COVID-19 shot update

UPDATED OCT. 2: The updated COVID-19 shot is now available for anyone without insurance or children with Medicaid. Visit here to learn more: COVID-19 shot in Public Health Clinic.

SEPT. 15: With the approval of a new COVID-19 shot and its upcoming arrival, we want to address some of the questions we are receiving:

  • We are unsure when the new shot will be available in our Public Health Clinic, but we hope to have them by the end of September.
  • The health department will provide the vaccine for free to those who qualify for the Kentucky Vaccine Program – those who are uninsured and children with Medicaid. The vaccine will only be available for those groups.
  • Those who qualify for the Kentucky Vaccine Program can make same-day appointments when the vaccine is available by calling 859-288-2483. We cannot make appointments until we receive the vaccine.
  • We encourage others to get the COVID-19 shot at area pharmacies or medical providers. The vaccine is expected to be at some Lexington pharmacies as early as next week.

LFCHD to hold low-cost rabies vaccination clinic

The Lexington-Fayette County Health Department will host a low-cost rabies vaccination clinic 6-9 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 14, at the North Lexington Family YMCA, 381 W. Loudon Ave.

Vaccinations will cost just $5. All cats and ferrets must be in a carrier, and all dogs must be on leashes, and all animals must be licensed. 

Rabies, a viral disease of humans, pets and wild animals, is transmitted from animals to humans by the saliva of a rabid animal, usually from a bite. Rabies vaccinations typically cost about $20, making this clinic a great value to pet owners. “A rabies shot gives protection to the pet as well as its owner and the other people of Lexington,” said Luke Mathis, LFCHD Environmental Health team leader and one of the event’s organizers. “We’re pleased to provide this useful public health service as we help Lexington be well.”

The clinic also provides pet owners with the opportunity to purchase an animal license for $8 if the animal has been spayed or neutered. A license costs $40 if the animal has not been altered or the owner has no proof of alteration. Lexington-Fayette Animal Care and Control, the Lexington Humane Society, and the YMCA of Central Kentucky are also sponsoring the event.

In the event of bad weather, the clinic date is subject to change, with the date/location to be determined later. The health department will provide updated information at and on its Facebook page at A special Facebook Event page has also been created at

Stay safe during summer heat!

Be sure to follow these summer safety tips during the heat:

  • Drink plenty of fluids. You will need to drink more fluids than your thirst level indicates. Avoid drinking alcoholic beverages or drinks with large amounts of sugar because they cause you to lose more fluid.
  • Wear sunscreen and appropriate clothing. Sunscreen should be SPF 15 or greater and applied 30 minutes before going outdoors. Choose lightweight, light-colored, loose-fitting clothing. Wear a wide-brimmed hat that will provide shade and keep your head cool.
  • Schedule outdoor activities carefully. If you must be outside, try to plan your activities so that you are outdoors either before noon or in the evening.
  • Stay indoors and, if at all possible, stay in an air-conditioned place. If your home does not have air conditioning, go to the shopping mall or public library. Even a few hours spent in air conditioning can help your body stay cooler when you go back into the heat.
  • Never leave anyone in a closed, parked vehicle.
  • Use a buddy system. When working in the heat, monitor the condition of your co-workers and have someone do the same for you.
  • Monitor those at high risk, including infants and children up to 4 years of age, people 65 and older, people who are overweight, people who overexert during work or exercise and people who are ill or on certain medications for blood pressure diuretics. Visit adults at risk at least twice a day and closely watch them for signs of heat exhaustion or heat stroke. Infants and young children need much more frequent watching.

Signs of heat-related illnesses include an extremely high body temperature (above 103°F); red, hot and dry skin (no sweating); rapid, strong pulse; throbbing headache; dizziness; nausea; confusion; muscle cramps; tiredness and unconsciousness. If someone starts to experience these symptoms, seek medical help immediately and move them to a shady spot, if outdoors, and begin cooling them using whatever methods are available. Monitor body temperature, and continue cooling efforts until the body temperature drops to 101-102°F.

Join the Photovoice project!

We are extending the deadline for you to join this project!

