September 22, 2009 - Heidi Swygard, MD, assistant professor in the division of infectious diseases at the UNC School of Medicine, was recently appointed to the Wake County Public Health Committee (PHC). Swygard was nominated to the committee by Ramon Rohano, director of Human Services for Wake County. PHC chair Benny Ridout, who is Medicaid Pharmacy Director for the state of North Carolina, gave his enthusiastic approval of the appointment, particularly because HIV and STDs are critical issues in Wake County. “She brings considerable expertise,” Ridout said.
The PHC is composed of representatives many health-related fields, including nurses, doctors, and pharmacologists, as well as representatives from the health insurance pharmaceutical industries. The committee discusses local public-health issues and makes recommendations to the Wake County Human Services Board, which in turn sends recommendations to the Wake County Board of Commissioners. The PHC was instrumental in implementing the recent ban on smoking in all county buildings.