Health and Safety news briefs

Staff Reports

2018 EMS Star of Life Awards

The EMS Star of Life Awards were created by Ohio ACEP and the Ohio Division of EMS to recognize outstanding achievements and to honor those in Ohio’s EMS system whose accomplishments rise above the day-to-day excellence of that system. In 2018 Ohio ACEP and the Division of EMS will be joined by the State Board of Emergency Medical, Fire, and Transportation Services in presenting the awards. The program is scheduled for May 22, 2018.

Award categories include:

– EMS Stars

– EMS Provider of the Year

– EMS Agency of the Year

– Frank Giampetro Distinguished EMS Educator

– EMS Medical Director of the Year

Please review the nomination packet and consider nominating appropriate individuals and/or an agency in one or more of the categories. The deadline for nomination submissions is February 23, 2018.

Thank you for supporting our efforts to honor and recognize the State of Ohio’s exceptional EMS providers! If you have any questions, feel free to contact the Division of EMS at (614) 466-9447 or (800) 233-0785.

Ohio’s Certified Fire Safety Inspectors (FSI) and Hazard Recognition Officers (HRO)

In accordance with Ohio Administrative Code 4765-20-12, when a new fire code is adopted in Ohio, all certified fire safety inspectors and hazard recognition officers shall attend continuing education of not less than four hours related to the new fire code. The continuing education shall be completed within six months of the adoption of the new code. The 2017 Ohio Fire Code (OFC) became effective on December 15, 2017, therefore, continuing education shall be completed by June 15, 2018.

In order to ensure fire code updates are available for Ohio’s fire safety inspectors and hazard recognition officers the Ohio Department of Commerce, Division of State Fire Marshal will be holding a series of six, day-long, FREE training courses throughout the state regarding the new 2017 Ohio Fire Code (OFC).

These courses will be open to the public and will focus on new code enforcement processes, updated special provisions of the OFC and important national model code changes that are incorporated into the 2017 OFC. The live, interactive seminars will begin at 9:00 a.m. (with registration beginning at 8:00 a.m.) and will conclude at 4:00 p.m. as follows:

Central: Wednesday, March 14, 2018

Division of State Fire Marshal

Multipurpose Room

8895 East Main Street

Reynoldsburg, OH 43068

Northwest: Tuesday, March 20, 2018

Owens Community College, Findlay Campus

Multipurpose Room (117)

3200 Bright Road

Findlay, OH 45840

Southeast: Thursday, March 22, 2018

Hocking College, Nelsonville Campus

Student Center Multiplex

3301 Hocking Parkway

Nelsonville, OH 45764

Northeast: Tuesday, March 27, 2018

Cuyahoga Community College (Tri-C) – Parma

Western Campus Theater

1100 Pleasant Valley Road

Parma, OH 44130

Southwest: Thursday, March 29, 2018

Miami University, Middletown Campus

Dave Finkelman Auditorium

4200 North University Boulevard

Middletown, OH 45042

Central: Friday, April 13, 2018

Division of State Fire Marshal

Multipurpose Room

8895 East Main Street

Reynoldsburg, OH 43068

NOTE: Each day-long seminar will cover the same content; there is no need to attend multiple sessions unless an attending wishes to do so.

Online training mirroring these courses will be available mid- to late spring 2018, and will be posted on the Ohio Fire Academy’s 24/7 platform.

Questions regarding the fire code updates should be forwarded to the Ohio Department of Commerce, Division of State Fire Marshal.

NOTE: Fire Safety Inspector continuing education was reduced from 30 hours to 24 hours, effective January 1, 2018. Six hours of continuing education is required for renewal of the Hazard Recognition Officer certification. Participation in a fire code update can be credited toward continuing education requirements.

Information on fire safety inspector or hazard recognition officer renewal requirements is available on the Ohio Department of Public Safety, Division of Emergency Medical Services website at: or you may contact the Division of EMS Education Section at 800.233.0785.

MedFlight Ground Mobile ICU Incident

Posted by MedFlight on February 4, 2018

UPDATE 2/5/18, 1:57am: The injured crew member, Chuck Calissie, remains in the care of The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center. Dale Muetzel, Samantha Brocwell, and Cody Shetler have been released from Riverside Methodist Hospital following medical evaluation.

The teams at MedFlight would like to thank you for your overwhelming thoughts and prayers during this incident.

2/5/18, 12:42am: The families of the Mobile ICU ground team involved in the accident have been updated regarding the conditions of their family members and have approved the release of names. The injured crew member was Chuck Calissie, who is currently being treated at The Ohio State University Wexner Center. Dale Muetzel, Samantha Brocwell, and Cody Shetler are currently being evaluated at Riverside Methodist Hospital.

