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Tuesday, April 8th, 2014

The City Oasis Project is sponsoring a community garden clean-up day at the Community Garden in the Warnersville neighborhood of Greensboro.  Everyone is invited to help clean the garden space to prepare for the upcoming growing season and learn more about this project and various community partners.  Join us on Saturday, April 12th from 10:00 am to 2:00 pm at the Prince of Peace Lutheran Church located at 1100 Curtis Street for this great community event.  All who are working will receive a light lunch and refreshments at noon.

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Monday, April 7th, 2014

April is National Child Abuse Prevention Month, a time to recognize that we all can play a part in encouraging the social and emotional well-being of children and families and ensuring that parents have the knowledge, skills and resources they need to care for their children.

Communities play an important role in protecting children. To highlight the importance of preventing child abuse and raise awareness, Family Service of the Piedmont, Guilford County Health Department, Guilford County Department of Social Services, Greensboro Police Department, Guardian Ad Litem will work in collaboration to coordinate a “Pinwheels for Prevention” garden to celebrate “Every Child Matters.”

Where:          DSS Parking Area (1203 Maple Street, Greensboro, NC)   
Monday, April 14th    11:00am-2:00pm

Pinwheels will be displayed, reminding us that we all have a role in helping children in our community thrive. Information and brochures will be available for distribution and agency representatives will be on hand to answer any questions. The prevention of child abuse has a long-term, positive impact on children, families and communities as a whole. Awareness and abuse prevention play an important role in helping families find the strength they need to raise educated, safe and healthy children.

For more information about child abuse prevention programs in our community, contact Family Service of the Piedmont at 387-6161.

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Thursday, March 20th, 2014

Each March, the American Academy of Dietetics and Nutrition celebrates National Nutrition Month.  The theme for this year’s celebration is Enjoy the Taste of Eating Right.  The campaign focuses awareness on the importance of making informed food choices and developing sound eating and physical activity habits.  Combining taste and nutrition to create healthy meals is a healthy goal for all Americans.
There is a program found in the local department of public health which works to get this message across and teach program participants how to enjoy the taste of good nutrition.  The Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children, more commonly known as WIC, is a nutrition program with a mission to safeguard the health of low-income women, infants, and children up to age 5 years who are at nutritional risk by providing nutritious foods to supplement the diet, providing education about healthy eating and by offering referrals for healthcare.
Local residents who are pregnant, who have had a baby in the past six months, who are breastfeeding an infant less than one year of age or who have a child under the age of five years may apply for program benefits.  The local agency serves those residing in Guilford County who fit into one of these categories and who have a household income no greater than 185% of the federal poverty level.  Households receiving Medicaid and/or Food Stamp benefits also meet income eligibility.
WIC nutritionists, working with the WIC Program, are health professionals, having a minimum of a four-year degree in nutrition. They are trained to guide program participants to select foods which meet their specific health and medical or nutritional needs.   Participants must have an indentified nutritional risk factor determined by the nutrition staff.  These risk factors include but are not limited to anemia, poor growth, history of poor pregnancy outcomes, inadequate dietary intake and other nutrition problems.
WIC participants receive food vouchers to buy specific healthy foods that provide key nutrients such as calcium, Vitamins A, D, E, iron, and protein.  WIC foods include milk, cheese, eggs, juice, cereal, peanut butter, dried beans/peas, infant formula, cereal, infant fruits and vegetables, whole grain bread/rice, fruits, and vegetables, and for mothers who exclusively breastfeed, tuna or salmon and carrots.  During the summer months qualified participants may also receive coupons to purchase locally grown fresh fruits and vegetables from the farmer’s market.  WIC participants are also referred to other community resources for which they may qualify.
WIC also provides trained breastfeeding peer counselors and breastfeeding educators to help mothers to learn to breastfeed and to prepare for the arrival of their newborn.  Moms learn about milk production, positioning the baby for proper latch and how to address breastfeeding concerns.  A pump loan program is also available when needed by participants.
The WIC Program is located in both High Point and Greensboro at the Guilford County Department of Public Health and is available to Guilford County residents.  In High Point, WIC is located at 501 E. Green Street and in Greensboro, at 1100 E. Wendover Avenue.
If you have questions or are interested in applying for the WIC Program, call the High Point office at (336) 641-7571 and the Greensboro office at (336) 641-3214.
USDA is an equal opportunity provider and employer.

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Friday, March 14th, 2014

The Guilford County Department of Public Health and local community partners are pleased to announce the results of the 2012-2013 Community Health Assessment (CHA) as summarized in the CHA report.  The CHA report informs community members, leaders, organizations and others about Guilford County’s pressing health issues and provides recommendations for action.
To access the report, go to: http://www.guilfordhealth.org. Proceed by clicking on Health Statistics.
What is Community Health Assessment and Why is It Important?
According to the Institute of Medicine, one of the core functions of public health is assessment. [1] Every three or four years the Guilford County Department of Public Health (GCDPH) conducts a CHA with local partners.  CHA gathers important data on the local health needs and strengths. These data highlight pressing health concerns and guide the development action plans to address these concerns. 

The CHA also:
• Provides information for  the development of Guilford County Department of Public Health’s strategic plan,
• Fulfills local health department’s requirements of the North Carolina Division of Public Health consolidated agreement, and
• Ensures that specific benchmarks are met as a part of the state health department accreditation process. 

With passage of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, the IRS requires each non-profit (501 (c) (3)) hospital system to conduct a community health needs assessment (CHNA) every three years. 

Our Local Process and Partners
In 2012 -2013, Guilford County Department of Public Health collaborated with two hospital systems, Cone Health System and High Point Regional Health System, and the Cone Health Foundation to conduct a joint CHA and CHNA process. This joint assessment:
• Collected data on health needs and assets within the county,
• Highlighted pressing health issues and
• Developed recommendations for action plans that address community health concerns.

With guidance from UNC Greensboro’s Center for Social, Community and Health Research and Evaluation, partners used a participatory community-engaged approach to document community members’ health status and the availability of resources in Guilford County. A steering committee with representation from these partners guided the assessment, engaging community members, local citizens and organizational representatives throughout the process.
Guilford County’s Pressing Health Concerns
Partners used a multi-level approach to identify the most pressing health concerns, including multiple community meetings, an online survey and an expert panel using the Hanlon prioritization method, which considers the size and severity of the health issue as well as the feasibility of addressing it.

During the community meetings, participants and health professionals discussed and ranked the most urgent health-related issues as:
• Chronic Disease Prevention and Management
• Poor Birth Outcomes
• Sexually Transmitted Infections
• Childhood and Adult Obesity Prevention
• Teen Pregnancy
• Access to Clinical Care
• Poverty and Unemployment
• Violent Crime
• Access to Healthy Food

Taking Action
In later spring 2014, the GCDPH will convene a series of meetings to translate the community assessment recommendations into a Guilford County Community Action Plan.  For more information, contact Guilford County Department of Public Health at 336-641-7777.

[1] North Carolina Division of Public Health. Community Health Assessment., Website: publichealth.nc.gov/lhd/cha/index.htm; Updated August 22, 2013. Accessed November 1, 2013.

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