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General Zika Virus Information

Information regarding Zika prevention, transmission, pregnant women and Zika, testing, travel and more is included. More infoClick here for more information on Zika...

Ebola Virus Disease
West Nile Virus Activity Widespread in Missouri

As of September 8, 2015, the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services (DHSS) has received reports of West Nile virus (WNV) activity in all parts of the state. Seven neuroinvasive human cases (St. Louis City-3, St. Louis County-3, and Schuyler County-1) and four positive blood donors (St. Louis, St. Charles, Miller, and Cape Girardeau Counties) have recently been identified. Eight equine cases have been reported year-to-date (Howell, Oregon, Lawrence, Gentry, Cole, Warren, Washington, and Miller Counties). Equine cases can be a sentinel event for human cases, with equine cases preceding those occurring in people. Additionally, 25 dead bird sightings have been noted across the state in species that are known to be sensitive to WNV infection. Currently, no testing of sick or dead wild birds for WNV is being routinely conducted. Two Missouri counties (St. Louis and Jefferson) have reported numerous positive mosquito samples they collected and tested throughout the summer.

pdfRead the full press release here.

Ebola Virus Disease
Ebola Virus Disease.

With the coverage of Ebola Virus Disease (EVD) in the news, there has been a lot of interest in learning more about this disease. Ebola is not significantly different from other diseases that require isolation and quarantine.

The Moniteau County Health Center also has emergency response plans in place for all different types of major health events that could occur, including a response to a case of a serious illness such as Ebola. We are also communicating with the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services (DHSS), and keeping up-to-date on the quickly evolving isolated cases nationally and outbreak internationally. We are sharing CDC guidance and other new information with our community partners regularly.

If you would like to learn more about Ebola Virus Disease, please visit the links below:

Prevent Animal Bites
What to do if you are bitten by an animal.

What To Do If You Are Bitten

  1. Immediately flush the wound with soap and water.
  2. Contact your personal physician or medical professional to determine if further treatment is necessary.
  3. Notify the Moniteau County Health Center of the animal bite. The health department will want to know:
    1. A description and location of the animal.
    2. Circumstances of the bite.
    3. The animal's health/behavior at the time of the bite.
    4. Complete address and phone of the animal's owner.
    5. The animal's vaccination history.

What About Rabies?

Rabies is a VIRAL DISEASE that can affect most warm-blooded animals. Transmission of rabies occurs when the VIRUS-laden saliva of a rabid animal is introduced by a bite, or otherwise, into a fresh break in the skin. Picking up a dead animal or petting the fur is NOT considered to be sufficient to transmit the disease.

Do not think that rabid animals can be spotted easily because they drool or foam at the mouth. That happens only some of the time. Rabid animals appear to act abnormal and may stagger, appear paralyzed, act restless, change the tone of their bark, or appear to be choking. Rabid animals are not always aggressive and may act unusually docile or friendly.

Nearly 90% of rabies cases are in Wild Animals. The worst culprits are SKUNKS, RACCOONS, BATS, FERRETS and FOXES. Other known rabies carriers include CATS, DOGS, DOMESTIC LIVESTOCK, DEER, GROUNDHOGS, MUSKRATS, OPOSSUM, WEASELS and OTHER CARNIVORES. Animals that are rarely, if ever, infected include rabbits, mice, squirrels, rats, hamsters, gerbils, moles and guinea pigs.

What About The Animal That Bit Me?

It is important to confirm whether or not the animal that bit you could have been rabid at the time of the bite. Detain or hold the animal if it can be done safely. A HEALTHY DOG OR CAT that bites a person should be confined and observed for TEN (10) DAYS. Any illness during this quarantine period should be immediately evaluated by a Veterinarian and reported to the Health Department. If signs of rabies develop, the animal should be humanely killed and its head provided to the Health Department for examination by the State laboratory. Please place the intact head in double plastic bags and refrigerate, but do not freeze. Any STRAY OR UNWANTED DOG OR CAT that bites a person may be killed immediately. Avoid damage to the animal's head, which is provided to the Health Department for rabies examination. A WILD OR EXOTIC ANIMAL that bites a person should be immediately killed avoiding damage to the head, which is needed for testing by the Health Department. There is no 100% safe quarantine time for wild animals.

What If I Can't Find The Animal?

Be sure to make note of the description of the animal and the location, and the circumstances of the bite. If possible, have friends or family members keep looking for the animal. The California Police Department may be able to assist in locating and capturing a dog.

Any bite or scratch by a wild, carnivorous animal should be regarded as a possible exposure to rabies. If the biting animal was a dog or cat, and it is healthy after the TEN (10) DAYS, rabies would no longer be a concern.

While it is up to the PHYSICIAN to make the ultimate recommendation, the decision to administer treatment to prevent rabies can be delayed for several days. However, if the biting animal cannot be confirmed rabies free, the decision to administer antibody and vaccine should be based on the behavior of the animal, the presence of rabies in the area, and the circumstances of the bite.

Some Do's and Don'ts

  • Do have pets vaccinated against rabies.
  • Do keep your pet on a leash when outside.
  • Do obtain a dog license for your dog.
  • Do support animal population control.
  • Don't touch strange live or sick animals.
  • Don't make pets of wild animals.
  • Don't allow your cat/dog to roam free.
  • Don't touch any injured animals including your own injured pets.
Missouri commits to reducing premature birth rates by 8 percent by 2014
Missouri commits to reducing premature
birth rates by 8 percent by 2014

As part of a continued commitment to giving Missouri's children a healthy start in life, the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services has set the goal of reducing the premature birth rate in Missouri by 8 percent by the year 2014.

