We are excited to see this new option for our community members. If you know anyone who might benefit from additional support and heath screenings pass this information on:
Washtenaw County Public Health is pleased to announce that it has launched Wise Choices. Wise Choices provides free health screenings and support to help income-eligible men and women, insured or uninsured, make small, healthy changes in their lives.
“This is a great opportunity to support individuals in the community as they make a conscious choice to be healthier and set realistic goals,” says Program Administrator Ruth Kraut. “The Wise Choices program was also implemented at the Health Department of Northwest Michigan, where they have seen overwhelmingly positive results among their participants. We are all excited to start the program in Washtenaw County.”
The Wise Choices program consists of a brief health intake screening, goal-setting and planning, and consistent follow-up with a community navigator.
Studies have shown that setting small, specific, short-term goals increases the likelihood of success, as opposed to setting big, broad, long-term goals. Participants in Wise Choices decide which behavior they want to focus on to improve their health. These behaviors could be anything from eating more fruits and vegetables, to going on a 15 minute walk three days per week, to being more diligent about taking their blood pressure medication. Motivational interviewing techniques are then used to increase participants’ commitment and motivation to making a healthy behavior change.
The community navigator serves as a liaison between Washtenaw County Public Health, Wise Choices participants, and community resources. Community navigators may provide participants with referrals to community-based lifestyle programs, including a weight loss program called Taking off Pounds Sensibly (TOPS) or the Diabetes Prevention Program.