Health Advisories

  • Health Advisory: Evaluating and Reporting Suspected E-cigarette or Vaping Associated Lung Injury (EVALI)

    Health Advisory: Evaluating and Reporting Suspected E-cigarette or Vaping Associated Lung Injury (EVALI)

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    Requested actions Ask all patients if they recently used e-cigarette or vaping products and which substances they used. Ask patients who report using e-cigarette or vaping products about respiratory, gastrointestinal and constitutional symptoms (e.g., cough, chest pain, shortness of breath, abdominal pain, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea and fever). Perform chest X-ray. Consider chest CT to evaluate…

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  • Support Youth Addicted to Nicotine

    Support Youth Addicted to Nicotine

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    Supporting Youth who are Addicted to Nicotine: Advice for Pediatricians Ask the Right Questions: •Ask about tobacco and nicotine use in the context of routine screening, using language that youth will understand. Sample screening questions include: o “Do you use any tobacco products, like cigarettes, chewing tobacco, or hookah? Have you used them in the…

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  • 2019-2020 Influenza Season Preparedness

    2019-2020 Influenza Season Preparedness

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    Surveillance updates Seasonal influenza surveillance begins in October and ends in April. It is important to stay up to date on local influenza activity. Vaccine Both influenza A components of this season’s vaccine are different from last season. Both B components are unchanged. CDC recommends influenza vaccine for everyone over age 6 months for whom…

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  • Vaping-associated Pulmonary Illness

    Vaping-associated Pulmonary Illness

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    CDC Urges Clinicians to Report Cases of Unexplained Vaping-associated Pulmonary Illness Multiple cases of severe pulmonary disease in patients who use vape products have occurred in Wisconsin and Illinois. Requested actions Ask patients who present with respiratory or pulmonary illness if they vape THC or e-juice. Determine what kind of THC or e-juice they’ve vaped,…

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  • Statewide Standing Order for Naloxone

    Statewide Standing Order for Naloxone

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    On Aug. 28, 2019, Washington State Health Officer Dr. Kathy Lofy signed a statewide standing order for naloxone, a medication that can reverse an opioid overdose. The standing order works like a prescription and allows any Washington person or organization to get naloxone from a pharmacy. We want to remind our local pharmacies and healthcare…

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  • Outbreak of Hepatitis A in Washington

    Outbreak of Hepatitis A in Washington

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    Washington state is experiencing a hepatitis A outbreak in multiple counties in people who are living homeless or who use drugs. Requested actions Give hepatitis A vaccine to unvaccinated patients living homeless or using drugs. Suspect hepatitis A in patients with acute onset of jaundice, vomiting, anorexia and elevated liver function test results—especially those living…

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  • MMR Vaccine Exemption Law Change

    MMR Vaccine Exemption Law Change

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    In 2019, the Washington State Legislature passed a bill that removes the personal/philosophical exemption to the MMR vaccine requirement for schools and child cares. The new law removes the personal and philosophical option to exempt children from the MMR (measles, mumps, and rubella) vaccine required for school and child care entry. The law: Takes effect…

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  • Expedited Partner Therapy

    Expedited Partner Therapy

    There are temporary changes to Expedited Partner Therapy (EPT) packs distribution. This is a result of the Washington State Department of Health undergoing an audit of its program. Please: Stop giving out EPT packs. Give the patient a prescription for their partner to fill at their pharmacy of choice. Advise that the partner will need…

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  • Marijuana Prevention

    Marijuana Prevention

    We work to protect the health of youth. We work with community partners to prevent youth marijuana use. Marijuana use is illegal for people under the age of 21. Why is this work important? Marijuana use puts teens at higher risk for addiction. Youth who use marijuana are more likely to fail in school. Most…

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  • Measles Provider Alert May 2019

    Measles Provider Alert May 2019

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    Provider Alert For immediate release: May 15, 2019 Dear Colleagues, A Pierce County man in his 40’s has been diagnosed with measles. The Tacoma-Pierce County Health Department and Public Health-Seattle & King County are investigating this jointly as he spent a significant amount of time at the Sea-Tac Airport. It is unclear where this patient…

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  • Sexually Transmitted Diseases (STD) Treatment Guidelines: Key Updates

    Sexually Transmitted Diseases (STD) Treatment Guidelines: Key Updates

    Treatment of Uncomplicated Gonococcal Infections of the Cervix, Urethra, Pharynx, and Rectum Recommended treatment regimen is dual therapy with Ceftriaxone 250 mg IM in a single dose plus Azithromycin 1 gm p.o. in a single dose. Doxycycline is no longer recommended for use in conjunction with Ceftriaxone to treat gonorrhea. If Ceftriaxone is not available,…

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