Special thanks to local first responders, the staff at Mary Rutan Hospital, Columbus Division of Fire’s CISD team, and all others involved for their quick response and support. We will continue to keep you updated.

2/4/18, 9:02pm. At approximately 6:45pm on Sunday 2/4/18, while enroute to a referring facility to begin a patient transport, MedFlight’s Columbus-based Mobile ICU team was involved in an accident with injuries to one of the medical crew members. There were no fatalities. First responders transported the team to the local hospital for assessment.

We will keep you updated as details are available. Please do not call our emergency dispatch number at this time in regards to this incident. We are still processing requests for critical-care transport if needed. We thank you for your support and patience as we assist our team during this incident.

As Pregnancy Related Deaths Rise In Ohio, Sykes Looks To Raise Maternal Mortality Awareness

House bill will designate May Maternal Mortality Awareness Month

Posted February 12, 2018 by Minority Caucus

State Rep. Emilia Strong Sykes (D-Akron) today announced legislation that would designate the month of May in Ohio “Maternal Mortality Awareness Month” to recognize the Ohio mothers who die each year from pregnancy related complications.

The number of Ohio mothers who die from pregnancy related complications has increased threefold from a decade ago. The average death rate in 2016, according to the Ohio Department of Health, is 85 women per 100,000 live births.

“Ohio has the opportunity to be a leader in maternal mortality awareness,” said Sykes. “By designating a month for awareness, we will bring light to the various causes of maternal mortality, develop new ideas and protocols to limit and eliminate pregnancy related death, and show the women of Ohio that the state supports their health and well-being during and after pregnancy.”

Sykes, who serves as the House Minority Whip, represents Ohio’s 34th House district, which includes Akron and parts of Cuyahoga Falls and Bath Township.

Source: The Ohio House of Representatives.

CDC Director Brenda Fitzgerald resigns

By Debra Goldschmidt and Ben Tinker, CNN

Updated 9:16 PM ET, Wed January 31, 2018

(CNN) Dr. Brenda Fitzgerald, director of the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, resigned Wednesday, a day after Politico reported Fitzgerald’s purchase of tobacco stock after she took the position at the nation’s top public health agency.

Such an investment is obviously at odds with the mission of the CDC, considering cigarette smoking will result in the deaths of nearly half a million Americans this year. Smoking remains the leading cause of preventable death in the United States.

The CDC’s slogan is “24/7: Saving Lives, Protecting People.” But Fitzgerald bet against that mission just one month into her tenure at the agency, when she purchased stock in a tobacco company — one of the very drugs she is supposed to be leading the crusade against.

The news of her stock purchases was first reported Tuesday. According to that report, Fitzgerald “bought tens of thousands of dollars in new stock holdings in at least a dozen companies,” including Japan Tobacco, one of the largest tobacco companies in the world. It sells four brands in the US: Export “A,” LD, Wave and Wings.

The day after the purchase, Fitzgerald “toured the CDC’s Tobacco Laboratory, which researches how the chemicals in tobacco harm human health,” according to Politico.

In a statement in November, Fitzgerald highlighted CDC data that illustrated the extent of tobacco use among US adults, stating, “Too many Americans are harmed by cigarette smoking, which is the nation’s leading preventable cause of death and disease.” She then vowed to “continue to use proven strategies to help smokers quit and to prevent children from using any tobacco products.”

Concerns about potential conflicts related to Fitzgerald’s financial interests were already under the microscope.

Fitzgerald also invested in pharmaceutical companies Merck and Bayer, as well as health insurance company Humana, according to Politico.

The CDC referred requests for comment to the Department of Health and Human Services.

“Like all Presidential Personnel, Dr. Fitzgerald’s financial holdings were reviewed by the HHS Ethics Office, and she was instructed to divest of certain holdings that may pose a conflict of interest,” the latter agency said. “During the divestiture process, her financial account manager purchased some potentially conflicting stock holdings. These additional purchases did not change the scope of Dr. Fitzgerald’s recusal obligations, and Dr. Fitzgerald has since also divested of these newly acquired potentially conflicting publicly traded stock holdings.”

Last month, Sen. Patty Murray said Fitzgerald’s ability to do her job was hindered by “ongoing conflicts of interest.”

“On at least three occasions since Director Fitzgerald’s appointment in July, CDC has sent Fitzgerald’s deputies to testify at Congressional hearings, alongside the heads of other government agencies, that explored the federal response to the opioid crisis,” said Murray, D-Washington.

“Dr. Fitzgerald owns certain complex financial interests that have imposed a broad recusal limiting her ability to complete all of her duties as the CDC Director. Due to the nature of these financial interests, Dr. Fitzgerald could not divest from them in a definitive time period,” a statement from the Department of Health and Human Services said Wednesday.

