National Public Health Week

By Leslie Terjesen on Monday, April 4, 2016

 

“The home and neighborhood you live in can impact your health and your opportunity to engage in healthy behaviors. It is important for our residents to live in communities where they can be safe and active throughout the day” said Ocean County Freeholder Deputy Director Gerry P. Little, Liaison to the Ocean County Board of Health.  “During National Public Health Week 2016, there will be several subjects addressed as we work to become the Healthiest Nation by 2030.”

There are many barriers to health in our homes and neighborhoods that we need to overcome, including;

In Our Homes:

**Thirty-five million homes in America have at least one health or safety hazard.

**Over 24 million homes have lead-based paint hazards, which put children at risk of lead

    poisoning.

**Between 20-30 percent of asthma cases are linked to modifiable conditions in people’s

    houses. Populations that suffer from disproportionate rates of asthma, such as children,

    women, low-income residents, blacks and Puerto Ricans, also face a higher chance of living in

    hazardous homes.

 

In Our Neighborhoods:

**In 2013, nearly 5,000 pedestrians were killed in traffic collisions.  The majority of these

   deaths are in low-income communities and communities of color, where sidewalks and 

   streets   are more likely to be poorly maintained.

**Nearly 50 percent of Americans live in communities with unhealthy levels of air pollution

    associated with car exhaust and industrial pollution.5

**In 2015, there were more than 50,000 incidents of gun violence in America that resulted in

    injuries and deaths.7

Daniel Regenye, Ocean County Health Department (OCHD) Public Health Coordinator, said, “These statistics are certainly concerning. But remember: There are evidence-based ways to design new neighborhoods and improve existing ones to help keep us safer and healthier. Everyone has the opportunity to influence those designs and improvements and shape up your community.  The OCHD works with different coalitions that address subjects such as lead, nutrition, physical activity, safe roads, bike safety, using our Farm Markets, reducing the use of tobacco, etc. We always urge residents to call us with concerns related to our environment.

Please visit the Ocean County Health Department website at www.ochd.org or follow us on Twitter@OCpublichealth or like us on Facebook.