The Kentucky Department for Public Health is working to promote World AIDS Day on December 1 and unite people across the commonwealth in the fight against HIV. The theme for this year’s observance is “Getting to Zero” with a push to get to zero new HIV infections, zero discrimination and zero AIDS related deaths. Despite increased understanding of HIV and AIDS, state officials say the annual event is still needed as a reminder that the disease still impacts millions of people worldwide.
Several people, including hospital employees, were decontaminated Sunday evening at Saint Joseph Hospital in London after experiencing problems that might have been related to a chemical on a stray dog, according to authorities. The illnesses happened after two people from Jackson County came to the emergency room complaining of symptoms including eye and throat irritation, a cough and a burning sensation to the skin, according to Albert Hale, director of emergency management for Laurel County. While treating the people, a doctor and three other emergency-room workers began to experience similar symptoms, according to a news release from Laurel County Sheriff John Root.
In recent years, Northern Kentucky health officials have encountered more children with cavities in a state known for some of the worst teeth in the nation. To combat this, the Northern Kentucky Health Department is partnering with 11 local dentists to offer free dental screenings and provide affordable dental sealant and fluoride varnish to children in Boone, Kenton, Campbell and Grant counties.
The University of Kentucky is notifying 878 people of a breach of protected health information from a lost business phone. The phone was lost on Sept. 25 and was never recovered, UK HealthCare spokesman Kristi Lopez said. UK took out a classified ad in the Lexington Herald-Leader on Wednesday, saying the phone had access to email that might have included information about health conditions with medical record numbers "and, in some cases, names."
Smoke-free advocates are gearing up to push for an indoor smoking ban in Bourbon County, which ranks among the state's top producers of burley tobacco. Armed with an air-quality study and a public-opinion survey to bolster their cause, members of the Coalition for a Smoke-Free Bourbon County plan to hold a public forum sometime in early 2012, coalition member Phyllis Robinson said. After that forum, the coalition will ask Bourbon Fiscal Court to pass an ordinance for a countywide smoking ban, Robinson said.
Taylor County officials are denying an inmate’s claims that animals at Taylor County Animal Shelter were buried alive in mass graves. In a letter to the Central Kentucky News-Journal, Andy Stewart, who is serving time for arson, said he was working at the animal shelter when the event allegedly occurred. Stewart has since been transferred to the Marion County jail.
Lexington police arrested five people Tuesday after busting up a large-scale prostitution ring that rotated prostitutes through cities in several states, according to uniform citations filed in Fayette District Court. Mario Antonio Flores, Roberto Salinas-Rivera, Adrian Lezama-Ruiz and Roxana Olea Serna all pleaded not guilty Wednesday to charges of engaging in organized crime and promoting prostitution. Danella Santos-Evangelista, accused of being one of the organization's prostitutes, pleaded not guilty to one count of engaging in organized crime.
Two key lawmakers say they hope to hold a hearing in December about the state's handling of records regarding deaths and near deaths of kids in Kentucky's child-welfare system. State Rep. Tom Burch and Sen. Julie Denton on Wednesday said they want to hold hearings on whether the Cabinet for Health and Family Services, which oversees child welfare, is being transparent in the way it reports deaths and near deaths of children under its supervision.