During the 2022 MACo Summer Conference, officials from County Health Departments joined with their community partners to discuss their joint efforts to promote public health.
The COVID-19 pandemic forced county actors, especially local health departments, to think creatively and cultivate unlikely partnerships with nonprofits and businesses, alike. Moreover, the lessons and relationships gained from this public health crisis did not go to waste as county governments have continued to tackle epidemics like opioid use. During this session, members of local health departments and private industry representatives provided public-private partnership case studies from the pandemic era. In addition, they discussed how their lessons might effectively tackle longstanding health concerns across Maryland.
Delegate Bonnie Cullison introduced the session, letting the audience know that each presentation would feature two speakers. Director Schneider and President Norton co-presented on a novel partnership involving the Maryland Live! Casino. The Casino worked closely with Anne Arundel County’s Department of Health to provide COVID-19 testing and vaccinations.
Health Officer Levy and Executive Director Tuerke focused on their shared mission to address opioid use disorder in Cecil County’s communities. Voices of Hope partners with Cecil County to provide peer support to individuals in recovery and is the largest organization of its kind in Maryland.
Director Lykens and President Davis informed the audience of Baltimore County’s Re-Tree program. Although the program may not seem directly related to public health, both presenters made the case that tree canopy coverage is critical to protecting the health of vulnerable populations. President Davis informed the audience that the program is expanding into other jurisdictions, including Baltimore City.
- Jennifer Schneider, Director of Disease Prevention and Management, Anne Arundel County Department of Health
- Rob Norton, President, Maryland Live! Casino
- Lauren Levy, Health Officer, Cecil County
- Jennifer Tuerke, Executive Director, Voices of Hope
- David V. Lykens, Director, Baltimore County Department of Environmental Protection and Sustainability
- Jana Davis, Ph.D., President, Chesapeake Bay Trust
Moderator: The Honorable Delegate Bonnie Cullison
The session was held on August 19, 2022, at the Roland Powell Convention Center in Ocean City, MD.
More about MACo’s Summer Conference: