Local Government Revealed: Health Director Tim Wright

Tim Wright has been the Anderson County Health Director since February 2012.  Tim has two titles, the Public Health Director and Environmental Health Program Manager.  He is married to Tammy Lou Wright.  He has one daughter and two step sons.  He is originally from Pike County, graduated from Knox Central High School in 1985.  He graduated from Cumberland College in 1990 with degrees in Environmental Health Science and Physical Education.  He loves to collect art and enjoy his passion for fishing.  He and his family also have a small farm and have Thoroughbred brood mares.

Most of us know where the Health Department is located, which is by the Walmart on Glensboro Road, but know little about the services that it provides for everyone in the county.  This includes a variety of clinical services, environmental services, school health services, the H.A.N.D.S. program for first time parents and public health preparedness.  Family Care of the Bluegrass is also there to provide care for everyone, including those without insurance or those that are under insured.

The mission of the health department is to protect and promote a healthy community while growing and expanding the public health service for everyone. With that vision and goal in mind, no person will be turned away from service due to the inability to pay. This means that there is a sliding fee scale so that nobody is turned away.

Some of the clinical services that the health department provides are a number of different exams, including well child checkups, breast and cervical cancer screenings, tuberculosis testing, STD/HIV testing and counseling, and physical exams for sports, school, or commercial driver licenses.  They also offer immunizations, family planning which includes birth control methods, exams, and testing, nutrition counseling and food vouchers for those in the WIC program, and a diabetes support group.

Family Care of the Bluegrass, which is located in the health department but not managed by them, offers a full range of health services and is staffed by doctors and nurses.  They also have grant money available to help pay for services for those who don’t have the ability.

In addition to the services performed in the building, the health department also have staff throughout the county.  All the county school nurses are employed by the department and offer similar help for students including immunizations, health education, and more.  They can also give over the counter medication with the proper consent forms.  Another program is H.A.N.D.S. (Health, Access, Nurturing and Development Services), which is a federally funded, in home program to help new parents.

The health department has even more responsibilities. Public facilities from restaurants, hotels, spas and many others are checked for safety.  Depending on the requirements (legal and regulatory), the health department ensures we are protected. This service also includes quarantining any animal that bites for ten days to protect against rabies or other diseases.

They also have to plan for future disasters.  In the event of a catastrophe, the health department has plans in place to do everything possible to protect the citizens of the county.  They have backup communication systems in place to make sure the fire department, police, sheriff, hospital and ambulance services are available in the event of a disaster.  Hopefully, they will never be needed, but the health department is ready if they ever are.

The county health board, which Tim reports to, meets quarterly and is composed of 12 members, six of which are health care professionals (3 doctors), an engineer and the Judge Executive among others.  They set the yearly tax rate (no changes in 11 years) and approve the budget.  The board can also take any state law, and make it more stringent, but they cannot weaken the law.

Tim’s personal goal for the health department is to provide the best care they can offer.  He believes they have achieved that goal, but he and the staff are constantly working to improve the care they provide to an even greater degree.

-Written by Don West

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2 Comments

  1. I have worked with Tim Wright and his staff for as long as Tim has worked in Lawrenceburg. I know the passion he has for providing good healthcare for our citizens. Thank you Don for clearly capturing the department in such a positive light for all to read.

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