To the Editor:
(Plain Press, September 2015) In the July issue of the Plain Press, the following article appeared “Community Health Improvement Plan seeks health and wellness for all people in Cuyahoga County”. In it, the writers quoted Cuyahoga County’s Health Commissioner, Terry Allen, when he said, “Everyone deserves the right to be healthy.”
As participants in the Health Improvement Partnership (HIP-Cuyahoga), we take this seriously and are committed to a partnership that must include health care providers, non-profit organizations, hospital systems, grocers, government entities and most importantly our selves. If we are to improve health outcomes by eliminating structural racism, providing access to healthy eating and active living, establishing a true partnership between clinical and public health and increasing our ability to manage chronic illness, changes have to be made and partnerships must be formed.
A healthy population is not only one that combines excellent health outcomes (reducing obesity, drug and alcohol abuse, mental illness, heart attacks and cancer rates; and preventing diabetes, strokes and suicides). It is combining care with many other things that influence whether or not we are a healthy community. This health improvement plan has an excellent perspective on how to do this by combining health care; how institutions view their patients; how many things influence our health; and how we can take charge of our own health.
We strongly urge you to get involved in the implementation of this plan. Please call Martha Halko or Nichelle Shaw at 216-3092447 or go to the HIP-Cuyahoga website at www.hipcuyahoga.org.
Take care of your health.
Gloria Aron and Gail Long