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Welcome to the official website for the town of Wilmington, Massachusetts


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Health Department
Contact TypeContact Information
Contact:
Director of Public Health
Senior Clerk
Public Health Nurse
Address:
121 Glen Road
Wilmington, MA 01887
Phone:
978-658-4298
Fax:
978-694-2045
Hours:
Monday - Friday 8:30 - 4:30
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Mosquitos and Ticks:  They're out in Mass!


Lyme Disease

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Information on Our Mosquito and Tick Program

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The Zika Virus

What is Zika virus?
Zika is a virus (germ) spread by certain kinds of mosquitoes. Most people (80%) who are exposed to
Zika virus will not get sick. If they do get sick, symptoms usually start 2-7 days after being bitten by an infected mosquito and may include fever, rash, joint pain, and conjunctivitis (red eyes). However, if infection occurs when a woman is pregnant, the infection can sometimes spread to the developing fetus.

How is Zika spread?
Zika virus is usually spread to people through the bite of an infected mosquito. The virus can also be spread from a man to his sexual partner during unprotected sexual contact and from a pregnant woman to her baby during pregnancy or around the time of birth. There is also concern that Zika virus could be transmitted through blood transfusion from an infected donor. Virus has also been found in breast milk, urine and saliva but transmission potential from these sources is still being investigated.  Although Zika virus has been known to cause infection in people in Africa and Asia since the 1950s, outbreaks of Zika infection have occurred in areas of Africa, Southeast Asia, and the Pacific Islands only more recently. During 2015, Zika virus was found in South America for the first time. Since then, it has spread to many countries in Central and South America, the Caribbean and some of the Pacific Islands, resulting in a very large outbreak of public health concern.

Can I get Zika virus from mosquitoes in Massachusetts?
It is extremely unlikely that anyone could become infected with Zika virus from a mosquito bite in
Massachusetts. The kinds of mosquitoes that are known to carry Zika virus are generally not found in Massachusetts.  However, travelers to affected areas may be bitten by infected mosquitoes during their trip and some of these travelers are being diagnosed with Zika virus disease when they return to the United States.

What is the risk from Zika virus infection if I am pregnant?
In pregnant women who become infected with Zika virus, it is possible for the virus to spread to the
developing fetus. When this happens, it can result in birth defects, including abnormal brain and head development (microcephaly). If you are pregnant, and you or your male partner have traveled to an area with ongoing Zika virus transmission, you should discuss testing with your doctor or other healthcare provider. Zika virus testing of pregnant women is available at the Massachusetts State Public Health Laboratory.

What is the risk from Zika virus infection if I am not a pregnant woman?
Most people (80%) who are exposed to Zika virus will not get sick. If they do get sick, symptoms usually start 2-7 days after being bitten by an infected mosquito and may include fever, rash, joint pain, and conjunctivitis (red eyes). There have been reports of some immune system disorders, such as Guillain-Barré syndrome, following Zika virus infection; this happens rarely and can also happen following other types of infections.

Am I at risk for Zika virus?
At this time, only people traveling to places with ongoing Zika virus outbreaks or engaging in sexual
activity with someone who has traveled to these places are at risk for getting the infection. If you or your partner is planning on traveling, you should check the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website for information about where Zika virus is occurring: http://wwwnc.cdc.gov/travel/notices.

If I am pregnant, how should I protect myself from Zika virus disease?
Until more is known, pregnant women and couples trying to become pregnant should postpone travel to areas where Zika virus transmission is ongoing. Pregnant women who do travel to one of these areas should talk to their doctor or other healthcare provider first and take great care to avoid mosquito bites duringthe trip. Further travel advice for pregnant women is available at this CDC website: http://www.cdc.gov/zika/pdfs/zika-pregnancytravel.pdf. Since Zika virus can also be spread by a man to his sexual partner, if your male partner has traveled to an area with ongoing Zika outbreak you should use condoms correctly and consistently every time while engaging in any form of sexual activity OR not have sex during the pregnancy.

