GetHealthySLV.org - Your Health, Your Voice, A Community Choice
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Saguache, CO

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Wind: SW at 23 mph

Contact Information

Two Locations to Serve You!

Main Office
505 3rd Street
P.O. Box 68
Saguache, CO 81149
Phone: 719-655-2533 or
Fax: 719-655-0105

Della Vieira
Crowfox Fleming
Office Manager
Barbara Martinez
PCP Supervisor
Ileen Rivale
Prevention Coordinator
Kimberly Bryant
Robert Wood Johnson Coordinator
Denise Lobato
Nurse Family Partnership

Click here to contact us.

Center Office
220 S. Worth
Center, CO 81125
Phone: 719-754-2773
Fax: 719-754-2392

Gloria Quintana
Healthy Communities Partnership
Administrative Assistant
Alyssa Metzger
RN, School Nurse
Denise Lobato
Nurse Family Partnership Program

Click here to contact us

Public Health Home

May Article

Hello fellow Saguache County Residents, finally the sun has come out to play!  with our delay in Spring time weather many might have forgotten that Spring & Summer are working our way.  Please remember to keep you & your families safe- wear helmets whenever on bikes, ATV's, motorcycles, ect., apply sunscreen prior to being in the sun & reapply as directed, keep hydrated at all times, increase intake of fruits & veggies & stay active, doing all of these consisently will help you & your family better live safe & healthy lives!

Although we Coloradans have not yet been affected by it- the number of confirmed Measles cases in the US has dramatically risen throughout this year.   From January 1st 2014 to May 16th 2014 there have been 216 confirmed Measles cases & of those 15 outbreaks in different states throughtout the US.  Measles is a respiratory disease caused by a virus, which has a quick onset & is extremely contagious.  The virus is transmitted via airborn route by person with virus breathing, coughing or sneezing and can remain infectious on surfaces or in the air for up to 2 hours after infected person coughs and breathes.  Nine out of ten unvaccinated persons, if exposed to the virus which causes Measles, will get Measles.  One indemnifying symptom of Measles is the rash associated with, which is characterized as a flat red area covered with small bumps(if immunocompromised may not exhibit rash), other symptoms may be a very high fever (up to or greater than 105 degrees), cough, runny nose, fatigue, water-crusted eyes.  Additional complications one can have from Measles include ear infections, pneumonia, bronchitis, diarrhea, respiratory & neurologic complications, & acute encephalitis (infection in the brain) which can lead to permanent brain damage.  Fortunately there is a vaccine to prevent Measles.  It is a live-atttenuated 2 dose series vaccine established in 1963, prior to this vaccine there were approximately 549,000 Measles cases & 495 deaths per year in the US.  From 2000 to 2013 there was a range of 37 to 220 Measles cases in the US, majority of those occuring in persons not vaccinated.  The recommendations for the MMR vaccine for children are first dose at 1 year, if traveling outside of US and under 1 year, can have first dose from 6-11 months, second dose between 4-6 years, for adults if born during or after 1957 & do not have evidence of immunity at least one dose is recommended, for teens & adolescence, young adults 2 doses are recommended with at least 28 days in between the doses.  We do have MMR vaccine available at both our Center & Saguache offices, & can provide vaccines via walk in or by appointment, please call for availability 719-754-2773 (Center) or 719-655-2533 ( Saguache).  Prevention is the key for you & your family!

Along with the warm weather come more travelers & more community members traveling to remote areas for recreational activities such as camping & fishing.  Another issue for those to be aware of is Tick Born Relapsing Fever (TBRF) which is bacterial infection caused by a bite from a soft body tick(usually in lodgings where rodents may be) & is characterized by reoccuring episodes of fever lasting days, followed by days without fever & this process repeating 1-4 times, other symptoms may include body aches, muscle pain, joint pain, headache, nausea, vomiting, dry cough, light sensitivity, rash, neck pain, eye pain, confusion or dizziness.  If exposed to an environment where ticks may be present & have symptoms listed with 7 days of exposure, it is recommended to follow up with your Primary Care Physician.  In order to be proactive you can help protect you & your family by using insect repellelent containing DEET, avoid sleeping in areas with rodent infestation, rodent proof building/lodgings (use of respirator mask when removing rodent carcasses & or cleaning rodent droppings/urine/saliva), use of protective clothing, bathing & washing clothing when exposed.  If you have questions or would like additional information regarding TBRF or Measles, please feel free to call either of the Public Health offices. 

I wish al of you & your families a safe & fun summer!

Alyssa O'Brien, RN, SCPHN, School Nurse

Public Health Confirms Hantavirus Associated Death


Rio Grande County Public Health

Contact Emily Brown, Director


Saguache County Public Health

Contact Della Vieira, Director



May 15, 2014

4:30 pm

Public Health Confirms Hantavirus Associated Death

SAGUACHE— The laboratory at Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment has confirmed a recently deceased resident of Saguache County was exposed to hantavirus, according to Saguache County Public Health Director, Della Vieira, and Rio Grande County Public Health Director, Emily Brown. Exposure to the virus is thought to have occurred in Rio Grande County. To protect confidentiality, public health officials are unable to disclose the identity of the deceased.

Hantavirus Pulmonary Syndrome (HPS) is a rare but serious disease caused by exposure to hantavirus. Colorado has had more confirmed cases of HPS than any other state except New Mexico. The disease is fatal for more than one-third of those people who become infected.

Hantavirus cannot spread from person to person. People are infected by breathing in the virus when stirring up dust from mouse nests or mouse droppings in areas with poor ventilation, or when handling mice, because hantavirus can be found in the urine, saliva, and droppings of infected mice.  People are at risk when going into closed spaces with rodent droppings, such as crawl spaces, attics, barns, outbuildings, and sheds, or when clearing wood piles where mouse droppings might be present.

In the San Luis Valley, the hantavirus is carried by deer mice, which have tawny backs, white bellies, big eyes and big ears. Typically, 10-15 percent of deer mice are infected, and it is not possible to tell if a mouse has the virus just by looking at it.  Rodents and household pets do not get sick from the virus.


Symptoms of HPS:

Symptoms usually start from one week to six weeks after exposure. Initialsymptoms are fatigue, fever, and muscle aches. There may also be headaches, dizziness, chills, and abdominal problems such as nausea, vomiting, and chills.  Four to ten days later,a dry cough and difficulty breathing may develop as the lungs fill with fluid. From this point, the illness can progress rapidly to respiratory failure or even death.

Because the disease can progress rapidly, it is important to seek medical care immediately if you develop fever, headache, and muscle pain within six weeks of exposure to mice or their droppings. 


Reduce your risk:

Keep mice away from areas where you live and work.  Store human food, pet food, and bird seed in lidded containers or securely closing cabinets.  Use traps baited with peanut butter to remove rodents from indoor areas. Keep garbage in tightly-covered cans.

Plug all holes (dime-sized or larger) in walls and around pipes and vents, using steel wool or metal sheeting. Repair window screens and make sure weather-stripping is tight under all doors, including pet doors.  Store hay, wood and equipment above ground at least 100 feet from the house. Remove old cars, junk and brush piles from the yard.

To clean up rodent infested areas:

Open doors and windows and allow a room to air out for 30 minutes before going inside.  Consider using a respirator mask (N-100 rating) that seals tightly to the face. DO NOT SWEEP OR DRY-VACUUM MOUSE DROPPINGS. Mix a fresh solution of one part bleach to nine parts water (or 1 ½ cups bleach per gallon of water). Wear rubber gloves and spray droppings, nests, and carcasses with the bleach and water solution. Let soak for 5-10 minutes before cleaning up with a mop, sponge, or wet vacuum.  After disinfecting, place mouse carcasses, nests and cleaning materials into a plastic bag. Tie the bag shut and put it in an outdoor trashcan.  Wash hands and clothing after clean up.

