Health advocates team up for health responsibility - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

Health advocates team up for health responsibility

JACKSON, MS (Mississippi News Now) -

As part of a training series Monday morning in Jackson, community health leaders are getting better acquainted with Mississippi's major health care problems and ways to identify them. Those include obesity, diabetes, hypertension and teen pregnancy.

"I wish someone had taught me some of the things that we're learning here today. I would be a better person," said Gail M. Brown, project director for the Community Students Learning Center in Lexington.

It's all part of a statewide push from Governor Phil Bryant and the medical community to get Mississippi on track for better health.

"We have to change the mindset that somebody else is responsible for my healthcare to I am responsible for my healthcare," said Bryant.

To change that mindset, the governor's office is teaming up with health and learning centers across the state. One of those centers is the Community Students Learning center in Lexington, where Gail Brown is the project director.

"If we start early with our young people, teaching them good health habits, it would make it better for them as they grow older," said Brown.

Brown says educating kids on health issues, like teen pregnancy, needs to be from more than just outside efforts, but rather starting in the home.

"The parents are the children's first teacher," said Brown.

Parental education classes are being offered through numerous community health and learning centers across the state. Bryant says through the effort, community groups are starting to work together rather than individually in trying to combat those growing health concerns. Bryant hopes that will push health education to begin at community levels.

That's exactly what we want to do, create these districts of community leaders for healthcare that go back into the neighborhoods, back into the schools, assist families and beginning healthcare at that basic level with the individual," said Bryant.

Copyright 2012 MSNewsNow. All rights reserved.

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