first_imgDr. Box visits with members of the Ohio County Health Department on December 21, 2018, as she completes her visits to all 93 local health departments.Indianapolis, In. — State Health Commissioner Kris Box, M.D., FACOG, today is completing one of the first goals she set for herself when she became state health commissioner more than a year ago—to learn more about public health across Indiana by visiting all 93 local health departments.She began her tour of local health departments in December 2017 and will complete it today by visiting the Ohio, Jennings, Bartholomew and Brown County health departments.“I’ve logged a lot of miles this year on a journey that has taught me about the unique areas of our state and about how our local partners are working to improve public health,” Box said. “I’ve learned about their challenges and their successes as they work to improve the well-being of their communities, and I value the partnerships we have with them more than ever.”Local health departments provide services that help protect residents’ health, such as environmental health services, food protection, emergency preparedness, preventive and primary care, immunizations, training and education. The Indiana State Department of Health (ISDH) provides direct support to local health departments and their respective boards of health to help them deliver these essential public health services.Box, who has pledged to make Indiana the “best at getting better” when it comes to the health of its residents, said the feedback from local health departments has been invaluable because it has shown that every county faces unique challenges.“I believe firmly that we can’t make decisions in a vacuum,” Box said. “We have to know what people are saying and doing in our communities because what we think will work in Indianapolis might not be a good fit in rural southern Indiana. My visits to the local health departments have been incredibly enlightening and have helped shape my thoughts on how ISDH can best address the opioid epidemic, infant mortality, tobacco use, obesity and other pressing health issues facing our state.”last_img read more