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Making it Better: Minnesota's Health Improvement Log

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Aug. 15, 2019

Minnesota identifies severe lung injury cases among teens who reported vaping

MDH working in partnership with Children’s Minnesota

The Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) is encouraging Minnesota health care providers to be on alert for novel cases of severe lung disease potentially related to vaping and e-cigarette use among teens and young adults.

Children’s Minnesota has reported finding four cases of severe lung injury in the metro area potentially related to vaping. These cases are similar to lung disease cases recently reported in Wisconsin and Illinois, though it is too early to say whether they are connected.

“There are still many unanswered questions, but the health harms emerging from the current epidemic of youth vaping in Minnesota continue to increase,” said Dr. Ruth Lynfield, state epidemiologist and MDH medical director. “We are encouraging providers and parents to be on the look-out for vaping as a cause for unexplained breathing problems and lung injury and disease.”

Read the full news release.

2019 fall regional meetings set

ship logo

Save the date!

This fall’s regional meeting will focus on healthcare and healthy eating partnerships. Local SHIP staff have been instrumental in securing sites, planning the agenda and recommending presenters.

The goals for the session are:

  • Listen to community partners who will provide examples of changing policy, systems or environment through healthcare and healthy eating partnerships
  • Identify opportunities for building or enhancing community partnerships during a site visit
  • Discover and discuss tools, resources and ideas during networking time with peers

Time will be set aside to hear updates on and discuss the planning for the next SHIP.

Watch for more information and registration details in Making It Better or Basecamp. Questions? Please send an e-mail to Alex Dahlquist ( and Shirley Scheuler (


Thursday, Oct. 10
9 a.m. – 3:30 p.m. (tentative)
Bunker Hills Activity Center, Oak Room
550 Bunker Lake Blvd NW, Andover, MN 55304


Tuesday, Oct. 15
9 a.m. – 3:30 p.m. (tentative)
Lakewood Health System
Lower Level, Classrooms A&B
49725 County 83, Staples, MN 56479


Thursday, Oct. 24
9 a.m. – 3:30 p.m. (tentative)
Blue Earth County Historic Courthouse
3rd Floor Conference Room
204 S 5th St, Mankato, MN 56001


Tuesday, Oct. 29
9 a.m. – 3:30 p.m. (tentative)
Crookston Library
110 N Ash St, Crookston, MN 56716

Going to the Minnesota State Fair?

state fair

Put MDH on your map!

Heading to the Minnesota State Fair this year? Put the Minnesota Department of Health on your map!

The main MDH booth will be located inside of the Education Building, near the cross of Cosgrove Street and Dan Patch Ave. The theme for MDH’s booth is “Healthy Kids, Healthy School Year.”

The booth will feature information on back-to-school topics and a back-to-school checklist for parents and caregivers. These specific topics days will include extra activities, materials and expert staff:

  • Friday, Aug. 23 – E-cigarettes
  • Monday, Aug. 26 – Oral health
  • Thursday, Aug. 29 – Asthma
  • Friday, Aug. 30 – Mental health and well-being

Stop by the MDH booth any day of the fair – Aug. 22 through Sept. 2 – from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m.

Learn more about MDH at the Minnesota State Fair.

Duluth’s first Indigenous Foods Expo planned

food expo

Event set for Sept. 21

The American Indian Community Housing Organization (AICHO) in Duluth will host a fun and educational community-wide festival focused on Indigenous food, food practices, Indigenous economy, culture and healthy activities.

The Indigenous Foods Expo will take place on Saturday, Sept. 21, from 11 a.m. - 3 p.m. at the Niiwin Indigenous Foods Foods Market and Central Hillside Park in Duluth. This event is free and open to the public. This is an opportunity to share the Minnesota and local Indigenous history, knowledge, cultural food practices, Indigenous foods, and network and connect with Indigenous food producers, healthy foods and with each other.

Read more about the Indigenous Foods Expo.

Updated SHIP Monitoring Guide now available

Several changes reflected in update

Changes to the SHIP Monitoring Guide this quarter include:

  • Removed all references to bi-monthly contact calls.
  • Removed the requirement of the Quarterly Report success story submission that would have been due on May 31, 2020.
  • Changed Quarterly Report requirement to submission of SHIP Application in August 2020.

Get the SHIP Monitoring Guide (PDF).

Helpful tips for completing forms

FAQ for local SHIP staff

Q: Is there an instructions/definitions page I can refer to when completing my work plan?

A: Yes. It’s located on the Instructions tab on the Excel work plan template. There is a wealth of information in the template that will help you correctly create and update your work plans. These instructions are also on Basecamp: SHIP Grantees -> Docs and Files -> Workplan Template -> Workplan Completion Instructions.