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Collaboration highlights Community Vital Signs Summit

Education, economy and access to healthcare hold the key to a healthier future for the County of San Bernardino, according to a report from Community Vital Signs released at its “Live Well, Age Well” Summit at the National Orange Show in San Bernardino on Thursday, November 14, 2013.

More than 200 community leaders attended the summit where community feedback and priorities established from Community Vital Signs’ 23 community engagement meetings during July and August were unveiled. Attendees were given copies of “San Bernardino County: Our Community Vital Signs,” a report based on the community meetings. The report, expected to generate a framework for sustainable health improvement in communities, will be available online at communityvitalsigns.org and will be available in County of San Bernardino libraries.

Summit attendees heard from keynote speakers, John Husing, Chief Economist of the Inland Empire Economic Partnership and June Simmons, President and Chief Executive Officer of the Partners in Care Foundation.

community-vital-signsThroughout the summer, more than 1,000  leaders from business, education, public safety, health and human services, faith and community organizations, transportation and planning came together to make plans for improving health and wellness in the community. County Chief Executive Officer, Gregory Devereaux, and each of the County’s Board of Supervisors participated in the various meetings.

Meeting attendees received a list of indicators and were asked to choose indicators that the Community Vital Signs Steering Committee should prioritize as community goals over the next three to five years. According to the report, the seven indicators that rose to the top included: education, economy, access to health care, nutrition/access to healthy foods, mental health, community safety, and safety at school.

“San Bernardino County: Our Community Vital Signs, will impact the future of this County with regard to decisions, policies, systems-change and strategies that will better meet the healthy needs of residents of San Bernardino County,” said Maxwell Ohikhuare, MD, Health Officer, County of San Bernardino. “Community Vital Signs meetings has set the stage for action-driven priorities and measurable results. It is our hope the report will be used to pave the way for a healthier County.”

The Community Vital Signs initiative addresses the Wellness Element of the Countywide Vision. It is a community health improvement framework developed through the collaborative efforts of county residents, community organizations, and government agencies. It sets evidence-based goals and priorities that align and leverage our resources to improve the overall health and well-being of the county’s residents.

View this special video message from Board of Supervisors Chair Janice Rutherford about Community Vital Signs Initiative.

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