Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Honoring Utah’s Emergency Responders

(Salt Lake City, Utah) – The Utah Department of Health (UDOH), Bureau of Emergency Medical Services and Preparedness paid tribute to the emergency medical professionals representing the many dedicated heroes whose mission is saving lives.  Today’s EMS Awards Ceremony gave special recognition to several different categories of responders who went above and beyond in the handling of critical situations. 

Special recognition was given to those who responded to a vehicle versus train crash last November.  Kaysville police, the Kaysville Fire Department, the Layton Fire Department, and the Davis County Sheriff’s office all responded when a UTA Frontrunner train ran into a van carrying three people.  The adult female driver, Clara Lewis, was found in critical condition with life-threatening head injuries.

When Davis county paramedics, Deputy Shane Archibald and Deputy Shane Sorenson, discovered her airway was restricted, they elected to use a pre-hospital rapid sequence intubation (RSI) protocol they had only recently been trained in, likely saving her life.  It was the first time they’d used the procedure. 

“As I reflect on the many lives the men and women in the EMS profession have affected, my respect and admiration for their commitment and fortitude continues to expand,” said Bureau Director Paul Patrick.  “It’s one of the highlights of the year to have the opportunity to thank them publicly and acknowledge their remarkable service.”

Special recognition also went to West Valley Police Officer Kevin Peck, whose story went viral in December after he responded to an incident involving a pedestrian and a UTA bus.  24-year old Aryann Smith’s legs were pinned under the large vehicle and she was awake and frightened.  Officer Peck crawled under the bus to take her pulse and remained there, holding her hand, until fire crews were able to lift up the bus and get her out.                                

For more information on the EMS Awards Ceremony and a complete list of winners, visit the UDOH Bureau of Emergency Medical Services and Preparedness website at

Media Contact:
Tamara Goodin
Emergency Medical Services Systems
Cell: (801) 230-2963
Office: (801) 273-6672

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Kaysville Frontrunner Crash Responders to Be Honored

What:   The Utah Department of Health’s (UDOH) Bureau of Emergency Medical Services and Preparedness will celebrate emergency medical services with an awards ceremony.  During the ceremony, special recognition will be given to Emergency Medical Services personnel who responded to a crash  involving a UTA Frontrunner train and a passenger van.  Davis County Sheriff’s responders used a special, pre-hospital intubation program and the critically-injured victim survived.

Why:     To recognize and honor EMS personnel throughout Utah.

Who:     Governor Gary R. Herbert
               Dr. David Patton, Executive Director, Utah Department of Health
               Emergency Medical Services award honorees

When:   Wednesday, May 30, 2012, 10 a.m.

Where:   Utah State Capitol Rotunda
               350 North State Street
               Salt Lake City, Utah

Media Contact:
Tamara Goodin
Emergency Medical Services
Office: (801) 273-6672
Cell: (801) 230-2963

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Utah Anti-tobacco Crusader is National Youth Advocate of Year

(SALT LAKE CITY) – The national Campaign for Tobacco-free Kids (CTFK) honored South Jordan Teen Gabe Glissmeyer as its national “Youth Advocate of the Year” at its 16th annual gala on May 17.
Glissmeyer, an LGBTQ youth, was honored for many achievements, including his creation of Out of the Smoke, a Utah Pride Center program dedicated to helping LGBTQ youth quit smoking. Glissmeyer, President of the Youth Leadership Board of Utah’s statewide youth tobacco-control program, One Good Reason, also played a major role in the “It’s All About the Packaging” initiative. The initiative surveyed more than 1,800 Utah teens on marketing tactics used by the tobacco industry to sell dissolvable tobacco products to youth.
“Gabe Glissmeyer and other young leaders from across the nation are making great strides in the fight against tobacco and their voices are being heard,” said Matthew L. Myers, President, Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids. “Young leaders like Gabe play a critical role in preventing kids from smoking and reducing tobacco’s terrible toll on our nation.”
Glissmeyer’s fight against tobacco began when his older sister picked up her first cigarette.
“Hollie turned to cigarettes at a young age and that addiction rapidly progressed into more experimentation until she chose heroin,” said Glissmeyer. “I saw how her life was falling apart and tearing apart the lives of people around her. That’s when I decided to fight back.”
In Utah, 8.5 percent of high school students smoke, and 1,500 children become daily smokers every year. Every year, tobacco use kills 1,200 Utah residents and costs the state $345 million in health care bills. 
For more information and resources visit
Media Contact:
Andrea Kofoed
One Good Reason Adult Coordinator
(o) 801-538-7085 (m) 801-836-4066
Gabe Glissmeyer
Anti-tobacco Advocate
(801) 793-0410

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Law Banning E-Cigarettes and Hookah in Public Places Now in Effect

(Salt Lake City) – House Bill 245, Definition of Smoking in the Utah Indoor Clean Air Act, passed during the 2012 Utah Legislative session went into effect May 8, 2012. The amendment changes the definition of smoking to include e-cigarettes and hookahs, and bans the use of these items in public places. The Utah Indoor Clean Air Act already prohibits smoking in all publicly-accessible, enclosed indoor facilities, whether publicly or privately owned. §26-38-3(1), §26-38-2(a)-(p).

