Welcome to Westport Health Notes, a monthly column from the Westport Board of Health (BOH). The goal is to share information with our community about local issues and projects, public health alerts, …
Welcome to Westport Health Notes, a monthly column from the Westport Board of Health (BOH). The goal is to share information with our community about local issues and projects, public health alerts, and even facts about the scope of responsibility that local Boards of Health manage.
Public health nursing is the practice of promoting and protecting the health of populations with an emphasis on primary prevention of illness. They work to ensure the overall health of communities through education, advocacy, outreach, and delivery of care. Public health nurses provide tools to help improve and maintain health and promote public wellness. Their goal is to improve population health outcomes for all families. Public health nurses create positive changes by following public health policy and through community building and leadership.
The Town of Westport’s Board of Health registered nurse, Linda Pierce, provides flu shots, T.B. testing, and has organized blood drives in our community to address a critical blood shortage. Every Wednesday from 9:30 am to 11:30 am, she conducts a blood pressure screening clinic at her office in the Town Hall Annex. She has also obtained Narcan for free distribution to residents to address potential opioid overdoses in our community. During the pandemic, her role was critical in helping provide vaccines during our COVID clinics. Her responsibility for the process of contact tracing, communication with public health agencies, our school department nurses, and individuals impacted by this virus, was vital during this public health crisis. Linda has also provided important educational presentations on various medical issues in monthly Board of Health meetings. These are just a few of the many services she provides to our community.
In September, Linda will be taking on an additional project in her role as a community builder and educator. She will be leading a new group entitled “Mom Talks.” This group will be an open forum where new moms can meet and share their experiences and challenges. The goal is to provide support and education to perinatal women so they may feel less alone, and to gain information to help them in their role as a mother. Linda will be joined by Catarina Faioes, a representative of the Women, Infants, and Children Nutritional program (WIC). She will provide nutrition education, breastfeeding support, and referrals to healthcare and other services to Massachusetts families who qualify. In addition to English, Catarina speaks Portuguese and Spanish.
The group is open to all expecting moms, and new moms with children up to 12 months
of age. It will be held the third Monday of every month from 10 am to 11:30 am starting
Sept. 18 , at the Town Hall Annex meeting room, 856 Main Road, Westport.
Please call Public Health Nurse Linda Pierce at 508-636-1030 as registration is required. This group is free of charge and a safe space for all. BIPOC and LGBTQIA+ pregnant and postpartum moms/birthing people are welcome. You do not have to be a Westport resident to attend.
As a community, our public health nurse provides us with important services that work to better our health and our lives. Linda ‘s work and leadership is a shining example of what good public health nursing is all about.
Amaral (RN, PMHCNS-BC) is a member of the Town of Westport Board of Health.