Should I wait before trying to get pregnant?
If you are trying to become pregnant and have potentially been exposed to Zika virus through travel or sexual activity, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has provided suggested time periods to wait before rying to become pregnant. You should consult with your doctor or other healthcare provider for more information.Women Men Zika symptoms Wait at least 8 weeks after symptoms start. Wait at least 6 months after symptoms start No Zika symptoms Wait at least 8 weeks after exposure Wait at least 8 weeks after exposure
Note: These recommendations are current as of May 2, 2016 and are subject to change. Remember to check www.cdc.gov/zika or talk with your healthcare provider for the most current information.

Is there any treatment for Zika virus?
There is no specific treatment for Zika virus infections, but most people do not become seriously ill and recover quickly. If you are pregnant and are bitten by mosquitoes while traveling in an area with Zika virus or had sexual contact without a condom with a male partner who has traveled there, you should contact your prenatal care provider. Zika virus testing is available and recommended for pregnant women with possible Zika virus exposure.
If testing confirms that she was exposed to Zika virus, her prenatal care provider may make
recommendations for additional monitoring of the woman and her developing fetus.

What can you do to protect yourself from Zika virus while you are traveling?
Since Zika virus is spread by infected mosquitoes, here are some things you can do to reduce your
chances of being bitten when you are traveling in an area with Zika virus
:
 When you are outdoors, wear long pants, a long-sleeved shirt and socks. This may be difficult to do when the weather is hot, but it will help keep mosquitoes away from your skin.

 Try to stay in places that use air conditioning or window and door screens. Sleep under a mosquito bed net if air conditioned or screened rooms are not available or if you are sleeping outdoors.
 Use a repellent with DEET (N, N-diethyl-m-toluamide), permethrin, picaridin (KBR 3023), IR3535 (3-[N-butyl-N-acetyl]-aminopropionic acid) or oil of lemon eucalyptus [p-menthane 3, 8-diol (PMD)] according to the instructions on the product label.

 When used as directed on the product label, insect repellents containing DEET, picaridin, and IR3535 are safe for pregnant women.

 If you are also using sunscreen, apply sunscreen prior to using repellent.

 DEET products should not be used on infants under two months of age and should be used
in concentrations of 30% or less on older children.

 Oil of lemon eucalyptus should not be used on children under three years of age.

 Permethrin products are intended for use on items such as clothing, shoes, bed nets and camping gear and should not be applied to skin.

 More information on choosing and using repellents safely is included in the MDPH
Mosquito Repellents fact sheet which can be viewed online at www.mass.gov/dph/mosquito.

 If you can’t go online, contact MDPH at (617) 983-6800 for a hard copy.

 Unlike mosquito-borne illness here in Massachusetts, Zika virus is spread by mosquitoes that bite during the day. This means that when traveling in an area with Zika virus activity, it is especially important to take these steps to prevent mosquito bites during daytime hours as well as between dusk and dawn.

Where can I get more information?
 Your doctor, nurse, or health care clinic, or your local board of health (listed in the telephone directory under Local Government).

 The Massachusetts Department of Public Health (MDPH), Division of Epidemiology and Immunization at (617) 983-6800 or toll-free at (888) 658-2850, or on the MDPH Zika virus website at www.mass.gov/dph/zika.

 The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Zika virus website at www.cdc.gov/zika 

 Health effects of repellents: MDPH Bureau of Environmental Health at 617-624-5757




                                                                

                                                        
Zika Virus and Travel: Advice for Women



You may have heard a lot on the news recently about Zika virus.  It causes an illness spread by mosquitoes carrying the virus.

As of now, Zika virus has been found in mosquitoes in Africa, Central and South America, and the Caribbean islands. It has not been found in the mainland United States. That’s because the kinds of mosquito that carry Zika virus are much less common here.

Four out of every five people who are infected with Zika virus do not even get sick. People who do get sick from Zika virus mostly feel only mild symptoms, which last from several days to a week.

However, Zika virus infection may be a special concern for women who are pregnant, or who are trying to become pregnant. That’s because pregnant women who become infected with Zika virus can pass the virus to the baby. And Zika infection during pregnancy seems to be linked to birth defects like microcephaly (incomplete brain development).

Pregnant or trying to become pregnant?

