R 193
2019 -- H 5954
Enacted 04/03/2019

H O U S E   R E S O L U T I O N

Introduced By: Representatives Cassar, Kislak, Phillips, Canario, and Cortvriend
Date Introduced: April 03, 2019

     WHEREAS, National Public Health Week is observed annually the first full week of
April. It is organized by the American Public Health Association with week-long activities
designed to educate and highlight issues that are critically important to the health of the American
people and to accomplish the goal of improving the public's general health. Each day of the week
a different theme is highlighted and discussed; and
     WHEREAS, On Monday the theme was Healthy Communities. Science has shown and
proven that the health, longevity and well-being of people are connected to the places in which
they live, work, learn, worship and play. For example, at least four million United States
households are home to children who are being exposed to high levels of lead, with about six
million homes considered to be substandard; and
     WHEREAS, Tuesday's theme is Violence Prevention. National data shows that gun-
related deaths are rising. Between 2015 and 2016, the United States was home to nearly 27,400,
homicides and nearly 45,000 suicides involving guns. These numbers are the highest levels
documented in a decade. Additionally, one in four women experience some form of partner
violence, and one of every six American women has been the victim of rape or attempted rape.
Also, in 2016, 676,000 victims of child abuse and neglect were reported to local authorities and
officials; and
     WHEREAS, Wednesday's theme is Rural Health. America's rural communities are
suffering from a host of health disparities including suffering from higher rates of chronic
diseases and from limited access to primary care and prevention services. People living in rural
areas are at a greater risk of dying from the five leading causes of death, which include heart
disease, cancer, unintentional injury, chronic lower respiratory disease and stroke. Suicide rates
are also higher in rural America than in urban areas, and the gap has been steadily growing since
2000; and
     WHEREAS, Thursday's focus is on Technology and Health. New technologies are
rapidly transforming the public health landscape. Examples of this phenomenon include state
environmental health tracking programs using spatial analysis and visualization methods to help
predict people's hazardous exposure risks. Online learning communities are helping health
practitioners and organizers to share best practices, and workers in our nation's health laboratories
are using the latest technology to rapidly detect, trace, and contain disease outbreaks; and
     WHEREAS, Friday's theme is Climate Change and its negative impact on the nation's
public health. Climate change is linked to more frequent and extreme natural disasters such as
hurricanes, flooding and drought, and is expected to negatively impact food security, water and
air quality, and to exacerbate the risks of vector-borne diseases such as the West Nile Virus and
Lyme Disease. Climate change is also expected to disproportionately impact already vulnerable
populations such as the elderly, children, those living in poverty, and those suffering from chronic
diseases; and
     WHEREAS, The focus for the weekend, Saturday and Sunday, is Global Health. The
health and well-being of Americans is fundamentally linked and connected to the global
community. Pandemic viruses can quickly travel throughout the globe, and therefore will require
global efforts and cooperation to track and contain such threats. Research also shows that
American investment in global health is good for the United States economy. A recent 2015 study
shows that 89 cents of every United States government dollar directed towards global health
research and development was invested in America, putting billions of dollars into the United
States economy; now, therefore be it
     RESOLVED, That this House of Representatives of the State of Rhode Island and
Providence Plantations hereby proclaims the Week of April 1-7, 2019, to be "National Public
Health Week" in the State of Rhode Island; and be it further
     RESOLVED, That the Secretary of State be and hereby is authorized and directed to
transmit duly certified copies of this resolution to the Governor of Rhode Island, the Honorable
Gina M. Raimondo, and to the Director of the Rhode Island Department of Health, Nicole
Alexander-Scott, MD, MPH.