North Shore Health Department Highlights 11/27/2018

Did you know?

Winter driving brings unique challenges for all, but if you have new teen drivers, this week may bring their first chance to drive in the snow or ice. Here are some winter driving tips for new drivers, that also serve as good reminders for the rest of us.

  • Take extra time—to get to your destination, to stop, to turn, or to get started.
  • Reduce speed, and increase following and braking distance.
  • Make sure the car is winter-ready.
    • Keep your fuel tank at least half full to prevent freezing of fuel lines and provide necessary fuel if you become stranded.
    • Ensure your tires have good tread and are properly inflated.
    • Ensure your battery, anti-freeze and cooling system are in good condition.
    • Replace worn windshield wipers and carry extra washer fluid.
    • Ensure headlights and other vehicle lights are operating properly.

North Shore Health Department Highlights 11/20/2018

Did you know?

Don’t invite illness to your Thanksgiving table! The Thanksgiving meal is the largest meal many people prepare each year. Food handling errors and inadequate cooking are the most common problems that lead to foodborne disease outbreaks. Follow some of these helpful tips.

There are three golden rules for any kitchen: keep it cold, keep it hot, and keep it clean. Here are some helpful reminders:

  • Wash your hands for 20 seconds with warm water and soap before starting food preparation and between preparing different foods. That’s about the time it takes to sing Happy Birthday to yourself.
  • Foods that can spoil or grow bacteria should be kept cold (under 41 degrees).
  • Once foods are cooked, keep them hot (above 135 degrees).
  • If foods cannot be kept under 41 degrees or above 135 degrees, keep at room temperature no more than four hours.  After that, they need to be thrown out.
  • When re-heating leftovers, make sure foods reach 165 degrees.
  • If possible, use different cutting boards for fruits and vegetables versus raw meat. If you only have one cutting board, wash it with soap after each use, especially after preparing raw meat.
  • Never thaw or defrost food at room temperature. Instead, plan ahead and place foods in the refrigerator a few days before your gathering.  You can also thaw foods in the microwave, or by putting the food under cold running water; do not leave foods in submerged water, as this promotes bacteria growth.
  • Properly cook meats to the recommended temperatures: poultry, stuffed meat, and leftovers should be cooked to 165 degrees; ground beef to 155 degrees; and fish, pork, and eggs to 145 degrees.

Read more about food safety at the CDC’s website: https://www.cdc.gov/foodsafety/groups/consumers.html

North Shore Health Department Highlights 11/13/2018

Did you know?

November 15, 2018 is the American Cancer Society’s 43rd annual Great American Smokeout. The Great American Smokeout encourages smokers to make a plan to quit smoking. The most recent data available indicates that in 2017, 14.0% of U.S. adults were current cigarette smokers, the lowest prevalence recorded since monitoring began in 1965. Nonetheless, smoking remains the leading preventable cause of disease, disability, and death in the United States. Each year, an estimated 480,000 U.S. adults die from cigarette smoking and secondhand smoke exposure.

Smokers can and do quit smoking: former smokers now outnumber current smokers! Among current U.S. adult smokers, nearly two out of three want to quit smoking, and about half made an attempt to quit in the preceding year. Medication and counseling/coaching are the two best tools to help you quit smoking—nearly tripling the likelihood of successfully quitting. You can get both FREE by calling the Wisconsin Tobacco Quit Line at 800-QUIT-NOW (800-784-8669). The Quit Line offers a free two-weekly supply of your choice of the nicotine patch, lozenge or gum, along with free telephone coaching on how to quit from experts.

CDC’s Tips From Former Smokers campaign offers additional resources (https://www.cdc.gov/tips).

Let this year’s Great American Smokeout event be your day to start your journey toward a smoke-free life.

North Shore Health Department Highlights 11/06/2018

Did you know?

Now is the time to enroll in or change 2019 Marketplace health insurance. The 2019 Open Enrollment Period runs from Thursday, November 1, 2018, to Saturday, December 15, 2018. The Health Insurance Marketplace is for people who don't have health insurance coverage through a job, Medicare, Medicaid, the Children's Health Insurance Program (CHIP), or another source that provides qualifying health coverage. You can sign up for health insurance on your state's health insurance exchange or individual marketplace only during the annual open enrollment period, unless you have a "qualifying life event," such as getting married or having a baby. If you take no action, you will be automatically re-enrolled in your current policy. If you buy health insurance through your workplace, your employer will inform you about its open enrollment period.

