Washburn County Health & Human Services was awarded $8,166 from the Wisconsin Department of Health Services to improve environmental public health in Washburn County by reducing the burden of Carbon Monoxide poisoning in Washburn County through outreach and education.

“According to the 2017 County Environmental Health Profiles, Washburn County’s rate of ER visits related to Carbon Monoxide poisoning is 28.1 per 100,000, which is far in excess of the State-wide rate of 7.9,” said Cheri Nickell, Washburn County Health Officer. “This grant will allow us to reach those most at risk.”

The Health Department will be working with community partners to educate residents of Washburn County about how to decrease their risk of Carbon Monoxide poisoning, as well as providing carbon monoxide detectors to those who cannot afford to purchase them.  “Many people are not aware that 2009 WisconsinState law Act 205 says every home that has any of the following – an attached garage, a fireplace or any gas operated appliance, must have a working carbon monoxide detector on every floor. While there are other steps people can take to reduce their risk of Carbon Monoxide poisoning, having a working detector can save your family’s lives,” said Nickell.  

The project in Washburn County is one of eight environmental public health projects being funded throughout the state through the Taking Action with Data funding opportunity from the Wisconsin Environmental Public Health Tracking Program, which is housed at the Wisconsin Department of Health Services.

The Health Department will be partnering with the Spooner Fire District, the Washburn County Fuel Assistance Program and with Washburn County WIC this fall to provide Carbon Monoxide education and detectors to those in need. In addition, information will be posted to the county website:


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