Tuesday, August 31, 2021
Austin-Travis County Public Health Leaders: Skip the Horse Medicine and Get a Referral for Monoclonal Antibody Therapy
Monday, August 30, 2021
Thursday, August 26, 2021
Aug 26, 2021 01:07 pm
Austin, Texas – Through routine monitoring for mosquito-borne diseases, including the West Nile Virus, Austin Public Health (APH) has identified four positive mosquito pools for West Nile Virus in the 78744 zip code within the last two weeks.
Although no human cases of West Nile Virus have been identified at this time, the positive mosquito pools indicate the virus is in our community. In 2020, there were 36 positive mosquito pools in Travis County and 1,389 positive pools across the state of Texas, and four confirmed West Nile virus cases.
"We use routine monitoring to assist us in alerting the public about the potential spread of the virus through mosquito bites," said APH Interim Assistant Director of Environmental Vector Control Marcel Elizondo. "By eliminating breeding opportunities and protecting ourselves from mosquito bites, we keep ourselves, our families, and communities safe."
West Nile Virus is the most common mosquito-borne disease in the United States. It is typically spread to people by the bite of an infected mosquito. According to the Center for Disease Control, West Nile Virus is not spread through coughing, sneezing, or touching other people or live animals.
Only about 20 percent of people infected with West Nile Virus develop symptoms such as headache, body aches, joint pains, vomiting, diarrhea, or rash. Of those infected, few develop further serious illnesses affecting the central nervous system. People over 60 years of age are at greater risk of developing serious disease, as are those with medical conditions such as cancer, diabetes, hypertension, kidney disease. Organ transplant recipients are also at risk for more severe forms of disease.
Know the dangers and fight the bite with the "Four D's":
Drain standing water: Mosquitoes breed in standing water and need as little as one teaspoon. Emptying water that accumulates in toys, tires, trash cans, buckets, clogged rain gutters, and plant pots will deny mosquitoes a place to lay their eggs and reproduce.
Dawn to Dusk: Although different species of mosquitoes are active at different times of day, the Culex mosquito that spreads West Nile Virus is most active between dusk and dawn.
Dress: Wear pants and long sleeves when you are outside. Wear light-colored, loose-fitting clothing; mosquito repellent clothing is also available.
DEET: Apply insect repellant: Use an EPA-registered repellent such as those containing DEET, picaridin, IR3535, oil of lemon eucalyptus, para-menthane-diol or 2-undecanone. Apply on both exposed skin and clothing.
Mosquitoes are present in Central Texas year-round, but the population is largest and most active from May through November. During this period, the APH Environmental Vector Control Unit monitors the mosquito population.
For more information on West Nile Virus, visit www.AustinTexas.gov/WestNile. For additional information about APH Environmental Vector Control and mosquito monitoring programs, visit https://austintexas.gov/department/environmental-vector-control.
Salud Pública de Austin informa que hay zonas de mosquitos positivas para el Virus del Nilo Occidental en el Condado de Travis
Austin, Texas - A través de la vigilancia rutinaria de las enfermedades transmitidas por los mosquitos, incluyendo el Virus del Nilo Occidental, Salud Pública de Austin (APH por sus siglas en inglés) ha identificado cuatro zonas positivas de mosquitos para el Virus del Nilo Occidental, en el código postal 78744, en las últimas dos semanas.
Aunque no se han identificado casos humanos del Virus del Nilo Occidental en este momento, las zonas positivas de mosquitos indican que el virus está en nuestra comunidad. En 2020, hubo 36 zonas positivas de mosquitos en el condado de Travis y 1,389 zonas positivas en todo el estado de Texas, así como cuatro casos confirmados del virus del Nilo Occidental.