Hantavirus is a very real threat in the San Luis Valley. Take care when opening outbuildings, or when you find mouse droppings and mice around the house. For further information about protecting yourself and your family from hantavirus, contact your local Public Health Agency or go to www.cdc.gov/hantavirus.  


Hantavirus Information May 2014

Public Health Improvement Information

Here at Saguache County Public Health we are improving our community by working with other organazations in the community to improve over all health and health concerns in our community. We are dedicated to our community and the people, and we are striving to making this community a healthier place to live, and enjoy.  In the process we are teaming up with our schools, and making a plan for the students to live a healthier lifestyle.  We are sharing information with schools on better choices of nutrition, and exercise. This will allow students to be able to take this information home and incorporate this with their parents.  If you are interested in viewing more of what we are doing you can visit this website at,http://www.chd.dphe.state.co.us/CHAPS/Documents/PHIPs/Saguache_Final.pdf

4th Street Food Store

!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!Saguache Works!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

This store also known as the 4th Street Food Store, its made of two parts one is the food part which has a  variety of local grown foods, and the other is the thirft store.  They also have the gym in the back of the store, also known as the BeBop Studio, here in the studio they offer alot of different exercise classes all free of charge.  The classes run as follows: Varirty Exercise Mon-Thurs, at 6 a.m. or Tues, and Thurs at 4:30 p.m. followed by stretch class at 5:30 p.m.

Coredio-Martial Arts Training: Saturday mornings at 10 a.m.

WOW! (Workout for Women): Mon and Wed at 4:30 p.m. and Friday at 9:30 a.m.

RAM (Retired Active Men): Tues, Thurs, and Sun at 10 a.m.

FREE TIME Exercise:  (Please sign in at the Thirft Store)

  Sun, Mon, and Wed 10:00 a.m. to 3 p.m.

  Saturdays 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.


The grocery part of the store has a variety of locally grown products, and depending on the season fresh produce, the variety of food they offer range from meats to nuts, and some lactose products, they have added seeds and nuts to the shelve, so stop on by and see the selection they have, and give them your support, they offer a 20% discount if you use your snap card (food stamps).

One more thing if your wondering what to make for dinner no worries they have  a stand of recipes there for you too look at, and the best thing of all, the recipes have all the ingredients you will need there at the store, so you won't need to go anywhere else for the ingredients they are all at your 4th Street Store isn't that awsom.

Another item they have is beauty care products, which range from facial creams and hair products.

They are asking the public if you have any kind of donation for the thirft store, to please bring it by, any item ranging from household items to clothing is good.  Again a big thank you from the girls at 4th Street Food Store for all your support.


Update from Connect for Health Colorado and Medicaid

Key Dates for You to Know:


December 20, 2013-Dates by which Coloradans are encouraged to submit applications for financial assistance for coverage that starts January 1, 2014.


December 23, 2013- Deadline to select a private health insurance plan on Connect for Halth Colorado that will take effect January 1, 2014.


January 1, 2014- Earliest date coverage begins for newly eligible Mediacaid or private health insurance plans purchased through Connect for Health Colorado.


January 10, 2014-Deadline for Connect for Health Colordo customers to make fist month's premium payment for January1, 2014.


March 31, 2014-Open enrollemtn for Connect for Health Colordo ends. *Medicaid does not have an open enrollment period.*


This is the website if you need assistance in finding a plan go to Colorado.gov/Health

this website will help answer questions about the Affordable Care Act, the Medicaid expansion, Connect for Health Colorado and the individual mandate. 



Coloradans are now able to check the status of their Medical Assistance Application(includes Medicaid and CHP+) by calling 1-800-359-1991 between 8:00a.m. & 6:00 p.m.  Monday-Friday(closed state hoidays). 



As a reminder, questions pertaining to client cases or personal circumstances should be directed to the Medicaid Customer Contact Center.  You can reach the Customer Contact Center at:

Toll Free:  1-800-221-3943/ TDD: 1-800-659-2659

Email:  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Hours of operation:  Monday-Friday, 7:30a.m. to 5:15 p.m. (closed state holiday)


Dairy Statement

Advice from pediatricians:  Use only pasteurized dairy products:


     Women, infants,and young children should avoid raw or unpasteurized milk and milk products, according to a statement by the American Academy of Pediatrics in the December 15, 2013 issue of Pediatrics.  A summary of the statement follows.


