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History of the Health Department: 1970's

The Northern Kentucky District Board of Health was created, joining the Health Department in Campbell and Kenton counties. The total expenditures in the first year as a district came to $462,308.22 and the district health department provided 33,306 services to the people of Northern Kentucky. James Dressman (Kenton County) and Andrew Jolly (Campbell County) were Judge Executives at this time.

When the District Health Department was formed, it had 47 employees, and was divided into six departments: Office of Biostatistics Research and Planning; Environmental Services; Medical Services; Administrative Services; Health Education and Nursing—all under the Health Officer.

The first meeting of the District Board was held on July 5, 1972, at the Town and Country Restaurant in Covington. The Chair was Frederick Stine, MD, and the Health Officer was William V. Banks.

The first district administrative office was located at 24 W. Fourth St. in Newport.

As of 1973, the District office was relocated to 413 Central Ave. in Newport; the Campbell County Health Center was located at 401 Park Ave. in Newport; and the Covington/Kenton County Health Center was located 15th Street in Covington.

1974A dietitian conducts a WIC visit in the 1970s
The Health Department began offering WIC services for the first time. WIC is a federal program created by Congress in 1972 to  provide nutrition and health education, as well as supplements for nutritious foods for pregnant women, nursing mothers, infants and children considered at health risk because of poor nutrition and low income. Kentucky was the first state to offer WIC. In 1974, the Health Department’s WIC program had a caseload of 400 patients. By August 1978, WIC had grown to 1,598 patients.

After only two years, the Campbell County Fiscal Court considered leaving the district, but decided to remain in the district with the creation of a Campbell County Local Board of Health-funded medically indigent tax.

The District office moved from its quarters at 412 Central Ave. in Newport to the Union Light, Heat and Power building at 107 Brent Spence Square in Covington.

In February, as swine flu threatened the United States, 48 million Americans got the swine flu vaccination only to learn it was a false alarm. Only a few hundred cases were recorded nationally. The Health Department held vaccination clinics in county health centers and off-site.

The Health Department started offering community-wide flu clinics.

The District bought the 12 E. Fifth St. building, Newport, in 1977. It opened to the public in 1979 as the Maternal Child Health Center. 

Two hundred and fifty dogs were vaccinated in September and October at 10 mass rabies immunization clinics.

The 1977 mission statement read: “The purpose of the Northern Kentucky District Health Department is to improve, protect and maintain the general public health and make each individual aware of his responsibility in maintaining the health of himself, his family and his community.”

Northern Kentucky received an additional $25,500 from the state health department as an incentive to remain a district health department.

The Kenton County Health Center moved into a newly remodeled building at 912 Scott St. in Covington on March 22 and 23 from a temporary center at 823 Scott St. The services at the new building at 912 included STD testing, tuberculosis, adult health and lead testing.

The Health Department began offering a program for senior citizens 55 and over including diabetes screening, hearing tests and cancer screenings.

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