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Berks County Medical Society will host summit on health study

The Berks County Medical Society will host an event this week to review a study about how the county can help fill local health care gaps.

The event Thursday morning will feature a panel of local community leaders and health experts led by moderator Joe Watkins, a former presidential aide to President George H.W. Bush, and a national media personality.

The Community Health Checkup discussion will be held at the Stonersville Social Club in Exeter Township from 8 to 10 a.m. A light breakfast will be served prior to the event at 7:30 a.m.

The study by Health Management Associates, which was commissioned by the county commissioners, was unveiled in April. It is meant to help gather information regarding the health of county residents and create recommendations to enhance the delivery of health services.

There were four recommendations included in the study:

• Create a Berks County health director position to lead public health collective action and coordination and serve as a trusted communicator about public health information.

• Develop a Berks County Public Health Advisory Panel to advise the health director and guide public health assessment, policy and assurance activities.

• Support the establishment of a Healthy Berks Coalition to serve as a coordinating body for public health efforts in the county. The health director will coordinate the activities of the coalition.

• Create a Berks County health analyst position to improve public health data completeness and accuracy who would report to the health director.

“The commissioners’ study was welcome news for those concerned that Berks County needed to be able to maintain clear communication and local control during public health emergencies,” T.J. Huckleberry, executive director of Berks County Medical Society, said in a news release announcing the event.

He said the forum will be a practical way for county leaders to learn about what the next steps will be.

Members of the public interested in attending the event should reserve a spot at

Source: Berkshire mont

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