Here are some helpful tips to guide you:

  • If you want to keep your doctors, make sure that they still participate in the plans you’re considering. Check the provider lists on healthcare.gov, but also double check the provider list on the carrier’s website or contact your current provider directly.
  • There is no penalty for not buying coverage in 2019. However, it is a good idea to have coverage if you can afford it to avoid catastrophic bills for any unexpected health issues that may arise. You may not enroll at will throughout the year, so waiting for a health issue before attempting to enroll is not an option.
  • You have short term plan options. Traditionally, short-term plans have been used to bridge a coverage gap of a few months or less, but a new ruling suggests they can be adopted as a long-term solution and can be renewed for up to 36 months. These plans do have limitations beyond what the ACA insurers meet. Insurers can charge you more based on preexisting conditions or deny you coverage.

For more information visit www.healthcare.gov

North Shore Health Department Highlights 10/30/2018

Did you know?

November 4th, 2018 marks the end of daylight saving time--a time of year that many people look forward to. After all, an extra hour of sleep is a hard thing not to like. However, this one-hour change may have some negative effects when it comes to road safety.

It’s easy to assume that with one additional hour of sleep, road users will be more alert and aware, but in actuality there is generally an increase in the average number of collisions during the late afternoon commute in the two weeks following the end of daylight saving time, compared to the two weeks prior to the change. This may be due to people staying up that extra hour at night, and then missing it the next morning.

Driving in the dark is also a factor. During the spring and summer months, people generally get up and return home while the roads and highways are brighter and hazards are easier to see. When drivers, cyclists, and pedestrians have spent the past eight months commuting in a well-lit setting, it may be hard to adjust for less daylight and poor weather conditions.

As we fall back and head towards winter, follow these tips to drive safely after the clocks change:

  • Keep your regular sleep schedule. Go to bed at the same time you normally would so you can benefit from that extra hour of sleep.
  • Before you pull out of the driveway, clean your headlights, brake lights, and signal lights.
  • Give yourself plenty of time to get where you want to go.
  • Approach all crosswalks, intersections and transit stops with caution, as it will be harder to see pedestrians and cyclists.
  • Heed the speed limits and adjust your speed accordingly to the weather conditions.
  • Maintain a safe following distance so you’re prepared to react under any situation.

Rolling back the clock may sound like a great opportunity to stay up later; however, the time change can impact the quality of your sleep and affect your body’s internal clock. Whether you’re walking, cycling or driving, take advantage of the extra hour, sleep well, and be proactive on the road as the days get shorter.

North Shore Health Department Highlights 10/23/2018

Did you know?

National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day is Saturday, October 27, 2018 from 10:00 a.m. - 2:00 p.m. National Take-Back Day is a safe, convenient, and responsible way to dispose of unused or expired prescription drugs. According to the 2016 National Survey on Drug Use and Health, 6.2 million Americans misused controlled prescription drugs. The study shows that a majority of abused prescription drugs were obtained from family and friends, often from the home medicine cabinet. Too often, unused prescription drugs find their way into the wrong hands. That's dangerous and often tragic. That is why it is important to get rid of unused medication!

You can help prevent prescription drug abuse by talking to your children about the dangers of taking someone else’s medication, and by safely removing all expired and unused medications from your home.  Incorrect disposal of some medications can affect aquatic plants and animals, contaminate our food and water supplies, or permit drug theft.  For that reason, it is not recommended to flush or throw away any medications.  Returning your unwanted medicine to a take-back program is the safest and most environmentally protective way to dispose of them.

To find a collection site near you visit: https://www.deadiversion.usdoj.gov/drug_disposal/takeback/

Additionally, all police departments in the seven North Shore communities regularly accept unused or expired medications.  Guidelines for drop-off by community can be found at:  http://www.nshealthdept.org/Portals/NsHealthDept.org/Med%20Drop%20Off%20Sites.pdf

North Shore Health Department Highlights 10/16/2018

Did you know?

October is National Protect Your Hearing Month, a time to raise awareness about noise-induced hearing loss (NIHL) and steps you can take to prevent it. Loud noises can cause permanent hearing loss. Once hearing is gone, you can’t get it back. Hearing loss from loud noise can be prevented. About 70% of people exposed to loud noise never or seldom wear hearing protection. Repeated exposure to loud noise over the years can damage your hearing—even long after exposure has stopped. Everyday sounds typically do not damage your hearing. However, many people participate in activities that produce harmful sound levels, such as attending loud sporting events and music concerts and using power tools. Loud sound can damage sensitive parts of the ear, causing hearing loss, ringing or buzzing in the ear and increased sensitivity to sound. Repeated exposure to loud noise over the years affects how well you hear later in life and how quickly you develop hearing problems.

