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April 1, 2005

'Live Stronger, Longer' Is Theme of National Public Health Week, April 4-10

The theme of National Public Health Week, which is April 4 through 10, focuses on ways to help seniors "Live Stronger, Longer." The Oswego County Health Department suggests that older residents can be proactive about staying strong and healthy throughout their later years.

"Several health problems -- including diabetes, heart disease, hypertension, and injuries can be avoided if they are proactively addressed," said Kathleen Smith, Commissioner of Health for Oswego County. "This year we urge all residents over the age 65 to work together with their families and healthcare providers to develop health care plans that include the '3 Ps: Prevent, Protect and Plan.'"

Prevent problems from happening. Americans can prevent many of the common health problems that can hinder the enjoyment of later years by keeping their immunizations up to date and taking prescribed medications as indicated.
  • The Oswego County Health Department sponsors immunization clinics every Friday morning from 9 to 11 at the H. Douglas Barclay Courthouse in Pulaski, and every Friday afternoon from 12:30 to 3:30 at the Nick Sterio Public Health Clinic, 70 Bunner St., Oswego.
  • Protect your health through early detection. Several chronic diseases can be treated if detected in time. The County Health Department provides screening for high blood pressure, diabetes and elevated cholesterol on the first Thursday of each month from 9 to 11a.m. at the Health Department on 70 Bunner St., Oswego.
  • Remove hazards in the home. Falls are the most common cause of injuries to older Americans and can lead to decreased mobility and independence.
  • Plan to stay healthy. All Americans can live longer, healthier lives by developing an action plan for minimizing identified health risks. The list can include getting a daily dose of exercise, keeping up with shots and screenings, and having a healthy diet. Smith said that 60 percent of Americans over the age of 65 have not had a sigmoidoscopy or colonoscopy in the past five years, two tests that can detect colon cancer and are paid for by Medicare.

"Advances in public health and treatment of diseases are enabling Americans to live longer lives. This Public Health Week, take the time to talk with your family and healthcare provider about how to make it a longer, stronger life," said Commissioner Smith. For more information on health screening resources or recommendations, contact the Oswego County Health Department at 349-3547 or 1-800-596-3200, ext.3547.

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