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  • Important advice to pregnant women during lambing season | HSC Public Health Agency
    also carry similar infections The PHA is advising women who are or think they may be pregnant to reduce their risk of miscarriage and infection by avoiding close contact with sheep during lambing season which runs until around April The number of reports of these infections and human miscarriages resulting from contact with sheep is extremely small However it is important that pregnant women are aware of the potential risks associated with close contact with sheep during lambing To avoid the possible risk of infection pregnant women are advised that they should not help to lamb or milk ewes avoid contact with aborted or new born lambs and with the afterbirth birthing fluids or materials e g bedding contaminated by birth fluids avoid handling clothing boots etc which have come into contact with ewes or lambs It is also important to note that these risks are not only confined to the spring when the majority of lambs are born nor are the risks only associated with sheep cows and goats that have recently given birth can also carry similar infections Pregnant women should seek medical advice if they experience fever or influenza like symptoms or if they are concerned that

    Original URL path: http://www.publichealthagency.org/news/important-advice-pregnant-women-during-lambing-season-3 (2016-02-11)
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  • Northern Ireland self-harm statistics published by PHA | HSC Public Health Agency
    address the issue of suicide prevention we must continue to encourage those in crisis to seek support when they need it Mary Black PHA Assistant Director of Health and Wellbeing Improvement said The publication of the second annual report is timely with the forthcoming launch of the next suicide prevention strategy for Northern Ireland 2015 20 and the commissioning by the PHA of new self harm community based support services The feedback from last year s first annual report has been encouraging receiving attention by a range of health and social care bodies the community and voluntary sector and the media There has been concerted effort to increase our understanding of the issues represented in the data and perhaps more importantly what can be done to raise greater awareness about the issue of self harm supporting carers and families and informing professionals working in this field in both the community and statutory sectors The key findings of the report are that between April 2013 and March 2014 There were 8 453 self harm presentations to Emergency Departments ED in Northern Ireland involving 5 983 persons Almost a third of presentations occurred in the Belfast Trust 30 18 in the South Eastern and Northern Trusts and 17 in the Western and Southern Trusts Overall there was an even balance of male and female presentations However females were marginally overrepresented in the Northern 55 Western 54 and Southern Eastern 52 Trust areas One fifth 20 of people presented with self harm on more than one occasion during the twelve month period Persons aged 15 29 accounted for almost half 44 of all self harm presentations with 16 of presentations being made by 20 24 year olds followed by 15 19 year olds 15 and 25 29 year olds 13 The European Age Standardised Rate EASR of self harm in Northern Ireland was over two thirds 64 higher than that for the Republic of Ireland However it should be noted that there are different heath systems in operation in each country Health and social services provision ensures there is free access to healthcare for all residents of Northern Ireland while there is a fee for each visit to the ED in the Republic of Ireland for non medical card holders Comparing the incidence of hospital treated self harm for those aged over 15 years in Northern Ireland with the Republic of Ireland and a number of study areas in England Belfast City had the highest incidence rate of 632 per 100 000 followed by Derry Londonderry City 622 Limerick City 610 and Derby with a rate of 435 per 100 000 The total numbers of presentations in Northern Ireland for self harm and suicidal ideation for the financial year 2013 14 was 12 076 A second report will also be launched at today s event The Northern Ireland Registry of Self Harm Western Area Six Year Summary Report 2007 2012 This report the first of its kind in the UK or Ireland looks

