2013 Statistical Snapshot of the Ocean County Health Department
BOARD OF CHOSEN FREEHOLDERS
Joseph H. Vicari, Director
John C. Bartlett, Deputy Director
John P. Kelly
James F. Lacey
Gerry P. Little
OCEAN COUNTY BOARD OF HEALTH
John (Jack) J. Mallon, Chairperson
Senator Robert Singer, Vice-Chairperson
Anthony DePaola, Secretary/Treasurer
Carol Blake, RN
Maurice (Mo) B. Hill, Jr., D.M.D.
Henry J. Mancini
Warren H. Wolf
Gerry P. Little, Liaison to the Board of Health
In partnership with our community, we are committed to promoting healthy lifestyles and a clean and safe environment. We are dedicated to advocate for and to provide leadership in assuring consistent, quality healthcare in our community.
We are guided by the following principles:
To assess the priority needs and wants of the community we serve through comprehensive health planning;
To inform and educate residents about public health issues;
To encourage people to take responsibility for their own and their neighbors’ health;
To utilize a team approach in achieving our mission;
To commit to problem solving utilizing a systemic approach;
To promote a work environment which fosters creativity, innovation, respect, sense of caring, commitment, trust, quality and dependability
PUBLIC HEALTH PRACTICE STANDARDS
The Ocean County Health Department and its Board of Health are governed by the Public Health Practice Standards of Performance for Local Boards of Health in New Jersey, N.J.A.C. 8:52. Inherent duties and responsibilities are summarized in the three Core Public Health Functions and the Ten Essential Public Health Services.
CORE PUBLIC HEALTH FUNCTIONS .
Assess and monitor the health of communities and at-risk populations to identify health problems and priorities.
Formulate public policies with community and government leaders to address local and national public health problems and priorities.
Provide all populations with access and appropriate and cost-effective care, including health promotion, disease prevention, and follow-up evaluation.
Monitor health status to identify community health problems.
Diagnose and investigate health problems in the community.
Inform, educate, and empower people regarding health issues.
Mobilize community partnerships to identify and solve health problems.
Develop policies and plans that support individual and community health efforts.
Enforce the laws and regulations that protect health and ensure safety.
Link people to needed personal health services and ensure healthcare when it is otherwise unavailable.
Ensure a competent local public health system and a competent personal healthcare workforce.
Evaluate effectiveness, accessibility, and quality of personal and population-based services.
Research innovative solutions to health problems.
Members John J. Mallon, Chairman
Robert Singer, Vice Chairman
Anthony DePaola, Secretary-Treasurer
Carol Blake, R.N.
Maurice “Mo” B. Hill, Jr., D.M.D.
Gerry P. Little, Freeholder Liaison
OCEAN COUNTY BOARD OF HEALTH
P.O. Box 2191
Toms River, NJ 08754-2191
Fax: (732) 831-6495
http://www.ochd.org March, 2014
Daniel E. Regenye, M.H.A., Lic. H.O.
Public Health Coordinator
A Message from the Chairman of the Board
Since its inception in 1978, the Ocean County Board of Health has always provided leadership, direction and guidance for the day-to-day operations of the Ocean County Health Department. The Board works with the Office of the Public Health Coordinator and Administrative staff to assure that the Ocean County Health Department provides the most comprehensive and necessary health services to our residents. Last year, Ocean County was battered by Superstorm Sandy; we have spent many of our efforts this past year mitigating the damage and working as part of the county’s recovery efforts. Although the Health Department has worked diligently with each of our municipalities and the recovery efforts, there is so much more to do.
Our Board continues to recognize the dedication and compassion of the Health Department employees. So many of our employees were directly affected by Sandy and they still fulfilled, above and beyond, their work commitments to ensure the health of our county residents. We know how much our employees gave back to us during this time of need. Our Board made sure that each and every one of our employees who were involved in the Sandy response was recognized. We are so proud of the work force here at the Ocean County Health Department.
Within our Health Department structure, there have been many organizational changes over the past couple of years to improve our services and program delivery. Our goal is to offer the greatest benefit to the taxpayers of Ocean County while keeping the tax rate at a reasonable, stable level. In order to achieve this, and due to difficult economic times and limited resources, many of our employees have taken on additional responsibilities. As always, we are proud of the efforts given by our employees.
