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State health commissioner leaving for CDC

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Dr. Judy Monroe, Indiana’s state health commissioner, will step down March 8 to become deputy director of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Monroe, a former Indianapolis family physician in the St. Vincent Health network, led the state’s public health efforts for five years after being appointed by Gov. Mitch Daniels in March 2005.

Until Daniels appoints a new commissioner, Loren Robertson, deputy health commissioner, will fill Monroe’s job on an interim basis.

Under Monroe’s oversight, the state created a hospital-errors reporting system, which has helped reduce the prevalence of severe bed sores, and the INShape Indiana initiative, which aimed to lower smoking and obesity rates and improve physical activity rates.

The results of the INShape Indiana effort have been mixed. From 2004 to 2009, the percentage of Hoosier adults who were obese rose from 26 percent to 26.9 percent. But, according to data compiled by the UnitedHealth Foundation, Indiana’s ranking among states did improve during that time frame.

The percentage of adults who smoke held steady at 26 percent, although Indiana’s ranking slipped compared with other states.

The percentage of adults exercising each month fell from nearly 75 percent in 2004 to 72 percent in 2008, according to data from the Indiana State Department of Health.

Lastly, the percentage of children with the complete set of immunizations dipped slightly, from 79 percent in 2004 to 78.4 percent last year. But Indiana’s ranking improved compared with other states, according to the UnitedHealth Foundation.

“I’ll leave Indiana with a great sense of pride and gratitude,” Monroe said in a statement. “Fortunately, I will continue to be involved with the health departments in my new position.”

Her new job will take Monroe to the CDC headquarters in Atlanta. From there she will manage three divisions of the CDC and oversee the deployment of CDC resources in state, local, territorial, and tribal public health agencies.
 

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  1. A Tilted Kilt at a water park themed hotel? Who planned that one? I guess the Dad's need something to do while the kids are on the water slides.

  2. Don't come down on the fair for offering drinks. This is a craft and certainly one that belongs in agriculture due to ingredients. And for those worrying about how much you can drink. I'm sure it's more to do with liability than anything else. They don't want people suing for being over served. If you want a buzz, do a little pre-drinking before you go.

  3. I don't drink but go into this "controlled area" so my friend can drink. They have their 3 drink limit and then I give my friend my 3 drink limit. How is the fair going to control this very likely situation????

  4. I feel the conditions of the alcohol sales are a bit heavy handed, but you need to realize this is the first year in quite some time that beer & wine will be sold at the fair. They're starting off slowly to get a gauge on how it will perform this year - I would assume if everything goes fine that they relax some of the limits in the next year or couple of years. That said, I think requiring the consumption of alcohol to only occur in the beer tent is a bit much. That is going to be an awkward situation for those with minors - "Honey, I'm getting a beer... Ok, sure go ahead... Alright see you in just a min- half an hour."

  5. This might be an effort on the part of the State Fair Board to manage the risk until they get a better feel for it. However, the blanket notion that alcohol should not be served at "family oriented" events is perhaps an oversimplification. and not too realistic. For 15 years, I was a volunteer at the Indianapolis Air Show, which was as family oriented an event as it gets. We sold beer donated by Monarch Beverage Company and served by licensed and trained employees of United Package Liquors who were unpaid volunteers. And where did that money go? To central Indiana children's charities, including Riley Hospital for Children! It's all about managing the risk.

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