The Bill allows limited exemptions for businesses that permit hookah use and e-cigarette sampling. “Businesses that apply for the exemption will be allowed time to transition into compliance with the new law,” said Steve Hadden, Health Program Specialist, Tobacco Prevention & Control Prevention, Utah Department of Health. Affected businesses have until July 1, 2012 to apply for the one-time, 5-year exemption.

Businesses that permit the use of hookah can qualify for the exemption by sending a letter of application and supporting documentation to the Utah Department of Health by July 1, 2012. To qualify for the exemption, businesses must meet all of the following criteria as of January 1, 2012:

The business had and currently maintains a class C or D liquor license;
The business has sold and currently sells a mixture of tobacco and other flavors for the purpose of heating, inhaling, and exhaling through a hookah pipe in the business’ public access areas;
The business relied on the sale of mixed tobacco and other flavors for use in a hookah for at least 10% of its gross sales.

Hadden said, “Those businesses that are granted an exemption will be required to meet other criteria during their five-year exemption in order to maintain compliance. Local health departments will be completing regular compliance checks on those businesses.”

Tobacco use is the single greatest cause of preventable death in Utah, claiming more lives
than car crashes, murders, suicides, AIDS, alcohol use, drug abuse, and fires combined.  For free help quitting smoking, call the Utah Tobacco Quit Line at 1.800.QUIT.NOW,
or visit

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Media Contact:
Steve Hadden, Health Program Specialist
Tobacco Prevention & Control Program

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Governor Details Comprehensive State Response to Data Breach

SALT LAKE CITY – In the Capitol Board Room this afternoon, Utah Governor Gary R. Herbert, flanked by agency leadership, detailed the State’s comprehensive response to the recent health and Medicaid data breach. The State response includes a full-scale, independent audit of technology security systems, the appointment of a new health data security ombudsman, investigation by law enforcement, and personnel action.

“The State of Utah must restore the trust placed in it,” the Governor said.“Cyber-security is the modern battlefront and we are all enlisted—you, me, our state agencies, the Legislature—all of us have a critical role to play,” he added.

Confirming that the March 30 unauthorized transfer of personal files from state servers was an isolated incident, the Governor apologized to the approximately 280,000 individuals whose Social Security Numbers were compromised, as well as approximately 500,000 others who had less sensitive information also stored on the server. “The compromise of even one person’s private information is a completely unacceptable breach of trust,” said the Governor. “The people of Utah rightly believe that their government will protect them, their families and their personal data. As a state government, we failed to honor that commitment. For that, as your Governor and as a Utahn, I am deeply sorry.”

According to law enforcement authorities, cyber attacks on public information systems have increased 600% this year, resulting in nearly a million attempts daily by cyber terrorists or hackers to infiltrate the State IT network. That reality, coupled with the recent data breach, prompted the Governor to call for a comprehensive, independent security audit of information technology systems, both for this incident and across all agencies. The security audit, conducted by Deloitte & Touche, is now underway, as is a parallel assessment of the State’s response to victims.

Another critical part of the State’s response is Governor Herbert’s appointment of Sheila Walsh-McDonald as the new Health Data Security Ombudsman. She will oversee individual case management, credit counseling and public outreach. The Governor said, “Sheila is a trusted and experienced member of the public health and advocacy community, having dedicated her 33-year professional career to working on behalf of Utah’s disparate populations, with a focus on improving and strengthening the public and private programs that serve them. It is truly an honor to have Sheila on board in this effort and I thank her for her willingness to serve.”

During today’s event, the Governor also announced the resignation of Stephen Fletcher, executive director of the Dept. of Technology Services (DTS), and the subsequent appointment of 28-year IT veteran Mark VanOrden as acting director of DTS. VanOrden is the IT director for the Utah Dept. of Workforce Services and recent recipient of the Merrill Baumgardner award for excellence. 

“Right now, I am counting on Mark’s well-established ability to pull the DTS team together to focus on optimizing the value of Deloitte’s audits and our efforts to rebuild public trust in our IT systems and processes,” said Governor Herbert.