As Chairperson of the Board of Health, and on behalf of my fellow Board members, we invite and encourage you to attend our Board meetings. We welcome your ideas and suggestions and give you the opportunity to become more involved in improving the health status of our community.
The Ocean County Board of Health remains committed to its mission by working “in partnership with our community” to achieve healthier lifestyles and a clean and safe environment for all of Ocean County residents.
John J. Mallon
Daniel E. Regenye, M.H.A., Lic. H.O.
Public Health Coordinator Email: Dregenye@ochd.org
OCEAN COUNTY HEALTH DEPARTMENT
P.O. Box 2191
Toms River, NJ 08754-2191
(732) 341-9700 ext. 7201
Fax: (732) 831-6495
http://www.ochd.org March 2014
A Message from the Public Health Coordinator Over the past year, the Ocean County Health Department had one of its greatest challenges; post Superstorm-Sandy. We ended 2012 still responding to the storm and during this past year have been involved in recovery efforts including all our departments leading to new partnerships.
We are extremely fortunate to have an extremely proactive and supportive Board that truly understands the working of our many departments. We have looked at our Table of Organization and moved some of our divisions into more appropriate areas for providing their services. Many things change in public health and it is essential that our departments are up-to-date and coordinated with to meet the needs of our residents.
This annual report gives me the opportunity to share some of the accomplishments and challenges that we experience on a day-to-day basis. We are proud that the Ocean County Health Department is looked upon by various agencies throughout New Jersey, including the New Jersey Department of Health, as a role model as to how public health services can best be delivered. Many of our staff continue to be recognized for their accomplishments locally, statewide and nationwide.
Each year offers us new challenges and this year’s drug epidemic and drug deaths, 107 in 2013, has brought the Health Department into a collaborative effort with the Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office and other agencies addressing this issue. Substance abuse is a major public health issue and we will work with our other county, faith-based and non-profit agencies as we work to put an end to this.
We continue our collaboration with the Faith-Based Communities to help disseminate important health information to our residents. The Faith-Based Initiative has become one of our important partners in public health.
I would like to extend my sincerest thanks to our employees and our many partners for all that we have accomplished during this past year. Not only are we proud of our employees but in the relationships we have established with many outside agencies and departments, our county schools and the many community groups that create our active and ongoing partnerships. As always, I look forward to hearing from and working with our residents to assure a healthier life in Ocean County.
Daniel E. Regenye
Public Health Coordinator
Ocean County Health Department Services
Alcohol and Drug Services
-Treatment and Prevention
-Intoxicated Driver Resource Center
-Northern Ocean County Animal Facility – Jackson
-Southern Ocean County Animal Facility – Manahawkin
*Pets for Adoption
*Rabies Clinics – Animal Vaccinations
*24 Hour Receiving Area for Municipal Animal Control Officers
Child Development Services
-Special Child Health Services
-Eye Screening Clinic
-Hepatitis B Vaccine Program/Bloodborne Pathogen Program
- New Jersey Cancer Education and Early Detection Program
Home Health Care
-Skilled Nursing Care
-Dietician and Social Work Evaluations
-Certified Home Health Aides, as needed
Women, Infants and Children (WIC) Special Supplemental Nutrition Program
-Nutrition Counseling for Women, Infants & Children
- Anemia Testing
-Farmer’s Market Program
-Breastfeeding Counseling and Support
-Referrals for Healthcare
Community Partnerships The philosophy of the Ocean County Health Department per its mission statement is to work in partnership with our community. As such, Health Department staff are involved or have been involved in many community collaborations and partnerships including but not limited to the following:
Barnabas Health System
Beth Medrash Gevoha
Big Brothers/ Big Sisters of Ocean County
Caregivers of Central Ocean County
Central Jersey Family Health Consortium
Catholic Charities of Ocean County
Centers for Health, Education , Medicine, and Dentistry (CHEMED)
Chambers of Commerce:
-Toms River Chamber
-Southern Ocean County Chamber
Children’s Home Society of NJ CUNA Program and Family Resource Center
County Animal Response Team (CART)
Family Planning Center of Ocean County, Inc.
