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  • 5 Oct 2022 1:39 PM | Deborah Hodges (Administrator)

    Nine out of 10 adults said ​they believed that there’s a mental health crisis in the US today. Asked to rate the severity of six specific mental health concerns, Americans put the opioid epidemic near the top, with more than two-thirds of people identifying it as a crisis rather than merely a problem. More than half identified mental health issues among children and teenagers as a crisis, as well as severe mental illness in adults. [CNN Health]

    Look at the metrics on the responses to what is contributing to the mental health crisis. 

    Full article here>


  • 5 Oct 2022 8:31 AM | Deborah Hodges (Administrator)

    A few days left to National Hispanic/Latino Month 2022- from the Office of Minority Health [OMH]

    USA - Facts, health concerns, health insurance coverage and more. How up to date are you?  Illinois has the sixth highest population of Hispanics/Latinos. 

    Overview (Demographics): This ethnic group includes any person of Cuban, Mexican, Puerto Rican, South or Central American, or other Spanish culture or origin, regardless of race. According to 2020 Census data, there are 62.1 million Hispanics living in the United States. This group represents 18.9 percent of the total U.S. population, the nation’s second largest racial or ethnic group after non-Hispanic whites. In 2020, among Hispanic subgroups, Mexicans ranked as the largest at 61.6 percent. Following this group are Puerto Ricans (9.6 percent), Central Americans (9.3 percent), South Americans (6.4 percent), Other Hispanic/Latino (including Spanish) (5.8 percent), and Cuban (3.9 percent). In 2020, states with the largest Hispanic populations were Arizona, California, Colorado, Florida, Illinois, Nevada, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, and Texas. In 2020, 25.7 percent of Hispanics were under the age 18 compared to 53 percent of non-Hispanic whites.

    Full info here> 

    IDPH Health info here>


  • 4 Oct 2022 11:47 AM | Deborah Hodges (Administrator)

    The national poverty rate was 12.8% in 2021, but was significantly different for the nation's oldest and youngest populations, according to a new Census Bureau report released today. [US Census Bureau]

    The child poverty rate (for people under age 18) was 16.9% in 2021, 4.2 percentage points higher than the national rate, while poverty for those ages 65 and over was 10.3%, 2.5 percentage points lower than the national rate.

    The American Community Survey (ACS) 1-year estimates provide data for a number of demographic, social and economic indicators, including poverty. The estimates are used by planners, policymakers and community stakeholders to evaluate trends and make comparisons across demographic groups.

    The national child poverty rate was 16.9% but there was considerable variation among states, ranging from 8.1% to 27.7%.

    Government agencies, researchers and local organizations regularly use these estimates to measure economic well-being and identify the number of individuals and families eligible for various programs. 

    Read full article here> 


  • 3 Oct 2022 4:04 PM | Deborah Hodges (Administrator)

    Even though people are becoming more connected through social media and other outlets, the great irony is that many people still feel lonely. That loneliness, in turn, can have far-reaching implications on a person’s health and well-being. Loneliness as a public health issue has been intensified during the COVID-19 pandemic. Knowing how to recognize loneliness and what can help patients overcome feeling lonely is key. [AMA]

    Full article here> 


  • 30 Sep 2022 12:57 PM | Deborah Hodges (Administrator)

    Family-Based Intervention Lowers Long-Term Suicide Risk in Youth [NIH update}

    We assumed this for awhile now. Now, we know how important family support can be  in youth at risk for suicide. 

    Over the last 20 years, suicide rates have increased in the U.S. by 24%, with the largest increases occurring in females ages 10-14 and African American children aged 5-11. These statistics highlight the critical need for better ways to understand and prevent suicide in youth and adolescents. In a recent study supported by the National Institute of Mental Health, researchers examined the impact of a family-based intervention on suicide risk in youth and found risk-reduction benefits up to 10 years later.

    Full article here> 


  • 30 Sep 2022 11:12 AM | Deborah Hodges (Administrator)

    The devastating effects of violence experienced by individuals is decimating homes, neighborhoods, and communities across the US. Since 2019, US homicide rates have increased by 35%, to8.1 per 100000population in 2021,1 rising in parallel with an overall increase in violent crimes. The complex public health problem of violence can present in many forms, including assault, homicide, suicide, intimate partner violence, child abuse, elder abuse, and others. [JAMA Network}

    These preventable violent injuries and deaths impose a steep human toll and have important economic consequences, including costs for acute care, the

    need for long-term home health care, loss of productivity, and the inability to reintegrate back into society. 

