A vibrant, resilient city is defined by several factors including the health of its communities. Nashville is a thriving city with a high-quality of life as well as a leader in high-quality, innovative healthcare services. However, Nashville’s health outcomes lag behind other comparable cities. Mayor Briley is committed to promoting a culture of health in Nashville by empowering our residents to take steps to improve their overall health and well-being. Good health and well-being is not a destination but a journey and health happens with the day-to-day decisions we make, such as incorporating more fresh fruits and vegetables into our diets or leaving our cars at home to walk to a transit stop. In 2019, Mayor Briley is focusing on initiatives to help Nashville improve its health and well-being and promote Music City as a healthy city.
In December, the Mayor's Office, the Metro Public Health Department and community partners launched Nashville’s Ending the Epidemic planning process. In 2018, Nashville is committed to developing a community-led planning process to End the HIV epidemic once and for all. We have the science and the tools at our disposal to make sure that everyone knows their HIV status and those infected can get early treatment and reach viral suppression, effectively eliminating their risk of transmission. We also have access to prevention tools to help those most at risk avoid infection. HIV also thrives in the face of stigma and discrimination so we must commit to educating the public and breaking down barriers so we can reach those most at risk.
1 in 5 adults experiences mental illness in a given year. Fatal drug overdoses have doubled in Davidson County in the past 5 years. Overdose is now the leading cause of death of Americans under age 50 and 2/3rds of American families report being impacted by addiction. At least 50% of those with a substance abuse disorder are estimated to have a co-occuring mental illness. Through the Community Mental Health Systems Improvement Workgroup, Metro has made strides in expanding opportunities for diversion for those with mental illness from the criminal justice system. Mayor Briley is committed to making an even broader commitment to addressing behavioral health in a systemic way in 2018 through a community-led process by continuing to focus on diversion issues and emergency response to drug overdose while also focusing more upstream on prevention and education initiatives and exploring opportunities to expand treatment resources in Nashville. An important strategy of the efforts to prevent substance use is a partnership with schools to present evidenced-based programming to young people rooted in the pillars of social and emotional learning.