Media Advisory: State Health Commissioner, Local Officials Highlight Obesity, Tobacco Use Prevention at Stops Tuesday in Ulster County
Part of National Public Health Week Tour
ALBANY, N.Y. (April 4, 2011) – On Tuesday New York State Health Commissioner Nirav R. Shah, M.D., M.P.H., will be joined by local officials as he makes stops in Kingston and Rosendale to highlight local efforts to prevent obesity and create smoke-free outdoor public places. The events are part of the State Health Commissioner's six-county Public Health Week tour.
State Health Commissioner Shah; Ulster County Executive Michael Hein; Ulster County Public Health Director La Mar Hasbrouck, M.D., M.P.H.
Dr. Shah and local officials will highlight the "I Choose 600" obesity prevention campaign that encourages consumers to check the calorie counts of meals purchased at fast food restaurants and choose meals that don't exceed 600 calories. Research shows that overconsumption of calories is the primary cause of the obesity epidemic. 60 percent of adult New Yorkers and one-third of children are overweight or obese. Calorie posting at fast food restaurants is currently required in Albany, Schenectady, Ulster and Suffolk Counties and New York City. Calorie posting will be required nationwide in summer 2012 as part of federal health reform (Affordable Care Act). On Friday, the FDA issued draft calorie posting requirements for public comment.
Hudson Valley Mall -- Food Court
1300 Ulster Avenue
Tuesday, April 5, at 10:30 a.m.
Commissioner Shah; Ulster County Executive Michael Hein; Ulster County Public Health Director La Mar Hasbrouck, M.D., M.P.H.; Rosendale Town Supervisor Patrick McDonough; and Ellen Reinhard, Director, Tobacco Free Action Coalition of Ulster County.
Highlight efforts by local municipalities to restrict the use of tobacco products in public outdoor spaces and recreation areas. Currently, 23 of 24 municipalities in Ulster County, including Rosendale, have adopted or plan to adopt local laws or policies to restrict smoking in select public areas. Smoking continues to be the leading preventable cause of illness and death in New York State and the U.S. In addition to the impact on health, tobacco use accounts for $8 billion annually in health care costs in New York alone. Tobacco smoke contains a deadly mixture of more than 7,000 chemicals and compounds, of which hundreds are toxic and at least 70 cause cancer. There is no safe level of exposure to secondhand smoke, and exposure to secondhand smoke is a danger even in outdoor areas. A Surgeon General's Report issued in December noted that exposure to tobacco smoke causes immediate damage to the body.
Playground adjacent to Rosendale Community Center, 1055 Route 32, Rosendale, NY 12472
April 5, 2011, at noon.
For the complete schedule of Public Health Week activities, go to: http://health.ny.gov/press/releases/2011/2011-04-01_public_health_week_media_advisory.htm