What can you do to protect your hearing?

  • ·         Turn down the volume of the TV, radio, or music.
  • ·         If listening to loud music, take listening breaks to reduce your exposure.
  • ·         Use quieter products (power tools, toys, recreational vehicles) whenever they are available.
  • ·         Reduce equipment noise by replacing worn, loose, or unbalanced machine parts. Keep equipment well lubricated and maintained.
  • ·         Use hearing protection devices (such as earplugs and earmuffs) when you cannot avoid loud sounds.
  • ·         Make hearing protection convenient. Stash earplugs in your car or workshop for easy access.
  • ·         Keep children away from loud music or equipment at home.

For more information visit: https://www.cdc.gov/nceh/hearing_loss/default.html

North Shore Health Department Highlights 10/9/2018

Did you know?

October is Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS) Awareness Month. SIDS is the sudden, unexplained death of a baby younger than 1 year of age that doesn’t have a known cause even after a complete investigation. In 2016, there were 3,600 sudden infant deaths in the United States. There are ways to help reduce the risk of SIDS. Follow these tips: 

1. Place your baby on his or her back for all sleep times—for naps and at night.  Babies who sleep on their backs are much less likely to die of SIDS than babies who sleep on their sides or stomachs.

2. Use a firm sleep surface, such as a mattress in a safety-approved crib or bassinet, covered only by a fitted sheet.  Soft surfaces can increase the risk of sleep-related death. A firm sleep surface helps reduce the risk of SIDS and suffocation.

3. No bed sharing! Accidental suffocation, strangulation, and wedging (for example, being stuck between two objects such as a mattress and a wall) can happen when a baby is sleeping in an adult bed or other unsafe sleep surfaces. Room sharing is much safer than bed sharing and may decrease the risk of SIDS by as much as 50%.

4. Keep soft objects, such as pillows and loose bedding out of your baby’s sleep area. Soft objects and loose bedding, like stuffed toys, sheets, comforters, and blankets, can increase the risk of suffocation and other sleep-related deaths. If you’re worried about your baby getting cold while sleeping, you can dress her or him in sleep clothing (like a wearable blanket) to keep warm.

5. Do not allow smoking around your baby. Smoke in the baby’s surroundings is a major risk factor for SIDS. Quitting smoking can be hard, but it is one of the best ways parents and caregivers can protect their health and their baby’s health.

6. Alcohol and drug use is a risk factor for SIDS. Alcohol and drug use alters the way someone thinks and decreases parent’s arousal. This can cause parents to make decision about the babies sleeping position that are not safe.

North Shore Health Department Highlights 10/2/2018

Did you know?

One of the most important jobs you have as a parent is keeping your child safe when riding in a vehicle. Each year, thousands of young children are killed or injured in car crashes. Proper use of car safety seats helps keep children safe. But with so many different seats on the market, many parents find this task overwhelming. If you are expectant parents, give yourselves enough time to learn how to properly install the car safety seat in your car before your baby is born to ensure a safe ride home from the hospital.

The American Academy of Pediatrics recently released an updated version of its car seat safety recommendations for rear facing car seats. Remember that laws are based on ages, but safety guidelines are based on your child’s weight and height, which may or may not coincide with ages.

Know the stages:

  • Rear-facing car seat: Until they reach the seat’s height and weight limits.

For the best possible protection, infants and toddlers should be buckled in a rear-facing car seat, in the back seat, until they reach the upper weight or height limits of their seat.

  • Forward-facing car seat: After outgrowing rear-facing seat until they reach the seat’s height and weight limits (usually until at least age 5).

When children outgrow their rear-facing seats, they should be buckled in a forward-facing car seat, in the back seat, until they reach the upper weight or height limit of their seat.

  • Booster seat: After outgrowing forward-facing seat and until seat belts fit properly.

Once children outgrow their forward-facing seat, they should be buckled in a belt positioning booster seat until seat belts fit properly.

  • Seat Belt: Once seat belts fit properly without a booster seat.

Children no longer need to use a booster seat once the seat belt fits them properly. Seat belts fit properly when the lap belt lays across the upper thighs (not the stomach) and the shoulder belt lays across the chest (not the neck). Proper seat belt fit usually occurs when children are about 4 feet 9 inches tall and age 9-12 years. Some seats in vehicles are deeper than others, so a child may fit in one seat location, but not another. For the best possible protection, keep children properly buckled in the back seat.