     Raw milk and milk products from cows, goats, or sheep are a source of bacterial infection that are especially dangerous to pregnant women, fetuses, the elderly, young children and people with compromised immune systems.

     The popularity of raw-milk products, such as soft cheeses, has been growing in recent years, in part due to claims of health benefits.  But those claims have not been backed up by science. However, there is a scientific record of diseases and illnesses from raw milk, mostly caused by contamination of the product with E. coli, Salmonella, or Campylobacter.  The illnesses caused by such bacteria can cause diarrhea, fever, cramps, nausea and vomiting.

From 1998 through 2009, there were 93 recorded outbreaks fo disease resulting from consumption of raw milk or raw-milk products, causing 1,837 illnesses, 195 hospitalization and two deaths.

The full press release can be found at:



Veteran Service Officer

The Veteran Service Officer

James Sheeran

Will be in Center at the Public Health building on the 3rd Thursday of the month from 10 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.  If you have questions you can call  719-655-2680

He is in Sagucahe Office on Wed, Thrs, and Fri from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00p.m.  He is also is Crestone when not in Center or Saguache you can always reach him and see where he will be at, this schedule is subject to change, the numbers he can be reached at are: Saguache 719-655-2680

                                                                     Saguache Public Health 719-655-2533

                                                                         Center Public Health 719-754-2773

Email:  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


DENVER – This week, October 21- October 27 is Colorado Winter Weather Awareness Week and the Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT) and Colorado Office of Emergency Management are offering some tips on how to get yourself and your vehicle prepared for inclement weather.

“This time of year, winter weather can strike at any time, which means we all need to get our emergency kits and vehicles ready for winter travel,” said CDOT Executive Director Don Hunt. “Early preparation will help ensure the safety of those traveling Colorado highways during inclement weather.”

 The first step in preparing for winter is ensuring that you have an emergency kit in your vehicle in case you are stranded. If you find yourself stranded, stay in your vehicle, turn on your flashers, call for help and wait until it arrives. Your emergency kit should include the following:


·  Flares/reflectors to signal for help and warn other motorists

·  Sturdy scraper/snow brush/snow shovel to clear snow

·  Battery or crank-powered radio to listen to emergency broadcasts

·  Flashlight with extra batteries or crank-powered flashlight

·  Survival blanket or sleeping bag

·  Chemical hand warmers

·  Extra set of clothes, including coat, hat, mittens, boots, etc

·  Water for each person and pet in your car

·  Food items containing protein such as nuts and energy bars; canned fruit and a portable can opener

·  First Aid Kit and essential medications

·  Tire chains and tow strap

·  Non-clumping kitty litter/sand for traction

·  Jumper cables

·  Extra cloth or paper towels for cleanup if necessary

·  Deck of cards or board game for entertainment


In addition to the emergency kit, be sure to check your vehicle now and before any road trip to make sure it is in safe operating condition


·  Windshield Wiper Fluid

·  Heater/Defroster

·  Wiper Blades

·  Antifreeze

·  Lights

·  Fuel System and a Full Tank of Gas

·  Ignition

·  Exhaust System

·  Tire Tread

·  Battery Brakes


In addition to the emergency kit and vehicle preparedness, it is important for motorists to keep speeds down during inclement weather and give snow plows room to do their job.  Motorists are also encouraged to plan ahead when traveling by calling 511 or visiting www.cotrip.org for real-time road information. Winter weather awareness information and updates are also posted by the Office of Emergency Management at www.COEmergency.com or on Twitter at COEmergency using the #COwx hashtag.

Restaurant and Other Health Inspections

If you are looking to construct a restaurant facility, open a restaurant, or take over an existing restaurant, please contact the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment, Division of Environmental Health and Sustainability, to inquire about regulatory requirements and retail food establishment licensure at 303-692-3645.