An exciting new addition, called Photovoice, is being incorporated into our community health improvement planning process focused on mental health. Photovoice invites participants to share their perspectives on mental health through photography, reflection and action.

We are seeking participants who live and/or work in Lexington-Fayette County to participate in 4 weekly Zoom sessions, 1 ½-2 hours per week, led by a trained facilitator in July/August 2023.

After an orientation session, participants will be asked to take photos (with a smart phone or digital camera) related to mental health in Lexington-Fayette County. The photos are then shared and discussed during the weekly sessions.

Sessions will be scheduled to meet the needs of participants as much as possible (day and evening sessions), and participants will receive a raffle ticket for each session they attend. The enrollment deadline is Friday, July 7.

To sign up:

Bat found in Meadowthorpe tests positive for rabies

The Lexington-Fayette County Health Department received word this afternoon that a bat found in Lexington has tested positive for rabies. The bat was discovered in the Meadowthorpe (40511 ZIP code) area. The health department posted signs in the area on Friday to notify residents of the discovery.

LFCHD officials continue to remind residents to make certain their pets have a current rabies vaccination. There does not appear to be any contact between neighborhood animals and the bat, but officials ask that residents keep watch on their pets. Early symptoms of rabies include a change in behavior, chewing at the bite site, fever and loss of appetite.

Bats that are active during the day or are unable to fly might be suspect for having rabies. To minimize the risk for contracting rabies, it is best never to handle any bat. If you find a bat in your home and the possibility of human exposure cannot be ruled out, contact the Division of Environmental Health and Protection at (859) 231-9791 for help with having the animal collected and submitted for rabies testing.

To prevent bats from entering your home, carefully examine your home for holes that might allow bats to enter the residence. Any openings larger than a quarter-inch by a half-inch could allow for bat entry. These openings should be blocked either with stainless steel wool or caulking in the fall or winter so you do not unintentionally trap bats within your home.

Common ways for bats to enter homes include down the chimney, through openings around the chimney, through vents, through openings behind shutters, under doors, under siding, under eaves and under shingles.

Rabies, a viral disease of humans, pets and wild animals, is transmitted from animals to humans by the saliva of a rabid animal, usually from a bite. State law requires that all dogs, cats and ferrets maintain a current rabies vaccination.

Keep a watch on air quality

Some parts of the United States are being impacted by wildfires in Canada. Health officials urge caution for those spending time outside, particularly people with some existing conditions. (Learn more from the Kentucky Department for Public Health: Air Quality).

People with asthma or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease are more likely to suffer immediately, said Rachel Keith, an associate professor of medicine at the University of Louisville, but air pollution can have long term effects on health as well.

Air pollution can trigger heart attacks, Keith said. Exposure over time can increase the risk of heart disease, some cancers and diabetes.

If people with asthma or COPD feel they need to use inhalers but it’s not helping, “and you still feel like you are having that air hunger or still having an asthma attack,” it’s time to see a doctor, Keith said.

Also keep an eye out for signs of a heart attack: pain and chest pressure, nausea, lightheadedness.

The New York State Department of Health offers the following tips:

When Air Quality is Unhealthy

  • Stay indoors with windows closed. This is the best way to avoid health effects. This is especially important for at-risk groups (“sensitive populations”), like young children, older adults, people with respiratory or heart problems, and those who exercise or do strenuous work outdoors.
  • For people who spend time outdoors, wearing a well-fitting face mask is recommended.
  • If it gets hot inside, cool off with air conditioning if you can.
  • People with any symptom should contact their healthcare provider.

For the most up-to-date air quality information for your area, visit

Board of Health to hold special meeting and hearing May 8

The Lexington-Fayette Urban County Board of Health has rescheduled the special meeting previously set for 3 p.m. May 4, 2023, to occur during the monthly regular meeting of the Board of Health at 5:45 p.m. May 8, 2023, at the Lexington-Fayette Urban County Health Department building located at 650 Newtown Pike, Lexington, Kentucky, 40508. Attendance will be in person. The agenda can be found here: Board of Health Hearing Agenda for May 8.