Check the seat’s owner’s manual and/or labels on the seats for weight and height limits.

North Shore Health Department Highlights 9/25/2018

Did you know?

Flu season is here, and it is time to get vaccinated! The 2017–18 influenza season in Wisconsin was extremely severe. Over 7,500 influenza-related hospitalizations were reported in Wisconsin, of which 65% were among people over 65 years old. More than 500 respiratory outbreaks, most of which were caused by influenza, were reported by nursing homes, assisted living facilities, and residential care apartment complexes. The number of influenza-associated hospitalizations and outbreaks was more than double that of any previous season.

Flu symptoms can include fever, body aches, fatigue and headache.  Most people who develop influenza recover within two weeks, but in some vulnerable populations (including children, elderly, immune-compromised), the flu can result in hospitalization and even death.  The best way to protect yourself from the flu is to get vaccinated. The health department is offering flu vaccines at this time. To make an appointment call 414-371-2980 or visit our website at http://www.nshealthdept.org/Clinics.aspx and request an appointment online. In addition to getting your flu vaccine, follow these important tips to stay healthy:

• Avoid close contact with people who are sick.

• Stay home when you are sick. This is especially important if you work with a vulnerable population (i.e. elderly, children)

• Cover your mouth and nose when you cough or sneeze.

• Wash your hands—especially before eating and after coughing, sneezing or blowing your nose.

• Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth.

Learn more about flu at: https://www.cdc.gov/flu/about/index.html
For more information on upcoming clinics at the health department visit: http://www.nshealthdept.org/Clinics.aspx

North Shore Health Department Highlights 9/18/2018

Did you know?

Last week, the City of Milwaukee had its first case of human West Nile Virus (WNV) in 2018.  WNV is most commonly transmitted to humans by mosquitoes. Mosquitoes become infected when they feed on infected birds. Infected mosquitoes can then spread the virus to humans and other animals. Fortunately, most people infected with WNV will have no symptoms. About 1 in 5 people who are infected will develop a fever with other symptoms, while less than 1% of infected people develop a serious, sometimes fatal, neurologic illness.  Symptoms of severe illness include high fever, headache, neck stiffness, stupor, disorientation, coma, tremors, convulsions, muscle weakness, vision loss, numbness and paralysis. While serious illness can occur in people of any age, those over 60 years of age are at the greatest risk for severe disease. People with certain medical conditions, such as cancer, diabetes, hypertension, kidney disease, and people who have received organ transplants, are also at greater risk for serious illness.

Though this information was shared earlier this year, the health department wants to remind residents to follow these tips to help prevent mosquito bites:

• Limit time spent outside at dawn and dusk, when mosquitoes are most active.

• Apply insect repellant to clothing as well as exposed skin since mosquitoes may bite through clothing.

• Make sure window and door screens are in good repair to prevent mosquito entry.

• Properly dispose of items that hold water, such as tin cans, plastic containers, ceramic pots, or discarded tires.

• Clean roof gutters and downspouts for proper drainage.

• Turn over wheelbarrows, wading pools, boats, and canoes when not in use.

• Change the water in birdbaths and pet dishes at least every three days.

• Clean and chlorinate swimming pools, outdoor saunas, and hot tubs; drain water from pool covers.

• Trim tall grass, weeds, and vines since mosquitoes use these areas to rest during hot daylight hours.

• Landscape to prevent water from pooling in low-lying areas.

For more information on preventing mosquito bites visit: https://www.cdc.gov/zika/prevention/prevent-mosquito-bites.html

North Shore Health Department Highlights 9/11/2018

Did you know?

Oral health not only affects our ability to speak, smile, eat, and show emotions, but it also affects self-esteem, school performance, and attendance at work and school. Cavities (also called tooth decay) are one of the most common chronic diseases in the United States. Oral health has been linked with other chronic diseases, including diabetes and heart disease. Public health strategies such as community water fluoridation and school dental sealant programs have been proven to save money and prevent cavities.

In the North Shore in 2015, 14% of adults surveyed indicated that they had unmet dental care in the last year—double the percent who reported unmet dental care in 2012. Tooth decay is the most common chronic disease among children in the United States. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports that more than 40 percent of children have decay by the time they reach kindergarten. It is important to catch and repair cavities early so that children are not in pain, which can impact their ability to eat, speak, and grow.