"Utilizamos el monitoreo rutinario para ayudarnos a alertar al público sobre la posible propagación del virus a través de piquetes de mosquitos", dijo el Asistente Director Interino de Control de Vectores Ambientales de APH, Marcel Elizondo. "Al eliminar las oportunidades de reproducción y protegernos de las picaduras de mosquitos, nos mantenemos a salvo nosotros mismos, nuestras familias y las comunidades".
El Virus del Nilo Occidental es la enfermedad que más comúnmente transmiten los mosquitos en los Estados Unidos. Normalmente se transmite a las personas por la picadura de un mosquito infectado. Según el Centro de Control de Enfermedades, el virus del Nilo Occidental no produce contagio al toser, estornudar o tocar a otras personas o animales vivos.
Sólo un 20% de las personas infectadas por el Virus del Nilo Occidental desarrollan síntomas como dolor de cabeza, dolores corporales, dolores articulares, vómitos, diarrea o sarpullido. De los infectados, son pocos los que desarrollan otras enfermedades graves que afectan al sistema nervioso central. Las personas mayores de 60 años corren un mayor riesgo de desarrollar una enfermedad grave, al igual que quienes padecen enfermedades como cáncer, diabetes, hipertensión o enfermedades renales. Los receptores de trasplantes de órganos también corren el riesgo de padecer formas más graves de la enfermedad.
Conozca los peligros y combata la picadura con los siguientes consejos:
Drena el agua estancada: Los mosquitos se reproducen en el agua estancada y necesitan tan sólo una cucharadita, por tanto vacía el agua que se acumula en juguetes, neumáticos, cubos de basura, canalones obstruidos y macetas, pues impedirá que los mosquitos tengan un lugar donde poner sus huevos y reproducirse.
Del amanecer al atardecer: Aunque las diferentes especies de mosquitos son activas en diferentes momentos del día, el mosquito Culex, que transmite el virus del Nilo Occidental, es más activo entre el atardecer y el amanecer.
Vestimenta: Use pantalones y mangas largas cuando esté al aire libre. Porte ropa de color claro y suelta; también existe ropa repelente de mosquitos.
DEET: Aplique un repelente de insectos: Utilice un repelente registrado por la EPA, como los que contienen DEET, picaridina, IR3535, aceite de eucalipto de limón, para-mentano-diol o 2-undecanona. Aplíquelo tanto en la piel expuesta como en la ropa.
Los mosquitos están presentes todo el año en el centro de Texas, pero la población es mayor y más activa de mayo a noviembre. Durante este período, la Unidad de Control de Vectores Ambientales de la APH vigila la población de mosquitos.
Para obtener más información sobre el virus del Nilo Occidental, visite www.AustinTexas.gov/WestNile. Para obtener información adicional sobre el Control de Vectores Ambientales de la APH y los programas de monitoreo de mosquitos, visite https://austintexas.gov/department/environmental-vector-control.
Monday, August 23, 2021
AUSTIN, TX (Aug. 23, 2021) – The public has one more opportunity to give input before the preliminary map for the ten city council district boundaries is drawn by the Independent Citizens Redistricting Commission (ICRC).
While the ICRC has met its City of Austin charter requirements of holding ten public forums, the commissioners added two more public forums via virtual format due to the complications created with COVID. The final virtual forum is Friday, Aug. 27 from 11 a.m.-1 p.m.
"When the ICRC began planning for the public forum portion of the redistricting process back in June, the COVID-19 pandemic was a pressing issue to consider. Some residents prefer an in-person option for their public testimony, others are still adhering to social distancing guidelines," said ICRC Vice Chair Luis Gonzalez. "Additional virtual forum options were the obvious choice to ensure the ICRC was maintaining a balance between fair access to the process and our concern for public health. The two additional options gave the commissioners more opportunities to receive direct input from Austin residents as we begin our redrawing. Given the current severity of the pandemic and the benefit of hearing more voices, we feel we took the correct approach."
The public is invited to attend the last public input meeting, before the preliminary map is drawn, at this location:
Friday's, (Aug. 27) forum from 11 a.m.-1 p.m., can be accessed by registering with this link: https://zoom.us/webinar/
As the ICRC wraps up its first round of public forums, their mapping specialist George Korbel has been busy looking at numbers since the U.S. Census data published their count on Aug. 12, 2021.
George Korbel, who has been drawing redistricting maps for over 50 years, has been studying the different software platforms used by different entities – cities, school districts, counties. These "different software platforms will interpret the data a bit differently" and the ICRC wants to analyze all software platforms used before drawing its own maps.
The Texas Demography Center, the state entity that processes Census data for use in redistricting, will have redistricting data available the first week of September and the ICRC will draw up its own maps after that time.
The City of Austin's demographer released population numbers for the city that showed a 21 percent growth in population. According to the U.S. Census, Austin has a population of 961,855. With the addition of 171,465 people, the ideal size for each one of the ten city council districts is 96,186.
The population growth extended across demographic sectors, with the largest growth among non-Hispanic White residents, expanding by 67,723 to 452,994 persons, followed by Asian American residents growing by 36,694 to 85,853 persons, Hispanic residents growing by 34,741 to 312,448 persons, and African American residents growing by 5,242 to 66,002 persons, according to the U.S. Census data.
Korbel, who has attended all but one ICRC public forum, plans to use the public's input in his map making process.
"They're giving suggestions as to what changes should be made, and when I get access to the data, we will determine what the population of each one of the current city districts will be," Korbel said. "Based on that information, we'll start making changes to the districts, but I really can't tell until I get a hold of the data."
Korbel has been involved in redistricting over 50 jurisdictions such as cities, counties and school districts. Most recently, they redistricted education institutional boundaries in Houston and for Lone Star College, one of the largest community college districts in the nation.
He was instrumental in challenging the fairness of at-large elections in Texas in the '70s. He and the ICRC's legal counsel David Richards were part of the team that litigated the landmark case known as White v. Regester.
The case, which made it all the way to the Supreme Court in 1973 and won, found the urban voting district in Dallas and Bexar counties reduced Latino representation in the Texas House of Representatives. The case also expanded into other counties with large urban districts in the state including, Tarrant, Nueces, McLennan, Travis, Galveston, Jefferson, Lubbock and El Paso.
"(The case) set down the proof pattern for litigation in almost literally all redistricting that dealt with at-large elections," Korbel said.
Gonzalez said the ICRC is hard at work trying to find in-person venues in September to host the four public forums for the public to view and comment on the preliminary map when it is drawn.
To submit feedback directly to the commission about redistricting visit SpeakUp Austin! at https://www.speakupaustin.org/
Another way to participate is to contact ICRC commissioners or leave feedback please email: icrc.commissioners@
Due to rapid changes in scheduling due to COVID restrictions, for the most up-to-date events information from the ICRC please refer to events pages:
Public input forums are recorded and made available after the meetings here: http://www.austintexas.gov/
Past meetings and agendas can be viewed on the commission's website at www.austintexas.gov/cityclerk/
Interpretation and/or translation services will be available free of charge by advance request in Spanish, Chinese or Vietnamese. Call 311 or email email@example.com to request these services 48 hours in advance of a forum.
To find City Council Districts in Austin visit this link and type in an address: https://www.austintexas.gov/
Commissioners are: Joshua Blank (District 8), Sara Inés Calderón (D2), Erin Dempsey (D10), Camellia Falcon (D7), Luis Gonzalez (D10, Vice-Chair), Errol Hardin (D1), Shaina Kambo (D9), Prabhu Kannan (D5), Dr. Sterling Lands (D4), Hoang Le (D3), Brigham Morris (D3), Christina Puentes (D7, Chair), Eugene Schneider (D6) and Selina Yee (D1).
The ICRC board will hold its weekly commission meeting via videoconferencing 6 p.m., Wednesday, Aug. 25, 2021.
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Thursday, August 19, 2021
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