San Angelo's City Council will consider two items suffering from drought this Tuesday. Council will hear a proposal to re-institute pumping what little water remains in Twin Buttes Reservoir. But before that Mayor Morrison will offer a proclamation regarding Public Health, decimated by city budget cuts going back over a decade. The prior City Council nearly finished off public health, expecting state and federal money to supplant what little the city still offered citizens.
Consider this Whereas:
"Public Health has played an important role in laying the foundation for good health and improved longevity, by working to immunize people against disease, identifying and controlling environmental health hazards and infectious diseases; preparing for largescale emergencies; improving the health of mothers and children; and promoting health behaviors in areas such as nutrition."
San Angelo just experienced a deadlyH1N1 flu season.
Consider the wider immunization picture:
The City decimated public health services in stages, first dropping its longstanding primary care clinic. Then it closed its pharmacy and transferred social services to a community agency. Public health is a shell of its former self, now dependent on state and federal dollars for the few services left.
Consider the last Whereas:
"Strong public health systems are critical for sustaining and improving community health."Like nearly everything else "strong" has been redefined down. San Angelo faces critical shortages due to long term droughts. Unfortunately, there are few signs either will end soon. I wish it were an April Fool's joke and not the reality our community faces.