Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Diabetes Ad Campaign Features Larry H. Miller’s Widow, Gail

(SALT LAKE CITY) – Diabetes affects more than 130,000 Utah adults and is the sixth leading cause of death in the state. In 2009, prominent Utah businessman Larry H. Miller died from diabetes-related causes – a death that could likely have been prevented, according to his wife Gail Miller, who is featured in a new campaign for the Utah Department of Health (UDOH) Diabetes Prevention and Control Program.

“Diabetes is just an ugly disease. For people who have not seen this disease, they do not want to see it,” says Miller in a new TV ad. “Life goes on, but when you’re not there to share it with the one you love, it is really sad, especially when it didn’t have to be that way.”

The campaign includes 30- and 60-second TV ads and is an effort to educate all Utahns – with or without diabetes – about the importance of talking with their doctor in order to better manage the disease.

“If not well controlled, diabetes can lead to a number of serious complications, including blindness, amputations, cardiovascular disease, and kidney failure,” said Vivian Giles, MPH, Health Systems Specialist, UDOH Diabetes Prevention and Control Program. “We hope this campaign and Larry Miller’s story will encourage those at risk to talk with their physician and take control of their disease. People with diabetes can live a long and healthy life with proper care,” added Giles.

The television spots will also be shown before all films shown at Larry H. Miller Megaplex theaters in Utah. In addition, they will be featured at various facilities owned and operated by the Miller family, including at Utah Jazz and Salt Lake Bees games.

For more information, visit www.health.utah.gov/diabetes  or call the UDOH Health Resource Line at 1-888-222-2542.

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The mission of the Utah Department of Health is to protect the public's health through preventing avoidable illness, injury, disability and premature death, assuring access to affordable, quality health care, and promoting healthy lifestyles.

Thursday, April 25, 2013

UDOH Requests Comments on Change to Utah Indoor Clean Air Act

Who:   Utah Department of Health Tobacco Prevention and Control Program
What:  Proposal to modify the rule for the Utah Indoor Clean Air Act (UICAA)

Why:   The rule change is made in response to proposed legislation to address the public concern of third-hand smoke in vehicles non-smokers are required by employers to use to fulfill work responsibilities. The Department will remove a sentence regarding smoking in work vehicles to be congruent with the intent of the statute.

When:  Comment period open from April 15 to May 15, 2013

Where: Citizens may address comments regarding the rule by contacting Ron Marsden:
  • By phone at 801-538-6191
  • By fax at 801-538-6564, or
  • By email to rmarsden@utah.gov
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Monday, April 22, 2013

Medicaid Expansion Options Community Workgroup to Hold First Meeting

The Utah Department of Health (UDOH) will host the first Medicaid Expansion Options Community Workgroup meeting to explore options related to the potential expansion of the state’s Medicaid program under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA).   

The workgroup will be charged with collecting input from the community, identifying and analyzing factors beyond financial considerations, and considering alternatives to full expansion or the status quo.  The workgroup will ultimately provide Gov. Gary R. Herbert with a report detailing a full range of options along with key advantages and disadvantages of each option.

Why:   Under the ACA, states have the option of expanding their Medicaid programs to all adults who earn up to 138 percent of the federal poverty level.  If the state decides to expand, the federal government would cover 100 percent of the costs for the first three years.  After that, states would be required to pay a portion of the related costs.  The state would also incur additional administrative costs associated with any potential expansion.
Who:   The workgroup is comprised of business, community and government leaders, legislators, advocates for low-income individuals and families, and other stakeholders from the health care industry.
When:  Tuesday, April 23, 2013
             1:30 p.m.

Where:  Utah State Capitol - Capitol Boardroom
              (East end of Rotunda)

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Media Contact:
Tom Hudachko
(o) 801-538-6232
(m) 801-560-4649 

Primary Health Coverage Available for Uninsured Adults

What: Utah’s Primary Care Network (PCN) will open enrollment today.   PCN is a primary preventive health coverage plan for uninsured adults. Benefits include physician services, prescriptions, dental services, eye exams, emergency room visits, birth control, and general preventive services.

Why:   Since March 2012, PCN has been closed for enrollment and has not accepted new applications. Beginning today, all uninsured Utah adults may apply online, by mail, or in person to receive primary health care.

Who:   Adults who meet the following requirements may apply:
            - Age 19 through 64
            - U.S. citizens or legal residents
            - Not covered by other health insurance
- Meet income guidelines (e.g., a family of 4 with a maximum income of $35,325 per year)
            - Not qualified for Medicaid
            - Have no access to Medicare or Veterans benefits
            - Have no access to student health insurance (as full-time students)

When:   PCN will be accepting applications:
              For adults without children April 22 – May 6.
              For parents/caretaker relatives with dependent children April 22 – May 17.

Where:  Apply online at www.health.utah.gov/pcn or call the PCN hotline at

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Media Contact:
Kolbi Young
(o) 801-538-6847
(m) 801-231-6350

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Data Breach Victims Get Credit Monitoring Extension

(Salt Lake City, UT) – The Utah Department of Health (UDOH) will provide another year of free credit monitoring services for Utahns who were affected by the March 2012 data breach.

The extension is automatic and those who are already enrolled in the Experian credit monitoring service provided by the State will not need to take any action to ensure it continues.

Many breach victims who signed up for the fraud protection in April and May of last year are currently receiving notices that their service will expire and that there is a cost to renew. These individuals should ignore these expiration notices, as no further action is needed on their part.

“The renewal notices are occurring automatically on the one-year anniversary date of the notification process to the breach victims,” said Sheila Walsh-McDonald, Utah Data Security Ombudsman. “Any breach victim who has already paid Experian for the renewal should contact me by phone or e-mail so that we can be sure it is addressed.”

Experian is currently notifying all breach victims about the credit monitoring extension. Those who receive their communications by e-mail from Protect MyID or Family Secure should have received their notification on April 8, 2013. For enrollees who receive their communications by U.S. Postal Service, the postcards were mailed on April 11, 2013.

In addition, victims who were unable to sign up for credit monitoring services before last year’s initial deadline now have a second chance to enroll. Of the 280,000 people whose Social Security numbers were stolen, approximately 59,500 have enrolled to date.

Governor Gary Herbert and the Utah State Legislature authorized the additional year of credit monitoring in response to numerous requests from breach victims.

“I have spoken to thousands of victims and their most common request was that the credit monitoring needed to be longer than just one year,” said Walsh-McDonald. “I am pleased Governor Herbert and the Utah State Legislature were responsive to the breach victims’ request for an extension.”

For more information on the data breach or to sign up for credit monitoring, call or e-mail the ombudsman at 801-538-6923 or ombudsman@utah.gov.  For more information, visit  http://health.utah.gov/databreach/, available in both English and Spanish.

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Media Contact:
Sheila Walsh-McDonald
Data Security Ombudsman
(o) 801-538-6923 
(m) 801-588-9370