Posted in: Madison Park


May 24, 2024
A dad catching his daughter in a pool.
As summer approaches, NCDHHS wants to remind North Carolinians to practice safe swimming, heat safety and safe grilling to help prevent illness, injury and death.

Drowning remains the leading cause of death for children between ages 1 through 4 nationwide and is preventable. To help prevent drowning, monitor all children around pools or other bodies of water, close and lock gates to pools when not in use, beware of strong currents, stay out of the water if you are sick with diarrhea, and ensure pool water is treated with the proper chemicals. 

Prolonged exposure to heat can lead to dehydration, overheating, heat illness and even death. To protect yourself and others from heat-related illness, take the heat seriously. Do not ignore danger signs like nausea, headache, dizziness, lightheadedness, confusion, and rapid or erratic pulse. Get to a cool place, drink water slowly and seek medical help if conditions don’t improve.

Grilling is also a common summer activity that could lead to foodborne illness. When grilling, wash your hands before and after, separate raw and cooked food, cook food thoroughly, store leftovers properly, and clean and sanitize before and after grilling. 

Read more about staying safe this summer when swimmingenjoying the outdoors and grilling. See more summer safety tips on the NCDHHS website
Someone holding a vaping device.
NCDHHS will host a live tele-town hall on May 29 from 6 to 7 p.m. to discuss vaping prevention and resources for youth in North Carolina and how parents and caregivers can support their families. 

The panelists will discuss signs a child or teen may be vaping and how to help; ways parents and caregivers can talk to youth about vaping; how to find health information, care and providers for youth; and resources to help prevent youth from vaping or help them quit.

The fireside chat will stream live from the NCDHHS FacebookTwitter (X) and YouTube accounts, where viewers can submit questions. The event also includes a tele-town hall, which invites people by phone to listen in and submit questions. People can also dial into the event by calling 855-756-7520 Ext. #106458.
A table of healthy food.
Healthy Opportunities Pilots Bring Notable Cost Savings
As the Healthy Opportunities Pilots (HOP) program reaches its second anniversary, results from an independent study prove that the program is a success. HOP is the nation’s first comprehensive program to test and evaluate the impact of providing select evidence-based, non-medical interventions related to housing, food, transportation and interpersonal safety, and toxic stress to high-needs Medicaid enrollees. Findings show the state is spending about $85 less in medical costs per HOP beneficiary per month and that participants avoided emergency department visits and inpatient hospitalizations. The evaluation concludes HOP participants have a reduced risk of food insecurity, housing instability and lack of access to transportation. Further, the findings showed that the longer a person was enrolled in the pilots the more their risk was reduced. HOP services are currently available to qualifying NC Medicaid Managed Care Standard Plan beneficiaries who live in a pilot region and have at least one qualifying physical or behavioral health condition and one qualifying social risk factor. Learn more about the benefits of the HOP program.
Someone watching a webinar.
Side-by-Side Webinar with NCDHHS' Mental Health Division
Join staff from NCDHHS' Division of Mental Health, Developmental Disabilities and Substance Use Services on June 3 at 2 p.m. to learn more about policies and programs that affect the Mental Health, Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities, Substance Use Services and Traumatic Brain Injury community. The goal of these monthly webinars is to bring everyone together in one (virtual) place to share ideas for public policy that will improve the lives of North Carolinians. This group includes consumers, families, advisory groups, LME/MCOs, community members and partner organizations. Side by side, we will work together to improve our system. Register for the webinar on June 3 via Zoom and see a flyer for more information.  
Two people at the assistive technology event.
Assistive Technology Event a Success for Attendees and Exhibitors
On May 3, NCDHHS' Assistive Technology Program (NCATP) hosted the third of its three AT Resource Fair Pop-Up events at the Charlotte AT Center. The NCATP is a state and federally-funded initiative that provides assistive technology services statewide to people of all ages and abilities. The program promotes independence for people with disabilities through access to adaptive equipment at its nine AT Centers throughout North Carolina. More than 100 people came out to learn about the latest advancements in assistive technology and had a chance to try out some devices in person. Two dozen exhibitors were on hand, along with NCATP staff, to meet and greet those in attendance. Adria Twyman, Activity and Enrichment Coordinator with InReach, brought a group of residents to the Pop-Up event where they had the opportunity to connect with local resources and try out assistive technologies. Read more about other technologies showcased at the event and see pictures in a newsletter article. NCATP’s next big event will be the annual AT Expo on Oct. 3 at the NC State McKimmon Center.
Eight people around "inclusion works."
Inclusion Works Lunch and Learn
Join NCDHHS to learn about best practices to support individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities and Traumatic Brain Injury on their path to achieving Competitive Integrated Employment (CIE) on June 19 at noon. Each Lunch and Learn will cover a different topic related to the Inclusion Works initiative, which helps support individuals to find jobs in the community. These information sessions are led by NCDHHS staff and include time for a question-and-answer session with attendees. This month's webinar features workplace assistive technology and a demonstration of the Exploring Paths to CIE Guide. Join the June 19 webinar via Zoom. Previous Lunch and Learn presentations and recordings can be accessed on the Inclusion Works website
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