The Greater Milwaukee Dental Association, along with Marquette University School of Dentistry hosts an annual “Give Kids a Smile Dental Day,” which provides free dental exams, toothbrush polish, and fluoride varnish. Children needing additional treatment may also receive it that day or be scheduled for follow-up at participating dental providers throughout October. This year’s event is at Marquette University’s School of Dentistry on Saturday, October 6th from 8:00 am to 12:00 noon. Children ages 3-16 are seen on a first-come, first-served basis. Find more information on the program at: https://www.wda.org/your-oral-health/community-activities/give-kids-a-smile

For more information on how parents can help ensure their children’s good oral health, visit: https://www.cdc.gov/oralhealth/basics/childrens-oral-health/index.html  

What is the health department working on?

We are busy preparing for flu season. Make plans now to get your flu immunization! Whether you have insurance or not, we can provide your flu immunization. Payment is in cash or check, or we can bill Medicare (card required). Call the office (414-371-2980) to check on availability of vaccines for specific clinics.

The North Shore Health Department offers an assortment of flu immunizations, including:

  • Quadrivalent flu shots for $40
  • Preservative free quadrivalent flu shots for $45
  • High dose flu shots (ages 65 and over) for $65
  • Limited availability at some clinics: Flu mist (ages 2-49) for $40

Open clinics that do not require an appointment include:

*Friday, September 28, 9:00 am – 12:00 pm

          Lydell Community Center, 5205 N. Lydell Ave., Whitefish Bay

*Saturday, October 20, 9:00 am – 11:00 am

Nicolet High School Cafeteria, 6701 N. Jean Nicolet Rd., Glendale – PREFERRED CLINIC with reduced price ($10) preservative-free quadrivalent shots for ages 3-18 and all others available at prices above

*Tuesday, October 30, 3:00 – 5:00 pm

North Shore Library, 6800 N. Port Washington Rd., Glendale

*Tuesday, November 6, 1:00 – 5:00 pm

Both Health Department Offices

2010 E. Shorewood Blvd., Shorewood


4800 W. Green Brook Dr., Brown Deer

North Shore Health Department Highlights 9/4/2018

Did you know?

September is National Preparedness Month (NPM). This year’s NPM focuses on planning, with the overarching theme “Disasters Happen. Prepare Now. Learn How.” When disasters occur, such as the recent flooding throughout Wisconsin, first responders are often overwhelmed with major rescue efforts and individuals need to ensure that they are prepared for immediate action.

The first week of NPM reminds you to make and practice your plan. Ready.gov provides this guidance:

·         Put together a plan by discussing these four questions with your family, friends or household to develop your emergency plan.

o   How will I receive emergency warnings?

o   What is my shelter plan?

o   What is my evacuation route?

o   What is my family/household communication plan?

·         Consider specific needs in your household (children, older adults, those with access and functional needs, special medical needs, dietary needs).

·         Fill out a family emergency plan.

·         Practice your plan.

More information, including links and sample plans can be found at: 

Follow us on social media (@NSHealthDept on FB and Twitter; nshd2018 on Insta) to learn about the themes for weeks 2-4.


The Health Department has completed bacteria level testing of the North Shore beaches for the season. This summer Atwater reached the advisory level twice, Doctors Park reached advisory level once, and Klode reached advisory level four times and was closed once due to elevated bacteria levels. Signs indicating bacteria levels will be removed later this week. While warm weather and swimming may continue, remember heavy rains wash organisms into the water and can disturb sediment. This causes cloudy and potentially unhealthy conditions and could contribute to rip currents and undertows making swimming unsafe. Always practice cautious swimming habits and if in doubt, stay out!

The Health Department is partnering with local and state health departments on investigations related to synthetic cannabinoids. Wisconsin continues to see cases of severe bleeding following the use of synthetic cannabinoids, often called “fake weed,” “K2,” and “spice.” The bleeding occurs as these products contain rat poison (brodifacoum). Overall, Wisconsin has seen 54 cases since March of this year.  Counties with confirmed cases include Dane, Milwaukee, Outagamie, and Rock. People should call 911 or immediately go to an emergency room if they or someone they know are experiencing a serious reaction to synthetic cannabinoids.

North Shore Health Department Highlights 8/28/2018

Did you know?

Standing water is the perfect breeding ground for mosquitoes. Besides being annoying, mosquitoes can carry diseases such as West Nile Disease. With the recent heavy rains, most yards will likely have some standing water. If you have a home pool, remember that winterizing your pool also includes keeping the pool covered, and regularly clearing water from the pool cover.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends the following to control mosquitoes outdoors:

Remove standing water where mosquitoes could lay eggs.