Fitzgerald, an obstetrician/gynecologist from Georgia, was selected for the position in July by Health and Human Services Secretary Dr. Tom Price. Price was forced to resign in September amid a scandal involving his use of private planes.

Fitzgerald’s resignation was accepted Wednesday morning by Secretary Alex Azar, who assumed that role just last week. Dr. Anne Schuchat will serve as acting director until a replacement is confirmed.

CNN’s Michael Nedelman contributed to this report.

6 mindful habits that are hard to learn but will benefit you forever

By Lachlan Brown

February 4, 2018

Hack Spirit

Mindfulness isn’t just a practice—it’s an art.

Today, millions of people throughout the world are understanding the hidden secrets behind mindfulness, and using its philosophies to improve their daily lives.

If you’re someone who wants to start practicing mindfulness, there are ways to slowly get accustomed to it without needing to meditate everyday.

In fact, activities that are already part of your life like walking, reading, and even eating, can be configured to help you achieve that state of mindfulness.

Don’t know where to start? Here’s how:

1) Noticing The Lack of Mindfulness

One of the best ways to start becoming mindful is by realizing when you’re not.

Understanding the difference between mindfulness and the lack thereof allows you to check yourself and say, “Hey buddy, we’re losing our attention right now”.

Throughout the day, our brains go on autopilot. When we’re doing something repetitive or boring, it’s easy to just go along what’s happening and space out completely.

Having the ability to notice it when you’re starting to tip over the other side of consciousness is a great way to jumpstart your journey to mindfulness.

All you have to do is realize when you are not being mindful, and zap yourself back to reality.

2) Paying Attention to Your Thoughts

Mindfulness isn’t limited to when you’re meditating. You can be as reflective even when you are doing mundane, day-to-day tasks.

A simple way to do this is by checking in your thoughts from time to time. See what you feel about things, and try to find a reason as to why you feel this way.

Getting in this habit will come in handy, especially during times of conflict. As you train your brain to focus on everyday things, reflection will become an automatic response, allowing you to find the best solution for your problems, on the spot.

Instead of waiting for the golden opportunity, or a time where you’re so removed from the world that you can actually pay attention to your thoughts, make it a habit that you don’t need to treat meditation as a separate activity.

Inject it into your life and turn it into something that you just do just because.

3) Listening Intently

Mindfulness isn’t limited to the self. In fact, this becomes clearer, more effective when you are practicing it with others.

Everyday we have opportunities for social interaction, some of which are less memorable than others. No matter how insignificant these encounters are to you, it helps if you treat each conversation as if your life depended on it.

Really listen to the people you are talking to. Become aware of their emotions, their body language, and their responses.

Paying attention and listening intently to the people around you will result in more meaningful interactions.

4) Being Thoughtful About Your Breathing

Breathing is one of those things that just happen—we don’t have to think about whether or not we are breathing enough.

In reality, being mindful of one’s breath is one of the best ways to practice meditation. It’s easy to get into it because you don’t need to set time for it.

It’s important to note that juggling meditative breathing and another task isn’t mindfulness at all. To really succeed, you must do this when you are not surrounded by social stimuli.

For example, if you’re eating lunch alone, or waiting for the traffic signal to turn green, or waiting to be called at the Doctor’s office, you can use these instances to become thoughtful about your breathing. Doing this will help regulate balance and peace of mind in your life.

5) Turning Repetitive Tasks Into Something Memorable

Tasks such as driving home from work, shopping for groceries, or paying the bills become automatic over time. We don’t need to think about them because we already know what’s going to happen next.

Instead of letting yourself float through these moments in your life, take a good look at what you’re doing and start appreciating them for what they are. When we take these things for granted, there is a less chance of us finding them remarkable and potentially enlightening.

Take for instance emailing. You’ve probably emailed hundreds of clients in your lifetime. When you switch your brain off and let your fingers do the typing for you, you’re guaranteed to have more mistakes in your email.

Save your professionalism by paying attention to repetitive tasks. If you do, you’ll realize that there is a nuance that makes it a little different every time.

6) Noticing Something New Everyday

We don’t live in a fairy tale where something novel happens everyday. It can be hard to look forward to your day when you know every part of it. However, if you step back and give your routine a chance, you’re bound to realize things for the first time ever.

A detail on your car that you never noticed, a co-worker who always smiled at you, or a great lunch menu that you’ve always ignored. We tend to chase the exciting without even realizing that new things are in front of us.

No single day is the same. Every day we are meeting and interacting with a different version of the world; all we have to do is look closer.

Staff Reports