Transforming Texoma Into a Healthier Place

Healthier living is on the horizon for Texomans. A brand new program plans to help Texomans achieve a healthier lifestyle. The program is all thanks to a Transforming Texas Grant. Wichita County is one of 30 counties in Texas that got the funding.

The Wichita Falls-Wichita County Public Health District is ready to make some changes to create a healthier lifestyle for many.

Will Carter, Project Manager of the grant program, said, "We're going to utilize the funds that come from state and health services." Carter added, "We're also going to implement three key strategies to help resolve some health issues."

Wichita County health officials will focus on three areas tobacco in the work place, obesity rate and preventable diseases.

Carter said there is a great need for change in Wichita County. "Cases like diabetes, high blood pressure, cholesterol, and obesity, are actually leading the state average. That's probably one of the reasons why we were approved for this grant."

Wichita County health officials said the county exceeds the state average in all those areas. The grant program has a goal to reduce the rates in all three areas.

Program staff will need to implement changes in five years, before the grant expires. Carter commented, "The goal is for self efficiency, for people to try and take care of themselves and mange their conditions."

Collaborating with community organizations, to also implement the program, is key. Carter said, "We can actually plant the seed, and employers will keep it going from there on out."

Texomans can kick start a road to healthier living by attending the Wichita Falls-Wichita County Public Health Distinct's Health Fair. It takes place April 14th from 9 to 1p.m. at the Health District.

Natalie Garcia,  Newschannel 6