Advancing the NYS Prevention Agenda Phase II: Technical Assistance for Local Health Departments
Building Healthy Communities
June 23, 2016
To help achieve its goal of making New York the healthiest state, the New York State Department of Health issued the Prevention Agenda 2013–17 as a blueprint for State and local community action to address disease prevention and reduce health disparities.
All 58 local health departments were required to submit a Community Health Improvement Plan (CHIP) to the State outlining their strategies to advance the Prevention Agenda. To energize the implementation of these CHIPs, NYHealth launched a matching grants initiative, selecting the health departments with the most innovative and feasible projects to improve the health and wellbeing of their communities. In support of this initiative, NYHealth also awarded the New York Academy of Medicine (the Academy) a grant in 2014 to provide technical assistance to Prevention Agenda grantees and other county health departments as they implemented their CHIPs and create learning collaboratives to further provide resources and networking opportunities. In 2016, NYHealth awarded the Academy a second grant to continue to support county health departments’ needs and strengthen their collaborations with local hospitals and community-based organizations.
Under this grant, the Academy focused more intensely on NYHealth’s core strategies to create healthy food access and opportunities for physical activity in communities. It assisted county health departments in identifying best practices and lessons to advance health promotion initiatives and help build healthy communities. Specifically, the Academy conducted more than 30 learning collaborative sessions for a range of stakeholders, including county health departments, hospitals, community-based organizations, and local government units from counties across the State. Some examples of new learning collaboratives included advancing the built environment and healthy food options; policy and procurement for emergency food systems; and healthy food in health care settings. Each session was targeted toward a specific audience and included content experts and examples from local health departments, making the work and stories relatable.