  • Postpone travel to areas where Zika virus is spreading.
  • If you must travel to these areas, talk to your doctor first.
  • Strictly follow steps to prevent mosquito bites during your trip (see below).
  • Sexual transmission of Zika virus from an infected male partner is possible. If your male partner traveled to, or lives in, an area with Zika virus, use latex condoms consistently and correctly for the duration of your pregnancy.
Talk to your doctor if you develop symptoms of Zika virus infection.

Planning to become pregnant?

  • Before you travel, talk to your doctor about your plans to become pregnant and the risk for getting Zika.
  • Check the CDC travel website frequently for the most up-to-date recommendations. http://wwwnc.cdc.gov/Travel
  • Strictly follow steps to prevent mosquito bites during your trip.
Your best protection: Prevent mosquito bites

  • When used as directed, Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) approved insect repellents are proven safe and effective even for pregnant and breastfeeding women. Always follow the product label instructions.
Reapply insect repellent often.
Do not spray repellent on the skin under clothing.
If you are also using sunscreen, apply sunscreen before applying insect repellent.
Wear long-sleeved shirts and long pants.
Treat clothing and gear with permethrin (products for spraying clothes can be obtained at camping, sports and sportswear stores) or purchase permethrin-treated items. Treated clothing remains protective after multiple washings. See product information to learn how long the protection will last.
If treating items yourself, follow the product instructions carefully.
Do NOT use permethrin products directly on skin. They are intended to treat clothing.
Stay in places with air conditioning or that use window and door screens to keep mosquitoes outside.
Sleep under a mosquito net if you’re sleeping outdoors, or if the room where you are sleeping does not have screens on the windows or doors.












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Tobacco Regulations

At a duly posted hearing held on Tuesday, July 21, 2015 at 5:30 p.m. at the Wilmington Town hall, 121 Glen Road, Wilmington Ma, the Wilmington Board of Health amended Section 8 of the Board of Health regulations, smoking and tobacco products.  The amended regulations include policies that restrict the sale of tobacco products, raising the minimum sales age from 18 years of age to 21 years of age and adding definitions.  The new regulations will go into effect November 1, 2015.  A full copy of the regulations can be viewed at the Wilmington Board of Health or online at www.wilmingtonma.gov.

Please click on the following link. Changes will be in red.

Section 8 Smoking and Tobacco Products.pdf










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Planning on attending a farmers market this year?










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Naloxone (Narcan) training and Support


Massachusetts is one of 14 states and The District of Columbia that has a 911 Good Samaritan Law. On August 2, 2012, the 911 Good Samaritan law was passed along with laws expanding prescribing and administration of Naloxone (Narcan), a medication used to reverse an opioid overdose.

In order to encourage people to call 911 during an overdose, this law protects people from prosecution for possession of controlled substances when calling 911 in the event of a medical emergency.  This can help save lives and give people who use opioids a chance to get help for their addiction.  The chance of surviving an overdose depends greatly on how fast one receives medical assistance. However, the fear of involvement with law enforcement makes many people afraid to call 911.
 
This Good Samaritan Law will not interfere with law enforcement securing the scene at an overdose.  It does not prevent prosecution for selling drugs, trafficking drugs or outstanding warrants and will not interfere with police questioning. It does protect people from being arrested for possession of a controlled substance.  

During an opioid overdose a person becomes unconscious and unresponsive. They will not respond to being called or a sternal rub. They may also begin to turn blue from a lack of oxygen or make snoring or gurgling sounds. If you see these symptoms, we urge you to call 911 immediately and perform rescue breathing. Also learn about the medication naloxone and how it reverses an opioid overdose.

If you or anyone you know needs support, every chapter of Learn to Cope www.learn2cope.org  holds weekly meetings run by experienced facilitators. These meetings offer support, education, resources, Naloxone (Narcan) trainings and most importantly HOPE for recovery. All meetings begin at 7:00pm and are held weekly in various locations throughout the State.  There is one on Tuesdays at the Tewksbury Memorial High School, 320 Pleasant Street and on Wednesdays in Lowell at the Lowell General Hospital Saints Campus, 1 Hospital Drive.  

If you or anyone you know is interested in Naloxone (Narcan) training please contact the Wilmington Board of Health at 978-658-4298.  A future training date is being scheduled.  










