Public Health

Safe Zone updated
Updated YANA
2019 Winter dog

Icy Cold Arctic Blast!

Stay Safe!

Freezing temperatures are expected for an extended period of time. Ontario County Public Health urges you to use precautions during extended periods of cold temperatures.

Indoor safety:

  • Check your carbon monoxide detector. Carbon monoxide is an odorless, colorless gas that often goes undetected, striking victims in their sleep.
  • Use generators outside. Never operate a generator inside the basement or garage.
  • The kitchen is for cooking. Never use a stove or oven to heat your home.
  • Prevent  fire.
    • If you are using a fireplace, use a fire screen large enough to catch sparks and rolling logs.
    • If you are using a space heater, place it on a level, hard surface and keep anything flammable at least three feet away.
    • Turn off space heaters and make sure fireplace embers are out.

If you must go outdoors:

  • Frostbite can happen in as little as 30 minutes. Wear appropriate outdoor clothing: wear a tightly woven, preferably wind-resistant coat or jacket; inner layers of light, warm clothing; mittens; hats; scarves; and waterproof boots.
  • Stretch first and work slowly when doing outside chores.
  • Take a buddy and an emergency kit when you are participating in outdoor recreation.
  • Carry a charged cell phone.

Snow shoveling is a known trigger for heart attacks.  Symptoms of a heart attack include squeezing pain in the chest, shortness of breath, pain that radiates up to the left shoulder and down the left arm, or a cold sweat. Other signs that are equally common include jaw pain, lower back pain, unexplained fatigue or nausea, and anxiety. If you experience these symptoms stop what you are doing and call 911 immediately.

During periods of cold temperatures, please take a moment to check on elderly family members or neighbors and bring pets indoors. Lastly, please avoid traveling when the weather service has issued advisories. 

Please visit the following websites for more information.

English: Click here

Español (Spanish): Click here

(updated 1/28/19)

Choose Health Ontario Award!

Help us celebrate healthy happenings in Ontario County!

Share the love! The Ontario County Health Collaborative (OCHC) is taking nominations for the 2019 Choose Health Ontario Award. This award recognizes an individual, agency, organization, committee or business that demonstrates a commitment to improving the health of Ontario County residents. 

Previous recipients of the Choose Health Ontario Award include:

  • The Partnership for Ontario County
  • G. W. Lisk
  • The Geneva City School District
  • Wegmans Market, Canandaigua
  • The Salvation Army
  • Food Link
  • Henry Farro

The award will be presented at the 53rd Annual Ontario County Safety Awards Banquet on March 26, 2019 and the awardee will be recognized by the Ontario County Board of Supervisors by official resolution.

A little recognition is a wonderful feeling! Simply write a few paragraphs explaining why you think an individual, agency, organization, committee or business should be celebrated for their efforts to improve the health of Ontario County residents. Please be sure to include a supporting statement and measurable outcomes if available. Please submit your nominee(s) to Mary Beer at  by January 28, 2019.

(Updated 1/11/19)

February is America Heart Month!

American Heart Month is a great time to think about how you can reduce your risk for cardiovascular disease. This tip sheet offers ideas for simple ways to incorporate heart health in to every day of the month. Try a new activity each day and make your favorites part of your regular routine.  

(Updated 2/4/19)

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Electronic Cigarettes and Pregnancy

There is NO safe level of nicotine in pregnancy.

Please take a moment to read the Electronic Cigarettes and Pregnancy fact sheet provided from March of Dimes.

(Updated 1/11/19)

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2019 Rabies Clinic Schedule

Rabies 2019

You are Invited the Regional Early Childhood Coalition Meeting 

Please join us on Friday January 11, 2019 at 10:30 am at the Lyons National Bank in Penn Yan for the Regional Early Childhood Coalition meeting. Please see the agenda below.

(Updated 1/2/2019)

Edited Regional Early Childhood meeting

Hundreds Gather to Talk About Suicide Prevention

Kevin Hines Spreads Hope


On October 29, 2018, over two-hundred community members gathered at Hobart and William Smith College to hear a message of hope from best-selling author and suicide survivor, Kevin Hines. Ontario County Public Health in partnership with the Ontario County Suicide Prevention Coalition and Hobart and William Smith Colleges worked in collaboration to host “Stories Save Lives” presented by Kevin Hines.

