WILKES-BARRE, LUZERNE COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU) — Pennsylvania’s Physician General is being recognized for her work to improve the health of young people statewide. Dr. Rachel Levine received the Maternal And Family Health Services Outstanding Community Service Award Wednesday afternoon in Wilkes-Barre. Dr. Levine is recognized as an expert in pediatric care. She said ensuring good health is key to ensuring Pennsylvania’s future.
“It’s so important for the health of everyone in the Commonwealth.” Pennsylvania Physician General Dr. Rachel Levine, MD is a known advocate for the health of children and teenagers in Pennsylvania. She says that good health all starts before children are born. “We need healthy women who would have excellent pre-natal care to have healthy babies. We need those babies to have medical care and to have proper nutrition. And we need support for those families as those children grow.”
Dr. Levine was an honored guest at the Maternal and Family Health Services Annual Meeting and Community Awards Luncheon held Wednesday afternoon. She tells me that the importance of good health extends to mental and behavioral well being. “If you have healthy individuals then they’re able to be successful and productive at work and so everything works together. So our economic health depends upon our physical health.”
The biggest health risk facing the Commonwealth according to Dr. Levine is what she calls an opioid abuse problem of epidemic proportions. She says she and the Wolf administration consider a solution a priority. “Working on prevention efforts, on rescue efforts with the medication Naloxone which reverses overdoses and in expanding treatment.”
In receiving the Maternal Family And Health Services Outstanding Public Service Award, Dr. Levine was also honored for her work as an advocate in the LGBT community. Dr. Levine is the highest ranking transgender official in Pennsylvania and one of only a few serving in an elected or appointed position nationwide.