Several local doctors and community leaders in Gadsden County have joined forces to create a community health council.
The group's purpose is to offer an organized approach to health care and ensure that money received from any grants stays in the county.
Jerry Wynn of the Gadsden County Health Department says, "We've got a county judge in this council, a state representative, several faith-based groups. It kind of brings organization."
One of the council's goals is to increase the healthy lifestyle choices of Gadsden County citizens that will lessen the incidence of life-threatening health concerns like cancer, stroke and diabetes.
Margaret Awad of the Gadsden Community Health Department says, "Right now, there are people in place in the community that are putting together neighborhood groups to talk about what diabetes is and what can be done to manage it, so people won't end up losing limbs and suffer any kinds of complications."
In addition, the council will address the rising cost of health care.
Jerry says, "We all know the costs of health care is going up. We have to identify things that will help."
The council is developing a three-year plan to identify much needed resources to address these and other health concerns. Starting July 1, the Health Council will begin applying for grants in an effort to channel funds to the area.