Cambridge Public Health Department Celebrates National Public Health Week April 1-7, 2013


National Public Health Week Promotional Image

This year’s National Public Health Week theme is “Public Health is ROI: Save Lives, Save Money.” 

How can investing in public health and prevention create a healthier America?

In the business world, a return on investment, or ROI, refers to the amount of profit made in relation to the capital invested. In the world of public health, however, ROI is much different.

Oftentimes, public health ROI refers to avoided medical spending due to investments in prevention and early disease detection. However, public health ROI should also be measured in the number of diseases and injuries prevented, the number of lives saved, and the amount of productivity gained due to investing in public health and prevention.

By supporting and celebrating public health and prevention, we can help transform a health system that’s now focused on treating illness to one focused on preventing disease and promoting wellness. And we all have a role to play. By taking small actions, we can help our communities, friends, and families see the much larger benefits of prevention.

Did you know?

  • An investment of $10 per person per year in programs to increase physical activity, improve nutrition, and prevent smoking and other tobacco use could save the country more than $16 billion annually within five years. Massachusetts ranks #3 in the U.S. for potential net savings within 5 years of investment (Trust for America’s Health, 2008).
  • Routine childhood immunizations save $9.9 million in direct health care costs, save 33,000 lives and prevent 14 million cases of disease.
  • The cost of providing dental care for children enrolled in Medicaid and living in communities without fluoridation is twice as high as for children who receive the oral health benefits of drinking water fluoridation.
  • Each 10 percent increase in local public health spending contributes to a 6.9 percent decrease in infant deaths, a 3.2 percent decrease in cardiovascular deaths, a 1.4 percent decrease in deaths due to diabetes, and a 1.1 percent decrease in cancer deaths.


Public Health Poster Gallery
A poster gallery will be on display at Cambridge City Hall, 795 Mass. Ave. Apr. 1-21. The exhibit showcases programs and organizations working to promote public health in Cambridge. Information on community health improvement will also be featured. Open to the public.

27th Annual Cambridge CityRun and City Walk
The 27th Annual Marathon Sports Cambridge CityRun 5 Miler and 3-Mile CityWalk will be held Sunday, Apr. 7 at 10:30 a.m. This scenic event starts and finishes at the Russell Youth Center, 680 Huron Ave., Cambridge. The course runs along the perimeter of the Fresh Pond Reservoir two miles into the race. A single adult entry is $25 before April 1 ($30 after). To register, visit

Middle Grades Survey
Cambridge students in grades six through eight will take the Middle Grades Health Survey on Tuesday, Apr. 9. Conducted biennially since 1997, the survey helps determine the prevalence of health-risk behaviors among middle school students. It is a collaborative effort of the Cambridge Public Health Department, Cambridge Public Schools, and the Cambridge Prevention Coalition. Results from previous years’ surveys and other surveillance reports can be found on the Cambridge Public Health Department website.

Real World Public Health
A half-day professional development symposium for graduate students in public health, sponsored by the Cambridge Public Health Department and the Institute for Community Health. Real World Public Health will be held Wednesday, Apr. 3, from 8 a.m. - 1:30 p.m., at Windsor Street Health Center, 119 Windsor St., Cambridge.  Open to public health graduate students.


Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Roadmaps to Health Prize
Cambridge is one of six winners nationwide of the inaugural Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF) Roadmaps to Health Prize. The prize honors outstanding community partnerships across the United States that are helping residents lead healthier lives. Cambridge was honored for its achievements in the areas of healthy eating and physical activity, strengthening families, progressive urban planning, and integration of public health within the Cambridge Health Alliance health care model.

The community received a cash prize of $25,000 in recognition of its efforts and was honored on Feb. 20 at an event held at the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation in Princeton, New Jersey. The City of Cambridge will celebrate this achievement during National Public Health Week.

Let’s Move/Cambridge in Motion Mini-Grants
Two complementary Cambridge-based wellness campaigns, Let’s Move! and Cambridge in Motion are sponsoring 10 mini-grants of $500 each to promote healthy eating and physical activity in children and adults. The application is available online. Deadline for applications is Friday, April 5.

Cooking Matters at the Store®: Become a Trained Facilitator to Lead a Guided Grocery Store Tour to Help Families Buy Healthy, Affordable Foods
Want to teach others how to save money at the store? Want to help people buy healthy foods to feed their family? Want to share some tasty and healthy recipes with your community? Then become a trained “Cooking Matters at the Store” facilitator, so that you can lead grocery store tours for your clients, colleagues or community.  A training will be held Monday, Apr. 8, from 1:30-3:30 p.m., at 119 Windsor Street, 2nd Floor.  Space is limited to 15 people.  Registration information is available online.

Weeding Out the Facts: What Parents Need to Know about Teens and Marijuana
Join Dr. Traci Brooks (Cambridge Health Alliance), Lt. Lenny DiPietro (Cambridge Police Department), Jennifer Rifkin (Institute for Health and Recovery), and Cambridge Rindge and Latin School’s student leaders for an interactive workshop on talking with teens about marijuana and substance use. Dr. Brooks will share strategies and facts to help parents have a successful conversation about this difficult subject. The event will take place Wednesday, May 1 from 6-8 p.m., in the CRLS Falcon’s Nest (2nd Floor), 459 Broadway, Cambridge.  Light refreshments will be served. To RSVP and for more information, email Open to parents and students in middle school and high school.

Domestic Violence and the Workplace: Policy Materials Coming Soon
Domestic violence doesn’t just “stay at home.” It’s a workplace issue, too. Employers have a responsibility to maintain a safe workplace. Visit the Cambridge Public Health Department’s website to find resources for managers, supervisors, and co-workers on preventing and responding to workplace domestic violence. Stay tuned for new products coming this spring!

About National Public Health Week
National Public Health Week (NPHW) is observed during the first full week of April, and has been celebrated by communities across the United States since 1995. Organized by the American Public Health Association (APHA), NPHW is an opportunity to recognize the contributions of public health and highlight issues that are important to improving the nation's health.  To learn more about National Public Health Week, visit

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Visiting City Hall

Cambridge City Hall

795 Massachusetts Ave
Cambridge MA, 02139
Ph: 617-349-4000
TTY: 617-349-4242

Hours of Service

Monday: 8:30am-8pm
Tuesday-Thursday: 8:30am-5pm
Friday: 8:30am-12pm

Richard C. Rossi
City Manager

Lisa C. Peterson
Deputy City Manager