Tuesday February 13, 2007
Announces New Name for Health Department
LOUISVILLE (February 13, 2007) - Mayor Jerry Abramson and Metro Health Director Dr. Adewale Troutman today unveiled a new mobile clinic that will allow public health workers to bring prevention programs and medical care directly into neighborhoods across the community.
“This new clinic allows us to take medicine outside the walls of our government buildings and into parts of this community where people may not have access to quality healthcare,” Abramson said.
The city purchased the fully equipped, multifunctional 40-foot vehicle with a $245,000 grant from the U.S. Health Resources and Services Administration. The mobile clinic is equipped with exam tables that fold into chairs for dental procedures. It also has a lead-lined wall for x-rays and is fully handicapped accessible with a wheelchair lift.
“The mission of our department is to provide services for all people in this community,” said Troutman. “Now we can take our services directly to underserved residents who need them most.”
The mobile unit will immediately begin providing the following services:
- On-site immunizations and dental exams for JCPS middle and elementary students
- Preventive medical services to Somali-Bantu residents
- HIV and sexually transmitted disease outreach
“The unit will give us a real boost in improving immunization rates and dental health among our students,” added Dr. Stephen Daeschner, superintendent of Jefferson County Public Schools.
University of Louisville President Dr. James Ramsey added, “The mobile unit’s deployment to hard-to-reach populations is squarely in line with the mission of the university.”
The clinic could also be utilized for on-site treatment during natural disasters or other emergencies.
Louisville Metro Department of Public Health and Wellness
In addition to a new mobile clinic, the department has a new name. What was formerly known as the Louisville Metro Health Department will now be known as the Louisville Metro Department of Public Health and Wellness.
“Words are important, and the new name points to the new proactive direction that the department is taking to improve the lives of residents in our hometown,” Abramson said.
“This department is now focused on prevention as well as treatment,” Troutman said. “The mission of our department, while continuing to protect the public from contagious disease and environmental hazards, must also be to impact the social and economic factors that can detrimentally impact the wellness of our residents.”
Since 2003 the department has launched two community-wide wellness programs - The Center for Health Equity and the Mayor’s Healthy Hometown Movement.
Abramson established the Center for Health Equity last June. The center is working with neighborhood leaders to plan community improvements, coaching families about approaching nutrition in a holistic way, and it will be working with government and business leaders to increase economic opportunities in challenged neighborhoods.
The Mayor’s Healthy Hometown Movement is an effort to motivate Louisville citizens to exercise, eat well and adopt healthier lifestyles. The initiative has sponsored biking, hiking and other events and has been instrumental is creating bike lanes and “Mayor’s Miles” since its inception a little more than two years ago.