Alaska Chief Medical Officer News | November 2019


From Chief Medical Officer Dr. Anne Zink, MD, FACEP

Welcome to the third State of Alaska Chief Medical Officer (CMO) newsletter.  This month we discuss the usual state health news as well as other topics such as the Opioid Health Action Response, recidivism, and behavioral health updates. I have also started including events around the state and more. Thank you all for the feedback we have received, keep it coming! We changed the formatting so you see a summary and then can click on the full article for more details.

More than anything, THANK YOU for all your compassionate care across this amazing state.  It is a privilege to be in this role and to be working with you, as direct providers of care, to improve the health and wellness of all Alaskans. — Full Article

In this issue:

Behavioral Health Updates
Learn about new services for patients to find treatment, updates on the 1115 Waiver implementation and more. – Full Article

DHSS Administrative Updates
Learn about the Alaska Psychiatric Institute court order.
Full Article

EVALI (e-cigarette, or vaping, product use-associated lung injury) Alaska remains the only state without an EVALI case.
– Full Article

Death Certificates
Did you know physicians are legally required to sign death certificates?  What do you do if you don t know the cause of death or you’re not sure you’re the right person to sign it? – Full article

Infectious Disease Updates
This month we talk about flu and antibiotic awareness week.
– Full Article.

Resources to Support Opioid/Substance Use Disorder Response
Learn about continuing education opportunities, free consultation by experts for providers and more. – Full Article.

Obesity Prevention and Reducing Sugary Drink Consumption
Our Section of Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion (CDPHP) works to help Alaska children build a lifetime of healthy habits and grow up at a healthy weight. That work involves efforts to increase physical activity and reduce the consumption of sugary drinks among Alaska families. — Full Article.

DHSS Online Public Notices
View public comments on the Health Care Services Price Transparency. The comment period ended Sept. 27, 2019. This notice provides a record of the public comments received and I appreciate that many of you made comments.  You can search all state public notices online or sign up to receive email notifications for new notices or based on custom search criteria at: State of Alaska online public notices

Connect with DHSS

Office hours:  Atleast once a month I plan on holding office hours in different communities to hear from you, and listen to your concerns and successes. Next month, I’ll be holding office hours at Alaska Regional Hospital Monday, Dec. 9.

Providers as advisors:  We’re building a database of providers who are willing to be contacted via email or phone regarding ongoing state health care issues.  For example, on the topic of vaccine hesitancy, we hope to reach out to primary care providers to better understand vaccine hesitancy and how the state can support you in your work.  If you are willing to occasionally be contacted by me, or other DHSS employees regarding clinical input or administrative questions and concerns, please send your name, email, phone, specialty, and primary location of practice to, or call  907-334-2474. Thank you to those who have already contacted us; we are appreciative of our growing list of providers!



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Dec. 4, 2019, 11 a.m. Keep Kids Safe Throughout the Holidays. Webinar hosted by the Children Safety Network.

Dec. 4, 2019, 5:45 p.m.
Two Views on Addiction: Safe Prescribing, Legal Prescribing. Register at the event in Juneau, Centennial Hall, Hickel Room, 101 Egan Dr., Juneau, Alaska.

View all events

First Reported Case of New Delhi Metallo-β (NDM) Lactamase-Producing CRE in Alaska
State of Alaska Epidemiology Bulletin, 11/18/19

Update on Vibrio parahaemolyticus Infections — Alaska, 2005–2018
State of Alaska Epidemiology Bulletin, 11/14/19

Seven Patients Diagnosed with Scombroid Poisoning — Alaska, Summer 2019 State of Alaska Epidemiology Bulletin, 10/15/19

Health officials prepare medical response to opioid enforcement action
State of Alaska DHSS Press Release, 10/11/19

Alaska again has extremely high per capita rankings for STD rates
State of Alaska DHSS Press Release, 10/8/19


State of Alaska
Department of Health and Social Services
Subscriber to this Newsletter.

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