The department will continue work to initiate, maintain and accelerate programs and policies that are aimed at reducing the premature birth rate. It will also take steps to build a wider awareness of Missouri's prematurity rates and other maternal-child health indicators.

“We know how important it is for Missouri's children to have the advantage of the healthiest start possible in life," said Director Margaret Donnelly." That is why we are so supportive of programs and policies that can reduce premature births and infant mortality rates."

This commitment is part of an ongoing effort by the State of Missouri to promote healthy mothers and children. In 2011, Gov. Jay Nixon signed House Bill 555 which created the Missouri Task Force on Prematurity and Infant Mortality. This task force is seeking evidence-based and cost-effective approaches to reducing Missouri's preterm birth and infant mortality rates.

Together, these initiatives underscore Missouri's ongoing commitment to reduce the rate of premature births and infant mortality in Missouri.

Pertussis (Whooping Cough)
Pertussis Is Serious!
Protect yourself and others around you by getting a pertussis vaccine!
What is Pertussis? Pertussis (whooping cough) is a highly contagious, vaccine-preventable respiratory disease that can be passed easily from person-to-person. Pertussis is caused by a bacteria found in the mouth, nose and throat of an infected person and is spread when that person coughs, sneezes or talks. Pertussis is a year-round disease that peaks in the fall and winter during cold and flu season.
What are the symptoms? Pertussis usually starts with cold and flu-like symptoms; and after about two weeks the cough becomes more severe. Pertussis is known for uncontrollable coughing which can make it hard to breathe. After a coughing episode, someone with pertussis needs to take deep breaths which often times can result in a "whooping" sound, and commonly vomits and feels very tired. Between episodes, there may be no signs of illness. Pertussis can last for weeks and even months if not treated early.
How do we prevent it? The best way to protect against pertussis is immunization.
Who should get the pertussis vaccine?

Infants and Children:
The recommended pertussis vaccine for
children is called DTaP. For maximum protection against pertussis,
children need five DTaP shots.

  • The first three shots are given at 2, 4, and 6 months of age.
  • The fourth shot is given at 15 through 18 months of age.
  • The fifth shot (booster dose) is given when a child enters school,
    at 4 through 6 years of age.

11 years through Adulthood:
The Centers for Disease Control and
Prevention recommends a single booster (Tdap) for 11 year olds through
adulthood and especially for those who are in close contact with a baby,
including parents, siblings, grandparents and caregivers. Tdap is
required for students beginning in the eighth grade.

Pregnant Women:
Pregnant women who have not been previously
vaccinated with Tdap should get one dose of Tdap during the third
trimester or immediately postpartum, before leaving the hospital or
birthing center. Tdap will protect the mother at the time of delivery,
making her less likely to transmit pertussis to her infant.

pdfDownload a Fact Sheet pdfDownload Additional Info

Previously Featured Information

Missouri's theme is "Public Health: A Wise Investment: Save Lives, Save Money".

Investing in prevention and public health can make an enormous difference. And it starts with each of us taking the simple preventive steps that lead to better health.

For each day of National Public Health Week, the American Public Health Association has developed a theme. Those themes are listed below, along with things you can do to develop better health habits in your home, workplace and community. Click on the links for more details and ways you can make each theme work for you. A poster and an ecard promoting public health can be found at

  • Monday, April 1: Ensuring a Safe, Healthy Home for Your Family: Health and safety begin at home. Make prevention a fun family tradition.
  • Tuesday, April 2: Providing a Safe Environment for Children at School: Schools are the perfect setting for improving child health. Plus, children's health is a rallying point few can ignore.
  • Wednesday, April 3: Creating a Healthy Workplace: Wellness and safety in the workplace are good for health and for business. Let's make prevention work for us.
  • Thursday, April 4: Protecting You While You're on the Move: Safety on the go is often in our own hands, but it's also tied to community design. Together, we can turn our streets into roads to better health.
  •  Friday, April 5: Empowering a Healthy Community: Support public health efforts that create healthy opportunities for all. Good health is a community affair.

Public Health Week
National Public Health Week April 2- 6, 2012
Five Days, Five Essential Topics For A Healthy Lifestyle
Since 1995, communities across the country have celebrated National Public Health Week (NPHW) each April by highlighting public health achievements and raising awareness of issues important to improving the public's health.

With nearly 1 million Americans dying every year from diseases that could be prevented, even small preventive changes and community initiatives can make a big difference in living healthier lives. Here are just a few ideas we have for you each day of National Public Health week.
read more about Easter SafetyRead more here ...
Easter Safety
Giving Safe Easter Gifts
Parents Beware of Giving Baby Chicks or Ducklings as Easter Gifts
Easter usually makes us think of brightly colored eggs, baskets full of treats and large chocolate bunnies. These traditions can be safe and enjoyable for kids and adults. However, the Easter tradition of giving baby chicks and ducklings as gifts to young children can lead to serious illness. Because they are so soft and cute, many people do not consider that young birds often carry harmful bacteria called Salmonella. Every spring, some children become infected with Salmonella after receiving a baby chick or duckling for Easter.

read more about Easter SafetyRead more here ...