LMAS District Health Department

14150 Hamilton Lake Road

Newberry, MI  49868

For Life-Threatening Emergencies Call 911
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Upper Peninsula Health Survey in Mail August 4th

Health surveys will be mailed on August 4th to about 24,000 randomly selected households across the Upper Peninsula as part of a community health needs assessment. Twenty-eight agencies from across the UP have joined together on this project, including hospitals, clinics, behavioral health agencies, local health departments, and health foundations.

“The purpose of this survey, which takes about 10-15 minutes to complete, is to improve access to comprehensive health care services for members of communities in all 15 counties,” said Nicholas Derusha, Health Officer of the Luce, Mackinac, Alger, Schoolcraft (LMAS) District Health Department. “By completing the survey, you can help us plan for the future and bring much-needed services and funding to meet the health challenges of each community.”

Derusha said that as a token of appreciation, every household that is selected and completes the survey by Sept. 8 will be entered in a prize drawing for a $50 local grocery store gift card. The survey will be delivered in a clear plastic envelope with the cover letter and yellow survey booklet clearly visible.

Survey responses are anonymous, and findings will only be published for entire counties, never for individuals. Participants may fill out the paper survey and return it in the business reply envelope provided, or complete a convenient on-line version using the link and code in their mailing. The surveys should start being delivered between August 5th and August 8th.

If you have any questions please contact:

Kerry Ott, Public Information Officer
906-341-6951 x112 or 906-630-4511

National Immunization Awareness Month

We all need immunizations to help protect us from serious diseases. To help keep our community safe, LMAS District Health Department is recognizing that August is National Immunization Awareness Month.

Immunizations can prevent serious diseases like the flu, measles, and pneumonia. It’s important to know which shots you need and when to get them.

Everyone age 6 months and older needs to get a flu vaccine every year. Many other shots work best when they are given at certain ages.

Remember, vaccines are safe!

  • Vaccines are thoroughly tested before licensing and carefully monitored after they are licensed to ensure that they are very safe.

  • Vaccines are the safest and most effective way to prevent several diseases. They not only protect vaccinated individuals but also help protect entire communities by preventing and reducing the spread of infectious diseases.

  • Currently, the United States has the safest, most effective vaccine supply in its history. The country’s long-standing vaccine safety system ensures that vaccines are as safe as possible.

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Are You Ready For School? Check Those Vaccine Records!

Back-to-school season is here. It’s time for parents to gather school supplies and back packs. It’s also the perfect time to make sure your children are up to date on their vaccines.

Getting children all of the vaccines recommended by CDC’s immunization schedule is one of the most important things parents can do to protect their children from serious diseases. If you haven’t done so already, now is the time to check with your child’s doctor or your local health department to find out what vaccines your child needs.

Vaccines protect against a number of serious and potentially life-threatening diseases.
When children are not vaccinated, they are at increased risk for diseases and can also spread diseases to others in their classrooms and community – including babies who are too young to be fully vaccinated and people with weakened immune systems due to cancer or other health conditions.

Call your local LMAS District Health Department office to make your appointment today!

Luce County -            (906) 293-5107 ext. 324

Mackinac County -    (906) 643-1100 ext. 217

Alger County -           (906) 387-2297 ext. 401

Schoolcraft County - (906) 341-6951 ext. 102

Five Important Reasons to Vaccinate Your Child

National Immunization Awareness Month is a reminder that children need vaccines right from the start.

You want to do what is best for your children. You know about the importance of car seats, baby gates and other ways to keep them safe. But did you know that one of the best ways to protect your children is to make sure they have all of their vaccinations?


  • Immunizations can save your child’s life. Because of advances in medical science, your child can be protected against more diseases than ever before. Some diseases that once injured or killed thousands of children are no longer common in the United States – primarily due to safe and effective vaccines. Polio was once America’s most feared disease, causing death and paralysis across the country, but today, thanks to vaccination, there are no reports of polio in the United States.

  • Vaccination is very safe and effective. Vaccines are given to children only after a long and careful review by scientists, doctors, and healthcare professionals. Vaccines will involve some discomfort and may cause pain, redness, or tenderness at the site of injection, but this is minimal compared to the pain, discomfort, and trauma of the diseases these vaccines prevent. Serious side effects following vaccination, such as severe allergic reaction, are very rare. The disease-prevention benefits of getting vaccines are much greater than the possible side effects for almost all children.

  • Immunization protects others you care about. Children in the United States still get vaccine-preventable diseases. In fact, there has been a resurgence of whooping cough (pertussis) over the past few years. For example, more than 15,000 cases of whooping cough were provisionally reported in the United States in 2016. Each year up to 20 babies die from whooping cough in the United States. Most deaths are babies who are too young to be protected by their own vaccines. Unfortunately, some babies are too young to be completely vaccinated and some people may not be able to receive certain vaccinations due to severe allergies, weakened immune systems from conditions like leukemia, or other reasons. To help keep them safe and protected from vaccine-preventable diseases, it is important you and your children who are able to get vaccinated are fully immunized. This not only protects your family, but also helps prevent the spread of these diseases to your friends and loved ones.

