State Health Commissioner to Visit Long Island, Highlight Governor's Paterson's Health Reforms: Health Insurance Coverage, Support for Primary Care, Obesity Prevention

Note to Editors: This revises the Friday schedule.

ALBANY, N.Y. (Jan. 14, 2009) - State Health Commissioner Richard F. Daines, M.D., will visit community leaders, health care providers, and nutrition and obesity prevention programs in Nassau and Suffolk counties Thursday and Friday, Jan. 15-16, to discuss the health care reforms contained in Governor David A. Paterson's proposed 2009-2010 state budget.

Governor Paterson's reforms will expand New Yorkers' access to health insurance, invest in primary and preventive care, and implement a comprehensive strategy to address the state's obesity epidemic.

"I look forward to discussing the Governor's groundbreaking health care reforms and viewing some of Long Island's progressive preventive health initiatives with county public health directors, health care professionals, and other community leaders," said Commissioner Daines.

While in Nassau and Suffolk counties on Thursday, Dr. Daines will promote Governor Paterson's "War on Obesity" agenda with visits to a Women, Infants and Children (WIC) program in Hempstead, a food bank in Hauppauge, a restaurant in Patchogue serving a menu free of trans fats, and a visit to SUNY Stony Brook's Center for Pediatric Obesity Prevention, where Dr. Daines will conduct a live demonstration of how increased consumption of sugar sweetened beverages has affected childhood obesity epidemic.

On Friday Dr. Daines' will visit a hospital primary care clinic and two community health centers, where he will discuss Governor Paterson's budget proposals to increase support for primary and preventive services. He will also discuss the Governor's reforms to increase access to health insurance through expanded eligibility for New York's Family Health Plus program.

Dr. Daines' visits include:

Thursday:

9:30 a.m. -- WIC Center operated by the Nassau County Health Department; 26 Main St. Hempstead

11:15 a.m. -- Long Island Cares Harry Chapin Food Bank; 11:15 a.m., 10 Davids Dr., Hauppauge

12:45 p.m. -- Gallo Tropical restaurant serving a trans fat-free menu; 3 East Main St., Patchogue

2 p.m. -- L.I. Center for Pediatric Obesity Prevention Best Practices; Stony Brook University Health Sciences Center, 4th Floor Family Medicine Department conference room; 1 Nichols Rd., Stony Brook

Friday:

11:45 a.m. -- Hempstead Community Health Center operated by Nassau Health Care Corp. and Nassau University Medical Center; 135 Main St., Hempstead

1:30 p.m. -- Martin Luther King Jr. Community Health Center, operated by Suffolk County Health Services in collaboration with Good Samaritan Hospital Medical Center; 1556 Straight Path, Wyandanch

Dr. Daines will be joined on the visits by representatives of advocacy agencies, including the American Cancer Society, the American Heart Association, the American Diabetes Association, Community Health Care Association of NYS (CHCANYS), the Primary Care Development Corporation, the Primary Care Coalition, and the NYS Healthy Eating and Physical Activity Alliance (NYSHEPA).

Highlights of Governor Paterson's health care and obesity prevention reforms can be viewed at:

Dr. Daines' YouTube video on the impact of sugar sweetened beverages on obesity, in support of Governor Paterson's proposed tax on these beverages can be viewed at: