Baltimore City First In State To Provide in Court Naloxone Training For Drug Court Participants (FOX45)

Within the walls of Baltimore City’s Circuit Court the city’s Health Commissioner conducted an in court training session for nearly 30 Baltimore City Drug Treatment Court participants, teaching them how to administer Naloxone.  It’s a medication that is used to reverse the effects of an overdose.    “I think this is a way we can save lives in Baltimore City and really make an impact on the ever increasing overdose deaths,” said Ellen Heller, Circuit Court Judge. The in court training is a first for the state.  Its participants were chosen because they are at risk of an overdose and/or are in contact with people who are at risk. “If somebody is overdosing on heroin or fentanyl or oxycodone or other opiates they will stop breathing and within a matter of minutes they will die,” said Dr. Leana Wen, Baltimore City Health Commissioner.

Baltimore City First Jurisdiction In Maryland To Mandate Naloxone Training For Drug Court Participants

Beginning today, in an effort spearheaded by Baltimore City Health Commissioner Dr. Leana Wen, the Baltimore City Adult Drug Treatment Court (DTC) will be the first in Maryland to train participants on the use of naloxone while they are in court.  “Overdose deaths are a public health emergency,” said Dr. Wen.  “Last year, more people died from overdose than died from homicide.  The first step to recovery is staying alive. We need to get life-saving naloxone into the hands of people most at risk.” Individuals with a primary drug-related criminal offense are selected to participate in DTC as an alternative to more traditional legal settings.

"Crime Interrupts A Baltimore Doctor's Reform Efforts" (NPR - All Things Considered) August 7, 2015

On a hot, sunny Monday in mid-July, Dr. Leana Wen stood on a sidewalk in West Baltimore flanked by city leaders: Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake, interim police commissioner Kevin Davis, Rep. Elijah Cummings. Under a huge billboard with the web address, she proudly unveiled a 10-point plan for tackling the city's heroin epidemic. Wen, the city's health commissioner, said she aims to create a 24/7 treatment center, an emergency room of sorts for substance abuse and mental health. She spoke of targeting those most in need, starting with those in jail.

"Baltimore City and County Health Departments Investigating Possible Measles Case"

Today Health Commissioner Dr, Leana Wen announced that Baltimore County and Baltimore City Health Departments are currently investigating a possible, isolated case of measles in a Baltimore County resident who was seen for care at Sinai Hospital in Baltimore City. Upon recognition of a possible measles case, Sinai Hospital staff acted quickly and appropriately to reduce exposures.

"New Legislation Requires Restaurants To Publicly Detail Health Inspection Closures" (WJZ) August 6, 2015

Baltimore’s mayor signs legislation on Thursday that requires restaurants to publicly post reason for closures resulting from health inspections. The city inspects roughly 5,000 restaurants a year and only 100 actually get shut down for violations. With this new law you’ll be able to know why.

"Can A 32-Year-Old Doctor Cure Baltimore's Ills?" (NPR) August 6, 2015

Neighborhoods in Baltimore are still struggling to recover from the riots that broke out following the funeral of Freddie Gray. In the aftermath of the unrest, we here at NPR spent many hours trying to understand the raw anger on display. We looked at police brutality, economic disparities and housing segregation in Baltimore. Our conversations eventually led us to Leana Wen.

“World Breastfeeding Week” Calls for Greater Workplace Accommodations

As part of “World Breastfeeding Week,” the Baltimore City Health Department’s Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) Program is hosting several events this week to highlight the benefits of breastfeeding. Included are a Breastfeeding Friendly Workplace Award Ceremony—recognition to local businesses that make special accommodations for breastfeeding employees—and the “Fifth Annual Grand Baby Shower” for pregnant and breastfeeding moms enrolled in the WIC program.

"Response, recover and rebuilding Baltimore" (Baltimore Sun Op-Ed) August 2, 2015

There have been many accounts of the city's response on April 27th and the days following. In this last of my six-column series, I'd like to share the story of the Baltimore City Health Department's immediate response and ongoing recovery efforts.

Over Twenty Animals Perish in Local Fire

Last night, BCHD’s Office of Animal Control was called to Morrell Park to respond to the scene of a fire in which a number of animals were believed to have died. Twelve Himalayan adult cats, 11 kittens and two dogs were confirmed dead on the scene.

Baltimore Awarded Federal Funds to Combat Substance Abuse

Baltimore city will receive federal funds for up to three years to treat substance abuse from a new grant awarded by the Department of Health and Human Services.