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DOH-OKALOOSA PARTNERS WITH TFAH TO ADDRESS PUBLIC HEALTH ISSUES IN OLDER FLORIDIANS

By Allison McDaniel

November 09, 2018

FORT WALTON BEACH, Fla.— The Florida Department of Health in Okaloosa County (DOH-Okaloosa) is pleased to announce its participation in the Florida Age-Friendly Public Health Collaborative and Action Network, facilitated by Trust for America’s Health (TFAH) with generous funding from The John A. Hartford Foundation. The department and TFAH aim to identify and enhance the role of public health in improving the health and well-being of the older adults in our community.

“This is a great opportunity to address public health issues with Okaloosa’s vulnerable residents,” said Carrie Ziegler, Assistant Director of DOH-Okaloosa.“This funding allows DOH-Okaloosa to expand its current Lean On Me program by providing a wider range of public health resources and increases the services provided to vulnerable individuals 65 and older.”

In 2016, nearly 30,000 residents in Okaloosa County were 65 years and older. Over one-quarter of residents 65 and older were reported to be living alone and it is estimated 23 percent were living with a vision and/or hearing problem, according to FLHealthCHARTS.

In October 2017, TFAH brought together 30 experts in public health, aging, research and policy in Florida to explore how public health could contribute to the health and well-being of older adults. Convening participants developed a Framework for Creating an Age-Friendly Public Health System to advance public health’s role in addressing the challenges and opportunities of an aging society at the local, state and national levels.

Through the Florida Age-Friendly Public Health Network, the department will be working with the Florida Department of Elder Affairs and community partners to identify priority health issues among our older adults. DOH-Okaloosa will receive tools, training resources, and technical assistance based on our unique needs. TFAH will be sharing the results of this initiative with public health stakeholders and policymakers across the country. This collaborative effort will help Florida meet the unique public health needs of older adults.

About the Florida Department of Health
The department, nationally accredited by the Public Health Accreditation Board, works to protect, promote and improve the health of all people in Florida through integrated state, county and community efforts.

Follow us on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter at @HealthyFla. For more information about the Florida Department of Health please visit www.FloridaHealth.gov.

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