A Message from the Navy Surgeon General: Be a Partner in Preventive Health

VADM Faison - photo - as of 31 DEC 2015Shipmates,

Earlier this year I spoke about being a partner in your health in 2016. We’re well into the year and I think it vital to reiterate the importance of your health and overall readiness.

Every day we see heart disease, cancer, diabetes, and other non-communicable diseases affecting our Sailors, Marines and their families. Now more than ever, it’s critical we maintain our health and readiness so we can accomplish the mission.

August is Preventive Health Month. There’s no better time for our Navy and Marine Corps team to improve readiness by improving your health. I challenge you to focus on your physical health, resilience and healthy behavior choices every day.

Become partners in your health by being proactive instead of not attending to your health needs.

Early detection is the best prevention. Getting the right preventive care at every stage of life can help everyone stay healthy and lead productive lives, avoid or delay the onset of disease, and keep diseases from becoming worse or debilitating. Prevention should be intertwined into all aspects of our lives, including how we live, work and play. Visit your primary care manager and get recommended screenings, even if you feel well. The time to take preventive action is when you’re healthy.

If you lack physical health, the readiness of your unit or ship is at risk. Through a healthy lifestyle, regular checkups, screenings and vaccinations, disease can be prevented or avoided all together. Practicing a healthy lifestyle includes good nutrition, exercise, avoiding tobacco, and limiting alcohol. Personal hygiene and adequate sleep are also essential.

Your health impacts the Navy and Marine Corps across the globe. Make your health a priority and include health and wellness as a part of your focus on readiness. As you make the commitment to be a partner in your health during August and beyond, know that Navy Medicine is there every step of the way. Prevention starts with you!

Vice Adm. Forrest Faison, Navy Surgeon General