Community-Based Education
Health Education Coordinator : Katharine Lay
Phone: (606) 549-3380

Senior Clinical Nutritionist and WIC Coordinator:Teresa Bunch
Phone: (606) 549-3380
One of the core public health functions of the Whitley County Health Department involves providing health education services to the community.  This service may be provided in schools, factories, churches, civic events, senior citizen centers, day cares, places of business and a multitude of other locations.

Registered Nurses, Health Educators, and Social Workers are available to provide education and counseling on topics such as HIV/STD, safety, nutrition, hypertension, diabetes, cancer, cardiovascular disease, CPR, personal hygiene, family planning services (including folic acid supplements and education), prenatal care, parenting skills, OSHA regulations for the medical industry, weight management (including diet and exercise), child abuse prevention, domestic violence prevention and a multitude of other topics.

The Health Department Tobacco Control Program is aimed at reducing the use of tobacco by providing education and prevention programs both in schools and the community.  Cooper-Clayton stop smoking sessions are available from a trained facilitator.  This facilitator is also available for classroom and community presentations on the effects of smoking.
Check out the website that has information on giving up the tobacco habit.  The 1-800-784-8669 Quit Now Kentucky provides counseling over the phone.  A spanish quit line is also available by calling 1-855-335-3569.  What are you waiting for?  Call today!

Check out the state of Kentucky tobacco prevention resources and what the health department tobacco program is doing in your community on

The Child Fatality Review Board meets quarterly to review cases of child fatality and assess the educational needs of the community.  Education is aimed at reducing child fatality by increasing public awareness of issues such as SIDS, child safety and a multitude of other topics.

Tri-County Cancer Coalition (Knox, Whitley and Laurel Counties)

One of the most active coalitions in the community is the Tri-County Cancer Coalition which is made up of health agencies, cancer survivors, cancer patients and concerned citizens dedicated to provide support, education, and advocacy to those who have experienced cancer, or are now experiencing cancer.  The vision is to assist cancer patients and survivors in reclaiming their lives.  Services provided by this coalition are made possible by grants through the Lexington Foundation, Inc, and though various fundraising events from businesses and organizations that donate to the coalition.  Special services and supplies are provided, free wigs, bandanas, turbans, scarfs, lymphedema sleeves, breast prothesis, bras, a one time gift per year for transportation funds are earmarked to help cancer patients obtain treatment. 
Click on the paintbrush icon to print the travel assistance form.
For more information call the health department in each of the counties
for assistance.  Learn more about the Tri-County Cancer Coalition, were on facebook.

Tri-County Clear the Air Coalition

A coalition that is actively involved with providing education and building awareness in the Knox, Whitley and Laurel counties about a very crucial health issue Secondhand Smoke Exposure.   Secondhand Smoke is the smoke that smokers breathe out and the smoke from the end of a burning cigarette, cigar or pipe.  Burning tobacco puts thousands of chemicals into the air.  Secondhand smoke contains more than 4,000 chemicals: 5 regulated hazardous air pollutants, 47 regulated hazardous wastes, 60 know or suspected cancer-causing agents and more than 100 compounds in the air.  What is sad is that non-smokers that work in environments and go to public places that allow smoking breathe in these chemicals everyday.  Local smoke-free laws promote public debate and educate the public close to home.  Changing policy is one of the most effective public health measures because it changes the cultural norms about tobacco use.  Smoke-free laws protects nonsmokers from the dangers of secondhand smoke and change the community climate such that fewer youth start to smoke.  An added benefit of smoke-free laws is that smokers tend to smoke fewer cigarettes and some actually quit altogether.  Comprehensive smoke-free workplace laws are the best vaccine against heart disease, cancer, and breathing disorders.  For more information on secondhand smoke in public places go to

Katharine Lay, Health Educator
Teresa Bunch, Clinical Nutritionist and WIC Coordinator