Amid High Rates Of STD's, Leon Health Department Asks For Input In Setting Priorities

May 4, 2016

The Leon county health department is asking for feedback from residents as it conducts an annual local health survey. A series of town-hall style forums are scheduled across the county, with the first set for May 14 in Frenchtown.

Leon County Health Officer Claudia Blackburn says the department wants feedback on what its priorities should be.

“We have to decide that as we do our community health assessment. We’ll get clearer on what the priorities are. If there’s a way for us to dig deeper and do a comprehensive analysis, we will certainly do that," she said.

Leon County Health Department
Credit Leon County Health Department

Leon County continues to have a persistently high rate of sexually transmitted diseases—ranking number one in the state when it comes to gonorrhea and chlamydia. It also has a high rate of gun violence and infant deaths. The county's poor health statistics come even as other surveys show the county as one of the best places to live work, and play.

“The issue we have is competing priorities,"said Blackburn. "When you’ve problems with infant mortality and other issues people consider real problems like infant mortality, drug abuse, concerns about their children-young children, we have to decide where we’re going to put our resources.”

Many of the health issues, such as STD's are impacting African Americans more than others. And the county's STD issues have persisted over the past 20 years.

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From the Leon County Health Department:

  •  May 14, Greater Frenchtown at Dade Street Community Center from 12:30 p.m. to 2:30 p.m. 1115 Dade St., Tallahassee, FL 32304
  • May 21, Fairbanks Ferry Road Area at China Hill Primitive Baptist Church from 3:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. 458 Fairbanks Ferry Road, Tallahassee, FL 32312
  • June 11, Macon Community, Terrance Freely Community Center from 12:30 p.m. to 2:30 p.m.  2940 Grady Road, Tallahassee, FL 32312
  • June 18, Southside Community, Smith-Williams Service Center from 1:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m.  2295 Pasco St, Tallahassee, FL 32310
  • June 25, Hwy 20/Aenon Church Road Area, Berean Christian Fellowship from 12:30 p.m. to 2:30 p.m.  6214 Blountstown Highway, Tallahassee, FL 32310  

Attendees may share their thoughts, opinions, and concerns surrounding the following questions:

  1.  Which of the issues and concerns noted by survey respondents did you agree with?
  2.  Are there other issues and concerns you think are missing that you think are important to mention? If so, what are they?
  3. What seems to be the most critical health issues or concerns for the neighborhood or community?