The Governor urged impacted individuals and families to contact the Utah Department of Health hotline (1-855-238-3339) with any questions and encouraged them to enroll in free credit monitoring. He further cautioned citizens to beware of scammers and those who prey on the vulnerable and ill-informed.

“Please know that no one from the State will contact you and ask for information over the phone or via email regarding this incident. Do not provide private information, especially not a Social Security Number or account information, in response to a phone call or email you did not initiate,” the Governor said. “This incident is a tragic reminder that it is a different world in which we live. The dynamics continue to change and there is a very real and growing cyber threat.”

Contact: Ally Isom
Deputy Chief of Staff
801.538.1503 desk
801.864.7268 cell

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Tobacco Industry Exposed in New Film

(Salt Lake City) – The public is invited to attend free screenings of the documentary Addiction Incorporated throughout the month of May. The film, which follows a tobacco industry insider on his mission to expose the addictive nature of tobacco products, will begin its statewide tour in Salt Lake City on May 15. Free screenings will also be held in Orem, Nephi, Moab, Ogden, Price, St. George, and Park City. The film has not yet been released to theaters. 

Addiction Incorporated tells the true story of Victor DeNoble, an employee of Phillip Morris in the 1980s. He was asked to develop a cigarette that would not cause heart damage. Instead, his research produced scientific proof that cigarettes are intensely addictive and harmful. The documentary chronicles the industry’s attempts to keep this financially damaging information, and DeNoble, quiet.
“Addiction Incorporated is an inspiring true story about a man who sacrificed his career to expose tobacco industry tactics,” said Amy Oliver, marketing manager for The TRUTH campaign. “The people who see this film will walk away with even more reasons to fight the only industry in America whose product kills up to 50 percent of the people who use it exactly as intended.”
Tobacco use is the single greatest cause of preventable death in Utah, claiming more lives than car crashes, murders, suicides, AIDS, alcohol, drug abuse, and fires combined. For free help quitting smoking, call the Utah Tobacco Quit Line at 1.800.QUIT.NOW, or visit
May 15
Brewvies Cinema Pub
677 South 200 West, Salt Lake City
7:30 p.m.
Must be 21 years or older

May 16
Salt Lake Community College Amphitheater
4600 S Redwood Road, Taylorsville
8:00 p.m.
All Ages

May 21
Ogden Megaplex
2351 Kiesel Avenue, Ogden
6:15 p.m.
All Ages

May 21
Santy Auditorium
1255 Park Ave., Park City
7:00 p.m.
All Ages

May 22
Main Library Auditorium
210 East 400 South, Salt Lake City
6:30 p.m.
All Ages

May 22
Moab Arts and Recreation Center’s Stage Room
111 East 100 North, Moab
7:00 p.m.
All Ages

May 23
The Price Theatre
30 East Main Street, Price
7:00 p.m.
All Ages

May 24
The Scera
745 South State Street, Orem
7:00 p.m.
All Ages

May 24
Salt Creek Cinemas
1101 East Highway 132, Nephi
7:30 p.m.
All Ages

May 25
The Electric Theater
68 East Tabernacle Street, St. George
7:00 p.m.
All Ages

The May 22 screening at the Main Library in Salt Lake City will be followed by a Q and A session with a panel of anti-tobacco advocates. The film is rated PG.

Media contact:
Amy Oliver
Marketing Manager
(o) 801-538-6917  (m) 801-783-9067

Monday, May 7, 2012

“Heart-Healthiest 2012” Recipe Contest is On!

(SALT LAKE CITY) – The Utah Department of Health (UDOH) Heart Disease and Stroke Prevention Program (HDSPP) is once again asking the public to submit their favorite heart-healthy recipes for a new cookbook. The best recipes will contain ingredients full of vitamins, minerals, fiber, and not a lot of salt, which affects blood pressure.

“Uncontrolled high blood pressure increases a person’s risk of suffering a stroke or heart attack,” said Tania Charette, HDSPP Media Coordinator. “One way to control high blood pressure is by eating healthfully.”

“Our previous two contests turned out tasty, colorful, and healthy recipes from people all across Utah. Those recipes showed that eating wisely doesn’t mean sacrificing flavor,” Charette added.

The contest is now underway and ends June 30. Heart-healthy recipes can be submitted at

Throughout the contest, the site will feature “Healthful Recipe of the Week” selections. Prizes for weekly winners include a Papa Murphy’s gift certificate for a free deLITE pizza. One Grand Prize winner will get the opportunity to show off his or her recipe during a KSL Studio 5 segment.

For more information about HDSPP, visit

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Media Contact:
Tania Charette
HDSPP Media Coordinator