Recent Press Releases

Health Department Launches Media Campaign To Urge New Yorkers Age 50 and Older To Get Screened For Colon Cancer

April 27, 2017

The Health Department today announced “Detect + Prevent,” a new media campaign urging New Yorkers who are 50 and older to get screened for colon cancer. Colorectal cancer is the second leading cause of cancer death in New York City; every year more than 1,200 residents die from the disease.

Health Department's Center for Health Equity Hosts Fourth Annual Brooklyn Food, Fitness and Faith Summit

April 27, 2017

The New York City Health Department’s Center for Health Equity, through its Office of Faith-Based Initiatives and in partnership with the Brooklyn Interfaith Advisory Group, convened 250 faith leaders representing 100 faith-based organizations for Brooklyn’s annual Food, Fitness and Faith Summit today. Now in its fourth year, the summit brought together faith-based organizations at Brooklyn Law School’s Forchelli Conference Center to increase health programming in their houses of worship.

Health Department Launches Media Campaign on Dangers of Secondhand Smoke at Home

April 27, 2017

The Health Department today launched a new media campaign educating New Yorkers on the dangers of secondhand smoke at home and encouraging them to make their home smoke-free. Secondhand smoke can enter apartments or common areas through shared ventilation systems, air spaces, windows and hallways.

Sodium Warning Rule Legal Battle Ends, Review Deadline Passes

April 27, 2017

The Health Department today announced that the year-and-a-half legal battle for the Board of Health’s sodium warning rule has ended (National Restaurant Association v. The New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene et al.). After an intermediate appellate court upheld the rule, the National Restaurant Association had 30 days to ask New York’s highest court to review the decision.

Animal Care Centers of NYC Releases First Quarter 2017 Data, Leads Nation in Placement of Dogs and Cats

April 26, 2017

Animal Care Centers of NYC (ACC), the only open-admissions animal shelter serving all five boroughs, today announced its 2017 first quarter data, available to the public here. The overall placement rate for cats and dogs reached 94.3 percent with 95.5 percent of cats and 92.6 percent of dogs in its centers being placed either through adoptions to the public or through its adoption partner program.

Health Commissioner Bassett, GrowNYC Announce Record $1 Million in SNAP Benefits Redeemed At Greenmarkets In 2016

April 24, 2017

Health Commissioner Dr. Mary T. Bassett and GrowNYC Executive Director Marcel Van Ooyen today announced that in 2016, New Yorkers spent more than $1 million in Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits at farmer markets for the first time in the city’s history.

In Recognition of Earth Day, Health Department Releases Report on Improvements in Citywide Air Quality

April 20, 2017

In recognition of Earth Day on Saturday, the Health Department today released the latest New York City Community Air Survey (NYCCAS) results, which found improvements in air quality between 2008 and 2015 and highlighted continued progress toward Mayor de Blasio’s OneNYC goal of achieving the cleanest air of any large U.S. city by 2030. The report summarizes seven years of data from the largest ongoing urban air monitoring program of any U.S. city.

De Blasio Administration, City Council Members and Elected Officials Announce Sweeping Legislation to Curb Smoking, Tobacco Usage

April 19, 2017

Mayor Bill de Blasio today announced a series of legislative proposals to reduce the number of smokers in New York City by 160,000 over the next three years. While smoking rates in New York City have declined from 21.5 percent in 2002 to 14.3 percent in 2015, the city still has more than 900,000 smokers, including 15,000 youth.

Health Department Releases Report Detailing Patterns of Child Injury Deaths in New York City

April 14, 2017

The Health Department, in its role as chair of the New York City Child Fatality Review Advisory Team, today released its annual report on child injury deaths. This year’s report covers a five-year period, from 2010 to 2014, with a special focus on how patterns differ as children age.

As part of HealingNYC, Health Department Launches Opioid Overdose Awareness Television Campaign

April 13, 2017

The Health Department today launched an opioid overdose television campaign focusing on families and communities. The ads are part of the City’s ongoing public awareness campaign to educate New Yorkers about opioids and prevent overdose deaths with life-saving naloxone.

Health Department, Department of Housing Preservation & Development Urge New Yorkers to Properly Install Window Guards

April 11, 2017

As the weather gets warmer, the Health Department and the Department of Housing Preservation and Development (HPD) remind New Yorkers that properly installed window guards prevent children from falling out of open windows. Window guard installation is a shared responsibility for owners and tenants.

Deputy Mayor Palacio, Health Commissioner Bassett, City Council Speaker Mark-Viverito Announce the Launch of New "East Harlem Neighborhood Health Action Center"

April 4, 2017

Health Commissioner Dr. Mary T. Bassett today was joined by Deputy Mayor for Health and Human Services Dr. Herminia Palacio, New York City Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito and the President and Founding Director of SMART University, Susan Rodríguez, to announce the launch of the East Harlem Neighborhood Health Action Center, a building under renovation on 158 East 115th Street. The Action Center will bring much needed community space, health, wellness and clinical services to local residents.

