Public Health Week is a good time to make a commitment to healthier lifestyle

Posted 4 April 2023 at 1:09 pm

Press Release, Genesee & Orleans County Health Departments

This week, April 3-9, is National Public Health Week. The goal of National Public Health Week is to recognize the contributions of public health, the workforce and highlight issues that can improve the health and well-being of our communities.

The primary purpose of public health is prevention, protection, and improving the health of the entire population.

“Many of the leading causes of death for individuals in our community result from chronic conditions, which are among the most common, costly, and preventable of all health challenges,” stated Paul Pettit, Public Health Director for Genesee and Orleans County Health Departments (GO Health).

GO Health supports and implements programming and interventions that address emerging health issues and topics including, but not limited to, chronic diseases, overdose deaths, suicides, communicable diseases, substance use disorders, adverse childhood experiences, trauma, maternal and child health, a safe environment, and social determinants of health.

“At GO Health, we have an enthusiastic staff that aims to protect and improve the health of residents in our community,” Pettit said. “We thank them for their service and dedication.”

However, we know that we cannot make a difference without building effective working relationships with partners in healthcare and other sectors. As Chief Health Strategists, GO Health collaborates with partners outside of the health sector, including city planners, transportation officials, educational officials, legislators, and private businesses, because we recognize that other sectors can influence health factors and outcomes.

“We would like to take this time during National Public Health Week to thank our partners,” Pettit said. “We could not make the impact and improve the lives of our residents without the tireless work and effort our partners and volunteers put into our communities.”

This Public Health Week, GO Health encourages residents of Genesee and Orleans Counties to help celebrate the week by participating in activities to help improve your health and make our community healthier, stronger, and safer. Some suggestions include:

  • Eat less processed foods and drinks.
  • Quit smoking and vaping. Call the New York State (NYS) Quitline at 1-866-697-8487 for free patches and more.
  • Be active. Take a walk or bike ride along the canal, on a trail, or in a village.
  • Make sure you are up-to-date on routine screenings for colorectal (colon) cancer, breast cancer, and cervical cancer.
  • Make sure you and your children are up-to-date on routine immunizations.
  • Stay away from wildlife, including injured animals and pets that aren’t yours, to reduce your risk of rabies. Love your own, leave the rest alone.
  • Keep your pets up-to-date on their rabies vaccination.
  • Learn how to administer Naloxone (Narcan).
  • Volunteer at a local service organization that contributes to the health and well-being of our community.
  • Read to your children, every day.
  • The only way to find out if your children have been exposed to lead is through a blood test. Get your children tested for lead at ages 1 and 2.
  • Make sure your children sees his or her doctor for routine well-child visits to monitor their growth and developmental milestones.
  • Be prepared and make a family emergency plan. Practice your plan with your family/household and make sure your emergency kit is stocked with essential items. For more information, visit
  • Practice mindfulness or try yoga to help relieve stress.

For more information on GO Health Programs, visit