The Putnam County Department of Health is made of several divisions all working towards improving and protecting the health of the community. Click on one of the options below to learn more about that division.
Carmel, NY – Putnam County has been ranked the healthiest county in New York State in the recently released County Health Rankings and Roadmaps. Created by the University of Wisconsin Population Health Institute with support from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, the County Health Rankings and Roadmaps uses a data driven approach to improve health outcomes, reduce disparities, and advance health equity throughout the country. The health of nearly all counties in the nation is compiled into an annual report using county-level measures from a variety of national and state data sources.
“Putnam County is a place where anybody, regardless of their background, has an opportunity to be healthy and successful,” said Putnam County Executive Kevin Byrne. “This recognition is a testament to the hard work and dedication of our community partners, healthcare providers, and residents who have made wellness a priority. From our pristine parks and robust public health programs and initiatives, Putnam County truly offers something for everyone to enjoy and thrive. As we look ahead, we will continue to prioritize health and wellness, ensuring Putnam County remains a leader in healthy living and wellbeing for all.”
Interim Commissioner of Health Michael J. Nesheiwat, MD said, "Putnam County has been ranked the number-one healthiest of New York’s 62 counties for the second year in a row. We have ranked within the top five healthiest counties in New York state for the last 10 years. Each year, upon release of this report, staff at the Putnam County Department of Health conduct a full review of the findings with additional analysis of Putnam's performance over time, both of which are vital to ensure public health program planning aligns with the needs of our community."
The information contained in the County Health Rankings and Roadmaps supplements the data collected in Putnam’s triannual Community Health Assessment (CHA). Health department staff use all this information to maintain awareness of health indicators and inform program planning.
An area in which Putnam has been improving is the percentage of Medicare enrollees receiving an annual flu shot. For many years, the health department has been offering at least three public seasonal flu clinics where Medicare enrollees can receive a flu shot at no cost. To improve access to care and health equity among Putnam’s seniors, flu clinics are also offered at each of the Senior Centers in the County.
Aside from health outcomes, the report also looks at health factors, which include sub-areas such as health behaviors, clinical care, social and economic factors, and physical environment. These are all determinants of health because the surroundings and circumstances people are in impact their health. Putnam County ranks number two in health factors across the state, ranking within the top 10 for all sub-areas except physical environment. Aspects of this measure, such as average daily particulate matter in the air have been improving over time. The physical environment ranking also includes measures related to transportation, a social determinant of health known to be a challenge for rural/suburban counties such as Putnam. Putnam’s 2022 CHA had identified transportation as one of the ten main health challenges, and earlier this year, a transportation workgroup was formed by members of a community coalition on chronic disease. The group met alongside local government agencies to map out short and long-term objectives related to improving access to transportation.
Data from the Putnam County CHA is used by community partners, such as this workgroup, to inform program and service planning for residents. It is publicly available on the county website at https://putnamcountyny.com/health/community-health. “Whenever joining together to brainstorm solutions for improving public health, or other quality of life issues, community partnership is essential. This workgroup is just one example of the culture of collaboration that exists in Putnam,” says County Executive Kevin Byrne.”
The mission of the Putnam County Department of Health, nationally accredited by the Public Health Accreditation Board (PHAB), is to improve and protect the health of the Putnam County community, composed of nearly 100,000 residents. Core services include community health assessment, disease surveillance and control, emergency preparedness, environmental health protection, family health promotion and health education. For more information, please visit our county website at www.putnamcountyny.com or our social media sites on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram @PutnamHealthNY.