Seasonal “flu” occurs between October and May and typically peaks in January and February.  The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) report widespread influenza activity across the United States.  It is anticipated that Influenza activity will peak in MA within the next few weeks.  Recently, CDC issued a health advisory saying that the vaccine developed for 2014-2015 is less effective than usual; however, CDC continues to encourage everyone to get vaccinated. 


 Tips to prevent the spread of the Flu:

·    Wash hands often with soap and water or alcohol-based hand sanitizer;
      Avoid touching eyes, nose, or mouth;

·    Avoid close contact with those who are already sick;

·    Get plenty of sleep;

·    Eat healthy food and drink plenty of fluids;

·    Cover your nose and mouth when coughing or sneezing with a tissue or the crook of your arm;

·    Stay home if ill for at least 24 hours after fever is gone, without the use of Tylenol or Ibuprofen.



A new CDC brochure titled “Take Three Actions to Fight the Flu” is available at http://www.cdc.gov/flu/pdf/freeresources/general/take3.pdf

 

 












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What is the Enterovirus D68?

Click here for more information










MEMA~OFFERS TIPS FOR FAMILY HURRICANE PREPAREDNESS
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“The Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency (MEMA) is offering personal hurricane preparedness tips to all of the citizens of the Commonwealth,” stated~MEMA Director Kurt Schwartz.~ “The three key tips for preparing for hurricanes, as well any potential emergencies or disasters are to build a kit, create a plan and stay informed.”~
~
Build an Emergency Kit
Every home and business should have a stocked basic emergency kit that could be used for any emergency, regardless of the time of year. Everyone should keep certain items around the house and workplace in the event you are isolated for three to five days without power or unable to go to a store. While some items, such as bottled water, food, flashlight, radio and extra batteries, a first aid kit, sanitation items and clothing should be in everyone’s kit, it is important to customize the kit for the needs of you and your family.~ Consider adding medications, extra eyeglasses, contact lenses, dentures, extra batteries for hearing aids or wheelchairs, or other medical equipment such as an oxygen tank.~ A list of allergies, medications and dosages, medical insurance information, medical records and serial numbers of medical devices will provide additional information during an emergency.~ Do not forget your pets and animals in emergencies.~ Your kit should include pet supplies such as food, pet carriers and other supplies, as well as vaccinations and medical records for pets and service animals as well any other specialized items your family might need.
~
See attached emergency kit for a more complete list.
~
You may also consider making a mobile “go-bag” version of your emergency kit in case you need to evacuate to a shelter or other location, as an emergency shelter may not have all the items you need. At least annually, check your kit for any food, water, batteries, or other items that may need to be replaced or have expired.
~
Create a Family Emergency Communications Plan
Develop a Family Emergency Communications Plan in case family members are separated from one another during an emergency (a real possibility during the day when adults are at work and children are at school, camp or at a friend’s house). This plan should also address how your family plans to reunite after the immediate crisis passes.
~
Ask an out-of-state relative or friend to serve as the Family Emergency Communications Plan contact person.~ During and immediately after a disaster, it is often easier to access a long distance telephone number than a local one. Also, it is important to remember that if telephone service is disrupted due to high volume, text messages and the internet often can be a viable alternative for communicating with family.~~
~
As part of a Communication Plan, you should create a personal support network and a list of contacts that include caregivers, friends, neighbors, service/care providers, and others who might be able to assist during an emergency. It is important keep a list of contact phone numbers in a safe, accessible place (particularly if your cell phone is lost or dead). Make sure everyone within your family knows the name, address and telephone number of the Family Emergency Communications Plan contact person.
~
To ensure you will be able to reunite after a disaster, it can be helpful to designate two meeting areas for family members – one within your community (your primary location), and one outside of your community (your alternate location). Sometimes an emergency could impact your neighborhood or small section of the community, so a second location outside of your community would be more accessible to all family members.
~
A Family Emergency Communications Plan can help reassure everyone’s safety and minimize the stress associated with emergencies.
~
Stay Informed
It is important to identify ways to obtain information before, during and after a hurricane.~ MEMA encourages people who live or work in a coastal community to ‘Know Your Zone. The Know Your Evacuation Zone section of the~MEMA website enables you to use the interactive Hurricane Evacuation Zone finder to learn if your home or place of work is in one of the three hurricane evacuation zones.
