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Dept of Public Health Earns National Achievement Award for the Hepatitis A Response

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The Los Angeles County Department of Public Health (Public Health) has been recognized with an Achievement Award from the National Association of Counties (NACo). The award honors innovative, effective county government programs that strengthen services for residents. Public Health earned the 2018 Achievement Award in the category of health for its program titled “A Hepatitis A Crisis: Protecting Our Communities”.

“Public Health works with residents, community organizations, government departments and elected officials to ensure that all people have the resources and opportunities needed to promote health and prevent illness,” said Barbara Ferrer, PhD, MPH, MEd, Director of the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health. “Receiving this award is a distinct honor and recognizes the efforts of hundreds of our colleagues from public health, local cities, hospitals, community agencies and other County departments to provide education, vaccination, and environmental protections to limit the spread of hepatitis A in LA County. I’m grateful for the support we received from everyone involved.”

Public Health declared a local outbreak of hepatitis A on September 19, 2017. Outbreaks were also occurring in San Diego and Santa Cruz counties and on October 13, 2017, Governor Brown declared a statewide hepatitis A outbreak in California. The majority of cases in these outbreaks occurred in persons who are homeless and/or use illicit drugs. Although hundreds of cases of Hepatitis A among people who are homeless and/or actively using illicit drugs were seen in neighboring San Diego County, successful interventions limited the number of cases in LA County to 18. Public Health has determined local transmission among this group has ended in LA County, even though the statewide outbreak continues.

NACo President Roy Charles Brooks said,

“Counties seize opportunities to deliver services more efficiently and build stronger communities every day. Achievement Award- winning programs are examples for counties that are determined to enhance services for our residents.”

Nationally, awards are given in 18 different categories that reflect the vast, comprehensive services counties provide. The categories include children and youth, criminal justice, county administration, information technology, health, civic engagement and many more.

NACo will recognize award-winning counties at its 2018 Annual Conference and Exposition July 13-16 in Nashville/Davidson County, Tennessee.

The Department of Public Health is committed to protecting and improving the health of over 10 million residents of Los Angeles County. Through a variety of programs, community partnerships and services, Public Health oversees environmental health, disease control, and community and family health. Nationally accredited by the Public Health Accreditation Board, the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health comprises nearly 4,100 employees and has an annual budget of $1 billion. To learn more about the LA County Department of Public Health and the work they do, visit PublicHealth .LACounty.gov, and follow Public Health on social media at twitter.com/LAP ublicHealthfacebook.c om/LAPublicHealth, and youtub e.com/LAPublicHealth.

The National Association of Counties (NACo) unites America’s 3,069 county governments. Founded in 1935, NACo brings county officials together to advocate with a collective voice on national policy, exchange ideas and build new leadership skills, pursue transformational county solutions, enrich the public’s understanding of county government and exercise exemplary leadership in public service. Learn more at http://www.naco.org.

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