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      Ciy of Amarillo conducts health assessment phone survey

      A heads up from the City of Amarillo. You may be getting a phone call over the next few weeks from a (940) area code. That call will be asking you for general health information.

      The next time your phone rings it could be the University of North Texas Survey Research Center's computer system. They're performing this years city Community Health Assessment Telephone Survey. It's asking you general health questions. Some may find it strange and even a scam, but Matt Richardson with the City's Public Health Department says people can take solace in knowing their information stays anonymous.

      "In these phone calls, we'll be asking some personal health questions, but those are designed to gather anonymous identify information so that we can compare to what's happening in Texas and the Nation so that we can better assign resources to public health in our area.This is a random telephone dial. There are random phone numbers generated by a computer software and then we are calling about 10,000 numbers to about 800 responses," said Richardson.

      The survey is done every three years, the last one being in 2010. It helps assess the health needs of the community and identify any trends where more resources, including fund, are needed to combat issues like a rise in heart disease, diabetes, cancer, and obesity.

      "Research Institutions, the medical center, different organizations in Amarillo can then use this data to craft an argument to the federal government/state government for grant dollars to address some of the needs in our community," said Richardson.

      But still, people in the community are reluctant to give out their health information. Pronews 7 asked folks on Facebook if they would give out their health information. Most said no, only a handful said they would.

      Down the road, all of us will be able to view the Community Health Improvement Plan all the survey data will be part of.