·         Once a week, empty and scrub, turn over, cover, or throw out any items that hold water like tires, buckets, planters, toys, pools, birdbaths, flowerpot saucers, or trash containers. (It takes one week to develop from an egg to a flying adult)

·         Tightly cover water storage containers (buckets, cisterns, rain barrels) so that mosquitoes cannot get inside to lay eggs.

·         For containers without lids, cover with wire mesh with holes smaller than an adult mosquito.

·         Use larvicides to treat large containers of water that will not be used for drinking and cannot be covered or dumped out.

·         If you have a septic tank, repair cracks or gaps. Cover open vent or plumbing pipes with wire mesh with holes smaller than an adult mosquito.

·         If you have a pool, keep the filter running, which keeps water moving and prevents mosquitoes from breeding. When closing the pool for the winter, keep it covered and properly winterized.

Kill mosquitoes outside your home.

·         Use an outdoor insect spray made to kill mosquitoes in areas where they rest.

·         Mosquitoes rest in dark, humid areas like under patio furniture, or under the garage.

·         When using insecticides, always follow label instructions.

For more ways to protect yourself from mosquitoes, visit: https://www.cdc.gov/features/westnilevirus/

North Shore Health Department Highlights 8/21/2018

Did you know?

August is National Immunization Awareness Month. Immunization saves millions of lives and is widely recognized as one of the world’s most successful and cost-effective health interventions. Immunizations have positively impacted the lives of infants, children and adults.

Why should you vaccinate?

Immunizations can save your child’s life. Because of advances in medical science, your child can be protected against more diseases than ever before.

Vaccination is very safe and effective. Vaccines are only given after a long and careful review by scientists, doctors, and healthcare professionals.

Immunization protects others you care about and the community. Immunizing individual children helps to protect those people who cannot be immunized (children who are too young to be vaccinated, or those who can’t receive certain vaccines for medical reasons), and the small proportion of people who don’t respond to a particular vaccine.

Immunizations can save your family time and money. A child with a vaccine-preventable disease can be denied attendance at schools or child care facilities. Some vaccine-preventable diseases can result in prolonged disabilities and can take a financial toll because of lost time at work and medical bills.

The North Shore Health Department prevents vaccine-preventable diseases through our Immunization Program. Immunizations are provided to uninsured, underinsured and, in limited cases for some vaccines, private payers. Additionally, the health department provides education and outreach to residents, healthcare providers, school nurses, media, and others on the epidemiology of vaccine-preventable diseases and current vaccine recommendations.

North Shore Health Department Highlights 8/14/2018

Did you know?

September is National Childhood Obesity Awareness Month. About 1 in 6 children in the United States has obesity. Certain groups of children are more affected than others.  Children with obesity are at higher risk for having other chronic health conditions and diseases, such as asthma, sleep apnea, bone and joint problems, and type 2 diabetes. They also have more risk factors for heart disease like high blood pressure and high cholesterol than their normal weight peers. Children with obesity can be bullied and teased more than their normal weight peers. They are also more likely to suffer from social isolation, depression, and lower self-esteem.

Childhood obesity can be prevented. Communities, health professionals, and families can work together to create opportunities for kids to eat healthier and get more active. Some tips include:

  • Providing nutritious, lower-calorie foods such as fruits and vegetables in place of foods high in added sugars and solid fats. Try serving more fruit and vegetables at meals and as snacks.
  • Making sure drinking water is always available as a no-calorie alternative to sugary beverages and limit juice intake.
  • Helping children get the recommended amount of physical activity each day. Find age appropriate activities here: https://www.cdc.gov/physicalactivity/basics/children/what_counts.htm
  • Be a role model! Eat healthy meals and snacks and get the right amount of physical activity every day.

To learn more visit: https://www.cdc.gov/features/childhoodobesity/index.html or


North Shore Health Department Highlights 8/7/2018

Did you know…

The North Shore Health Department participates in a variety of community events throughout the summer including: National Night Out, Safety Days, Farmers’ Markets, Car Seat events, and many more. Community events build cohesion and resiliency among residents, businesses, government and community groups to make communities and neighborhoods safe and free of crime and violence. Community cohesion is the coming together of people with a shared vision and sense of belonging in which the diversity of people’s backgrounds and circumstances are valued and appreciated. Community resilience is the sustained ability of a community to utilize available resources to respond to, withstand and recover from adverse situations.  Both community cohesion and resiliency are important elements in a safe and healthy community and are fostered through fun events and activities involving the whole community. Earlier this summer we participated in Farmers’ Markets in Fox Point and Brown Deer and last week we participated in Glendale’s National Night Out. In September we will be at the Bayside Picnic on September 8th, Shorewood Farmers’ Market on September 15th and Whitefish Bay’s Farmers’ Market on September 22nd.

