Anne Arundel County has won a $1 million state grant for health programs, and much of it will be spent in the Brooklyn Park neighborhoods that County Executive Robert R. Neall is expected to visit today.
Neall will tour the North County community as part of a pre-arranged program, similar to other day-long personal tours through county neighborhoods he has conducted with his staff. The visits allow the executive and his staff to see a community's problems firsthand and to discuss them with community leaders.
County officials today are scheduled to meet with representatives of five Brooklyn Park community associations; to tour an industrial plant, two elementary schools and a library; to discuss recreation needs with one group; and to lunch with business and community leaders.
The officials will not be going empty-handed. Neall is expected to announce the grant, which is the county's share of $14 million given out by the state Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, during a morning visit to the Brooklyn Park Health Center.
The facility provides public health services in a community that a consultant recently found has critical needs in terms of infant mortality, cancer screenings and access to health care.
County Health Director Tom Andrews was unavailable yesterday, but a department spokesman said the $1 million grant will provide services in all three areas:
* About $200,000 will pay for approximately 1,900 prenatal and newborn home visits by nurses to 200 mothers and their babies in Brooklyn Park, Severn and Annapolis. The communities were pinpointed in a May 28 report as having the highest infant mortality rates in the county.
* $500,000 will be spent on cancer prevention and early detection programs. The money will pay for private physicians to perform cervical and breast cancer screenings for uninsured patients and prevention campaigns to curb smoking and high-fat diets.
Evelyn Stein, a Health Department spokeswoman, said part of the prevention money also may pay for health advertisements and for targeting specific populations, such as county school teachers, with information about the benefits of cancer screenings.
jTC * The $300,000 balance will pay for health care for 250 uninsured children and 50 uninsured adults who fall short of federal requirements for medical assistance.