May 29, 2002
SET TO RELEASE HEALTH PRIORITIES
Charlotte, NC – Mecklenburg Healthy Carolinians, a collaboration of community groups and individuals seeking to change health behaviors in Mecklenburg County, has completed the first step toward its mission. The group is preparing to release its list of “Priority Health Focus Areas.”
Planning committees based their priorities on the number of people affected, the severity or impact of the problem, the urgency with which the problem needs to be addressed, the impact of any intervention and the importance the public has placed on any particular health concern.
With these criteria in mind, Mecklenburg Healthy Carolinians has identified the following 10 priority areas:
1. Access to Health Care
2. Healthy Lifestyle Risk Behaviors (smoking, nutrition, physical activity)
3. Cardiovascular disease and Diabetes
4. Responsible Sexual Behavior
5. Substance Abuse
8. Respiratory Disease and Air Quality
9. Mental Health
10. Maternal Child Health
Planning teams are now in the process of addressing these individual priority focus areas, recruiting more diverse committee participation and seeking input from individuals and community groups.
The Healthy Carolinians Program, with guidance and support from the Governor’s office and the Mecklenburg County Health Department, is the result of North Carolina’s response to a national program titled “Healthy People: Health Objectives for the Nation.” The North Carolina model is based on the premise that individual counties are best qualified to identify and remedy their unique health concerns.