Kudos to Health Department Staff

Earlier this spring, Sanja Miljevic, one of the NSHD’s four Public Health Nurses, won the Carol Graham Scholarship for Emerging Leaders in Public Health Nursing. As an award recipient Sanja received a paid registration to the Wisconsin Public Health Association’s Public Health in Practice Conference. Sanja attended the conference in Stevens Point last week to develop her skills and learn of resources to improve community health. Sanja has been with the NSHD for four years and in that time has become one of our primary nurses working on communicable disease investigations, including managing several active TB patients. In her time with the Department, she has become a certified Child Passenger Safety Technician and a Rabies Control Program Trained Observer. Sanja also helped develop and onboard staff to our new scheduling and billing software system, allowing us to expand our Medicare billing options for flu vaccine. Congratulations, Sanja, on your award and your achievements in public health.

North Shore Health Department Highlights 7/31/2018

Did you know…

The North Shore Health Department receives a grant from the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (DNR), through the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to conduct beach monitoring for presence of E. coli at the three Lake Michigan beaches in our area—Atwater in Shorewood, Klode in Whitefish Bay, and Doctors in Bayside. We work with the Shorewood DPW and the North Shore Water Commission to test water at least twice a week. Signs are posted at each beach, indicating whether a beach is open (green), closed (red) or has elevated levels of E. coli detected (yellow). Current status of E. coli levels in most Wisconsin beaches, including the North Shore beaches, is available at: https://www.wibeaches.us.

In 2017, two drownings occurred on North Shore beaches. Seeing a need for more urgent response and rescue equipment, a Whitefish Bay resident, 17-year-old Matthew Pomes, worked in conjunction with the North Shore Health Department and the Village of Whitefish Bay to design and install a beach rescue equipment kiosk at Klode Beach for his Eagle Scout project. Congratulations, Matthew, and thank you for helping make Klode Beach a safer place to swim!

Photo caption: Eagle Scout Matthew Pomes and North Shore Health Director/Officer Ann Christiansen

What is the health department working on?

Last Thursday the North Shore Health Department hosted a Community Conversation at the Schlitz Audubon Nature Center to help us in developing the North Shore Community Health Improvement Plan (CHIP). We had a great turnout and many suggestions for us to integrate into the CHIP.

If you were unable to make the Community Conversation, you can still view the information from posters, and provide feedback on the topic areas electronically. Visit:


North Shore Health Department Highlights 7/24/2018

The North Shore Health Department will be hosting a Health and Well-Being Community Conversation at the Schlitz Audubon Nature Center. Stop by between 3:00-6:30pm on Thursday, July 26, to prioritize community health issues and action steps for the North Shore Health Improvement Plan. Please register online at http://ow.ly/QkMn30kEWII or by calling (414) 371-2980.

The North Shore Health Department reports a dead crow found in Milwaukee County has tested positive for West Nile virus.  West Nile virus is spread to humans through the bite of an infected mosquito. Mosquitoes acquire the virus by feeding on infected birds. The majority of people (80%) who are infected with West Nile virus do not get sick. Those who do become ill usually experience mild symptoms such as fever, headache, muscle ache, rash, and fatigue. Less than 1% of people infected with the virus get seriously ill with symptoms that include high fever, muscle weakness, stiff neck, disorientation, mental confusion, tremors, confusion, paralysis, and coma. Older adults and those with compromised immune systems are at greater risk of developing central nervous system illness that can be fatal.

The North Shore Health Department recommends the following:

  • Limit time spent outside at dawn and dusk, when mosquitoes are most active.
  • Apply an insect repellant with DEET, IR3535, picaridin, or oil of lemon eucalyptus to exposed skin and clothing.
  • Make sure window and door screens are in good repair to prevent mosquito entry.
  • Prevent mosquitoes from breeding by removing stagnant water from items around your property, such as tin cans, plastic containers, flower pots, discarded tires, roof gutters, and downspouts.
  • Turn over wheelbarrows, wading pools, boats, and canoes when not in use.
  • Change the water in bird baths and pet dishes at least every three days.
  • Clean and chlorinate swimming pools, outdoor saunas, and hot tubs; drain water from pool covers.
  • Landscape to prevent water from pooling in low-lying areas, and trim tall grass, weeds, and vines since mosquitoes use these areas to rest during hot daylight hours.