    Original URL path: http://www.publichealthagency.org/news/northern-ireland-self-harm-statistics-published-pha (2016-02-11)
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  • PHA publishes six year report on self-harm in the western area | HSC Public Health Agency
    and highlight key issues in respect of self harm prevalence in this area The highest rates of self harm in the western area were observed among females and young people Rates were higher in urban areas which is consistent with international findings While the rates in the western area are higher than those recorded in the Republic of Ireland or England the profile and pattern of self harm is consistent The six year summary report for the western area is being launched today at the 2015 Self Harm Symposium A Global Challenge The event is being held to mark the beginning of Self Harm Awareness Week The day long learning event is for professionals from the statutory and community and voluntary sectors working in the field of self harm Key findings from the six year summary report for the western area For the period from 1 January 2007 to 31 December 2012 the registry recorded 8 175 self harm presentations to Emergency Departments in the western area involving 4 733 individuals During this six year period 54 of all presentations were made by females and 46 were made by males The rate of self harm in 2012 was 6 higher than in 2007 an increase that was more pronounced for males than females 9 and 3 respectively Rates of self harm presentations were consistently higher among those in younger age groups for both genders The self harm rates peaked among females aged 15 19 years 837 per 100 000 The peak rate for males was among those aged 20 24 years at 809 per 100 000 Almost half of all presentations 45 were made by people aged under 30 years and 89 were made by people aged under 50 years In the majority of age groups the number of self harm acts by females exceeded that of males The findings from the report indicate that incidence of hospital treated self harm in the western area of Northern Ireland is over 60 higher than that in the Republic of Ireland 342 versus 211 per 100 000 However it should be noted that there are different heath systems in operation in each country Health and social services provision ensures there is free access to healthcare for all residents of Northern Ireland while there is a fee for each visit to the ED in the Republic of Ireland for non medical card holders The report contains the first of four supplementary reports The first looks at trends in repetition while the follow up supplements will analyse aftercare method of self harm and alcohol and socio economic factors and self harm The second Annual Report from the Northern Ireland Registry of Self Harm will also be launched today by the PHA The Northern Ireland Registry of Self Harm Annual Report 2013 14 is an analysis of the prevalence of self harm presentations to the 12 local Emergency Departments This information is being used to inform the design of a new community based service to

    Original URL path: http://www.publichealthagency.org/news/pha-publishes-six-year-report-self-harm-western-area (2016-02-11)
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  • Project making a change in Mid Ulster | HSC Public Health Agency
    initiative develops personal skills required for maintaining behavioural change and has a positive impact on mental health and wellbeing Dr Eddie Rooney Chief Executive of the PHA said Make a Change offers something that many may have never had before an individually tailored approach that encourages people to make healthier choices which will hopefully have a lasting impact for them their families and the wider Mid Ulster community Together with our partner organisations we are striving towards better health in our communities More than 260 people have used the service so far which involves participants having the opportunity to meet with a Health Support Officer up to eight times over a six month period to plan the best possible way forward setting goals to reach and review their progress Mark Kelso Director of Public Health and Infrastructure Mid Ulster District Council said The Make a Change Programme and Health Support Officer team has proved to be very effective in engaging with people who are difficult to reach It supports them to change their behaviour and take practical steps to improve their own personal health The evaluation has highlighted in particular the very positive impact that supporting individuals can make and demonstrates the real value of partnership working in helping reach those who can benefit most Councillor Roger Burton Mayor of Dungannon and South Tyrone Borough Council said Make a Change is having a very positive impact on the local community It demonstrates the very real benefits that working together can achieve and the small changes in our daily lives that can have huge long term benefits for everyone If you would like more information on the Make A Change programme or would like to speak to one of the Health Support Officers please contact the programme support team at Environmental

    Original URL path: http://www.publichealthagency.org/news/project-making-change-mid-ulster (2016-02-11)
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  • Symposium showcases work of health protection | HSC Public Health Agency
    training and research It is delivered by a multidisciplinary team of doctors nurses emergency planners and scientific surveillance and administrative staff Dr Lorraine Doherty Assistant Director of Public Health Health Protection at the PHA said The symposium yesturday brought together health professionals from across Northern Ireland with a shared interest in health protection We looked at how health protection has evolved since 2009 and reflected on the achievements we have made along with some of the challenges we have faced including emerging infections such as Avian Flu and more predominantly Ebola which has dominated much of our work over the last number of months We have had many successes too such as the childhood flu vaccine programme for primary school children which achieved a 79 4 uptake and the Rotavirus immunisation which has seen a marked reduction in the prevalence of Rotavirus among babies The symposium also gave delegates the opportunity to find out more on the key areas of health protection such as the function of the PHA duty room where the health protection team coordinates its acute response from It is the first point of contact for health professionals and other agencies regarding all health protection incidents and queries It plays a vital role in the management of infectious diseases and outbreak situations such as the E coli outbreak in 2012 The syndromic surveillance function also plays a vital role in protecting public health by collecting analysing and interpreting data Yesterday they too were able to showcase the work they do in providing an early warning of public health threats which require action This event has shown that the health protection service plays an essential role and looking to the future it will continue to protect public health while adapting to suit the changing demands it faces Ends

