The city Department of Health (DOH) has launched its new Take Care New York 2020 (TCNY 2020) initiative: a “blueprint for giving everyone the chance to live a healthier life,” according its website.
Taking into account both traditional and social health factors along with aggregated community input, the DOH released the program’s first annual report published this month. Identifying eight underserved neighborhoods citywide, the DOH selected one local stakeholder — known as a “planning partner” — from each area willing to collaborate for change. Planning is currently in the early stages.
In Jamaica, “unmet medical need” is top priority, and the planning partner is Public Health Solutions — a nonprofit, public health institute founded in 1957 which works to improve health through research, policy, capacity building and direct service.
Far Rockaway identified an “unmet mental health need” as the top priority, and the planning partner is the Rockaway Waterfront Alliance — a nonprofit organization dedicated to empowering residents and revitalizing the area.
Each planning partner was awarded a grant by the DOH earlier this year to use toward the health improvement process. Each group will “decide how they are going to address the priority, identify potential resources and develop a local action plan.”
The community-based organizations will work to achieve TCNY 2020’s four main goals: to “promote healthy childhoods, create healthier neighborhoods, support healthy living and increase access to quality care.”
The report also featured a list of the top five health priorities expressed by residents in each of the five boroughs. In Queens, air quality is the top priority, followed by high blood pressure, obesity, physical activity and unmet mental health need, in that order.