Wednesday is the Last Day for Eligible New Yorkers to Apply for Free Nictoine Patches or Gum Through 311 or

April 3, 2017

The Health Department today reminded New Yorkers that Wednesday, April 5 is the last day to apply for free nicotine patches or gum by calling 311 or visiting The program complements an anti-smoking television ad campaign, a collection of the Health Department’s hard-hitting educational campaigns since 2006, which shows the truth about the dangerous consequences of smoking.

Health Department, Animal Care Centers of NYC and Mayor's Alliance for NYC's Animals Co-host First Rabies Vaccination and Dog Licensing Event of 2017

April 1, 2017

This weekend, the Health Department, Animal Care Centers of NYC, and Mayor’s Alliance for NYC’s Animals provided free rabies vaccinations to the city’s dogs and cats for the first time this year. This free event – made possible through a partnership with the Parks Department, Assembly Member David I. Weprin, Community Board 4 Queens and Fantasy Forest at the Flushing Meadows Carousel – was held at Flushing Meadows Corona Park.

Health Commissioner Bassett, Council Member Cornegy Host "Gift to Life Call to Action" Event in Honor of Late D.A. Thompson

March 31, 2017

As part of Colon Cancer Awareness Month, Health Commissioner Dr. Mary T. Bassett and Council Member Robert E. Cornegy Jr. were joined by Kings County’s Acting District Attorney Eric Gonzalez and LaRay Brown, Chief Executive Officer of Interfaith Medical Center, to remind New Yorkers about the importance of getting a timely colonoscopy. More than 1,200 New Yorkers die from colorectal cancer each year.

Health Department Releases Report On Driving and Dangerous Driving Behaviors Among New York City Adults and Teens

March 31, 2017

The Health Department today released a new Epi Data Brief on driving and dangerous driving behaviors. The report, “Driving and Self-reported Dangerous Driving Behaviors in New York City,” provides statistics collected for the first time on the number and characteristics of adults who drive in New York City, as well as estimates of adults who speed and text or email while driving.

Health Department Releases New Traffic Fatality Reports on Pedestrians and Motor Vehicle Occupants

March 24, 2017

The Health Department today released two Epi Data Briefs on traffic fatalities in New York City between 2012 and 2014. These newly published reports — “Pedestrian Fatalities in New York City” and “Motor Vehicle Occupant Fatalities in New York City” — use data from the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner to describe demographic and geographic patterns among traffic deaths. The reports also identify differences in the burden of traffic injuries among neighborhoods and between age, race and ethnic groups.

Health Department Recognizes World Tuberculosis Day, Releases New Data on TB Rates for 2016

March 24, 2017

In recognition of World Tuberculosis (TB) Day, the Health Department today released an annual summary of 2016 data on TB in New York City. The new report (PDF) indicates the number of people diagnosed with TB in New York City decreased from 577 in 2015 to 565 in 2016, which corresponds to a rate of 6.9 cases per 100,000 people.

As a Part of Colon Cancer Awareness Month, the Health Department Recognizes Health Care Providers that Offer Free Colonoscopies to Uninsured Patients

March 21, 2017

Health Commissioner Dr. Mary T. Bassett today recognized 57 clinical partnerships between 50 clinical sites that offer free colonoscopies to uninsured patients as part of the New York City Community Cares Project. Every year more than 1,200 New York City residents die from colorectal cancer, making it the city’s second deadliest cancer.

Health Department Kicks Off Fitness Program for Faith-Based Organizations

March 21, 2017

The Health Department today launched the Faith-Based Physical Activity Challenge, a fitness program spearheaded by the Center for Health Equity’s Office of Faith-Based Initiatives. The program pairs certified physical fitness instructors with 50 houses of worship across the city to conduct weekly fitness classes for congregants and community members.

Health Department Hosts Women's Health and Activism Summit in Recognition of National Women and Girls HIV/AIDS Awareness Day

March 18, 2017

In recognition of National Women and Girls HIV/AIDS Awareness Day, the Health Department and the newly formed New York Knows Women’s Advisory Board today hosted a Women’s Health and Activism Summit at MIST in Harlem. Health Commissioner Dr. Mary T. Bassett was the keynote speaker, and panelists discussed their personal and professional experiences reaching women through activism and health education.

Health Department Expands Awareness Campaign About the Risks of Excessive Drinking

March 17, 2017

The Health Department today announced an expansion of the “Just One More Drink CAN Hurt” public awareness campaign, which reminds New Yorkers of the harms of excessive drinking and the actions that they can take to protect themselves and their friends from the unintended, dangerous consequences of alcohol use. In New York City, there are nearly 1,800 alcohol-attributable deaths every year and an average of 84,000 alcohol-related emergency department visits.

Health Department Launches Anti-smoking "Greatest Hits" Public Awareness Campaign

March 16, 2017

The Health Department today announced a new anti-smoking television ad campaign highlighting the health risks of smoking. The ads, a collection of the Health Department’s hard-hitting educational campaigns since 2006, show the truth about the dangerous consequences of smoking.

