Note to Cincinnati and Hamilton County: you are killing us

I suppose patience is a skill that is not given to everyone to master.

We’ve been waiting for Cincinnati to show us the dimensions of what is possible for cities that are unafraid to lead and rise to the complex challenges of controlling the spread of bed bugs.

I am pleased to tell you that the minutes of the Cincinnati Board of Health meeting of March 25, 2008, now available online, are just what the doctor ordered if you are as impatient as I am and in need of some hopeful bed bug news. More like a tease, but we take what we can get.

Please consider the following (word document, read google cache here):

UPDATE ON BEDBUGS IN CINCINNATI

(Attachment No. 3)

Dr. Camille Jones, Assistant Health Commissioner, Community Health Services, came to the podium to offer information on the Joint Bedbug Task Force. She said the Task Force has developed a draft of a Strategic Plan, which needs further refinement, but they have identified eight key points: cost and resource needs; hotline/data base; education; inspection issues; training; legal and enforcement issues; research; and evaluation.

Dr. Jones said the draft includes background information which describes what has been done so far, and what needs to be done at present and into the future. The CHD is working very closely with Hamilton County Public Health and Ohio State University Extension Service. A meeting was held on March 14th with State Representative Dale Mallory and City Council members, and other representatives from the city, county and state. They are seeking additional funds and resources, and working toward coordinated approaches to addressing the problem.

Dr. Maseru commended Dr. Jones and her team for their efforts, and said it was an extraordinary piece of work. He further said the Strategic Plan could be a template for providing a platform to petition for additional funds. Dr. Jones thanked Dr. Maseru for the recognition, and thanked everyone involved in the Strategic Plan efforts.

A Joint Bedbug Task Force.

A Strategic Plan. (Strategic Plan!)

Let’s highlight the eight key points:

cost and resource needs;

hotline/data base;

education;

inspection issues;

training;

legal and enforcement issues;

research;

and evaluation

Tell me you are not as impatient as I am to read this Strategic Plan!

If you want a sense of the scope of Cincinnati’s action and the ambition of their plans, then you have to read Dr. Jones’ February report to the Cincinnati City Council (link is PDF). You can also read about Ohio’s latest legislative move on bedbugger.

And if by chance it occurs to you that the city of New York should get in on this bed bug action idea, well, you know what we think you should do.

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