View the latest health news and explore articles that pertain to the county's health priority areas.

4-year $3.1 million grant awarded to ADHS and UA Center for Rural Health to fight opioid crisis.

Tackling the Opioid Crisis in Arizona: UA Center for Rural Health Has Key Role

February 1, 2018

The University of Arizona Center for Rural Health is partnering with the Arizona Department of Health Services and other state agencies to train first responders to recognize opioid overdoses and to administer the drug naloxone to prevent fatalities.

The effort is funded with a four-year, $3.1 million grant from the U.S. Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) to the Arizona Department of Health Services and the UA Center for Rural Health, at the University of Arizona’s Mel and Enid Zuckerman College of Public Health.

Read more here: Arizona Teleedicine Program

Complete Streets Policy for the City of Tucson

LSA Takes the lead in developing a complete-streets policy for tucson

January 29, 2018

In October 2016, Living Streets Alliance (LSA) was awarded a grant from Voices for Healthy Kids to pursue a robust and equitable Complete Streets policy in Tucson.

LSA’s approach is focused on developing a Complete Streets policy in the City of Tucson, ensuring that all future road construction and reconstruction projects create a complete network that is safe and convenient for all people using all modes of transportation. 

Read more here: Living Streets Alliance

Governor Doug Ducey Signs Arizona Opioid Epidemic Act

Arizona Opioid Epidemic Act

January 26, 2018

The Arizona Legislature unanimously approved Gov. Doug Ducey's proposal to crack down on excess opioid prescribing and add other regulations designed to cut down on addictions and overdose deaths.

The Act bars doctors from prescribing more than an initial five-day supply of pain medication in most cases, boosts pain clinic regulation and adds $10 million to help uninsured people get addiction treatment.

Read more here: Phoenix New Times

Grab a newly printed map of The Loop, bike bells and other safety items during outreach events held through the end of February 2018.

Bike Ambassador events

December 28, 2017

Pima County’s Bike Ambassadors will hand out newly printed maps of The Loop (Pima County’s 120-mile-plus shared-use path), bike bells and other safety items as part of outreach events held through the end of February 2018.

All events will be held from 9 to 11:30 a.m. with exceptions for two special events. Dates and locations can be found here: Pima County’s Bike Ambassadors

Law enforcement looks at ‘treatment first’ as an option for those who are addicted.

Arizona Angel Initiative

December 22, 2017

The Arizona Angel Initiative allows citizens to walk into a police precinct, turn in their drugs and request treatment without fear of prosecution. Angels are also able to help parents secure safe placement for their child(ren) while they are in treatment in lieu of placing their child(ren) in the foster care system.

Read more here: Arizona Governor's Office

U.S. drug overdoses jumped significantly in 2016 to more than 63,600, and more than 42,200 of them were attributed to opioids.

Life Expectancy Drops Again As Opioid Deaths Surge In U.S.

December 21, 2017

Life expectancy in the U.S. fell for the second year in a row in 2016, nudged down again by a surge in fatal opioid overdoses.

The rate of drug overdose deaths involving synthetic opioids also jumped significantly, from 3.1 per 100,000 in 2015 and 6.2 per 100,000 in 2016.

You can read the full article here: NPR Arizona Public Media

[Diabetes] alters the healthy copper balance that more typically enables new blood vessel formation
— Dr. Tohru Fukai

Excessive copper in diabetes impedes ability to make new blood vessels

December 18, 2017

Scientists have evidence that in diabetes, copper can pile up inside our cells, wreaking havoc on our ability to make new blood vessels. Treatments that target ATP7A, a copper transporter that normally helps ensure healthy copper levels in our bodies, may one day help patients with diabetes recover the innate ability to make healthy new blood vessels, say Dr. Masuko Ushio-Fukai, vascular biologist and cardiologist at the Medical College of Georgia at Augusta University.

Read the full article here: Augusta University


Study claims Tucson ranks #2 most dangerous city for Bicyclists.
— 24/7 Wall St.

study is “severely flawed" and of "little use”.

December 13, 2017

Study published by 24/7 Wall St. was found to be "flawed and not consistent with what would be required in terms of method of analysis in order to draw the state conclusions."

Read the memorandum from C.H. here: Pima County

Read about Tucson's efforts here: Arizona Sonora News


1.4 people per 100,000 residents die as a result of pedestrian-involved car crashes in Arizona.

Arizona pedestrians among nation's most likely to die in fatal crash

December 6, 2017

There were 1,637 crashes involving pedestrians in Arizona in 2016, according to data compiled by the Arizona Department of Transportation. Those 1,637 crashes resulted in 1,448 injured and 197 killed pedestrians. Some accidents involved more than one pedestrian struck.

You can read the full article here:  AZ Central

In 2015, overdose deaths occurred at a rate of 17.0/100,000 people in rural populations vs. 16.2/100,000 people in metropolitan areas.

Declaring Opioids A Health Emergency Could Make Treatment More Widely Available

October 26, 2017

Medication-assisted treatment (MAT) is proven to be among the most effective treatments for opioid abuse disorders.

Including MAT  as a part of general medical practices more often could ease concerns of patients who don’t want to visit substance abuse treatment centers because of the stigma attached to addiction.

You can read the full article here: FiveThirtyEight

Every seven hours someone in Arizona dies of suicide, with 2 out of 3 having undiagnosed depression.

depression and fight against teen suicide

October 11, 2017

Teenage suicide continues to climb across the country, with the rate among young girls hitting a 40-year high.

KOLD News 13 spoke to 19-year-old Ivona about her suicide attempt and struggle with depression. 

You can read the full at: KOLD News 13

For more Arizona suicide statistics visit the: AFSP

For more national statistics, visit the: CDC

15% of U.S. moms suffer from a postpartum mood disorder like anxiety or depression.

Mommy Mentors Help Fight The Stigma Of Postpartum Mood Disorders

September 29, 2017

A recent review, published in the journal Child Development, suggests distressed mothers may benefit from ongoing nurturing, especially from those in similar situations. The researchers also found that support from peers and tending to a mother's well-being increases positive parenting behaviors.

You can read the full article here: NRP Arizona Public Media

Pima County Falls Prevention Awareness Day: Sept. 22nd

Falls Prevention Awareness Day

September 22, 2017

This year, the Southern Arizona Falls Prevention Coalition is celebrating Falls Prevention Awareness Day (the first day of fall) by offering free events in Tucson, Oro Valley and Green Valley to educate the community on ways to prevent slips, falls and spills.

Read more here: Marana News

The number of annual deaths in Pima County has risen from 222 in 2010 to 263 in 2016

Pima County report on opioId use shows it's widespread

September 1, 2017

Arizona Governor Doug Ducey declared the opioid epidemic a Public Health State of Emergency in June.

The county report was in response the declaration.

You can read the full report here: Tucson News Now.