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February 20. 2013 10:55PM

Public Health Network in Derry gets grant funding

DERRY - The region's Public Health Network will receive $342,000 in federal and state grants and matching funds over the next two fiscal years to continue its mission of public health preparedness and substance misuse prevention.

Derry is the regional sponsor of the health network, which also includes Atkinson, Chester, Danville, Hampstead, Londonderry, Plaistow, Sandown, Salem, and Windham.

The majority of the funding comes from a New Hampshire Public Health Network Grant, according to public health network coordinator Garrett Simonsen.

"The grant provides the core financial support for the public health network coordinator to increase and enhance public health emergency preparedness and response activities, and to establish substance misuse prevention and related health promotion in the Derry region," Simonsen said.

Additionally, the New Hampshire Charitable Foundation has committed to providing a matching grant to support substance misuse prevention and related health promotion services.

The amount from the charitable foundation will total $20,000 per fiscal year, while the state public health network grant will total just over $150,000 per year.

Derry has been the regional coordinator for the public health network since 2006, but Simonsen said the matching funds from the New Hampshire Charitable Foundation are new.

Some of the activities funded through the regional public health network include training personnel and volunteers to support public health needs during an emergency, conducting emergency drills and exercises, facilitating efforts among partner agencies to the strengthen the capabilities of the public health system within the region, and participating in local health assessments to support data-driven approaches to public health prevention and health promotion services.

While the public health network does not provide for treatment services, Simonsen said the data collected does help with the development of drug misuse programs.

aswift@newstote.com


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