Welcome to our latest Live Well Allegheny e-update. Please find a variety of information that will be helpful to you in your efforts and can also be shared within your own networks. As always, you can find a great deal of information on our website, including our Partner Resources.
We now have 215 community partners, 68 municipalities, 53 restaurants, 33 workplaces and 18 school districts united in our efforts to make Allegheny County healthy for all!
A Letter From Our Director
Greeting from the Director’s Corner.
The start of the school year is upon us, which often brings a combination of excitement and apprehension even in normal years. Of course, nothing is normal in the era of COVID-19.
I strongly encourage schools and parents to follow CDC guidelines and practice universal masking in schools, regardless of whether you’ve been vaccinated. This is something I’ve said repeatedly during my public COVID-19 briefings for at least a month now. Masks help reduce spread of the virus. Children under 12 are not yet eligible for the vaccines, meaning they and other at-risk people are the most vulnerable populations right now so we need to do what we can to keep them protected. Until vaccines are approved for all ages, masks are the best protection.
Speaking of vaccinations, COVID-19 disrupted not only in-person learning, but also routine doctor visits, leading to many children falling behind on required, non-COVID vaccines. It’s time for all of us to get back on track. Routine childhood vaccinations protect against serious diseases, such as measles, chickenpox, and whooping cough. I encourage all parents to make sure your children are up to date before returning to school. Make an appointment today with your child’s doctor or at any Federally Qualified Health Center. Or consider the ACHD’s Immunization Clinic (425 First Avenue in downtown Pittsburgh) – you can schedule an appointment by calling 412-578-8062.
I wish everyone an educational and rewarding return to school. Good luck to all students, parents and educators. And please be safe and be kind.
Dr. Debra Bogen
Director, Allegheny County Health Department
August is National Immunization Awareness Month
August is National Immunization Awareness Month (NIAM). This annual observance highlights the importance of getting recommended vaccines throughout your life. We know the COVID-19 pandemic has impacted all aspects of life, including your ability to attend important appointments and receive routine vaccinations. During NIAM, we encourage you to talk to you doctor, nurse or healthcare professional to ensure you and your family are protected against serious diseases by getting caught up on routine vaccination.
Visit the CDC’s Growing Up with Vaccines Interactive Guide, which provides information on the vaccines recommended during pregnancy, throughout childhood, and into adulthood.
As your children head back to school this fall, it’s particularly important for you to work with your child’s doctor or nurse to make sure they get caught up on missed well-child visits and recommended vaccines.
Remember to take care of yourself too! Make sure to receive any vaccines you need to stay healthy. Use the CDC’s adult vaccine assessment tool to see which vaccines might be right for you.
August is also a critical time for those who are eligible to get vaccinated against COVID-19. To learn more about COVID-19 vaccination, check out the following websites:
August is Breastfeeding Month
Breastmilk is the best source of nutrition for most babies, providing a variety of vitamins and minerals that help babies grow big and strong! For more information about breastfeeding please visit some of our local partners at the Center for Urban Breastfeeding.
If you have questions about breastfeeding or need help, call the Breastfeeding Help Line at 412-687-2243. The helpline is available Monday-Friday from 8:30 AM to 4:30 PM. All calls are referred to registered nurses, certified lactation counselors, and an internationally board-certified lactation consultant. The ACHD team is here to help you get started, answer questions and problem solve.
August is Children’s Eye Health and Safety Month
While preparing for your children to head back to school, make sure to stay up to date with eye health. Learn when to get vision and eye exams for children here. #ChildrensEyeHealthandSafetyMonth
The Live Well Allegheny Learning Collaborative is an opportunity to regularly convene participants in order to promote the implementation of evidence-based practices. By implementing evidence-based practices, we can work together to improve the overall health of Allegheny County residents.
Please join us for our virtual speaker series on September 14, 2021 to learn more about accessing health data with speakers from the Allegheny County Health Department Epidemiology Department. To register visit our JotForm at this link:
All questions for the speakers should be submitted to the JotForm by August 31, 2021.
Thank you & hope to see you there!
Partner Information & Opportunities
Introducing new Live Well Partner Ruach Bicycle Club
Ruach Bike Club started in 2017 when founder Mike White was a coach at a private middle school. At the end of the season he wanted to take the team out on a bike ride at Frick Park. All the players returned their permission slip, but on the day of the ride only half of his athletes showed up. The next Monday at practice, he asked them what happened. Those that didn’t attend the ride responded, “Coach Mike, I don’t have a bike.” So White decided he would make a place for kids to not only ride bikes, but also a place for kids to get bikes if they need them. Ruach Bicycle club has expanded since the initial bike ride to include STEM education.
To learn more about Ruach Bicycle club, located in The Wheel Mill in the Homewood neighborhood of Pittsburgh, visit their website at: ruachbicycleclub.com
You can learn more about our new partner’s commitment to health and wellness by looking them up on the Search Local Resources web page.