March 20, 21, 22: Blood Drives in San Juan Islands

February was a tough month: With the snowstorm that hit the region, Bloodworks Northwest had to cancel many blood drives, and donors were unable to safely make it in, resulting in a loss of over 1,500 donations in the first few days of the storm. The snowstorm left Bloodworks Northwest with emergency levels for all blood types, and they are still working on recuperating from this loss.

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San Juan County 2019 homeless count increased 24 percent over 2018

The 2019 San Juan County “Point-In Time” (PIT) Homeless Count identified 149 people who have no stable place to live, an increase from the 2018 count of 120 but similar to the 2017 count of 154.

Of the 149 people identified as having no stable place to live, 67 people were living out of doors, in vehicles, in abandoned buildings, or in an RV or boat that lacked one of the following: drinking water, a restroom, heat, the ability to cook food, or the ability to bathe. The remaining 82 were at risk of homelessness, in temporary, unstable living arrangements, often with friends or family.

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Last year's Chickenpox outbreak in the San Juan Islands was costly

The effects of last year's  chickenpox outbreaks in the San Juan Islands affected more than just the children who caught the communicable disease.  The $73,000 spent by the county Health Department rapidly wiped out the department's emergency fund. Money from the current expense fund had to be diverted to cover the cost of the public health response. 

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San Juan Island PHD to hold special meeting Feb. 5

San Juan County Public Hospital District #1 Board of Commissioners will hold a special meeting at 1 p.m. Tuesday, February 5 in the Frank Wilson Memorial EMS Building 1079 Spring Street in Friday Harbor. The purpose of the meeting is to finalize the interim EMS Chief contract. The board selected Karl Kuetzing as interim chief in January. Chief Jerry Martin handed in his resignation effective April 1, 2019.

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