Dr. Maria Almond: Who are we? Let me explain

Published 6:51 pm Thursday, April 27, 2023

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Editor’s note: This marks the first in a series of monthly columns that the staff of the Piedmont Health District will be producing for The Herald. It will run each time on the last Friday of the month, with a goal of answering questions from local residents. 

The pandemic hasn’t been easy for any of us. But we are all moving forward, and the Piedmont Health District is happy to be helping so many new individuals who rediscovered their local health departments and how public health works to serve our community.

Dr. Maria Almond

Looking back over the past three years, we can reflect on the lessons learned. One thing learned is the importance of community. There is no better feeling than seeing smiling faces, as people return to regular rhythms and our health departments. We have all been through a difficult time and are coming out the other side. Use this column as a reminder that you’re not alone.

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The health department strives to be a resource for you. We work best when in partnership with community members and organizations which is why we are so happy to be hosting in-person events and having face-to-face conversations with the people we value most. We continue to work to strengthen and expand our relationships.

This health column is a new way we’re hoping to communicate with you. Not only do we want this forum to serve in answering your questions, but also to showcase the amazing team you don’t often get to see, so that we can get to know each other better.

COVID-19 placed a spotlight on the public health response, and while the pandemic is ebbing, our work is ongoing. Our local health departments are full of resources of which many are unaware. We want all community members to know how we serve the district and, likewise, to hear from our community how we can best work together to improve our health and well-being.

Our Piedmont team is made up of individuals who have dedicated their careers to helping others stay healthy. Each county health department has a caring nurse, clerk, environmental health specialist and community health worker who are always available to help you. We offer a wide range of services to our citizens: family planning and sexual health clinics; environmental health services, such as well/septic permits and food service safety; community outreach and health education; infectious disease surveillance, prevention and outbreak investigation; emergency preparedness coordination; vital records; and Women, Infants and Children (WIC) services. We host daily clinics from Monday to Thursday that focus on family planning and sexual health, and immunizations for adults and children.

The Piedmont Health District is one of 35 health districts within the Virginia Department of Health. We serve the counties of Amelia, Buckingham, Charlotte, Cumberland, Lunenburg, Nottoway and Prince Edward — all in the name of keeping the heart of Virginia healthy.

Dr. Maria Almond is the director for Piedmont Health District, one of 35 health districts of the Virginia Department of Health. It serves the counties of Amelia, Buckingham, Charlotte, Cumberland, Lunenburg, Nottoway and Prince Edward. Call (434) 392-8187 x 137 or email briauna.marcum@vdh.virginia.gov with any questions.