Tuesday, August 7 from 9 a.m. – 4 p.m. Check-in begins at 8 a.m. The event will take place at the Vance-Granville Civic Center, 200 Community College Road, Henderson.

The event is open to the public including caregivers, students, local leaders and aging professionals. The cost includes $10 for caregivers and $40 for Aging and Health Professionals. Register online at www.dementianc.org/henderson. Deadline to register is Tuesday, July 31.

Conference topics include Aging and Memory: What’s Normal and What’s Not, Redefining Technology for Caregivers, Adjusting Activities as Dementia Progresses and more! Breakfast and lunch will be provided, courtesy of Chef Christian Brown with Lake Gastronomy Catering.

Contact Harvey Holmes, Family Caregiver Specialist, with any questions or concerns at 252-436-2040 or [email protected]

Granville Vance Public Health Releases 2017 Report

Granville Vance Public Health (GVPH), a provider of public health services related to communicable diseases, primary care, maternal health, child health and family planning, recently released their annual report for 2017.

According to the report, GVPH’s status as a health district allows greater flexibility to procure grant-based funding; however, overall state and federal funding has decreased in recent years. The agency has “worked hard to partner with local, state, and federal entities that can support and expand community health efforts in Granville and Vance counties.”

During the July 2016 – June 2017 fiscal year, GVPH managed over $2,500,000 in grant-funded projects. These funds helped support valuable community-based projects in both counties while also maintaining critical staffing. These grant dollars help ensure that evidence-based care and health promotion practices extend into rural communities in Granville and Vance counties.

GVPH reported $5,984,265 in revenues and $6,072,389 in expenses for fiscal year 2017, an increase of $683,672 and $103,848, respectively, from fiscal year 2016.

A major undertaking for 2017, GVPH was subject to the North Carolina Local Health Department Reaccreditation process and was recognized as an accredited health department with honors. Local health departments receiving the honors designation excelled in their accreditation assessment, missing one or fewer within each of the five standards set by the accreditation program, a total of 147 activities.

The next reaccreditation assessment for GVPH will occur in the fall of 2021.

Notable statistics from the January 1 – December 31, 2017 reporting term include:

  • 4,529 unique patients seen for 9,743 individual clinical care visits
  • 1,914 uninsured patients totaling 3,705 clinical care visits
  • 1,636 patients rely on Medicaid for medical care received during 3,037 Medicaid clinical care visits
  • 3,994 immunizations given to 2,409 individuals
  • 1,989 immunizations were given to 720 children and adolescents under 18 years of age
  • 1,799 flu vaccines provided
  • 2,408 WIC participants served
  • Child Health Program conducted 1,034 visits for 715 children
  • 12 CenteringPregnancy® groups conducted in 2017 with 109 women participating

In a letter recently sent to healthcare professionals and other parties, Lindsey Bickers Bock, health education supervisor for GVPH, stated “In our role providing safety net services for vulnerable populations, GVPH sees the clear impact of social determinants of health and the necessity of protecting and promoting health by facilitating policy, system and environmental changes to prevent disease, address health equity issues and improve population health.

For more information on the services offered by GVPH, visit their website at www.gvph.org. To view more detailed information on the 2017 report, specifically, click here.

Kids in Parks Track Trail Ribbon Cutting 4-20-18

There will be a Kids in Parks Track Trail ribbon cutting at Granville Athletic Park Friday, April 20 at 3:30 p.m.

According to an email from Charla Duncan, management analyst and JCPC coordinator with Granville County, “We’re gearing up for Earth Day weekend! This is one more reminder before our grand opening of our Kids in Parks TRACK Trail program at the Granville Athletic Park! The kiosk will be installed at the first trail entrance of the park (enter through the main entrance of the GAP off of Belltown Road). We encourage you to bring your family! The activities for this trail are geared toward 6-12 year-olds. Consider registering your child prior to the event.”

The web page www.kidsinparks.com says, “Kids in Parks is an expanding network of family-friendly outdoor adventures called TRACK Trails. Each TRACK Trail features self-guided brochures and signs that turn your visit into a fun and exciting outdoors experience.”

The idea is to get kids unplugged from electronic devices and to get them outside doing physical activity.

Families Living Violence Free – Marital Rape

— submitted by Families Living Violence Free

Make no mistake about itMarital Rape is a serious form of violence and an often-present component of domestic violence, and it is illegal in all 50 states.

It’s time to say enough! SPEAK UP!

If you or someone you know is a victim of Domestic Violence, please call Families Living Violence Free at 919-693-5700 Crisis Line or Hispanic Crisis Line 919-690-0888 Day or Night! We are here for you!

You could be saving a life….it might be your own.

Letters of Interest Are Due May 1, 2018

— press release

Triangle North Healthcare Foundation Offers Grant Opportunities for Health Programs

Triangle North Healthcare Foundation is seeking partners to help measurably improve health in Vance, Warren, Franklin, and Granville counties. The 2018 grant cycle is now open. Letters of Interest are due May 1.

To be considered for a grant with Triangle North Healthcare Foundation, you must represent a nonprofit organization, school, or governmental agency that serves the Triangle North region— Warren, Vance, Granville, and/or Franklin counties, according to the Foundation’s executive director Val Short. “Your project should fall into one of our five funding priorities, which are Chronic Disease, Mental Health & Substance Abuse, Nutrition & Physical Fitness, Success in School as related to Health & Fitness, and finally, Reproductive Health,” said Short.

The first step in the grant application process is the Letter of Interest, which is actually a form, available on the online Grant Portal, and accessed via the Foundation’s website, www.tnhfoundation.org.

“We ask that anyone interested in applying for a grant should contact us first to schedule a meeting,” said Short. “We can discuss the details of a project and determine if it falls within our funding guidelines.” To schedule a meeting to discuss a potential grant project, call 252-598-0763.

Since its first grant cycle in 2013, Triangle North Healthcare Foundation has awarded over $1 million in grants to a variety of programs and projects throughout the region, including the Henderson YMCA’s Save Our Kids and Girls on the Run programs, Boys & Girls Clubs’ healthy teen programs, N.C. MedAssist’s free pharmacy for the uninsured, Smart Start, and many others. A full listing of TNHF grant programs is available on the Foundation’s website.

The mission of the Foundation is “to encourage, support, and invest in quality efforts that measurably improve health in the Triangle North region.” The Foundation cannot accomplish this alone. “Through our partnerships with community organizations, formed through grantmaking, this Foundation can make a difference in the health status of our communities,” said Mrs. Short. “Please let us hear from you!” she added.

Triangle North Healthcare Foundation is a nonprofit regional grantmaking organization based in Henderson, NC, which supports and invests in health and wellness initiatives and programs that will impact health in a positive way in Warren, Vance, Granville, and Franklin counties. Funding for the Foundation’s grantmaking was made possible by the endowment established after the merge of Maria Parham Medical Center and Duke Lifepoint.