The Wisconsin Department of Health Services will continue surveillance for West Nile virus until the end of the mosquito season. To report a sick or dead crow, blue jay, or raven, please call the Dead Bird Reporting Hotline at 1-800-433-1610.

Listen to Ann Christiansen, Health Director, discuss West Nile virus on WUMW Lake Effect:  http://wuwm.com/post/tuesday-lake-effect-spread-insect-borne-illnesses-designer-donna-ricco-royal-roost

For more information on West Nile virus: https://www.dhs.wisconsin.gov/arboviral/westnilevirus.htm

North Shore Health Department Highlights 7/17/2018

The North Shore Health Department is hosting our first broad community discussion to help us in developing the North Shore Community Health Improvement Plan. The CHIP is a 5-year plan that identifies health priorities, develops and implements strategies to address the priorities, and lays out the means to measure health improvements.

Please consider joining us on Thursday, July 26th, 2018 at the Schlitz Audubon Nature Center where we will review the community health issues that emerged from the North Shore Community Health Assessment and discuss potential action steps for improvement. We invite you to stop by anytime between 3:00pm – 6:30pm to meet with stakeholders and staff, review the potential topic areas, and provide input on what is being or could be done to make our communities healthier and safer. If you can’t join the discussion on July 26th, please let us know as there will be other opportunities to provide input and get involved.

The event is free, but we would like everyone to register through the link on our website (https://nshealthdept.org).

To view the 2017-2021 Community Health Assessment and the 2014-2019 Community Health Improvement Plan visit: http://www.nshealthdept.org/Reports.aspx

North Shore Health Department Highlights 7/10/2018

The North Shore Health Department investigates several tickborne infections including Lyme disease, babesiosis, ehrlichiosis, anaplasmosis, and rocky mountain spotted fever. Lyme disease is the most frequently reported tickborne illness in Wisconsin, but numbers for the other conditions are increasing. Common symptoms of tickborne diseases may include fever, chills, muscle aches, headache and rash. Preventing tick bites is the key to reducing your risk of tickborne diseases.

  • Avoid areas with tall grass and brush where ticks are common.
  • Apply repellents that contain at least 20%–30% DEET.
  • Wear clothing treated with 0.5% permethrin.
  • Shower soon after coming indoors.
  • Perform daily checks. Check your entire body after being outside even if you were only in your yard.

It is important to remember that ticks are present in all counties in Wisconsin. People living in any county in Wisconsin can contract Lyme disease or other tick-borne diseases.

For information on how to safely remove a tick, visit https://www.cdc.gov/ticks/removing_a_tick.html

For information on Lyme disease incidence in Wisconsin, visit https://www.dhs.wisconsin.gov/tickborne/lyme/index.htm



North Shore Health Department Highlights 7/3/2018

Summer is in full swing and Fourth of July is here! As you celebrate with friends and family this week, it is important to remember some key safety tips about the use of fireworks. According to the US Consumer Product Safety Commission, 280 people on average go the emergency room every day with fireworks-related injuries in the month around the July 4th holiday. Per the North Shore Fire Department, sparklers, smoke bombs and snakes are the only fireworks that have been identified as legal in the State of Wisconsin and the North Shore. 

If you are travelling somewhere where fireworks are legal and you plan to use them, stay safe and follow these tips:

  • Obey all local laws regarding the use of fireworks.
  • Know your fireworks; read the cautionary labels and performance descriptions before igniting.
  • A responsible adult should supervise all firework activities.  Never give fireworks to children.
  • Alcohol and fireworks do not mix.  Save your alcohol for after the show.
  • Wear safety glasses when shooting fireworks.
  • Light one firework at a time and then quickly move away.
  • Use fireworks outdoors in a clear area; away from buildings and vehicles.
  • Never carry fireworks in your pocket or shoot them into metal or glass containers.

If you will be grilling for the holiday follow these steps to safely cook up treats for the backyard barbecue:

  • Always supervise a barbecue grill when in use.
  • Never grill indoors – not in your house, camper, tent, or any enclosed area.
  • Make sure everyone, including the pets, stays away from the grill.
  • Keep the grill out in the open, away from the house, the deck, tree branches, or anything that could catch fire.
  • Use the long-handled tools especially made for cooking on the grill to keep the chef safe.
  • Never add charcoal starter fluid when coals have already been ignited.
  • Always follow the manufacturer’s instructions when using grills.

For more safety tips visit: www.fireworkssafety.org, www.nfpa.org