Even before I began my tenure as the Lee County Health Department (LCHD) Administrator, my former job at another nearby health department found me planning educational programs and working in other ways with KSB Hospital. A local health department and community hospital; although different in many ways, share numerous objectives and are both integral pieces of a local public health system. In this time of budget concerns and the changing landscape of healthcare, it is more important than ever that we work together to share resources and avoid duplication of services.
LCHD and KSB have embarked on too many projects and programs to list here. Some recent examples include: both organizations are active members of the Partnership for a Healthy Lee County (PHLC), an organization with the mission of decreasing the prevalence of obesity in Lee County. Camp DREAM, a day camp for youth living with diabetes, has been a successful joint endeavor. Numerous community education events and health screenings have occurred as a result of our wonderful relationship with KSB’s Community Wellness program. PRISM of Lee County (Prevention, Recovery & Information on Substance Abuse and Mental Health) benefits from significant time and resource investment of both the health department and hospital.
Both organizations have required community health needs assessments due in 2016. Discussions are now underway as to how we can align our efforts on the assessment portion as well as the resulting community health plan. With both the health department and hospital working towards mutual goals for the improvement of our community’s health, we are poised to make a real difference.
I value our working relationship with KSB and thank them for the great partnership.
Cathy Ferguson, MPH