Empowering Communities: Yielding a Higher Return on Investment

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The overall theme of the National Public Health Week 2013 campaign, “Public Health is ROI: Saving Lives, Saving Money”  promotes the idea that public health is an investment in our future and is an excellent way to celebrate the role of public health and the importance of disease prevention in promoting the health of our nation. The underlying message, and the basis for all public health programs and research, is simple: why wait until individuals are ill or injured to treat the problem? Let’s start now and work on preventing those outcomes and save money in the process.

As the week comes to a close, we wanted to bring special attention to today’s  theme:   “Empowering A Healthy Community”.  Here at the PRC/MI, we think this is particularly vital to the idea of ROI.  Raising awareness about the value of investing in public health is just the first step in effectively saving lives and money.  Public health strategies for protecting and improving individual-level health are vital.  But individuals cannot do it alone.  To ensure that public health funding yields the highest return in lives and dollars, communities must join together to bring the expertise of local policy makers, health practitioners, researchers, and community members to identify areas of local concern and to create healthy and innovative solutions.

The National Public Health Week website offers some suggestions on how to get involved and help to empower your community to be healthier, which include engaging in prevention activities in your neighborhood or city and writing letters to your local policymakers in support of public health programs. Visit the Empowering A Health Community page for more ideas: http://www.nphw.org/tools-and-tips/themes/empowering-a-healthy-community

Communities working together can create safe and healthy futures.

For more information about the benefits of investing in public health, visit: