Health District awarded $14 million as part of Recovery Act Prevention and
Wellness Initiative, Communities Putting Prevention to Work
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
March 19, 2010
LAS VEGAS –The Southern Nevada Health District today announced that it has been awarded a two-year grant in the amount of $14.6 million for its Tobacco Control Program, which will manage activities associated with the grant. A majority of the funding received will be distributed to previously identified community partners for programs to lessen and diminish the burden of tobacco use in Clark County.
The grant award is part of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ (HHS) Communities Putting Prevention to Work initiative to support public health efforts to reduce obesity, increase physical activity, improve nutrition and decrease smoking, four critical actions for combating chronic diseases and promoting healthier lifestyles.
The $372.8 million, funded by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, was awarded to 44 communities, including cities, towns, and tribes. These communities are receiving awards to implement policy, systems and environmental change strategies over the next two years as one of several initiatives of HHS Communities Putting Prevention to Work.
“We credit the strength of our application to our community partnerships and the many agencies and organizations we collaborated with to submit a comprehensive and competitive proposal. More than 84 percent of the funding we will receive will go to our community partners to develop and implement programs, activities and jobs that are vital to launching a comprehensive community-based approach to preventing chronic diseases and helping people lead healthier lives using evidence-based strategies and practices,” said Dr. Lawrence Sands, chief health officer. “The total amount distributed by the Department of Health and Human Services represents a one cent per day investment in funded communities – an investment designed to prevent chronic diseases and save our country money by reducing health care costs.”
For its portion of the federal grant money, the Tobacco Control Program’s project objectives include efforts to implement media campaigns, to assure that smoking cessation services are available and accessible to Southern Nevadans, and to preserve the Nevada Clean Indoor Air Act, passed by voters in November 2006.
The health district’s Tobacco Control Program has received recognition for its programs to reduce smoking rates in Southern Nevada. By using CDC’s Best Practices models, the Tobacco Control Program has developed activities and policy efforts that have contributed to a significant decrease in youth and adult smoking rates, expanded programs directed toward diverse communities, and increased knowledge of the dangers of secondhand smoke.
“One of the most effective ways to combat tobacco use is to educate people, especially young people, about the dangers of tobacco use. To do this, our Tobacco Control Program goes beyond traditional methods. Our staff has developed extensive social marketing programs as well as teen counter-advertising activities like educating young people at concerts and other street marketing events,” said Sands.
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The Southern Nevada Health District serves as the local public health authority for Clark County, Boulder City, Henderson, Las Vegas, Mesquite and North Las Vegas. The agency safeguards the public health of the community’s residents and visitors through innovative programs, regulations, and initiatives focused on protecting and promoting their health and well-being. More information about the Health District, its programs, services, and the regulatory oversight it provides is available at www.SNHD.info.