DHHS Highlights Newsletter: Volume 2 Issue 6

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Wednesday, July 8, 2015 | Vol. 2, No. 6

DHHS’ Highlights is published by the Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services for those interested in the latest information on health and human services issues. Please subscribe to or share the newsletter by clicking on the "Share" button.

Courtney Phillips Featured in Recent Newspaper Article


Courtney Phillips officially started as DHHS CEO on April 2.

Since then, she has been meeting with DHHS employees, community partners and legislators, getting to know the state and the people we work with and serve.

Now, thanks to a recent Omaha World-Herald article, even more Nebraskans are getting to know Courtney.

In the article, Courtney recounts her roundabout route to her career in public service, details her plans for DHHS' future and explains why she enjoys the work we do (hint: it's about the people).

West Nile Virus Arrives in Nebraska; DHHS Offers Tips to Protect Yourself


Nebraska's first human case of West Nile virus this summer was recently reported and a mosquito pool in Webster County also recently tested positive for the virus.

With that in mind, DHHS recommends you follow these simple steps to avoid mosquito bites and possible exposure to the virus:

  • Use mosquito repellent that contains DEET, picaridin, lemon eucalyptus oil or IR3535.
  • Dress in long-sleeved shirts, pants and socks when you’re outside.
  • Try to stay indoors during dusk and dawn when mosquitoes are most active.
  • Drain standing water around your home. It can breed mosquitoes.

Nebraska’s Cancer Registry Receives Gold Standard Rating


DHHS’ Nebraska Cancer Registry recently received a Gold standard rating for its 2012 data from the North American Association of Central Cancer Registries.

To achieve the gold standard, the registry’s data must meet standards related to quality, completeness and timeliness.

The Nebraska Cancer Registry was established in 1986 and is used to develop a picture of how cancer affects Nebraskans.

The registry is maintained by DHHS' Division of Public Health.

DHHS’ New Approach to Child Welfare is Well-Received


Alternative response, a new Division of Children and Family Services (CFS) approach to child welfare was recently featured in an Omaha World-Herald article.

The Omaha World-Herald also ran an editorial June 23 about how alternative response is being positively received by families and child advocates.

In alternative response, child welfare workers collaborate with families to find ways for children to safely remain in their homes.

Alternative response is being tested in five counties: Sarpy, Lancaster, Dodge, Hall and Scotts Bluff. If the approach is successful, acting CFS director Tony Green, said it could be expanded to five more locations next year.

BSDC's Sheridan Cottage Meets All Federal Requirements


Sheridan Cottage, an Intermediate Care Facility (ICF) made up of three homes on the Beatrice State Developmental Center (BSDC) campus, was recently recertified.

In a recent survey for the federal Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), Sheridan met all eight federal program requirements for Intermediate Care Facilities for Individuals with Intellectual Disabilities (ICF/IID).

BSDC is overseen by DHHS’ Division of Developmental Disabilities.

Thank you Sheridan Cottage staff for your hard work on earning and maintaining this certification.