CDPH in the News
Navy Finds More Radiation Data Falsification at Hunters Point
from NBC Bay Area
Internal emails from the California Department of Public Health uncovered by the NBC Bay Area Investigative Unit through a public records request in 2015 show regulators, including the Navy, had concerns that radiological scans on 22 buildings at Hunters Point “were collected too fast.” As a result, the California Department of Public Health suspended the release recommendations for those 22 buildings. A release recommendation indicates any radiation that may have existed on a site has been cleaned up, doesn’t pose a health threat and can be turned over for redevelopment.
Deaths from fentanyl surge to record in California
from San Francisco Chronicle
According to the California Department of Public Health, 373 people died from fentanyl overdoses last year. That is more than the number who died from fentanyl overdoses in 2016, and more than four times the 81 who died from overdosing on the drug in 2013. It is the highest number of fentanyl-related deaths the state has seen since public health officials began tracking the numbers in 2008.
State Agency Criticized for Failing to Protect Highest At-Risk Communities
from Beyond Pesticides
California’s Department of Pesticide Regulation (DPR) is falling short of protecting vulnerable communities in the state, especially low-income and communities of color. This, according to a new report by California Environmental Justice Alliance (CEJA), which assesses state agencies on eight environmental justice principles. The poor showing by DPR comes at the forefront of reports that the state’s pesticide use has increased, nearing record highs.
CEJA’s assessment is the only one in the nation to evaluate state agencies based on the impact of their environmental policies on low-income communities and communities of color. This is critical as the California Department of Public Health finds that Latino schoolchildren are almost twice as likely as their white peers to attend schools in the top quartile for nearby pesticide use, but DPR’s regulations do not address the racial disparity in exposure.
State declares ‘immediate jeopardy’ at UC San Diego hospital over dirty surgical instruments
California health officials declared “immediate jeopardy” at UC San Diego Health-Hillcrest in March for at least the eighth time after officials discovered issues with how surgical equipment was cleaned. The deficiencies were discovered during the California Department of Public Health’s routine compliance check at the hospital in March. Officials placed the hospital in “immediate jeopardy,” which indicates a hospital’s errors have caused or are likely to cause serious injury or death to patients. The designation was lifted 24 hours after it was initiated.
California Moving to Boost Lead Poisoning Prevention Programs for At-Risk Kids
from EWG News
An estimated half to three-fourths of lower-income young children in California don’t get the lead poisoning tests required by state and federal law. In response, state lawmakers are taking steps to strengthen the state’s childhood lead poisoning prevention efforts.
In January, an EWG analysis of state data found that between 2012 and 2016, almost three-fourths of California toddlers enrolled in Medi-Cal were not tested for lead in their blood. Our estimate was later reinforced by the state Department of Health Care Services, or DHCS, which reported that on average, each year 28 percent of the state’s toddlers are tested. Now, DHCS and the California Department of Public Health, or DPH, have released an analysis combining and matching the two agencies’ test data. The combined analysis found that in 2015, about 49 percent of 1- to 2-year-olds on Medi-Cal were tested, and about 41 percent of 2- to 3-year-olds were tested.