    Original URL path: http://www.publichealthagency.org/news/symposium-showcases-work-health-protection (2016-02-11)
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  • Wash your hands to help stop the spread of winter virus | HSC Public Health Agency
    spread of infections as well as covering your nose and mouth with a tissue when coughing or sneezing and disposing of it quickly and carefully in a bin If you do get flu the PHA s advice is to stay at home and don t spread your infection to others rest drink plenty of fluids and use over the counter remedies if they make you feel more comfortable Avoiding visits to friends or relatives in hospital or residential and nursing homes when you or they have symptoms Receiving the seasonal flu vaccine is still the best way to help protect yourself and others from getting the virus so if you are in an at risk group or pregnant get the vaccine now It takes approximately 10 days to develop protection against flu following vaccination Flu symptoms If you ve got flu you re likely to develop some or all of the following symptoms a sudden fever with a high temperature generally above 38 C 100 F a chill a severe headache muscle aches and pains a sense of feeling weak and tired a dry cough a sore throat Dr Jessop continued Flu symptoms usually peak after two or three days and you should begin to feel much better within five to eight days If you are becoming more ill or you are in an at risk group then contact your GP for advice Elderly people or those in at risk groups may develop complications that can lead to serious illness and can be life threatening That is why it is vital to get the seasonal flu vaccine if it is offered to you and to maintain good hand hygiene For more information on seasonal flu go to www fluawareni info and follow us on Facebook www facebook com publichealthagency and

    Original URL path: http://www.publichealthagency.org/news/wash-your-hands-help-stop-spread-winter-virus (2016-02-11)
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  • Cancer campaign to raise awareness and save lives | HSC Public Health Agency
    have concerns about their physical health and the potential symptoms of cancer Dr Miriam McCarthy Consultant in Public Health Medicine at the PHA said There are over 10 000 new cancer diagnoses each year in Northern Ireland With advances in treatment and care over recent years there is often a lot that can be done to tackle cancer when it appears but early detection and treatment are essential Survival rates in Northern Ireland for some cancers fall below what is achieved elsewhere in the UK and Europe Some of this may be due to low levels of awareness of cancer symptoms and a reluctance to talk to a GP at an early stage A survey undertaken on behalf of the PHA revealed that barriers to seeking help in relation to cancer symptoms include being worried about what the doctor might find and embarrassment We are urging people to set these concerns aside and speak to their GP if they have any signs or symptoms Finding cancer early and getting it treated can really make the difference and greatly improve the likelihood of survival It is therefore vital for all of us to be cancer aware to know the signs and symptoms of cancer and to speak to a GP if we experience any of them Cancer can strike at any age but almost 9 out of 10 cancers are diagnosed in people over 50 so that group in particular needs to be aware of how important it is to recognise any changes to their body and speak to their doctor if something isn t right Some of the common signs and symptoms you should ask your doctor to check out include coughing up blood blood in urine blood mixed through bowel motion stools a change in bowel habit that lasts

    Original URL path: http://www.publichealthagency.org/news/cancer-campaign-raise-awareness-and-save-lives (2016-02-11)
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  • Health Protection Symposium - Thursday 26 February 2015 | HSC Public Health Agency
    number of places open to members of the public these will be offered on a first come basis To follow what s happening with the h ealth protection symposium hpss15 Downloads Preview Attachment Size Draft Agenda Health Protection Symposium 2015 pdf 144 54 KB Health Protection Symposium Poster Competition 09 01 15 pdf 76 27 KB Registration Form HP Symposium 26th February 2015 Final 3 doc 109 5 KB Print

    Original URL path: http://www.publichealthagency.org/news/health-protection-symposium-thursday-26-february-2015 (2016-02-11)
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