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Dangerous Mold Count Triggers Air Quality Alert

WHAT:  The Midwest is experiencing very dangerous levels of mold in the air, which will result in headaches, itchy throats and runny noses for those with sensitive respiratory systems. The Gottlieb Allergy Count, the official allergy count for the Midwest, reports that today’s  mold count is 125,000, a high for 2013, and well over the 50,000 threshold for an air quality warning.

“The heat, the humidity and the rain have created a dangerous concentration of mold that is a real health hazard for many in the Midwest today,” said Dr. Joseph Leija, an allergist who performs the Gottlieb Allergy Count, the only consistent allergy count for the Midwest. “Today is no TGIF as many will be running to their allergists for relief."

The official Gottlieb Allergy Count today is: trees- none, grass - none, mold – very high (air alert status). weeds – low and ragweed – low.  “Run the air conditioning, stay indoors and take your allergy medication,” advised Dr. Leija, who has performed the Gottlieb Allergy Count for more than two decades.

Dr. Leija is available today for interviews with the media, to show today’s pollen catch and to demonstrate the count process. Media, please call Stasia Thompson at (708) 417-5036.

Tips from Dr. Leija to safeguard health include rinsing nasal passages with saline solution to remove trapped particles, washing your hair before sleeping at night and staying indoors in air conditioning.

WHO:  Dr. Joseph Leija, an allergist at Loyola’s Gottlieb Memorial Hospital, is solely certified by the National Allergy Bureau to perform the daily allergy count for the Midwest.

The Gottlieb Allergy Count is available free to the public via Twitter at GottliebAllergy, www.GottliebHospital.org and  1-866-4-POLLEN (476-5536).
WHY:  An air quality alert has been called today due to the high concentration of mold spores in the air – the threshold for an air quality alert is 50,000 and today’s count is 125,000.

Loyola University Health System (LUHS) is a member of Trinity Health. Based in the western suburbs of Chicago, LUHS is a quaternary care system with a 61-acre main medical center campus, the 36-acre Gottlieb Memorial Hospital campus and more than 30 primary and specialty care facilities in Cook, Will and DuPage counties. The medical center campus is conveniently located in Maywood, 13 miles west of the Chicago Loop and 8 miles east of Oak Brook, Ill. The heart of the medical center campus is a 559-licensed-bed hospital that houses a Level 1 Trauma Center, a Burn Center and the Ronald McDonald® Children's Hospital of Loyola University Medical Center. Also on campus are the Cardinal Bernardin Cancer Center, Loyola Outpatient Center, Center for Heart & Vascular Medicine and Loyola Oral Health Center as well as the LUC Stritch School of Medicine, the LUC Marcella Niehoff School of Nursing and the Loyola Center for Fitness. Loyola's Gottlieb campus in Melrose Park includes the 255-licensed-bed community hospital, the Professional Office Building housing 150 private practice clinics, the Adult Day Care, the Gottlieb Center for Fitness, Loyola Center for Metabolic Surgery and Bariatric Care and the Loyola Cancer Care & Research at the Marjorie G. Weinberg Cancer Center at Melrose Park.

Media Relations

Stasia Thompson
Media Relations
(708) 216-5155
thoms@lumc.edu
Anne Dillon
Media Relations
(708) 216-8232
adillon@lumc.edu