What Is Public Health?

It's present everywhere, every day and in everybody's life. Many residents in Haywood County are not even aware of this silent force in their lives, Public health affects us all, ensuring that food service in our restaurants is safe to eat, keeping our water clean, making sure our children are vaccinated against dangerous diseases, and generally contributing to the quality of life in our county.

The Haywood County Health Department wants you to know more about the benefits of public health and that's why we're celebrating North Carolina Public Health Month in April.

"Public Health is a quiet miracle, ensuring that our most basic and critical life needs are met," said Haywood County Health Director Carmine Rocco. "Every week, our 70 staff members work together to help address specific health issues, from the flu and good prenatal care to restaurant sanitation; and we offer a broad range of education programs on nutrition, smoking cessation and many other things. But because public health generally works to prevent problems, it often goes unnoticed."

Here are just a few of the activities the Haywood County Health Department has coordinated in recent months:

  • Healthy Haywood kicked off the most successful Fitness Challenge to date, with a whopping 2,937 participants who'll be working out up to 24 times for just $10 at area fitness centers through early May. Healthy Haywood is a program of the Health Department and numous community partners, and is an award-winning, certified Healthy Carolinians partnership.
  • The Health Department worked with county restaurants and bars to bring about a smooth transition to a new anti-smoking law that went into effect in January.
  • Vaccinated thousands of citizens against the H1N1 virus and provided ongoing community education during the fall of 2009 and on through the winter of 2010.

The public is encouraged to find out more about public health activities and policies by attending monthly meetings of the Haywood County Board of Health. The next regular meeting is scheduled for 6 p.m., Tuesday, May 11 at the health department.

Want to know more about Public Health? Check out the following links: