by Kristina Wieghmink, Ottawa County Department of Public Health
Starting June 9, Ottawa County residents, 18 years of age and older, will have the opportunity to give input on local health related needs and concerns. The outreach is part of the Behavioral Risk Factor Survey (BRFS), which periodically monitors health among various geographic areas within Ottawa County. A total of 2,000 residents will be randomly selected and contacted by Grand Rapids based Barnes Research, Inc. Survey calls will be made in June, July and August to residents’ landline and mobile phones. Participation is voluntary and anonymous. If you are called, your participation is very important to the survey. The information provided will help assess community members’ health risks, monitor health trends, respond to emerging public health issues, provide data for planning and development, allocate funds and improve treatment. Health related questions about behaviors including exercise, tobacco use, doctor visits, health insurance and other topics are in the survey. Results are expected to be available before the end of the year.
“Information from this survey reveals how healthy Ottawa County is in many specific areas compared to neighboring counties and counties throughout Michigan and the United States. The results will help hospitals and other organizations target their efforts to where the need is greatest. We’re asking residents who receive a call to please contribute 15-20 minutes of their time. This way, we all help make Ottawa County a healthy place to live, work and play.” – Marcia Knol, OCDPH Epidemiologist
The Ottawa County BRFS is an initiative of the Ottawa County Community Health Needs Assessment Committee. Committee members are from the Ottawa County Department of Public Health, Holland Hospital, North Ottawa Community Health System, Spectrum Health-Zeeland Community Hospital, Community Mental Health of Ottawa County and the Greater Ottawa County United Way. For more information about Ottawa County surveys, assessments and reports, visit www.miOttawa.org/healthdata.