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DOH-Walton Celebrates National Public Health Week

By Ryan Mims

April 07, 2015

Florida Department of Health in Walton County Celebrates National Public Health Week 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                                                
April 6, 2015
Contact: Ryan E. Mims
(850) 892-8040 ext.1159


WALTON COUNTY— The Florida Department of Health in Walton County (DOH-Walton) will recognize National Public Health Week April 6-11. National Public Health Week is an initiative of the American Public Health Association (APHA) to rally the public health community and to bring awareness to public health concerns that affect the Nation. This year the national theme for the week is Healthiest Nation 2030.
“Currently, the U.S. spends more and gets less when it comes to health care and public health outcomes. This is the defining challenge of our generation,” states Holly Holt, Health Officer and Administrator of DOH-Walton. “This is a task that we, the public health community, are uniquely positioned to help overcome. That’s why, during National Public Health Week, DOH-Walton will be rallying along with the public health community across our Nation to make the U.S. the healthiest nation in one generation — by 2030.”
Every year in the United States, seven out of 10 deaths are due to preventable chronic diseases such as diabetes and heart disease. In fact, chronic diseases account for 75 percent of national health care spending, yet only 3 percent of our health care dollars go toward prevention. In Walton County, there are more than 45 percent of adults that are living with a costly and potentially life threatening chronic illness.
DOH-Walton is working to lessen the effect of chronic disease by educating the public on prevention and increasing the ability to see a healthcare provider. Through the growth of DOH-Walton primary care clinics in Paxton and Mossy Head during the last year, the ability to see a healthcare provider regularly in Walton County is becoming more of a reality for residents. DOH-Walton offers primary care services in DeFuniak Springs, Santa Rosa Beach, Paxton, and Mossy Head that help residents and visitors get care that can prevent serious health conditions such as cancer, diabetes, and heart disease. Clients with diagnosed chronic diseases can seek help to manage their conditions with case management staff. In addition, the WeCare Program at DOH-Walton refers uninsured clients to over 20 specialty physicians in the area.
Additionally, DOH-Walton partners with county businesses, agencies, and stakeholders to work collectively in making Walton County a healthier place to live. The Walton Community Health Improvement Partnership (WCHIP) brings these partners together to work to improve healthy behaviors by promoting a physically active lifestyle and consumption of healthy foods through multiple venues, i.e., promotion of walking history tours and geocaching, cooking classes, and community or container gardens.  Efforts to increase use of screening services, preventive and primary care services included agency collaboration to provide diabetic screening and awareness at local events.  Also, the WCHIP partners are implementing innovative ways to increase awareness of local health and wellness resources through community resource leaders and social media. 
Upcoming DOH-Walton Events
  • WCHIP Annual Health Summit- April 22nd at DOH-Walton in DeFuniak Springs. Community partners will discuss current data and trends in Walton County. This discussion will help direct initiatives for the upcoming year.
  • Let’s Talk Medications Class- April 30th at DOH-Walton in DeFuniak Springs. Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University (FAMU) College of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences will lecture on non-narcotic pain management.

For more information on primary care services at DOH-Walton or to schedule an appointment, call (850) 892-8015.

Contact Laura Brazell at (850) 892-8040 ext. 1163 or for more information on the Walton Community Health Improvement Partnership.

For more information about National Public Health Week, visit

The Department works to protect, promote and improve the health of all people in Florida through integrated state, county and community efforts.  Follow us on Twitter at @HealthyFla and on Facebook.  For more information about the Florida Department of Health please visit