The Richmond County Health Department has released its annual report for the 2011-12 year, and the department boasted a year of both growth and improvements.
In August, the department received its re-accreditation, which was conducted in half the time of a normal site visit, according to Health Director Tommy Jarrell. The department also met 99 percent of the required benchmarks required by the Accreditation Program.
Two new management systems were also implemented within the year to replace paper systems that were less efficient, according to the report.
“In our Environmental Health Department, we began using CDP for our On-Site and Wells Program,” Jarrell said. “We also installed Pet Points in our Animal Control Program. This system is fully automated and is also being used by the Richmond County Humane Society.”
The Pet Points program will allow for the tracking of animals the department may have handled in the past.
In addition, the department will continue to review Electronic Health Record Systems for its clinic. Jarrell said the department hopes to select a vendor during the 2012-13 year.
“These systems, along with others, are helping us reach our goal of becoming a ‘paperless’ office by 2014,” he said.
In Spring 2012, the Family Planning Clinic also began offering additional contraceptive options for patients, including long term options such as Paragard, Mirena and Implenon.
“Finally, we are pleased that we were able to maintain services during this difficult economy remaining well within our budget,” Jarrell said. “In addition, through our services, the local economy was also impacted. For example, we dispensed more than $1.9 million in free prescription medications to the uninsured and more than $1.4 million in WIC vouchers were cashed in Richmond County stores.”
Also included in the report:
• The Health Department registered 10,519 patients for various clinics, including childhood health, family planning, adult general services, maternal health, vaccinations, Breast and Cervical Cancer Screening Clinic and STD clinics.
• A total of 1,685 services were performed through the Dental Clinic for Children, including fillings, dental exams, cleanings, extractions, sealants and others. The clinic saw its heaviest concentration between the ages of 7 to 9-year-olds and 10 to 13-year-olds.
• The department provided 344 restaurant, food stand and school lunchroom inspections, including 342 who received scores of A and two receiving a B. Through the on-site waste water program and well program, the department made a total of 805 total site visits and collected 146 water samples.
• There were 1,014 visits to the Maternity Clinic during the past year with 147 post-partum home visits. A total of 148 health assessments were performed on newborns during the 2011-12 fiscal year.
• Richmond County WIC office served an average of 1,886 clients per month, with an average of 469 women, 1,027 children and 390 infants. The value of WIC vouchers paid to Richmond County businesses totaled $1,484,475.15.
• A total of 2,839 immunizations were given during the past fiscal year, including Flu, HepA or HepA/B, Menactra, Varicilla (Chicken Pox), Pneumonia, HPV (Guardasil), Zostavax (Shingles) and Tdap.
• A total of 362 children were born within the county last year. The number of deaths recorded was 377.
• During the 2011-12 year, the department provided 722 TB skin tests. The staff treated 94 new TB (disease) cases and followed up with 13 latent TB infections. Other diagnosed and treated diseases included 58 Syphilis cases, 61 Gonorrhea cases and 244 Chlamydia cases.
• A total of 1,293 dogs and 446 cats were retrieved by Animal Control officers. The Richmond County Humane Society euthanized 1,012 dogs and 535 cats. Five animals of different species were picked up by officers.
• The Health Department’s total budget for the fiscal year was $4,409,377.
“Now that the 2011-2012 year has ended,” Jarrell said, “we move aggressively into the 2012-2013 year looking forward to providing excellent services to the citizens of Richmond County.”
— Staff Writer Mallory Brown can be reached at 910-997-3111, ext. 18, or by email at email@example.com.