County Exec MaryEllen Odell Supports Employee Wellness For All: Putnam Community Health Improvement Plan Involves Businesses in Employee Health

Brewster, NY— Workplace wellness increases employee productivity, reduces absenteeism and streamlines health care costs and Putnam County’s recently completed Community Health Improvement Plan (CHIP) takes advantage of these well-researched benefits. Submitted to the NYS DOH last week, the CHIP has the broad support of the County Executive’s Office, working with the Putnam County Department of Health (PCDOH). One of the major goals of this plan is to involve the business community in promoting wellness strategies among Putnam workers.

“Employee health promotion is an excellent investment to make,” says Allen Beals, MD, Commissioner of Health. “It helps Putnam County keep health care costs in line, and it can help other businesses do the same. Workers spend a significant amount of their waking hours at work,” Dr. Beals continues. “Involving the business community is a logical and effective way to improve health. Our community partners, together with the strong support of our County Executive MaryEllen Odell, have taken the steps to incorporate this into our county’s health improvement

County Executive Odell has also been a proponent of the County’s own employee wellness program from the start. She participates in the programs herself, getting her annual flu shot and having her blood tested for various health risk factors. Blood screening usually involves a simple overnight fast, followed by a blood draw to measure cholesterol and other blood lipids, as well as sugar levels. These tests can provide information on risk of cardiovascular disease, pre-diabetes and diabetes, as well as other problems. Knowing one’s risk factors can help individuals take further
steps, if necessary, to prevent or halt more serious consequences.

The Health Department’s mission is to improve and protect the health of the Putnam County community, composed of nearly 100,000 residents. The Community Health Improvement Plan (CHIP) is required by the NYS DOH and outlines plans, goals and objectives that the PCDOH and its community health partners will work toward. The plan is available online at For more information on how the PCDOH can help business organizations launch an employee wellness program, please call 845-808-1390, Ext. 43258, or email For general Health Department information, visit our website at; or visit our social media sites on Facebook at and Twitter @PutnamHealthNY.