    According to estimates from the National Center for Injury Prevention and Control, nearly 2 million people were treated in US hospital emergency departments in 2020 for assault-related injuries.2



  • 29 Sep 2022 12:15 PM | Deborah Hodges (Administrator)

    Rural-urban geographic health disparities persist, with the latest data published in JAMA Network Open revealing that individuals living in rural areas are more likely to die from diabetes than those living in urban settings. [Patient Engagement HIT] 

    Diabetes mortality is particularly higher among men living in the rural south, the researchers added.

    The rural-urban divide in health outcomes is long documented. Individuals living in rural areas are more likely to face long travel times, have higher rates of chronic illness, and most recently are less likely to have gotten the COVID-19 vaccine and consequently see poorer outcomes from the illness.

    This latest data adds that the disease burden of certain chronic illnesses, in this case diabetes, is also higher in rural settings. Looking at data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Wide-Ranging Online Data for Epidemiologic Research (CDC WONDER) database from between January 1, 1999, to December 31, 2018, the researchers found higher diabetes mortality rates in rural settings than in urban ones.

    The team stratified data by urbanization, gender, age, and religion, splitting urbanization further by region (Midwest, Northeast, South, or West).

    Full article here> 


  • 28 Sep 2022 12:08 PM | Deborah Hodges (Administrator)

    The Department of Human Services is set to receive just over $37 million in federal funds to help aid Illinois’ opioid response, the state’s two senators announced last week. [Health News Illinois]

    “This federal funding will give our state the proper resources to provide support to individuals and families who need it the most, and I hope this investment will put our communities on the road to recovery,” Sen. Dick Durbin, D-Ill., said in a statement.

    The funds from the Department of Health and Human Services will go toward increasing access to medications for the treatment of opioid use disorder and supporting prevention, harm reduction, treatment and recovery services.

    DHS did not return a request for additional comment.

    The White House announced $1.5 billion on Friday for states, territories and tribal nations to curb addiction and support those in recovery. 


  • 27 Sep 2022 6:08 PM | Deborah Hodges (Administrator)

    Medical care can diagnose illness and injury, but a lack of medical care is not the cause of illness or injury. Medicine is more an art than a science. State-of-the-art care changes over time. When I was in medical school in 1972, a professor of medicine began his lecture by informing us that, "In 10 years' time you will discover that half of what I am telling you is wrong. I just don't know which half."

    We didn't give aspirin to someone having a heart attack until after 1980, but it's now routinely administered even before the victim gets to the hospital. Until the 2000s, post-menopausal women were given estrogen to replace the hormones they no longer produced, with one study finding slight gains in life expectancy from the use of that therapy. Most now consider this practice to be harmful.

    Full article here> 


  • 26 Sep 2022 6:28 PM | Deborah Hodges (Administrator)

    Vaccinators have administered 340,000 doses of the new COVID-19 booster vaccines in Illinois, according to the Department of Public Health.

    The agency announced Friday that about 137,000 doses of the boosters, which provide extra protection against the omicron subvariants, were given last week.

    “This is an encouraging sign as we head into the fall season and face a potential increase in COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations,” IDPH Director Dr. Sameer Vohra said in a statement. “Illinois is fortunate to have a significant supply of bivalent boosters.”

    The Chicago Department of Public Health said they have seen more than 75,000 booster doses administered to Chicagoans as of Sept. 21.

    There were 17,373 confirmed and probable cases of COVID-19 reported in Illinois last week, a 1.2 percent decrease from the prior week. There were 62 deaths reported last week.

    The new cases bring the state’s total to 3,751,275. There have been 34,947 deaths.

    The seven-day average for new cases on Friday was 2,482, down 30 from the prior week. The seven-day average for daily deaths was nine, down two from the prior week.

    The seven-day rolling average case rate per 100,000 people is 19.5, down 0.2 from the prior week.

    As of Thursday, 1,069 Illinoisans were in the hospital with COVID-19, down 108 from Wednesday and down 84 from the prior week.

    Three counties, Ford, Jefferson and Wayne, are now at a “high” community level of COVID-19, the level at which the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends people mask indoors in public spaces. Thirty-three counties are at a “medium” risk level.

     According to CDC data, 96 percent of COVID-19 cases in the Midwest between Sep. 17 and Sept. 24 were BA.4, BA.4.6 and BA.5 omicron subvariants. The region includes Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Minnesota, Ohio and Wisconsin.


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