  • 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. In contrast, getting vaccinated against these diseases is a good investment and is usually covered by insurance or the Vaccines for Children (VFC) program, which is a federally funded program that provides vaccines at no cost to children from low-income families.To find out more about the VFC program, visit www.cdc.gov/vaccines/programs/vfc/ or call your local LMAS office.

  • Immunization protects future generations. Vaccines have reduced and, in some cases, eliminated many diseases that killed or severely disabled people just a few generations ago. For example, smallpox vaccination eradicated that disease worldwide. Your children don’t have to get smallpox shots anymore because the disease no longer exists. By vaccinating children against rubella (German measles), the risk that pregnant women will pass this virus on to their fetus or newborn has been dramatically decreased, and birth defects associated with that virus are rare in the United States. If we continue vaccinating and according to the recommended schedule, parents in the future may be able to trust that some diseases of today will no longer be around to harm their children in the future.

Pregnant Women: Protect Yourself and Pass Protection On To Your Baby

From the moment you found out you were pregnant, you started protecting your developing baby. You might have changed the way you eat, started taking a prenatal vitamin, or researched the kind of car seat you’ll buy. But did you know that one of the best ways to start protecting your developing baby against serious diseases is by making sure you get the whooping cough (Tdap) and flu vaccines while you are pregnant?

The vaccines you get during your pregnancy will provide your developing baby with some disease protection (immunity) that can last the first months of life after birth. By getting vaccinated during pregnancy, you can pass antibodies to your baby that may help protect against diseases. This early protection is critical for diseases like the flu and whooping cough because babies in the first several months of life are at the greatest risk of severe illness from these diseases. Newborn babies are too young to get a whooping cough vaccine. Passing maternal antibodies on to them is the only way to help directly protect them.

In cases when doctors are able to determine who spread whooping cough to an infant, the mother was sometimes the source. Once you have protection from the Tdap shot, you are less likely to give whooping cough to your newborn baby.

When it comes to flu, even if you are generally healthy, changes in immune, heart, and lung functions during pregnancy make you more likely to have a severe case of the flu if you catch it. If you catch the flu when you are pregnant, you also have a higher chance of experiencing pregnancy complications, such as premature labor and delivery. Getting a flu shot will help protect you and your baby while you are pregnant.

You also can rest assured that these vaccines are very safe for you and your developing baby. Millions of pregnant women have safely received flu shots for many years, and CDC continues to monitor safety data on flu vaccine in pregnant women.

The whooping cough vaccine also is very safe for you and your developing baby. Doctors and midwives who specialize in caring for pregnant women agree that the whooping cough vaccine is important to get during the third trimester of each pregnancy. Getting the vaccine during your pregnancy will not put you at increased risk for pregnancy complications.

You should get your whooping cough vaccine between your 27th and 36th week of pregnancy, preferably during the earlier part of this time period. You can get a flu shot during any trimester. You can get whooping cough and flu vaccines at the same time during your pregnancy or at different visits. If you are pregnant during the flu season, you should get a flu vaccine soon after vaccine is available.

If you want to learn more about pregnancy and vaccines, talk to you ob-gyn or midwife, and visit https://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/pregnancy/pregnant-women/index.html.

Adults: Vaccines Are Not Just For Kids

Vaccines are an important step in protecting adults against several serious and sometimes deadly diseases.

  • The need for vaccinations does not end in childhood. Vaccines are recommended throughout our lives based on age, lifestyle, occupation, travel destinations, medical conditions, and vaccines received in the past.

  • The Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) updates vaccine recommendations for adults each year based on the latest research on vaccine safety, effectiveness, and patterns of vaccine-preventable diseases.

  • ACIP’s vaccination recommendations also are reviewed and approved by professional medical provider organizations, including the American College of Physicians, American Academy of Family Physicians, American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, and American College of Nurse-Midwives.

Every year, tens of thousands of adults in the U.S. needlessly suffer, are hospitalized, and even die from diseases that could be prevented by vaccines.

  • Each year, an average of 226,000 people are hospitalized due to influenza and between 3,000 and 49,000 people die of influenza and its complications, the majority of which are adults.

  • About 900,000 people get pneumococcal pneumonia every year, leading to as many as 400,000 hospitalizations and 19,000 deaths,

  • 850,000 to 2.2 million people suffer from chronic hepatitis B, with complications such as liver cancer.

  • In the U.S., HPV causes about 17,000 cancers in women and about 9,000 cancers in men each year. About 4,000 women die each year from cervical cancer.

  • Of the approximately one million cases of shingles that occur annually, up to 9% will involve the eye.

Vaccines are recommended for adults to prevent serious diseases such as influenza (flu), shingles, pneumonia, hepatitis, and whooping cough.

