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Florida Health in Seminole County Addresses County Health Rankings

By Mirna Chamorro

March 25, 2015

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
March 25, 2015

FLORIDA DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH IN SEMINOLE COUNTY ADDRESSES COUNTY HEALTH RANKINGS

SANFORD - The Florida Department of Health in Seminole County recognizes the value in measuring health outcomes and today acknowledged the sixth annual 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, much of which is available from the department at www.floridacharts.com.

“We will continue to strive to improve our ranking by measuring ourselves not only within the state, but in comparison to the national averages. We will continue to engage community partners in order to work together for the health of the community in Seminole County," said Dr. Swannie Jett, health officer of the Florida Department of Health in Seminole 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 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 Seminole County. These rankings use data related to physical environments, social and economic factors, health behaviors and clinical care.

In Seminole 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. The Healthy Seminole Collaboration, which consists of various community partners, has been created and meets monthly to evaluate and work on the community goals and strategies outlined in the CHIP. The CHIP is an ongoing community-driven initiative to identify and address the health needs in Seminole County. An important priority to be addressed is men’s health. A men’s health program will address the areas where men have poor outcomes compared to women such as suicide rates and Type 2 Diabetes related to obesity.

“Improving community health is the responsibility of all in Seminole County, not just the health department, hospitals and physician clinics. The County Health Rankings illustrate how the length and quality of life relies on individual health behaviors; social and economic factors including employment and education; housing, air and water quality that comprise the physical environment; and of course clinical care,” said Ken Peach, executive director of the Health Council of East Central Florida. “As a ‘whole community’ our job in this next year will be to unify our efforts around a common agenda of advancing good health to achieve a ranking of #1.”

“As the medical director for Seminole County EMS, I work closely with all healthcare providers in Seminole County area. We know that the state of health and healthcare in Seminole County is very good to excellent. We have worked closely with the health department and local hospitals in preparing for changes in services and we continue to ensure residents have access to care in Seminole County,” said Dr. Todd Husty, president and CEO TMH Medical Services.

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