The Portsmouth Health Department is dedicated to promoting, protecting, and preserving a healthy and safe community.
For reporting a public health emergency, such as a reportable disease or environmental public health hazard, after normal business hours, on holidays or weekends, please contact 866-531-3068
Volunteer for the Portsmouth Health District MRC
PHDMRC volunteers support local public health initiatives and emergency response. There are roles for both medical and non-medical volunteers. Participate in mass prophylaxis and vaccinations exercises and community disaster drills. Train with local emergency response partners. To volunteer: visit www.vamrc.org
Portsmouth residents may get a knock on the door October 28, 29, 30 and November 1. Portsmouth Health Department will be conducting the Community Health Survey (CHS). The survey will include questions on physical activity, nutrition, tobacco use, mental health literacy and access to care. The CHS enables public health practitioners and other city organizations to determine the health status and needs of the community.
Teams will be clearly identified by light blue vests with “Health Department” written on the back and identification badges, and will be in neighborhoods between 3-7 pm. Residents in targeted neighborhoods were selected using randomized census information.
Mosquitoes have always been an annoyance, but until recently in this part of the world, that’s all they were.
Now mosquitoes in Hampton Roads can carry the West Nile Virus, Eastern Equine Encephalitis, and other diseases. Of particular interest this year, is the emergence of Chikungunya Virus, which is now affecting people in the Caribbean. We currently have no cases of locally transmitted Chikungunya Virus disease in Virginia but two cases of locally transmitted Chikungunya Virus were recently reported by Florida Department of Health to the Centers for Disease Control as of July 17, 2014 . With the recent outbreaks in the Caribbean and the recent new cases in Florida, the number of Chikungunya Virus cases among travelers visiting and returning to Virginia will likely continue to increase, and local transmission is possible in the near future. For more information on Chikungunya Virus, visit: http://www.cdc.gov/chikungunya/
As with most diseases, it’s best to avoid infection in the first place. What can you do to keep mosquitoes away and help your family keep from being bitten?
Follow the 3 D’s: Drain, Dress, DEET
1. Drain - Mosquitoes not only breed in standing water, they can do so in something as small as a bottle cap. Kill mosquitoes before they have a chance to breed or hatch by eliminating standing water around your house. Did your toddler leave his toy truck out in the rain? Did you leave a bucket out by the flower bed? Look through your yard for popular mosquito hangouts and dump the water.
2. Dress - If it’s not too hot out, wear long sleeves, long pants, and socks when outdoors. Use insect repellent on exposed skin. Mosquitoes can bite through thin clothing, so spray insect repellent on your clothes for extra protection. Never use repellent underneath your clothes.
3. DEET - What repellents are safe? The CDC recommends products containing DEET, picaridin, IR3535, and some oil of lemon eucalyptus and para-menthane-diol products. Make sure to follow package directions and wash all repellents off with warm soapy water once you return indoors. For info on insect repellent use and safety visit http://www.cdc.gov/westnile/faq/repellent.html.
Updated 07/18/2014 10:10AM