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The Know Your Risk section of the~MEMA website will help you better understand the hazards associated with hurricanes and their risks, such as Storm Surge, Heavy Rain and Inland Flooding and High Winds.
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It is also important to learn how local authorities will warn you of a pending or current disaster situation and how they will provide information to you before, during and after a disaster.~ Remember that if their plan is not perfect then your personal plan will need to fill those gaps. You should closely monitor the media and promptly follow instructions from public safety officials as a storm approaches.
~
Severe weather warnings and watches, which can be obtained from media sources, the National Weather Service, a NOAA all-hazards radio, and on your cell phone can provide valuable and timely information.~ Some communities have local tools to alert residents. Also, consider utilizing Massachusetts Alerts, which is a communication tool used by the Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency (MEMA) to disseminate critical information to smartphones. Massachusetts Alerts is powered by a free downloadable application that is available for Android and~iPhone devices.~ For more information, go to www.mass.gov/mema/mobileapp.
~
Mass 2-1-1 is the Commonwealth’s primary telephone call center during times of an emergency and is able to provide information on emergency resources. This system is free to the public, available 24 hours a day/ 7 days a week, confidential, multilingual, and TTY compatible. Consider all the ways you might get information during an incident (radio, TV, internet, cell phone, landline, etc) in case one or more of those systems stops working.
SUGGESTED ALL-HAZARDS EMERGENCY KIT
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~ Bottled water (1 gallon per person/per day for 3 days)
~ Canned goods and nonperishable foods, particularly those that do not need cooking:
·~~~~~~ Canned meats and fish
·~~~~~~ Canned fruits and vegetables
·~~~~~~ Canned soups and puddings
·~~~~~~ Canned fruit juices
·~~~~~~ Dried fruit and nuts
·~~~~~~ Bread, cookies and crackers
·~~~~~~ Peanut butter and jelly
·~~~~~~ Coffee and tea
~ Manual can opener
~ Radio (battery-powered or hand crank), NOAA Weather Radio and extra batteries
~ Flashlight or lantern, with extra batteries
~ First aid kit
~ Diapers, wipes, baby food, formula, if needed
~ Pet food, supplies, tag, crates, if needed
~ Prescription medications (2-week supply)
~ Extra eyeglasses, contact lenses, and dentures
~ Extra batteries for hearing aids, wheelchairs, or other medical equipment,
~ Medical oxygen tanks
~ Whistle to signal for help
~ Moist towelettes, garbage bags, soap, sanitizer, and other personal hygiene items
~ Wrench or pliers to turn off utilities
~ Watch or battery operated clock
~ Copies of important documents and IDs
~ Cell phone and charger (also an auto, solar, or crank charger in case power is out)
~ Cash
~ Water purification tablets and household chlorine bleach
~ Camp stove or grill (outdoor use only) with fuel or~Sterno and waterproof matches or lighter
~ Change of clothes and sturdy shoes
~ Sleeping bags or blankets
~ Disposable plates, cups, and utensils
~ Seasonal items such as warm clothes, hat and gloves for winter and sunscreen for summer
~ Books, games, puzzles and other comfort items
~ Duct tape
~ Plastic sheeting or tarp
~

MEMA~is the state agency charged with ensuring the state is prepared to withstand, respond to, and recover from all types of emergencies and disasters, including natural hazards, accidents, deliberate attacks, and technological and infrastructure failures.~MEMA's staff of professional planners, communications specialists and operations and support personnel is committed to an all hazards approach to emergency management. By building and sustaining effective partnerships with federal, state and local government agencies, and with the private sector - individuals, families, non-profits and businesses -~MEMA ensures the Commonwealth's ability to rapidly recover from large and small disasters by assessing and mitigating threats and hazards, enhancing preparedness, ensuring effective response, and strengthening our capacity to rebuild and recover. For additional information about MEMA, go to www.mass.gov/mema. Continue to follow~MEMA updates on Twitter at www.twitter.com/MassEMA and~Facebook at www.facebook.com/MassachusettsEMA. Also, sign up for Massachusetts Alerts to receive emergency information on your smartphone, including severe weather alerts from the National Weather Service and emergency information from MEMA, download the Massachusetts Alerts free app. To learn more about Massachusetts Alerts, and for information on how to download the free app onto your smartphone, visit: www.mass.gov/mema/mobileapp.
~


        

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Local Health Departments Encourage Flu Immunizations

September is National Preparedness Month; federal, state, and local emergency preparedness officials have been suggesting various ways to ensure that all residents of the Commonwealth are ready for any emergency, manmade or natural.

