Health Summit addresses issues facing area

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Story Updated: Mar 26, 2010

WHITESBORO, N.Y. (WKTV) - The 2nd annual Regional Health Summit was held Friday at Hart's Hill Inn in Whitesboro - a follow-up to the Oneida County Community Health Assessment.

Health officials from both Oneida and Herkimer Counties spent the morning identifying solutions to health problems plaguing the Mohawk Valley with diabetes, heart disease, high blood pressure, and obesity just a few of the key issues.

A recent study by the University of Wisconsin ranks Oneida County 54th out of 62 counties in the state for Health Status. Herkimer County ranks 41st.

Health Factors Ranking (Out of 62 Counties)

Herkimer County
Health Behaviors - 25
Clinical Care - 62
Social & Economic Factors - 40

Oneida County
Health Behaviors - 20
Clinical Care - 29
Social & Economic Factors - 43

Friday's summit broke down all of the health issues facing both counties into five main categories: chronic disease, mental health, physical activity & nutrition, maternal care, and access to healthcare.

Summit leaders said they are not surprised at the region's health rankings. Past surveys have shown the area does need significant work in improving overall wellness. They said now is the time to create very specific strategies to improve health in the community.

"We're not ranked at the bottom, but we're not very high either," said Phil Hayne, Executive Director of the United Way of the Valley and Greater Utica Area. "We're not a very health community to be perfectly frank. There are things we need to start doing now."

To read the full Oneida County Community Health Assessment- visit the Oneida County Community Health Assessment online

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