Workforce Health: A Priority for the Healthy Communities Coalition of Eagle County

The Healthy Communities Coalition of Eagle County recently received a $125,000 grant from the American Planning Association through its Plan4Health program to support healthy eating and active living, which are two determinants of chronic disease.  It was one of only seventeen such grant awarded nationally, and the funds will be use to help local jurisdictions assess their planning policies and how they affect health outcomes in the local workforce.

Since 2012, the Healthy Communities Coalition (Coalition), which is comprised of multidisciplinary professionals and community members, has been implementing evidence-based strategies to support healthy eating and active living in Eagle County. The Plan4Health Grant will support the Coalition’s mission by enabling reviews of the comprehensive plans of all seven communities across the Eagle River Valley for Healthy Eating and Active Living (HEAL) attributes. This policy review will help inform planning priorities for communities across Eagle County related to HEAL in the built environment.

The Plan4Health grant activities conducted through the Healthy Communities Coalition will be led by the Eagle County Public Health and Planning Departments.

Plan4Health is a multi-year program that strengthens the connection between planning and public health. Seventy-five percent of the program’s funding supports local and state coalitions working to advance public health through better planning and partnerships, specifically through leveraging skills and evidence-based strategies. The program is implemented in partnership with the American Public Health Association (APHA) and represents a major new collaboration between planners and public health professionals to improve population health and contribute to the health of the local workforce. Funding for Plan4Health was provided through an award from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

Seventeen coalitions were selected nationally for the Plan4Health program after a competitive review process. The program is being administered through APA’s Planning and Community Health Center that is dedicated to integrating community health issues into local and regional planning practices by advancing research, outreach, education and policy.

Click here to read more about the Healthy Communities Coalition Plan4Health project.