Aberdeen health fair to go beyond the norm

New Jersey is no exception to the nationwide struggles with access to affordable healthcare and obesity. According to the state Department of Health, of the six leading health indicators as part of Healthy New Jersey 2020, we are not meeting our goals in three areas: access to primary care, childhood immunizations and adult obesity. In particular, obesity can trigger such catastrophic medical problems as diabetes, hypertension, heart disease and cancer.

To promote healthier living, Aberdeen’s Economic Business Council (EBC) approached the Aberdeen Township Council last year with the idea of holding a health fair that would differ from similar events by going beyond the traditional screenings to offer free healthy food samplings and attractions for attendees of all ages. The council readily agreed, paving the way for Aberdeen’s first health fair, from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. on April 6 at Matawan Regional High School, 450 Atlantic Ave., Aberdeen.

“A health fair can help educate residents on the ways that they can better maintain their health as well as improve access to healthcare by connecting patients and providers,” said EBC member Dr. Leonard J. Somarriba, DPT, CSCS, who helped coordinate the family-friendly event.

To that end, the Aberdeen event will feature more than 30 area vendors representing the medical, dental, physical therapy, behavioral health and exercise fields, along with social service organizations and merchants who carry health products and healthy foods.

“I am so proud of all the volunteer organizations that have come together to make this one of the most important events of the year,” Mayor Fred Tagliarini said. “It has been proven that early detection can save lives. I hope that people from Aberdeen and surrounding towns take advantage of this opportunity to meet with healthcare providers from our area.”