I need your help. A major focus of mine in the Legislature is health care and, as vice-chair of the Health Committee, I invite your input on our health future. The Onondaga County Health Department (OCHD) is seeking your feedback on two documents: the 2014-2018 Strategic Plan and the 2014-2017 Community Health Assessment and Improvement Plan. The documents and surveys are available at http://www.ongov.net/health/publicfeedback.html
After reviewing the two documents, please take the opportunity to complete the two brief surveys. These are living documents that evolve with community input. The input received from the surveys will be used to improve the health of our community, improve the programs and services we provide and also improve how this information is communicated to residents.
The Strategic Plan documents long-range priorities based on community input and aims to improve the way Onondaga County provides public health programs and services. The plan outlines the demographics of our county, the ten essential public health services, the mission, vision, and values of the department and the strategic priorities. The OCHD publishes this plan every four years, so your input is especially useful now.
The Community Health Assessment and Improvement Plan provides residents with empirical data, specifically demographic and health indicator data. Some examples are mortality rates from cancer, diabetes, and heart disease, asthma hospitalizations, and ethnic disparities with regard to infant mortality, preterm births, adolescent pregnancies, and sexually transmitted diseases. It is important to know the statistics regarding these public health concerns so that OCHD can determine the indicators and work toward finding solutions. The Community Health Assessment is mandated by the New York State Department of Health and the information gathered is invaluable to improving the public health of our county.
Please, at minimum, read the documents; they contain a wealth of information. The surveys are brief and take only a minute or two. Finally, please share this information with your neighbors and friends. The more responses we get, the better will be the results. As always, you’re welcome to contact me at 699-9585 or email@example.com on this or other topics.