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The Florida Department of Health works to protect, promote & improve the health of all people in Florida through integrated state, county, & community efforts.

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Florida Department of Health in Palm Beach County Reminds Floridians of Wildfire Smoke Health Risks

June 25, 2019

West Palm Beach, Fla.— Due to the smoke from the Broward County wildfires, the air quality index (AQI) for West Palm Beach is now in the “moderate” zone. The Florida Department of Health in Palm Beach County is recommending caution for those in the area who are unusually sensitive to air pollution.

Wildfire smoke can be a respiratory irritant, which can cause scratchy throat, coughing, headaches or irritated eyes and nose. Smoke can also worsen asthma, and other chronic lung or heart conditions. Dust generated from increased wildfire response activity on dirt roads may also worsen these conditions. The Florida Department of Health in Palm Beach County will continue to monitor the situation to keep the public informed.

Ways to protect yourself and your family from smoke:

  • Pay attention to local air quality reports, news coverage or health warnings related to smoke. For the latest on the air quality in your area, please check airnow.gov.

  • Avoid prolonged outdoor activities. This is especially important for children and persons with pre-existing medical conditions.

  • Follow your doctor’s advice about taking medicines and following the individual asthma management care plan if you or a loved one has asthma or other lung disease. Call your doctor if symptoms worsen.

  • If you have to be outside being prepared is key. Be mindful of the air quality conditions where you will be spending time outdoors. Stay tuned into special advisory warnings for the area.

About the Florida Department of Health

The department, nationally accredited by the Public Health Accreditation Board, works to protect, promote and improve the health of all people in Florida through integrated state, county and community efforts.

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