WHAT: Chicago’s mold count today hit 54,000 – well above the 50,000 threshold that signals a dangerous air quality warning. This is the third time that a high mold alert has been declared in the 2011 allergy reporting season. “Headaches, sinus congestion, runny noses and fatigue will be common among Chicagoans,” said Dr. Joseph Leija, an allergist who performs the official allergy count.
WHO: Dr. Joseph Leija, an allergist at Loyola’s Gottlieb Memorial Hospital, is solely certified by the National Allergy Bureau to perform the official daily allergy count for the Midwest. “The rain, the barometric pressure change, the humidity, the warm, humid weather – all these elements combine to create the dangerously high mold count,” he said of his unusual morning count. “Allergy sufferers should stay indoors, keep the windows closed, use their air conditioners and take their allergy medications.”
The Gottlieb Allergy Count is available to the public, in English, Polish and Spanish, via Twitter and at www.GottliebHospital.org. It is also available through our allergy hotline at (866)4-POLLEN, (866-476-5536).
WHEN: Dr. Leija is available to talk with reporters today about the high count, show what mold spores look like, offer tips and demonstrate how the allergy count is calculated.
Loyola’s Gottlieb Memorial Hospital, 701 W. North Ave., Melrose Park, IL 60160
WHY: Chicago’s mold count is dangerously high and the city is on alert for poor air quality.