To the OHA team:
The beginning of this week was much busier than most: we participated in legislative days with several presentations and meetings, and we prepared our marijuana dispensary program for retail sale beginning on Thursday. Then, in the midst of this hectic work that had us moving full speed ahead, a senseless tragedy stopped us cold.
But the minute we heard about the shooting at Umpqua Community College, the Health Security & Preparedness Response program of our Public Health Division reacted instantly by informing leadership, helping Douglas County to provide behavioral health resources and finding ways to support the hospitals. In coordination with Douglas County and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, we requested a Federal Behavioral Health Response Team to assist with the coordination and deployment of personal, family and community recovery resources. Dr. Pam Martin, our behavioral health director, is available 24/7 to help them in the healing efforts.
This devastating event is heartbreaking, yet it provides us with a unique perspective. Every day in our routine work we strive to protect, promote and provide access to good health for Oregonians. But life is full of unknown challenges. The most important thing is we simply take care of each other — in big and small ways. I appreciate you all. Please join me in holding our Douglas County friends in your thoughts at this difficult time.
To your health: A disaster or tragedy is unexpected and often brings out strong emotions. If you are feeling distress, please consider contacting our Employee Assistance Program (1-800-433-2320) as needed for support for you and your family members. This no-cost service is confidential.