Mayor's Office of Criminal Justice, Department of Health Announce Successful Rollout of "Justice-involved Supportive Housing" Program Stabilizing Individuals Who Frequently Cycle Through Jail and Shelter

March 15, 2017

The Mayor’s Office of Criminal Justice and the Department of Health and Mental Hygiene today announced that 97 individuals in New York City who most frequently cycled through jail on low-level charges, stayed in City shelters, and struggled with behavioral health needs have been connected to permanent supportive housing through a program called “Justice-Involved Supportive Housing.”

De Blasio Administration Launches New Initiative To Combat Opioid Epidemic

March 13, 2017

Mayor Bill de Blasio and First Lady Chirlane McCray launched HealingNYC, a new, comprehensive effort to reduce opioid overdose deaths by 35 percent over the next 5 years. In 2016, more than 1,000 people in New York City died in a drug overdose which involved an opioid, the highest year on record. More New Yorkers died from opioid overdoses last year than from car accidents and homicides combined.

Health Department, Fund for Public Health Announce the New York City Mural Arts Project

March 10, 2017

The Health Department and the Fund for Public Health today announced a community-based project to create three public murals about mental health in East Tremont, West Bronx, and Hell’s Kitchen. The New York City Mural Arts Project is a collaborative effort between mental health consumers, artists, community-based organizations and the community at large.

Health Department Releases Health Alert On Increase in Hepatitis A Cases Among Unvaccinated Men Who Have Sex With Men

March 9, 2017

The Health Department today released a Health Alert to notify providers of an increase in hepatitis A cases among men who have sex with men (MSM) in New York City. Five patients were identified in the first two months of 2017, none of whom had traveled internationally.

Health Department Releases New Data on Changes in Birth Certificate Gender Markers

March 9, 2017

The Health Department today released new vital statistics data on the number of people who have changed their gender marker on their birth certificate since 2014, when the Health Department and the City Council eased requirements for gender marker change applications.

Health Department and Animal Care Centers of NYC Announce Resumption of Services at Shelters

February 22, 2017

The Health Department and Animal Care Centers of NYC (ACC) announced today the resumption of normal cat adoption services at all shelters and at various mobile adoption events across the five boroughs. Shelter operations were partially suspended in response to an outbreak among cats of the H7N2 virus, a rare strain of bird flu.

Statement and Fact Sheet on Leptospirosis

February 15, 2017

The Health Department has identified a cluster of three cases of leptospirosis on one block in the Concourse area of the Bronx,” said Health Commissioner Dr. Mary T. Bassett. “Leptospirosis is a bacterial infection that is most commonly spread by contact with rat urine and is very rarely spread from person to person. This illness can be serious but is treatable with readily available antibiotics.

Health Department Announces Historic Expansion of HIV and STI Services at Sexual Health Clinics

February 10, 2017

Health Commissioner Dr. Mary T. Bassett today announced the historic expansion of HIV and sexually transmitted infection (STI) services, and the renaming of STD Clinics as Sexual Health Clinics.

Mayor’s Public Engagement Unit and Health Department Urge New Yorkers to Enroll in Health Insurance before Open Enrollment Deadline On Tuesday, January 31

January 27, 2017

Mayor Bill de Blasio’s Public Engagement Unit is partnering with the Health Department, NYC Health + Hospitals and others to remind New Yorkers of the deadline to enroll in health insurance: Tuesday, January 31.

Health Department, Mayor’s Office of Immigrant Affairs, and Human Resources Administration Launch My Vaccine Record, an Online Portal To Immunization Records For IDNYC Card Holders

January 19, 2017

The Health Department, the Mayor’s Office of Immigrant Affairs, and the Human Resources Administration announced that parents, guardians, and other individuals with IDNYC cards can go online to My Vaccine Record to access their own or their children’s official immunization records from the Citywide Immunization Registry. Previously, immunization records were accessible to healthcare providers online, but the public needed to contact the Health Department and wait up to two weeks to get a record.

Health Department Launches Social Media Campaign To Encourage Screenings For Sexually Transmitted Infections

January 13, 2017

The Health Department today unveiled a social media ad campaign to encourage screenings for sexually transmitted infections (STIs) among young women, young men who have sex with men (MSM) and adolescents aged 15 to 19. The campaign will run for four weeks on social media as well as dating apps primarily used by MSM, and is part of the de Blasio administration’s effort to expand and improve the City’s STD clinics. Adolescents and young adults are disproportionately at risk for STIs, including HIV.

Animal Care Centers of NYC’s Cats Quarantined for H7N2 Virus Receive Care, Monitoring at ASPCA Temporary Shelter

January 12, 2017

In coordination with the New York City Health Department (DOHMH) and Animal Care Centers of NYC (ACC), the ASPCA® (American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals®) – with funding provided by Maddie’s Fund® – has established a temporary quarantine shelter in Queens to care for hundreds of cats exposed to the avian flu virus, H7N2.