Oswego County News Release
Oswego County Public Information Office, 46 East Bridge St., Oswego, NY 13126

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April 3, 2009

County Health Department Observes National Public Health Week April 6 - 12

Dr. Dennis Norfleet, Public Health Director of the Oswego County Health Department, congratulates Kathryn “Kate” Caltabiano, Director of Patient Services, on earning her Master's Degree in Business Management. The agency is celebrating National Public Health Week April 6 through 12.

OSWEGO -- Health professionals across the nation will observe National Public Health Week Monday, April 6 through Sunday, April 12. The theme of this year's campaign is “Building a Foundation for a Healthy America.”

“Good health starts in the home,” said Dr. Dennis Norfleet, public health director for the Oswego County Health Department. “From the time we're born, and even before, public health is working to protect our families across generations. Whether it's receiving immunizations and other preventive services from a trusted health provider, living in lead-free homes, eating safe foods, or being cared for at home as we age, public health is a part of every aspect of our lives.”

The Oswego County Health Department has a long tradition of public health services, dating back to the 1960s when the county established the public health nursing staff. For many years the health department offered the only home care services in the county.

“Today our agency provides programs that impact all of us, from the water we drink and the food we eat, to immunizations for infants and school children, maternal and child home health visits, and home health care for the frail and elderly,” said Dr. Norfleet. “Our staff of dedicated professionals is available around the clock to respond to public health threats. Someone is always on call to respond to emergencies that could threaten the public's health.”

Kathryn “Kate” Caltabiano is one example of the dedicated professionals serving the public health needs of Oswego County residents. An employee of the health department for the last 19 years, Caltabiano has been taking classes for nearly two years in order to better serve our area. She recently received her Master of Science degree in Business Management from Keuka College.

“It was a very rewarding experience,” said Caltabiano, director of patient services for the nursing division of the Oswego County Health Department. “This program gives working adults the opportunity to cultivate their skill sets and be successful in their position.”

It has proven beneficial to Caltabiano in her work for the county. She oversees the nursing activities of preventive health services. The division promotes the optimum level of health for all Oswego County residents through skilled nursing care, occupational and physical therapy through the Certified Home Health Agency, communicable disease prevention programs, including weekly immunization clinics, Oswego County Hospice, and many other services.

“Public health care touches all levels of our community,” said Dr. Norfleet. “Services at the community level provide an opportunity to address many of the broader issues that impact health across our nation.”

The department also provides pre-school education and services to children with special needs. The Environmental Division is responsible for programs that minimize environmental health threats. Some efforts are targeted to the population at large, such as monitoring public and private drinking water supplies, food safety in restaurants, and inspecting children's camps. Other programs target specific needs such as interventions to prevent illness from rabies, lead poisoning, failing septic systems, and sale of tobacco products to minors.

For more information, contact the Oswego County Health Department at 349-3540 or 1-800-596-3200, ext. 3540, or visit the department's Web site at www.oswegocounty.com/health.shtml. For information on National Public Health Week, visit www.nphw.org.

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