The Division also provides information and resources on regulatory requirements for constructing and opening a restaurant on their website at:


For information related to food safety, restaurant regulation and licensure, restaurant health inspections, or other restaurant related questions, please visit the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment, Division of Environmental Health and Sustainability website at:


For information related to health inspection programs for child cares, schools, or other consumer protection related services, please visit the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment, Division of Environmental Health and Sustainability website at:


Public Health Mission Statement


Saguache County Public Health has a purpose of protecting the health and safety of the residents of Saguache County.We are dedicated to improve the health environment of the people by preventing disease, providing services for residents with special needs and improving and maintaining the health status of residents through the provision of prevention services.

Saguache County Public Health shall provide
continuum of care which is culturally sensitive, has measurable standards of quality and is a family and community based service.

About Us

We provide the following services:

  • Home and Community Based Services
  • Regional and County Disaster Preparedness
  • HCP for Children With Special Needs
  • Nursing Services - Immunization and Vaccination Fees
  • Prevention Services
  • Communicable Disease Investigation and Information
  • Public Health Educational Programs
  • And More...

Immunization Prices

Saguache County Public Health will be able to provide vaccines ONLY to unisured children, Native Amaericans, and children currently enrolled in Medicaid as of January 1, 2013.We are working closely with Rio Grande Public Health Department to ensure that children who are insured and would like to continue receiving vaccines form local Public Health agencies are able to do so.Please see the list of prices below for childhood immunization fees.


Children 0-18 years, any vaccine:$5.00

We continue to offer the adult vaccines listed below.


Hepatitis A (series of 2):$50.00

Hepatitis B (series of 3):$50.00

Influenza (seasonal):$25.00

Tuberculin Skin Test:$16.00

Lead Test:$10.00

Most Family Practice clinics also offer childhood and adult vaccines.We are working closely with community healthcare providers to ensue that all patients continue to receive quality immunization services.For futher information,contact Saguache County Public Health:719-655-2533 (Saguache Office) or 719-754-2773 (Center Office).

The Rio Grande Public Health has a travel clinic for vaccines for International travel, if you have any questions you or need more information,you can call (719) 657-3352 or (719) 754-2773.

Healthy Communities

What is Healthy Communities?
•Healthy Communities combines the best aspects of the EPSDT Outreach and Administrative Case Management program and CHP+ outreach into one model to better meet the needs of our clients. Family Health Coordinators are available statewide to serve clients through Healthy Communities.
What Healthy Communities services are available to Colorado Medicaid and CHP+ clients?
•This outreach and case management model takes into account that many of our families do not always understand the distinction between Medicaid and CHP+. In fact, many families have one child that is enrolled in Medicaid while another is enrolled in CHP+.
• Healthy Communities focuses on the "life cycle of a client” which is all of the activities that must happen for the client to obtain coverage and access to health care services in appropriate settings.

Family Health Coordinators perform the following activities:
     Generate awareness of the existence of the Medicaid and CHP+ programs;
     Offer information on how to apply for Medicaid and CHP+ and the availability of face-to-face application assistance;
     Inform families where to submit their application for processing and eligibility determination;
     Educate families on the value of preventive health care services and how to access their benefits at the appropriate settings;
     Link clients to Medicaid and CHP+ providers that will serve as the client's Medical Home.
     Provide clients with information and referrals to other community programs and resources; and
     Explain the re-enrollment process to families that continue to be eligible for Medicaid and CHP+ to eliminate gaps in coverage.
Who is eligible for Healthy Communities?
•All Colorado citizens who would like to access public programs or those who are already eligible for public programs and are under the age of 21 or pregnant.
How can a client get services?
•To find a Family Health Coordinator in your area, please call Public Health at 719-754-2773.
For more information call:
Jeff Helm: 303-866-2267 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.  
Gina Robinson: 303-866-6167 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Customer Service:
Within Denver Metro area: 303-866-3513
Outside Denver Metro area: 800-221-3943