Health

Whooping Cough Cases On Track For Highest Total Since 2010

Nov 11, 2013

The name makes it sound like an old-fashioned disease, but whooping cough cases are up. And state health officials are encouraging Ohioans to get booster shots.

The Ohio Department of Health says the highly contagious cough is one of the most commonly occurring, but vaccine-preventable, diseases in the United States. Whooping cough, also known as pertussis, is usually spread by coughing or sneezing.

It often starts with cold-like symptoms before turning into a persistent cough with spasms.

WYSO/Lewis Wallace

The federal health care marketplace, a key provision of the Affordable Care Act, opened for business Tuesday even in the midst of a government shutdown. But for groups doing outreach in Dayton, the first day was a slow one.

A crew of outreach workers stood around next to colorful tables in the parking lot of a health center Tuesday, chatting up passers-by and waiting for a mostly-absent news media to stop by.

The Federal health care Marketplace is set to open for business Tuesday, Oct. 1, and open enrollment will last for six months. Most people who can’t get employer insurance will be required to sign up for health plans under the Affordable Care Act, or pay a fee. But there’s still a lot of confusion about what exactly this will mean for the uninsured — about 1.5 million people in Ohio.

Flickr/vistavision

This week the Affordable Care Act has inspired congressional faceoffs, online poetry, and a reading of "Green Eggs and Ham" on the Senate floor. Meanwhile, the federal government is scrambling to get ready for the launch of the marketplace, where Ohio’s uninsured will shop for health plans.

The federal health care marketplace is set to open Oct. 1, and Ohio organizations are scrambling to prepare. Beginning Jan. 1, 2014, almost all Americans will be required to have health care either through an employer, through a private insurer, or through a state- or federally-run marketplace. The marketplaces will essentially be regulated online shopping centers where consumers can compare health plans and find out whether they qualify for federal subsidies.

Members of the Ohio Senate Committee on Medicaid, Health, and Human Services and other health professionals from around the state will be in Cincinnati Thursday to discuss how to improve Ohio’s infant mortality rate. 

A pool of mosquitoes has tested positive for the West Nile virus in a wooded area of a southwest Ohio park.

A spokesman for Public Health-Dayton & Montgomery County says the recent test of mosquitoes in a wooded area at Dayton's Wegerzyn Gardens MetroPark was the first positive one in the region this season. Public Health planned to treat the area with insecticide.

The Dayton Daily News reports that Franklin County also had a mosquito pool test positive this summer in the Columbus area.

Ohio is the fourth worst in the nation for infant mortality and is second worst for black infant mortality. In Columbus yesterday, the state health department launched a program to aid 9 Ohio cities to work on lowering those rates. Dayton is among one of the cities chosen.

The head of Ohio's addictions agency plans to talk about new data showing state residents still dying from drug overdoses at record rates.

Orman Hall is director of the Ohio Department of Alcohol and Drug Addiction Services. He also will use a news conference Tuesday afternoon to push for addiction treatment and other health care services for all Ohioans.

Data released last week show the number of people who died of accidental overdoses jumped 14 percent in 2011 for a total of over 17 hundred overall deaths.

A former Ohio hospital worker has filed a lawsuit after she was fired for refusing to get a flu shot because she's vegan.

Sakile Chenzira was a longtime customer service representative at Cincinnati Chidlren's Hospital.  She was fired in December 2010 after refusing to get the shot because she doesn't believe in consuming any animal products.

The flu vaccine contains a small amount of egg protein.

Chenzira filed a lawsuit against the hospital in 2011 alleging religious discrimination and seeking a minimum of $650,000.  The case is now set for trial in July.

Pages