Faith-Based Initiative of Ocean County
Georgian Court University
Governor’s Council on Alcohol and Drug Abuse (GCADA)
Health Advisory Group for a Countywide Community Health Needs
Humane Society of the United States
Interfaith Hospitality Network
Juvenile Justice Committee
Lakewood Complete Town Committee
Lakewood Emergency Preparedness Council
La Leche League of Ocean County
L.E.A.P., Lakewood Head Start Program
Local Advisory Committee on Alcohol and Drug Abuse (LACADA)
Local Emergency Planning Council
Long Beach Island Health Department
Meridian Health Care System
New Hope Foundation
New Jersey Action for Healthy Kids
New Jersey BREATHES
New Jersey Comprehensive Cancer Control Committees
New Jersey Department of Health Older Adults Heath Committee
Ocean County Human Services Advisory Council (HSAC)
Ocean County Library System
Ocean County Municipal Alliances
Ocean County Office of Senior Services
Ocean County Planning Department
Ocean County Professional Advisory Council (PAC) Committee
Ocean County Special Needs Shelter Plan Working Group
Ocean Mental Health Services
Preferred Behavioral Health of New Jersey
Providers Advisory Committee on Alcohol and Drug Abuse (PACADA)
Public Health Emergency Preparedness Advisory Committee
Puerto Rican Congress of New Jersey, Inc.
Richard Stockton College
Seashore Family Counseling Services
Southern Ocean County Coalition Against Substance Abuse (SOCCASA)
Southern Regional Governmental Public Health Partnership
St. Francis Community Center
Substance Abuse Prevention: Project MORE
Substance Abuse Prevention: Project DART
United Way Community Impact Subcommittee
YMCA Community Development Committee
(The above picture was the last day that this icon of Seaside remained standing)
SuperStorm Sandy Continued Outreach Efforts and Response The Ocean County Health Department (OCHD) continued to work diligently to respond to the ongoing overwhelming needs of Ocean County’s residents impacted by Superstorm Sandy. The Health Department continued throughout 2013, to offer Tdap and flu shots to their first responders. The OCHD was in continuous contact with each municipality make them aware of the availability of Tdap and flu vaccinations (at their respective municipalities) in addition to presenting at or providing information at any of their township meetings. From November 2012 through September 2013, the OCHD provided over 1,200 immunizations to help protect County residents from vaccine preventable illnesses (Tdap and influenza).
As residents returned home after the storm, ongoing information was sent to the public to provide guidance on remaining safe and healthy. The following information was posted on our website and distributed to media:
Information for Well Owners Regarding What to do After the Flood
Steps to Stay Safe when Returning to a Flooded Home
Keep For and Water Safe After an Emergency
Returning Home after a Disaster: Be healthy and Safe
Throughout the winter and spring months, information continued to be disseminated to the public through the website, press releases, and TV and radio interviews, including:
Hurricane Recovery Resources from the New Jersey Department of Health
Christie Administration Announces Extension of FEMA Transitional Sheltering Assistance Program
Salvation Army Opens Center in Ortley Beach for Sandy Survivors
Mold Removal for Businesses and homes
Christie Administration Reminds People Involved in Sandy Cleanup To Protect Themselves
Hurricane Resources from NJ Natural Gas
Superstorm Sandy Resources from UMDNJ
Deadlines for Debris Removal
In addition, all FEMA press releases and reports to the public were posted o the OCHD website, including FEMA maps.
UMDNJ, now Rutgers School of Public Health, designed a mold awareness program for both residents and public health/building code officials. In addition, we found a need for the peer counselors from the Hope and Healing Program that had concerns regarding mold, so that program was set up for them through Preferred Behavioral Health. It was extremely timely as the OCHD was receiving numerous calls regarding mold and clean-up procedures. We felt it is as important to get messages out to the public about mold and to offer trainings for their benefit. The New Jersey Department of Health sent us 5,000 copies of MOLD GUIDELINES FOR NEW JERSEY RESIDETN that we have used in our distributed packet in the Mobile Outreach Program and also gave Hope and Healing Counselors almost 2,500 of the booklets.
