This press release published at the request of the Florida Department of Health in Alachua County.
The Florida Department of Health in Alachua County recognizes the value in measuring health outcomes and today acknowledged the 2019 County Health Rankings & Roadmaps tool released by the University of Wisconsin and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. This study highlights the many community factors that influence health and uses established data.
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“County health rankings provide an opportunity to highlight the collaboration between public health departments and community partners,” stated Paul Myers, Administrator of the Florida Department of Health in Alachua County. “Together, we are making progress in improving health in Alachua County.”
These rankings are a snapshot of the health of counties across the country and they emphasize that health is not a singular effort but a combined work in progress across all community partners. The health department works in collaboration with local governments, non-profit organizations, health care facilities, business groups, schools, faith-based organizations and many other stakeholders to improve the health of all people in Alachua County. These rankings use data related to physical environments, social and economic factors, health behaviors and clinical care.
In Alachua County, the Community Health Improvement Plan (CHIP) is designed to address specific opportunities for improved health that have been identified by the community. The department has partnered with many stakeholders to implement the CHIP and collaborates regularly to track progress.
Through collaboration with UF Health — including the UF Health Shands family of hospitals, the UF Health Physicians outpatient practices and the University of Florida’s colleges of Medicine, Dentistry, Nursing, Pharmacy, Public Health & Health Professions and Veterinary Medicine — as well as the UF Emerging Pathogens Institute and the UF Student Health Care Center, public health programs flourish and provide stewardship opportunities for current and future public health professionals.
Partnerships with the Oral Health Coalition of Alachua County and the United Health Foundation, two public health dental clinics continue to increase access to needed dental services.
Alachua County’s WIC (Women, Infants and Children) Program, in cooperation with UF Health and North Florida Regional Medical Center promotes and provides resources to support breast feeding for new mothers.
“The Alachua County Board of County Commissioners recognizes the value of a robust public health system and provides significant support to the Florida Department of Health in Alachua County,” stated Board Chair Charles Chestnut. “We appreciate and support our county health department and recognize the progress we continue to make in ensuring that citizens and visitors have access to care and healthy choices.”
“Alachua County Public Schools values its long history of partnering with the Florida Department of Health in Alachua County,” stated Superintendent Karen Clarke. “We are committed to the health and academic progress of our students and embrace our inclusive approach with the health department.”
For more information, contact Roger Dolz at 352-334-8873 or Roger.Dolz@flhealth.gov.