California county declares loneliness a public health crisis

A California county is the first in the U.S. to declare loneliness a public health emergency, NBC News reported Feb. 2. 

The San Mateo County Board of Supervisors passe9+d a resolution Jan. 30, declaring a public health crisis and pledging to promote social connection in the Bay Area county. 

The resolution did not directly set aside funds for programs to reduce loneliness, according to NBC News. 

"What we're trying to do is to really get people out of the corners and say, 'Hey, look, there are a lot of people who are feeling like you. You're not alone. And moving forward, here are some of the things that we can do to support you,'" San Mateo Board of Supervisors Vice President David Canepa told the outlet. 

In May, U.S. Surgeon General Vivek Murth, MD, issued an advisory warning loneliness has greater health risks than obesity or physical inactivity. 

In a Feb. 2 post on X, Dr. Murthy wrote that he was grateful for San Mateo County for being the first locality to formally recognize loneliness as a public health concern. 

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