The programs for homeowners included these topics:
Awareness of mold
Safe work practices
Personal protective equipment
Best practices of remediation
Through this program and information the OCHD provided to the public regarding mold, we were aiming at:
Having homeowners identify how and where to look for mold in their home
Have homeowners understand how to protect themselves when cleaning up mold
Have homeowners understand the type of personal and respiratory protection needed to protect themselves and also understand clean-up procedures
Have homeowners understand other environmental and safety issues that could be present when cleaning up after a hurricane or flood
Eleven programs were set up though the OCHD for residents which reached close to 400 residents. There were mold programs done for professionals that were attended by Ocean County Registered Environmental Health Specialists and building and code officials sot it is difficult to estimate the numbers but we do know that in the professional programs set in by the OCHD, there were several hundred in attendance. Most of our environmental and health education staff have attended the Mold Programs sponsored by Rutgers School of Public Health.
Beginning may 2013, the OCHD began its MOBILE OUTREACH PROGRAM offering free Tdap vaccinations and mold information. It was important to reach out to any community requesting our services and to date set up 10 weekend outreach programs from Friday to Monday and also an additional 4 programs in Ortley Beach at the A & P for residents on the lower part of the barrier island. Programs were held at Stafford, little Egg harbor, Waretown, Ortley Beach, Toms River, Brick Point Pleasant Bach, lacey Township and Berkeley township. Many of the municipalities used their Nixle or Reverse 9-1-1 capabilities to broadcast this to their residents. The OCHD sent out press releases for each site and also did readied interviews each week to promote the sites. In our promotion of the program, we let people know:
N95 masks and gloves were available for safety if working with debris and mold
Safe Swimming guidelines
West Nile Information
OCHD Services and Clinic Services
The OCHD continues to offer information to the public regarding Sandy Recovery in the multiple pathways that they have been using all along.
Over the summer of 2013 and hurricane season upon us again, the OCHD worked with the Ocean County Library system in setting up displays on what one should have available in making their plan building their kit and staying informed. This was displayed in various libraries for the month of September. In addition, the OCHD Public Information did a 5-part series on National Preparedness month which was aired on WOBM and 101.5, for the 5 Mondays in September. The taped interviews were also put on their websites.
During the summer and early fall, the OCHD PIO was contacted by the SCAN Adult Education of Monmouth County that received a Robin Hood Grant to provide trainings in Ocean County post-Sandy. Groups of older adults affected by Sandy were offered resiliency trainings which were held in Stafford, Little Egg Harbor, Toms River and Brick.
We have referred the mold program to many organizations that have called regarding mold, including some of our faith-based organizations that we work with and they have brought the program right to their organization or their congregation. We also made sure that residents could download the NJDOH Mold Guidelines for New Jersey Residents from its website.
Sandy continued to provide the OCHD Environmental Unit continued with continued challenges. The division was responsible for ensuring that all public recreational bathing beaches would meet regulations in the public recreational bathing code prior to the recreational bathing season, mainly along the Atlantic Ocean and the Barnegat Bay.
Environmental Unit worked closely with the municipalities involved for restoring the beaches to acceptable swimming/bathing conditions and involved the NJ Department of Health for joint site inspections for each bathing site prior to the start of the season.
In addition to the recreational bathing sites affected by the storm, the Environmental Unit worked closely with all affected food establishments, providing on-site guidance to all facilities so that they were able to re-open their establishments as quickly as possible while conforming to the retail food establishment regulations. To date, 283 out of the 362 affected establishments have been reopened. Many of those that have not reopened have either been completely destroyed or the owners have chosen not to reopen their business.
This agency also responded to a major fire at the Seaside Heights Boardwalk, which claimed over 20 retail food establishments as victims. Many of these establishments were destroyed, and to date we have only reopened 2 establishments.
During the post-Sandy period, the Ocean County Health Department was selected to present “Defining a New Role in Medical Needs Shelter Operations during Superstorm Sandy” Poster at the NCCHO Public Health Preparedness Summit 2013.
The Summit brought 1,741 attendees to Atlanta, Georgia from nearly every state, and several territories and countries, including China and Australia for a four-day annual event which provided one of the only cross-disciplinary learning opportunities in the field of public health preparedness and response. The Summit also featured a short documentary film produced by Robert Wood Johnson Foundation about the role of Ocean County Health Department during Sandy Response.