In 2000, Kevin attempted to take his life by jumping off the Golden Gate Bridge. For Kevin, his first thought after he jumped was an instant regret. Kevin is among the 1% of people who have jumped from the Golden Gate Bridge and survived. Many factors contributed to his miraculous survival. Kevin now travels the world sharing his story of hope, healing, and recovery while teaching people of all ages the art of wellness & the ability to survive pain with true resilience.

Kevin Hines is a captivating storyteller. The audience laughed, cried and sat in silent meditation. Take a moment to watch his story: 

Kevin’s motto is #BeHereTomorrow reminding everyone that there is power in human spirit. By getting the help that you need, you can find the ability to live mentally well. If you need help for suicidal thoughts, please call 1-800-273-8255.

(Updated 11/7/2018)

Get Your Flu Shot!

It's not too early to get your flu shot!

Last year, 5.3 million cases of the flu were avoided and 2.6 million medical visits were prevented because of people just like YOU getting their flu shot! Thank you!! Call you health care provider or your local pharmacy and get your flu vaccine today. YOU hold the power of prevention!

(Updated 9/18/2018)

Flu Fighter 6 months and up

Emergency Preparedness

Prepare Now     Learn How

Eng Emergency PRep
SP Emergency Prep

2-1-1 Lifeline

Resources in the Finger Lakes

Need to be connected with a service in the Finger Lakes Region and not sure who to call? Simply dial 2-1-1 for local resources. 2-1-1 is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

2-1-1 Life Line

(Updated 8/9/2018)

See the Signs of Addiction

Save a life!

Please take a moment to watch the video and learn the signs of addiction. Click the link below to learn more about the special issues surround teenagers and their unique drug treatment needs.

Learn more about teens and drug abuse: Click here

(Updated 7/27/2018)

Prevent Lyme Disease!

Check out the graphics below!

(Updated 7/27/2018)

Lyme Disease 2
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Ticks bugging you?

Check out the movies below.

Click the play button to view.

(Updated 7/28/2018)

2018 Public Health Works!

Honor Roll Award Winner

Teresa Shaffer RN

Ontario County Public Health is proud to announce that our very own Registered Nurse, Teresa Shaffer has been named to the New York State Department of Health, "2018 Public Health Works! Honor Roll." Teresa has worked tirelessly to help increase the amounts of healthy foods available to areas of need in Ontario County.

To view the list of winners:  Click here

(Updated 4/2/2018)

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2017 Annual Report

The Ontario County Public Health 2017 Annual Report Is Now Available!

Take a moment to read the 2017 Annual Report. Find out how your local public health department prevents, promotes and protects your health!

For the 2017 Annual Report: Click here

Copies are available! Call 1-800-299-2995 today!

(Updated 3/21/2018)


Choose Health Ontario Award Winner! 


On March 27, 2018, Jack Marren (Victor), Chairman of the Ontario County Board of Supervisors and Mary Beer, Director of Public Health, presented the Choose Health Ontario Award to the Finger Lakes Area Counseling and Recovery Agency (FLACRA) for their commitment to drug and alcohol recovery in Ontario County.  The award was presented at the 55th Annual Safety Awards Dinner sponsored by the Ontario County Safety Council.

Each year, the Ontario County Health Collaborative recognizes an individual or group for outstanding efforts in health and wellness promotion.  FLACRA is a non-profit agency that has been serving individuals and their loved ones touched by addiction for over four decades. Their innovative and collaborative approach has resulted in the growth of services to residents of the Finger Lakes Region. Their services include an Addictions Crisis Center, Mobile Crisis Team, Medication Assisted Treatment & Peer Support, Housing, Care Management and Outpatient Clinics. FLACRA’s expertise and programming are essential components of addressing the opioid epidemic.

OCHC is comprised of over 30 stakeholders working together to make a difference in the health of Ontario County residents by providing programs, education, tools, motivation, and opportunities for making healthy choices. The collaborative began giving the Choose Health Ontario Award eight years ago to individuals, agencies, or programs in recognition of their contributions towards supporting health in our communities. UR Thompson Hospital’s Wellness Department, Regional Transit Service (RTS) Ontario, Geneva Reads and House of John were among the worthy 2018 CHOO Award nominations. On behalf of the Ontario County Health Collaborative, we extend a special thank you to all of these organizations.

To read the article in the Finger Lakes Times:  Click here

To read the article in the Daily Messenger: Click Here

(Updated 3/28/2018)

Looking For Addictions Treatment? 

Please see the FLACRA information below and visit the FLACRA website today!

To visit the FLACRA website Click here

(Updated 7/27/2018)

Flacra 2
Flacra 1

Water Testing

The New York State Department of Health (NYSDOH) is offering assistance with lead testing of water, for as long as funds are available.


Click here for more information about free lead testing for water

Common Questions

How does lead get into the water we drink? 
Inmost cases, lead in drinking water does not come from the source itself but from a plumbing system such as water fixtures, pipes and solder. Water in the plumbing system can dissolve lead from fixtures, pipes and solder. This is called leaching. Soft, corrosive or acidic (low pH) water is more likely to cause leaching. Water left standing in plumbing systems over a long period of time also increases leaching. The longer the water stands in the pipes, the greater the possibility of lead being dissolved into the water.

What can I do to reduce the lead level in my drinking water? 

If the lead level is higher than 0.015 mg/l only in your “first-draw-sample”, then the source of lead in your drinking water is likely from the fixture. 

You should:

  1. Run your water to flush out lead. Run water for at least 30 seconds or until water is cold to the touch or reaches a steady temperature before using it for drinking or cooking if it hasn’t been used for several hours. This flushes lead-containing water from the fixture.
  2. Use only cold tap water for cooking, drinking or making a baby's formula. Do not cook with or drink water from the hot water tap; lead dissolves more easily into hot water.  DO NOT USE WATER FROM THE HOT WATER TAP TO MAKE BABY FORMULA.
  3. Do not boil water to remove lead. Boiling water will not reduce lead.
  4. Replace your plumbing fixtures if they are found to contain lead. Plumbing materials, including pipes, new brass faucets, fittings, and valves, including those advertised as “lead-free,” may contribute lead to drinking water. The law allows plumbing products (such as pipes, pipe fittings, plumbing fittings and fixtures) with a weighted average of the lead content of wet surfaces of up to 0.25% lead to be considered “lead free.”

If the lead level is higher than 0.015 mg/l in both first-draw and flush samples, your home may be served by a lead service line and/or plumbing materials in your home may contain lead. Refer to the step 4 above.

Also, consider purchasing bottled water or a water filter. Read the package to be sure the filter is approved to reduce lead or contact NSF International at 800-NSF-8010 for information on performance standards for water filters. Be sure to maintain and replace a filter device in accordance with the manufacturer’s instructions to protect water quality. Any measure you take to reduce your exposure to lead should be continued until the lead source(s) has been minimized or eliminated.

Where can I get more information?
New York State Department of Health
Click here

Lead Poisoning Prevention
Click here

Certified Product Listings for Lead Reduction
Click here

Updated: 2/21/2017

Blood Pressure

It's All about Control

In Ontario County, 3 out of 10 people with high blood pressure do not have it under control.
Check out this quick video for ideas to decrease your blood pressure.  It just might save your life!

2016-2018 Community Health Assessment and Community Health Improvement Plan (CHA/CHIP)

In 2016, Ontario County Public Health (OCPH) worked with area hospitals, S2AY Rural Health Network and other community leaders to complete a Community Health Assessment (CHA) and develop a Community Health Improvement Plan (CHIP). Through this effort, three priorities areas were identified.

  • Priority 1: Prevent chronic diseases (including hypertension) by  reducing the rates of obesity and tobacco use.
  • Priority 2: Increase access to preventative healthcare.
  • Priority 3: Promote mental health and prevent substance abuse.
Click on the picture below to read the 2016-2018 Community Health Assessment and Community Health Improvement Plan (CHA/CHIP).
Updated 12/1/2016

Stay Informed About the Former Geneva Foundry Site 

For the latest updates on the former Geneva Foundry site, visit:                  New York State Department of Environmental Conservation:
Click here 
Register for news and updates from the Department of Environmental Conservation,  Division of Environmental Remediation
Click here 
Do you have specific site related health questions? 
     Anthony Perretta
     Corning Tower, Room 1789
     Albany, New York 12237

Updated 11/23/2016