County of Madison news

Protect Your Health After Flash Flooding

The state Department of Environmental Conservation office has reported flash flooding of Canastota Creek causing flooding, sewage backups and fuel spills in basements of residents in the Village of Canastota. The Canastota Wastewater Treatment Facility reported that a permitted discharge of partially treated wastewater occurred into Canastota Creek due to the weather conditions prompted by today’s heavy rains. The Madison County Health Department is advising impacted residents to take measures to protect themselves from harmful contaminants that may be present in such floodwaters and of flood recovery guidance available on the County website.

Residents need to take precautions before re-entering areas of a home that has experienced flooding. It is important to wear appropriate personal protection gear when re-entering your home, to properly remove standing water and not to pump out flood waters containing fuel oil. Guidance documents posted on the County website include the following topics;

· Things to Know Before Re-entering Your Home

· How to Avoid Getting Sick and Injured After a Flood

· Flood Cleanup and Home Repair

The above guidance documents as well as other information on flood recovery can also be found at health.ny.gov/FloodHelp

If there is flooding or sewage backups in your home, it is important to wear protective clothing to prevent coming in contact with harmful germs or contaminants while you clean and disinfect the area. Wash your hands frequently with soap and clean water.

Let’s Keep Madison County Healthy

Community Health Assessment

Do you think affordable housing and good jobs improve the quality of life in a community? What health problem do you think has the greatest impact on your community? Madison County wants to hear from you.

Every three years the Madison County Health Department partners with Oneida Healthcare Center and Community Memorial Hospital in Hamilton to identify and address local health priorities through the Community Health Assessment. During this assessment the Health Department gathers information from its community partners, other health organizations and members of the public.

The Madison County Health Department is now looking for that community input. They have teamed up with Zogby Strategies to conduct confidential and anonymous surveys.

A robo call will be conducted between July 8 – 10, 2019. If you want to be part of the survey contact the Madison County Health Department at 315.366.2361 or email health@madisoncounty.ny.gov.

The end result is a Community Health Improvement Plan. This plan is used to set priorities for future initiatives and strategies for the community. The results will guide the work the Health Department does over the next few years to improve the overall health of Madison County.

Free Private Water Testing Available to Madison County Residents

Do you have a well or other individual onsite water system? Have you tested your drinking water in the last year? It may look, smell, or taste fine, but may not be safe to drink. Test your water to know if it is safe and free from harmful contaminants.

The quality and safety of your individual water supply can change during the year. Your risk of water contamination can depend on a number of factors, including:

· How your well was constructed

· Where your well is located, and if there is enough separation from sources of contamination, such as septic systems, agricultural activity, or surface water

· How well your water source is protected

· How well the components of your water treatment system are maintained

Natural geological conditions in addition to industrial, agricultural and human activities in your area can potentially impact your drinking water quality.

Be confident your water is safe to drink. If you are on a private individual water system, contact Madison County Health Department’s Environmental Division at 315-366-2526 about free water testing and consultation services. Services are for eligible owners of residential wells, and other small individual onsite water systems in Madison County.

“The water testing is free and comprehensive,” said Geoffrey Snyder, Environmental Health Director. “Appointments are scheduled convenient to the homeowner, and a trained specialist performs an assessment of your water system and collects water samples. Water samples collected are sent to a certified lab for testing. Our Water Specialist will provide you a water quality report and review of the laboratory analysis, along with recommendations on what you can do to improve and protect your water source.”

The Health Department’s Individual Water Program has completed over 400 well assessments from 2016-2018. Test results have found 39% of water systems tested had coliform bacteria present. The presence of coliform bacteria is an indicator that a water system may be vulnerable to contamination. Among systems positive for coliform bacteria, 6% further tested positive for E. coli bacteria that can cause serious gastrointestinal illness. Naturally occurring arsenic was also detected at various levels in 26% of the home water systems tested.

Madison County Health Department’s website includes interactive maps showing known sources of potential contamination and geographical areas likely to have higher levels of arsenic, nitrates and other contaminants of concern. Check out the interactive maps to help guide your water testing activities online at bit.ly/McWaterTest, or call our Water Specialist for this information.

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control recommends you test your individual water system:

· Yearly for total coliform bacteria and nitrate

· If you notice a change in water taste or color

· After working on your water system

· If you notice standing water around the base of your well

· If you notice the well cap is not secure

If it has been more than a year since you last tested your drinking water, call the Madison County Health Department at 315-366-2526, or go to healthymadisoncounty.org to learn more.

Primary funding for this free water testing program is provided through cooperative agreement CDC-RFA-15-1507 between the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Madison County, NY Department of Health.

Health Department Receives National Grant for Oral Health

The Madison County Department of Health has been awarded the Barclay-Giel Seed Grant, the money will be used to launch an Oral Health Community Campaign in Madison County. Madison County was one of 15 (out of 251 applicants) community-based public health programs nationwide chosen to receive grant money.

The $7,500 is from the grant program was funded by the PHS Commissioned Officers Foundation for the Advancement of Public Health. The Seed Grants program is named after the late Martha Barclay-Giel, a retired Captain of the Commissioned Corps of the U.S. Public Health Service. Captain Barclay-Giel dedicated her life’s work to advancing the health of Americans.

“We here at the Health Department are pleased to announce that we have been awarded the $7,500 grant to launch an Oral Health Community Campaign in Madison County,” said Eric Faisst, Director of Madison County Public Health. “Madison County has the dubious distinction of having the highest number of third grade children with dental caries (cavities) in the State. With this money we hope to educate the public and improve oral health in our children.”

In 2018 the Madison County Department of Health formed a collaborative group of community organizations around the issue of oral health. The group identified three evidence-based strategies to reduce tooth decay among children: Community water fluoridation, offering fluoride varnish at well child visits, and promoting the importance of preventive dental care. In April 2019, the Department released its 2019 Oral Health in Madison County report that provided baseline data on oral health conditions and strategies to address the issue. The Department will further research campaigns targeted to our specific community needs. Materials including informational tool kits, provider detailing kits, and other outreach materials will be created and/or ordered by the end of the year.

If you would like more information or have questions about oral health please call the Madison County Health Department at 315-366-2526, or go to healthymadisoncounty.org to learn more.

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