Bloomfield health officer receives state recognition

Members of the Bloomfield Health Department are, from left, Vincent Nicosia; Karen Lore, director of health and welfare; Mike Fitzpatrick, Bloomfield health officer; Sonia Mulero; Donna Rose; Jill Scarpa, registered environmental health specialist; and Paula Peikes, supervisor of human services.

BLOOMFIELD, NJ — Bloomfield’s Health Officer Michael Fitzpatrick has received a Certificate of Achievement from the NJ Local Boards of Health Association on Thursday, Dec. 14. Fitzpatrick has been with the Department of Health and Human Services since 2009, following a career in both the private and the public sector.

He was nominated for the award by Karen Lore, director of Health & Welfare at the Bloomfield Department of Health and Human Services.
“I am honored to receive this award and to have the opportunity to serve the Bloomfield community by using evidence-based strategies to improve public health services,” said Fitzpatrick. “I believe that public health cannot be squeezed into a one-size-fits-all box and am appreciative that the Bloomfield Board of Health has allowed our department to incorporate an interdisciplinary, collaborative approach in our efforts to identify and improve underlying health needs. The role of a Health and Human Services office is to provide important information and resources to promote, prevent and detect the public health, including disease surveillance and prevention, environmental health, public health education, nursing and mental health program. Our staff of professionals continually strives to provide the best services to effectively serve residents of Bloomfield and our contracting community.”

Lore stated, “Mike led the Bloomfield Health Department in becoming the first accredited Health Department in the state of New Jersey by the Public Health Accreditation Board in 2015, by conducting a Community Health Assessment, Community Health Improvement Plan, Strategic Plan, in addition to a Quality Improvement initiative and Performance Management Plans to better serve the community. Mike is a great leader, utilizing a collective and holistic approach to empower the staff to address residents in need through a variety of initiatives. Recognizing the Opioid epidemic, Mike organized the department’s Public Health Educators to provide Narcan training to the community. Quite frankly, he is one of the most dedicated health professionals I have ever worked with, and truly deserving of this award.”

According to Mayor Michael Venezia, “Mike Fitzpatrick is an exceptional public health advocate, having started a Quality of Life program to investigate all complaints affecting residents, and taking a team approach to tackling individual cases. Public employees like Mike who go above and beyond the requirements of their jobs are what makes Bloomfield such a civic-minded community. He spearheaded trainings ensuring cultural competency of all staff including support for those with visual and hearing impairments, and language training to help non-English speakers.”

The Bloomfield Department of Health and Human Services provides public health and social services to Bloomfield residents with inter-local contracts with Caldwell, Glen Ridge, Mountain Lakes, Madison and Lincoln Park.