  • Older adults and adults with certain chronic conditions are at increased risk for serious complications from vaccine-preventable diseases.

  • Many of these diseases are common in the U.S., and all adults – even healthy adults – can benefit from vaccination.

  • Some vaccines can help prevent cancer. Hepatitis B vaccine can prevent liver cancer that can develop after developing chronic hepatitis B. The HPV vaccine can prevent cancers caused by HPV infection, including cervical, vaginal, vulvar and anal cancers.

  • Vaccination is important because it not only protects the person being vaccinated, but also helps prevent the spread of diseases to others – especially those who are most vulnerable to serious complications, such as young children, older people, and people with certain chronic conditions or weakened immune systems.

Most adults have probably not received all the vaccines they need.

  • Unfortunately, far too few adults are receiving the recommended vaccines, leaving themselves and their loved ones vulnerable to serious diseases.

  • According to CDC data:

    • Only 20% of adults 19 years or older had received Tdap vaccination. – National Health Interview Survey 2014

    • Only 28% of adults 60 years or older had received shingles (herpes zoster) vaccination. – National Health Interview Survey 2014

    • Only 20% of adults 19 to 64 years at increased risk had received pneumococcal vaccination. – National Health Interview Survey 2014

    • Only about 44% of adults 18 years or older received a flu vaccine during the 2014-2015 flu season. – Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System 2014-2015

  • Health care professionals play a critical role in educating their patients about recommended vaccines and ensuring that they are fully immunized.

  • CDC asks ALL health care professionals – whether they provide immunization services or not – to routinely assess the vaccine needs of their patients and make a strong recommendation for needed vaccinations.

  • Adults should talk with their health care professional to learn which vaccines are recommended for them, and take steps to get up to date.

Vaccines are very safe.

  • Vaccines are thoroughly tested before licensing and carefully monitored even after they are licensed to ensure that they are very safe.

  • Side effects from vaccines are usually mild and temporary.

  • Some people may have allergic reactions to certain vaccines, but serious and long-term side effects are rare.

Talk with your health care professional about which vaccines are right for you based on your age, health, job, lifestyle, and other factors.

  • Take CDC’s vaccine quiz (www.cdc.gov/vaccines/adultquiz) to find which vaccines may be recommended for you.

  • Vaccines are available at private doctor offices, as well as other convenient locations such as pharmacies, workplaces, community health clinics and health departments.

  • To find a vaccine provider near you, visit: www.vaccine.healthmap.org.

Do You Have a Preteen or Teen? Protect Their Future With Vaccines

Taking them to their sports physical, making sure they eat healthy and get plenty of sleep…you know these are crucial to your child’s health. But did you also you know your preteens and teens need vaccines to stay healthy and protected against serious diseases?

As they get older, preteens and teens are at increased risk for some infections. Plus the protection provided by some of the childhood vaccines begins to wear off, so preteens need an additional dose (booster) to “boost” immunity. You may have heard about whooping cough (pertussis) outbreaks recently. Vaccine-preventable diseases are still around and very real. The vaccines for preteens and teens can help protect your kids, as well as their friends, community, and other family members.

There are four vaccines recommended for all preteens at ages 11 to 12:

  • Meningococcal conjugate vaccine, which protects against four types of the bacteria that cause meningococcal disease. Meningococcal disease is an uncommon but serious disease that can cause infections of the lining of the brain and spinal cord (meningitis) and blood (septicemia). Since protection decreases over time, a booster dose is recommended at age 16 so teens continue to have protection during the ages when they are at highest risk for getting meningococcal disease.

  • HPV vaccine, which protects against the types of HPV that most commonly cause cancer. HPV can cause future cancers of the cervix, vulva and vagina in women and cancers of the penis in men. In both women and men, HPV also causes cancers in the back of the throat (including base of the tongue and tonsils), anal cancer and genital warts.

  • Tdap vaccine, which protects against tetanus, diphtheria, and whooping cough. Tetanus and diphtheria are uncommon now because of vaccines, but they can be very serious. Whooping cough is common and on the rise in the United States. It can keep kids out of school and activities for weeks, but it is most dangerous — and sometimes even deadly — for babies who can catch it from family members, including older siblings.

  • Influenza (flu) vaccine, because even healthy kids can get the flu, and it can be serious. All kids, including your preteens and teens, should get the flu vaccine every year. Parents should also get vaccinated to protect themselves and to help protect their children from the flu.

Teens and young adults (16 through 23 year olds) may also receive a serogroup B meningococcal vaccine, preferably at 16 through 18 years old.

You can use any health care visit, including sports or camp physicals, checkups or some sick visits, to get the shots your kids need. Talk with your child’s health care professional to find out which vaccines your preteens and teens need. Vaccines are a crucial step in keeping your kids healthy.

Want to learn more about the vaccines for preteens and teens? Check out www.cdc.gov/vaccines/teens or call 1-800-CDC-INFO.

Flu Shot?

Call your local office to schedule one today!