BUCYRUS — The Crawford County Board of Health recently voted unanimously to honor Avita Health System as the 2019 Public Health Partner of the Year.
The Board of Health annually reviews collaborative activities Crawford County Public Health conducted with community partners during the past calendar year to select its Public Health Partner of the Year.
Health Commissioner Kate Siefert said Avita Health System went above and beyond in 2019.
“In addition to collaborating with Crawford County Public Health on the Community Health Assessment, the Community Health Improvement Plan,and the WIC Baby Shower like they always do, Avita also added a Picture Perfect Breastfeeding event with our WIC Division to celebrate and support breastfeeding mothers,” Seifert said. “But what really stood out in 2019 was their willingness to provide free lab work to breastfeeding mothers wanting to donate their excess breast milk to our OhioHealth Mothers’ Milk Bank Drop Off site. part of a system of providing breast milk to preemies in NICU’s (neonatal intensive care units) across the nation.
“It is truly generous for one health care system to provide assistance to a program that benefits another health care system,” Seifert continued. “We are thrilled to have the board of health recognize Avita Health System as our 2019 Partner of the Year.”
In August of 2019, Crawford County Public Health became a Milk Bank Drop Off site, and has shipped 9,957 ounces of donated breast milk to OhioHealth’s facility in Columbus. Just one ounce can feed a premature infant for three days, so every donation is important. The process of becoming a donor includes a health screening with the OhioHealth Mothers’ Milk Bank as well as consent for blood test screening.
With limited access to OhioHealth labs in our area, Avita Health System was quick to agree to facilitate local donations by providing those tests for free. Providing donated breast milk is a way to work together to help even the littlest members of our community grow and thrive.
“It is truly an honor to receive the 2019 Public Health Partner of the Year award from Crawford County Public Health,” said Jerome Morasko,president and CEO of Avita Health System. “Collaborating with agencies like Crawford County Public Health on projects such as the Community Health Needs Assessment and programs that benefit the babies in our area is a tremendous win for the entire community. We look forward to continuing our work with Kate and her team and are thrilled to accept this award.”
This is the second year of honoring a community partner for efforts that help Crawford County Public Health fulfill its mission to educate, empower, and improve the quality of life for the Crawford County Community.
Sheriff Scott Kent was the 2018 Public Health Partner of the Year.