Working with the New York City Health Department’s Shop Healthy NYC initiative, youth from St. Barnabas Hospital Teen Health Center recently improved access to fruits and vegetables in the South Bronx by adopting their local Green Cart at 188th Street and Grand Concourse, a busy corner close to two subway lines. Green Carts, mobile fruit and vegetable stands in underserved areas, are a vital resource for neighborhoods that otherwise lack access to fresh produce. The students met with Green Cart owners Felipe and Rosa Vazquez to strategize ways to boost their business and get more people to eat fresh fruits and vegetables. Then they made attractive produce displays using reusable baskets and decorative price signs and distributed Shop Healthy NYC reusable shopping bags to customers as an incentive for purchasing produce.
In addition, the Teen Health Center agreed to purchase $100 worth of fruits and vegetables every week for six weeks, ensuring regular customers for Felipe and Rosa as well as increased access to produce for the teens.
This week, NYC Health launched a new television ad campaign highlighting the risks of prescription painkillers, also known as opioid analgesics. In New York City, the opioid analgesic overdose death rate increased 267 percent between 2000 and 2011, followed by a slight decrease in 2012. Opioid analgesics include drugs such as oxycodone (e.g., Percocet® or OxyContin®) and hydrocodone (e.g., Vicodin®). In 2012, Staten Islanders had the highest rate of opioid analgesic overdose deaths – more than three times as high as all other boroughs.
To specifically address opioid analgesic misuse and abuse on Staten Island, Health Commissioner Thomas Farley led two conferences in June for doctors and dentists in the borough. From June to August 2013, NYC Health visited more than 1,000 health care providers across Staten Island to educate them about the Department’s opioid prescribing guidelines and increase awareness about opioid analgesic misuse and its health consequences. With Staten Island University Hospital, the Health Department co-sponsored a training for physicians on the use of the effective medication buprenorphine, for treating opioid addiction. The Health Department also supplies naloxone, a medication that can reverse opioid overdoses, to overdose prevention programs. Additionally, the New York City guidelines for prescribing opioids from emergency departments have been adopted by 35 emergency departments across the City.
Read the full Press Release, and watch one of the two new TV ads above and the other ad here.
In NYC, more than half of adults are overweight or obese. The sugar in drinks such as soda, juice, and sweetened iced teas can bring on obesity, which can lead to high blood pressure and high cholesterol, diabetes and heart disease.
Check out one our new TV ads warning NYers of the dangers of sugary drinks above, and view all of them here.
Searching for a year-round farmers’ market? NYC Health offers 20+ Greenmarkets open throughout the year. Pick up fresh, seasonal fruits and vegetables at locations in Brooklyn, Manhattan, and Queens. Click on “Read More” for locations & hours.
Today, NYC Health launched a new ad campaign today warning people that listening to headphones at high volume can cause tinnitus (ringing in the ears) and irreversible hearing loss. The ads encourage people to protect their hearing by turning down the volume when using headphones.
To protect your hearing when using headphones, remember to:
Reduce the volume, limit listening time, and take regular breaks.
Never listen at maximum volume and do not turn the volume up to drown out external noise.
Use volume limiting features of personal listening devices.
Know the early signs of hearing loss and ask a doctor for a hearing test if you have trouble hearing conversation, need to turn up the volumes on TV, radio or personal music players or experience ringing in the ear.
Today is World AIDS Day. The theme for 2013 is “Shared Responsibility: Strengthening results for an AIDS Free Generation.”
In honor of World AIDS Day, the Brooklyn Knows HIV Testing Initiative has partnered with Greater than AIDS to encourage HIV Testing in Brooklyn and throughout New York City. For HIV testing locations near you, call 311 or text “TestNYC” to 877877. If you or someone you know needs information on HIV care, text “Care” to 877877.
The Health Department today unveiled a new anti-obesity campaign educating New Yorkers on the potential health risks, for both children and adults, of consuming too many sugary drinks. The ads highlight how sugary drinks can bring on obesity and diabetes, both of which can lead to serious health problems like heart disease and stroke. Accompanying these ads is a new Health Department Epi Data Brief on diabetes and its complications. According to the new report, in 2011, there were over 20,000 hospitalizations for diabetes and nearly 5,500 adults on dialysis due to diabetes, a 65% increase in the number of adults on dialysis due to diabetes since 2000.
The ads warn New Yorkers of the potential harmful consequences of excessive sugary drink consumption. The new ads also encourage New Yorkers to take a “sip in the right direction” and replace sugary drinks with water, seltzer, unsweetened teas, fat-free milk and fresh fruit.
New Yorkers can call 311 to get a Healthy Eating packet with more information and tips on how to cut back on sugary beverages.
The NYC Health Department recently announced new efforts to encourage New Yorkers to get their influenza vaccination before peak influenza season hits in January. Influenza, together with pneumonia, is the third leading cause of death in New York City, killing more than 2,000 people a year.
Influenza season in New York City typically starts in the winter months, peaking in January through March. However, influenza virus circulates all year long. Getting vaccinated before influenza transmission peaks is the best way to prevent infection from the virus.
Pregnant women have an increased risk of becoming ill and having complications from influenza. Influenza can also increase a pregnant woman’s chances of premature labor and delivery. Infants, who have the highest hospitalization rates from influenza, cannot get an influenza shot before 6 months of age. Vaccinating a mother while she is pregnant not only protects her, but also protects her newborn infant from influenza until he or she is old enough to get vaccinated.
To increase public awareness, the Health Department launched a new ad campaign reminding New Yorkers that influenza germs are everywhere and that vaccination is the best protection against the infection. In addition, the Health Department kicked off a pilot program at 15 public elementary schools that will allow children to get vaccinated at no out-of-pocket cost.
For the first time, New Yorkers can find a nearby vaccine location by texting FLU to 877877. Information is also available by calling 311 or using the site locator on nyc.gov/flu. Influenza vaccines are available at Health Department immunization clinics, and the Health and Hospitals Corporation (HHC) offers free or low-cost vaccination at all of its hospitals and community health centers.
The holiday season can trigger stress, loss and anxiety for many New Yorkers affected by Superstorm Sandy. Project Hope offers free and confidential emotional support to help Sandy survivors cope with the holidays. Watch the PSA to learn more about Project Hope crisis counseling services in your neighborhood. Or, call 1-800-LIFENET to connect with a Project Hope counselor near you today.