public health

The Eastbank of Orleans Parish is under a boil water advisory due to disruptions in power to city water pumping stations, according to statements from the Mayor’s Office and the Sewerage and Water Board.

A boil water advisory means residents in the affected area — the whole of the City of New Orleans on the east bank of the Mississippi River using the city water supply — should refrain from drinking tap water, making ice, brushing teeth or showering, or preparing or rinsing food until the water has been disinfected.

A potentially deadly brain-eating amoeba has been discovered in the St. Bernard Parish Water System at a leaking sampling station that serves more than 44,000 people.

The Louisiana Department of Health and Hospitals notified the water system and parish officials last night.

Tegan Wendland / WWNO

St. Tammany Parish has one of the highest rates of suicide in the state. It’s a problem that advocates are trying to solve and officials are trying to understand.

St. Tammany Outreach for the Prevention of Suicide, or STOPS, is determined to get the community talking about this problem, and to help those impacted. The 46 suicides in St Tammany Parish last year was a new record. But it’s an old problem. Parish resident Ricky Bryant is part of a long list that stretches back a few decades.

Saturday is National HIV Testing Day. Several Walgreens stores in New Orleans and throughout the state are offering free testing.

Tegan Wendland / WWNO

Raising kids is hard work. The St. Tammany Parish Parenting Center in Covington helps parents from all backgrounds face those challenges and take pride in the role they play in their children’s lives, and it’s also a place to socialize and find camaraderie.

On a recent weekday evening toys were scattered across the carpet and children played while parents filed in after work to support each other and learn how to be the best parents they can be.

A Tulane University researcher recently back from Sierra Leone in West Africa says health care workers treating patients with Lassa Fever are taking precautions similar to those used in the Ebola outbreak. But the risk of a Lassa epidemic is much less than the dangers posed by Ebola cases in that region.

A new 66-page comic book imagined by two medical librarians at LSU Health Shreveport will help kindergarteners and first graders better understand obesity.

Talicia Tarver’s “The Amazing Captain Fit” is a story about a boy who wants to be a superhero but lacks healthy eating habits. The comic book, published today, will be distributed through the Department of Pediatrics’ Reach Out and Read program. Tarver wanted to embed the message in something that kids and parents would both enjoy.

Eve Abrams

The YMCA of Greater New Orleans is taking steps to reduce the burden of diabetes by offering a Diabetes Prevention Program, so that people at risk of developing type 2 diabetes don’t.

When you think YMCA, what comes to mind?

Volleyball, helping kids, swimming, gymnastics, the gym, the song.

You can take your drinks outside on Bourbon Street, but you can no longer bring your smokes indoors.

Effective Wednesday, New Orleans has banned smoking in bars, restaurants and casinos.

The New York Times published an intriguing look at the city's nightlife spots as the ban went into effect.

Here's an excerpt:

While Chiffonda Hampton was serving three years in East Baton Rouge Parish Prison, she met Tonja Myles, a Peer Support Specialist with Capital Area Human Services. Myles was offering wellness classes to inmates with mental illness. Those classes taught Hampton how to cope with the anger of being abused as a child and basic life skills she had never learned before. Now that Hampton is out of prison, she continues to check in with Myles at CAHS.

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