Department of Health Celebrates National Public Health Week
New Mexicans Urged to Learn More About Public Health Clinics and Services
SANTA FE – National Public Health Week is April 4-10. The theme for this year’s campaign is “Public Health is Where You Are.” It is a reminder that where people live – physically, socially, emotionally, can have an effect on their overall health.
“Public health promotes health for individuals in the community they live in,” said David R. Scrase, M.D. Acting Department of Health Secretary. “It emphasizes the prevention of disease and other risk factors that can impact an individual, a family and a community. The New Mexico Department of Health (DOH) together with our partners throughout the state works to promote health and well-being and improve health outcomes for all people in New Mexico.”
The New Mexico DOH has more than 50 public health offices located throughout the state and provides services such as family planning, immunizations (available for children through age 18 and limited for adults), and vital records (birth and death certificates).
“New Mexicans need to know that there are public health resources available to support them throughout our state,” said Jeff Lara, Acting Public Health Division Director. “DOH works diligently to provide residents with the tools and information they need to make informed choices to lead healthier lives and build stronger communities. This is the core value of public health.” Here are some of the additional ways New Mexico’s local public health offices work to keep residents healthy from the start:
Women, Infants and Children (WIC) is the special supplemental nutrition assistance program that identifies health and nutritional risks for mothers and their children. Enrolled parents and guardians get nutrition education and receive monthly food benefits for high nutrient foods.
Children’s Medical Services (CMS) coordinates medical care for eligible children and youth with Special Health Care Needs (CYSHCN) ages 0-21 . It also manages the Newborn Genetic Screening Program and the Newborn Hearing Screening Program.
The Preventive Medicine Clinics at local public health offices provide testing/treatment for tuberculosis and sexually transmitted infections, and breast and cervical cancer screening in addition to family planning services and immunizations;
Disease Prevention concentrates on the prevention and control of infectious diseases with outreach, surveillance, outbreak response, testing/treatment, contact follow-up, and referrals for sexually transmitted infections, tuberculosis, HIV/AIDS and more. The team provides harm reduction counseling, facilitates needle exchange/disposal to reduce disease transmission, and Narcan training/dispensing for opiate overdose prevention.
NMDOH’s Health Promotion Teams work statewide with community groups, coalitions and councils to support initiatives related to healthy lifestyles and environments, health policies and local projects.
There are many other public health services provided by DOH. Learn all about them by visiting NMHealth.org.
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