Panama City, Florida – The Bay County Health Department, Bay CHD, conducts salt water quality monitoring of beaches in accordance with the Healthy Beach Monitoring Program. Water samples are taken twice a month between March and October. Samples are checked enteric bacteria which normally inhabit the intestinal tract of humans and animals. The presence of enteric bacteria may be an index of faecal pollutionwhich can come from stormwater runoff, pets and wildlife, and human sewage. Poor the results are displayed as “Advisory» on the affected beaches.
There are no advisories for any of the Bay County sampling sites.
Healthy beach advisories are issued to protect swimmers from the increased risk of gastrointestinal illnesses. To lower level of occurrencethere may also be increased risks of upper respiratory tract infections, Rashesand ear infections. Healthy beach advisories are unrelated to necrotizing fasciitisrare complications.
Sampling is usually done on Mondays with results on Tuesday, with the exception of public holidays. Results are shared on Bay.FloridaHealth.gov, through press releases, and real time on the Florida Healthy Beaches page at FloridaHealth.gov and search for “Healthy Beaches”.
The Florida Healthy Beaches program categories are; Good = 0-35 enterococci per 100 milliliters of seawater, Moderate = 36-70 enterococci per 100 milliliters of seawater, and Poor = 71 or more enterococci per 100 milliliters of seawater. If levels are above 70, Bay CHD informs local Florida Department of Environmental Protection for further investigation.
If you have any questions, please contact the Bay County Health Department at 850-481-4806 or visit the Health Department’s Internet Beach Water Quality website at http://www.floridahealth.gov /healthy-environments/beach-water-quality/index.html.
About the Florida Department of Health
The department, nationally accredited by the Public Health Accreditation Board, strives to protect, promote, and improve the health of all Florida residents through integrated state, county, and from the community.
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