Grassroots 24/7 Crisis Assistance - 410-531-6677 (local) or 2-1-1 (statewide)
Walk-in Assistance 11:00 a.m.-7:00 p.m., 7 Days/Week at Grassroots Crisis Center 
Resources and Referrals - 410-313-6202 

For additional information and resources click above or visit HoCoOpioidHelp

Breaking the Cycle of Youth Suicide in Howard County

Youth Suicide Prevention Program Uses Multiple Tactics to Help Save Lives

Suicide was the second leading cause of death for people ages 10-24 in 2017.  In Howard County, suicide was the leading cause of death for youth ages 15-19 between 2014-2016.  According to the Maryland Youth Risk Behavior Survey, 1 in 6 high school students and 1 in 5 middle school students have “seriously considered attempting suicide”. 

On February 28, 2019, County Executive Ball and the Howard County Health Department  announced a plan to reduce youth suicide in Howard County. Strategies include increasing awareness and reducing the stigma around suicide/mental health, educating the community about how to recognize risk factors and warning signs, demonstrating how to talk to someone about suicide, and linking youth to appropriate resources. The evidence-based plan, accompanied by an “It’s OK to Ask” outreach campaign, encourages both youth and adults to talk openly about suicide and suicide prevention. 

Health Department staff will be working in the community to provide specialized presentations and training for those who would like to bring Youth Suicide Prevention Program components to their organizations and groups.  A Teen Mental Health Ambassador program will be implemented in high schools throughout the county.  Mother and Daughter with It's OK to Ask suicide prevention campaign information

It’s OK to Ask” campaign materials, additional information, resources and training are available at, or by contacting Kayla Blasher, Health Department Youth Suicide Prevention Coordinator at 410-313-6240.

If you, or someone you know is in crisis, contact: 

  • Grassroots Crisis Intervention Center 24/7 at 410-531-6677 or
  • text HOME to 741741 (Crisis Text Line)

Learn suicide warning signs and get tips about how to start a conversation by visiting 


Photos and video of the Youth Suicide Prevention campaign announcement may be found at:


Community Health Needs Assessment Survey - Input Requested

Take part in the Howard County Community Health Needs Assessment Survey and weigh in on the health needs of Howard County.  Your input will help shape the future of health and wellness in the County.  Go to . 

You will also have the opportunity to look at the preliminary data from the Howard County Health Assessment Survey (HCHAS).

March is Colorectal Cancer MonthColorectal Cancer Purple ribbon

Colorectal cancer (cancer of the colon or rectum) is the third most common cancer in the United States and the second leading cause of death from cancer. Colorectal cancer affects people in all racial and ethnic groups and is most often found in people age 50 and older. Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month is a great time to spread the word about the importance of getting screened for colorectal cancer.  For more information about colorectal cancer and the services provided by the Health Department, visit our Colorectal Cancer Program page by clicking here.

Seasonal Flu Clinics

Walk-In hours. Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday. 8:30 a.m. - 4:00 p.m. No appointment necessary.
Wednesday clinics are 9:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.
Howard County Health Department 
8930 Stanford Blvd.
Columbia, MD  21045


Lead Information & Resources

Visit the following Health Department pages:

 The Doctor Is In - Episode Three - Public Health 101 

The Doctor Is In logo

The third episode of the Health Department podcast, The Doctor Is In is now available on Howard Community College’s Dragon Digital Radio.  It is no surprise that the words public health conjure up images of health inspectors investigating restaurants or perhaps a clinic for mothers and their babies.  While both are accurate, there is much more to public health than meets the eye.  In fact, it is often said that when public health is working, it is invisible. We’ll talk to three people working in very different areas of public health. You can hear all of the episodes of The Doctor Is In at: 

Featured Video

The Bonavitacola Family shares their experience with opioid overdose  and how it can happen in any family.

Opioid/Heroin Overdose Prevention Training

For more information about substance use/abuse and prevention see our Behavioral Health page.  Opioid Overdose Response (Narcan) Training is now provided on a "drop-in" basis twice a month.  For questions or more information call 410-313-6202 or contact  (You must reside, work or attend school in Howard County to participate.) 

March 5, 2019

March 28, 2019



Howard County Health Department
8930 Stanford Blvd.
Columbia, MD  21045

April 2, 2019

April 25, 2019



Howard County Health Department
8930 Stanford Blvd.
Columbia, MD  21045

May 7, 2019

May 30, 2019



Howard County Health Department
8930 Stanford Blvd.
Columbia, MD  21045

An Opioid Overdose Response Program Information video is available for viewing online. To view, click on the following link to Opioid/Heroin Overdose Training.

Suicide Prevention App for Smart Phones


Apple App Store:

Google Play Store:


Rabies Vaccinations for Your Pets 

Ttwo female vet techs with dog on exam tablehe Howard County Health Department, in cooperation with the Animal Control and Adoption Center sponsor monthly local vaccination clinics to protect your pet from the rabies virus.
Bring your dog, cat, or ferret for a discounted vaccination the 3rd Thursday of each month.
Location:  8576 Davis Road
                  Columbia, MD 21045  
Time:  Every 3rd Thursday
    Between the hours of
12:00pm and 1:30pm

Cost: $5.00 cash or check
Payable to “Director of Finance”

•    All pets must be on a leash or in a carrier!
•    Pets must be at least 3 months of age to receive a vaccination.
•    Re-vaccinate animals by the 1 or 3 year vaccination expiration date.
•    Please bring proof of any previous vaccinations. For cats and dogs you will need a copy of the previous rabies vaccine from your veterinarian. This will allow us to document a 3 year vaccination on your new certificate.

For more information, contact:
Bureau of Environmental Health at 
(410) 313-1773
Animal Control and Adoption Center at 
(410) 313-2780

Food-borne Illnesses

Important: If you think you are sick due to eating bad food or food product, contact the Bureau of Environmental Health at 410-313-1772.  After business cartoon of a tomato inundated by bacteria hours, leave a message with your call back information and we will return your call first thing the morning of the following day.

Calendar of Events

Friday, 8 March, 2019

12:00 PM – 1:00 PM Talk Saves Lives Presentation – HCHD Barton Room

1:00 PM - 3:30 PM Chronic Pain Management Workshop - East Columbia Library

6:30 PM - 8:30 PM Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc. Pink Goes Red for Heart Health

Wednesday, 13 March, 2019

2:00 PM - 4:00 PM Turf Valley Wellness Fair 2019

5:00 PM - 6:30 PM Local Behavioral Health Authority Board Meeting

Friday, 15 March, 2019
9:00 AM – 12:15 PM E-Cigarettes and Vaping Resurrection-St. Paul School, Ellicott City, MD

2:00 PM – 3:30 PM  Preventing Youth Access to Tobacco and E-cigarettes – HCHD Barton Room

Tuesday, 19 March, 2019

9:00 AM - 1:00 PM 2019 Annual PepsiCo Wellness Fair

Wednesday, 20 March 2019
6:00 PM – 7:30 PM Talk Saves Lives Presentation – HCHD Barton Room

Saturday, 23 March, 2019

11:00 AM - 2:00 PM Youth Opportunity Fair – Long Reach High School

12:00 PM - 4:00 PM Howard County General Hospital Latino Health Fair - Wilde Lake Interfaith Center

Thursday, 28 March 2019

6:30 PM - 8:30 PM Howard County Premier of Heroine Still Kills - Howard High School

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