Kent County LogoKent County Seal

Health Department Internships


Do you enjoy a drink now and then? Many of us do, often when socializing with friends and family. Drinking can be beneficial or harmful, depending on your age and health status, and, of course, how much you drink.

For anyone who drinks, these sites offer valuable, research-based information. What do you think about taking a look at your drinking habits and how they may affect your health?  Rethinking Drinking can help you get started.

Tools & Calculators

Thinking About a Change?

The decision to change your drinking is up to you. It is normal to have mixed feelings and it can help to weigh the pros and cons. Use the interactive change worksheet to see if you are ready for to take the next step and strategies for cutting down.

Take the Next Step

Like any illness, ongoing or excessive use of alcohol and other drugs can make things hard for your health, relationships, family, or job.  The good news is that these problems can be treated and recovery is possible. The Network180 Guide to Services lists agencies that may be able to help.

Additional Resources

Why Rethink Drinks?

Adult heavy drinking is a major public health concern. According to the Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS) in 2014, 17.1% of those 18 years and older who were surveyed admitted to binge drinking in the past month. Binge drinking is higher among men (23.2%) and in adults between the ages of 25-34 (29.3%). The assessment also found 20.1% of adults in a higher income tax bracket ($75,000 or more/year) admitted to binge drinking in the past 30 days. Many people do not realize the long-term harm they are doing to their bodies when they engage in heavy drinking.

Short term, we know the impacts of heavy drinking can include drinking and driving, aggression, and risky sexual behavior. But long-term, it can lead to obesity, higher risk of certain cancers, and organ damage. Knowing these risks early and taking a proactive approach can help you stay healthy.

Information for the Community

Who we are

The Kent County Health Department is working in partnership with network180 to reduce adult heavy drinking. This campaign is designed to inform adults about the harmful effects and risky behaviors associated with excessive alcohol consumption.

What we are doing

The multi-year campaign will include billboards, advertisements, QR coding and social media messages to bring people to the website. Social media, education, environmental strategies, and community mobilization include:

What's the Hurry?

Out With the Guys?

Girls' Night Out?

This partnership between the Kent County Health Department and network180 is supported by a grant from the Behavioral Health and Departmental Disabilities Administration/Bureau of Substances Abuse & Addiction Services.

Community Standards for Alcohol Use

Although many people may use alcohol appropriately, alcohol misuse and abuse creates significant risks to the health and safety of all our community members, particularly our children. Alcohol misuse is increasingly recognized as a major factor in violence, crime, sexual promiscuity, teen pregnancy, personal injury, and premature death. Alcohol misuse results in great harm to many individuals and families, businesses, neighborhoods, and the greater community.

Alcohol related problems cost Americans billions of dollars per year with a substantial portion expended for health care (and multiple billions beyond health care). The citizens of our community have a right to live, work, and play in environments that are free from the risks, problems, and costs resulting from the misuse of alcohol.
It is important for leaders and members of the community to step forward to address the problems that alcohol misuse creates in our community. We need to work together to improve the quality of life for all members of our community and particularly our children.

The Community Standards for Alcohol Use are based on these key beliefs:

Contact Us

Health Department


700 Fuller Avenue NE
Grand Rapids, MI 49503


Public Health Clinics

(616) 632-7100

(616) 632-7083

Mark Hall, MD, MPH
Medical Director

Adam London, RS, MPA
Administrative Health Officer

Animal Shelter

740 Fuller Avenue NE
Grand Rapids, MI 49503

Monday-Friday: 9:30am-6:30pm
Closed for Lunch:
Monday-Friday: 1:00pm-2:00pm
Adoptions end 1 hour prior to closing.
Closed Saturday & Sunday

(616) 632-7300

(616) 632-7324

Environmental Health Services

700 Fuller Avenue NE
Grand Rapids, MI 49503

(616) 632-6900

(616) 632-6892

Employee Recognition

Nominate a Kent County Employee for Quality Service!