One issue that consistently has local health officials worried continues to be the possibility of another Flu pandemic. An outbreak of Influenza has the potential for making many people ill, resulting in many deaths, and having a negative impact on the economy.

The health departments throughout the region are in the process of scheduling Flu Clinics within their communities. Residents are encouraged to contact their local health department to find out when clinics have been scheduled. Many clinics throughout the state are also posted on a centralized bulletin board at this website: https://www.mylocalclinic.com/fcss/.

Regardless of where you get your vaccine from, residents are encouraged to seek it out. Becoming immunized is easy, and will help protect not only you, but also those around you.

Remember to practice good cough and hand hygiene; always cough or sneeze into your sleeve instead of your hands, and wash your hands frequently. Use a hand sanitizer, especially when soap and water may not be available. Finally, when you are sick, stay home from work or school to help your body recover, and to prevent further spread to others.

For more information on the Flu, visit www.mass.gov/flu.











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Emergencies can happen at any time.  Take a few simple steps now to prepare yourself, your family and your community.

Click here to get ready










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Mass2-1-1 New Information and Referral Resource for Families and Children Requiring Assistance


Mass 2-1-1 is a new information and referral service for children, youth and families offered by the Executive Office of Health and Human Services. EOHHS has contracted with MASS 2-1-1 Inc. to provide enhanced information and referral services to families and children who are dealing with these challenging issues.
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This program supports all families, including families who are involved with Chapter 240 of the Acts of 2012, also known "Families and Children Engaged in Services" legislation. The legislation, which became effective in November of 2012, provides services for children who are runaways or truants, or children who are having serious problems at home and in school; the law also helps children who are victims of commercial sexual exploitation.
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Families can dial 211 from any phone and be connected to a trained information and referral specialist, anytime of the day or night.~













Special thanks to the Community Health Network Alliance!!

The CHNA 15 grant committee kindly provided grant funds for 6 Salem State University nursing students and their clinical instructor to attend the Massachusetts Public Health Nursing Conference in Woburn on April 25th.  Some of the guest speakers included the Medical Director for the Bureau of Infectious Disease of the MDPH, Dr. DeMaria, Associate Director of Healthcare Emergency Management from the Boston University School of Medicine, J.J. Burke and Loretta laRoche.  Kitty Mahoney the MAPHN President for the past 4 years was passing the gavel to the new president Mary Mckenzie.

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Featured in the photo is the past MAPHN President, Kitty Mahoney RN, Clinical Instructor, Traci Mello RN, nursing students, Maria Lopez, Christina Aloisi, Monica Bento, Tania Gelsomini, Reynald Horat and Andrew Yau.






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We are no longer accepting Needles or Sharps Containers at the Board of Health.

  You can drop off sharps containers and expired/unused medications at

The Public Safety Building

1 Adelaide St

 
There is no charge and no questions will be asked.

 What is collected?

·        Prescription Medicines

·        Over the counter medicines

·        Pet medications

·        Sample medications

·        Pills, capsules, ointments, and/or patches

·        Vitamins

·       Needles (Must be in an approved Sharps container including new and unused needles)
                     *NO Epi-pens will be accepted
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Bring in the medicine in the original container (blackout your name and the prescription number)

OR bring in the medicine in a clear plastic recloseable bag

What is NOT collected?

        • Thermometers

        • Bloody or infectious waste

        • Medication from businesses or clinics

        • Aerosols

         • Epi-pens









Ready: Prepare. Plan. Stay Informed.

Are You Ready For an Emergency?

Click here for an emergency supply list











                                                                



Help out the Community!
Join the Medical Reserve Corps
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Town of Wilmington   121 Glen Road, Wilmington, MA 01887-3597
Phone: (978) 658-3311    Fax: (978) 658-3334