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September 13, 2016 11:01 AMCategory: Health Equity

APHA Annual Meeting Preview

apha AMAPHA’s 2016 Annual Meeting and Expo will bring together more than 12,000 public health advocates and professionals to network, share experiences, educate and learn. This year’s meeting will take place in Denver, CO from October 28 to November 2 and is themed ‘Creating the Healthiest Nation. Ensuring the Right to Health.” Ensuring the right to health means that health isn’t simply an option. Everyone deserves the opportunity to achieve the highest level of health. Becoming the healthiest nation means some communities and populations might require more resources than others. Moving toward health equity means we must value all people equally, promote prevention and zero in on the social determinants of health.

denver skyline

Throughout the meeting there will be a few opportunities to hear about Plan4Health from both cohort one and two coalitions as well as staff from the national organizations. The details for sessions focused on Plan4Health are below:

Monday October 31, 2016

  • Food Security, Nutrition, and Obesity Issues Within Community Health Poster Sessions
    10:30am to 11:30am. 
    As part of this session, representatives from Boise, ID will present: Idaho Plan4Health – Assessment of the Food Environment of the Vista Neighborhood
    This presentation explores the outcomes of the food assessment of the Vista neighborhood in Boise Idaho, while also demonstrating the need for local agencies to keep more up to date and consistent health related data for our communities. We believe that our innovative approach to community health and food security assessment could benefit communities across the nation, which can easily be accomplished through the unique toolkit we have assembled that can take our process to places outside of the original study area. This toolkit will provide an opportunity for audience members to discuss the needs of their community and demonstrate the effectiveness of this type of neighborhood food assessment. The full abstract is available online.

  • Plan4Health: Building Healthy, Equitable Communities Through Planning and Public Health
    12:30pm to 2pm
    This session will focus on the work of three Plan4Health coalitions which are funded by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention through APHA and the American Planning Association. These cross-sector partnerships bring together planners and public health professionals, as well as many other community partners, to improve access to healthy foods and opportunities for physical activity. The policy, systems, and environmental change strategies that the coalitions are pursuing empower communities to make healthy living easier where people live, learn, work, and play. Presenters will discuss coalition development, the establishment of community priorities, implementation approaches, methods to measure health outcomes, and strategies to sustain changes that lead to healthier and more equitable communities. The coalitions will share successes and challenges that have contributed to best practices in the integration of planning and public health; these lessons learned may serve as models and be transferrable to other communities. The full abstract is available online

Tuesday, November 1, 2016

  • Methods to Improve Chronic Disease Health
    8:30am to 10am
    As part of this session, Anna Ricklin will present: National Collaboration to Address Chronic Disease through Policy, Systems and Environmental Change Approaches
    The American Planning Association’s (APA) Planning and Community Health Center was awarded a three-year cooperative agreement from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) Division of Community Health (DCH) to support local coalitions in chronic disease prevention. In partnership with the American Public Health Association (APHA), APA launched the Plan4Health project in September 2014—and has awarded $4.5 million to 35 coalitions in 27 states. Anchored by APA chapters and APHA affiliates, Plan4Health supports creative partnerships to build cross-sector coalitions, leveraging the expertise of membership organizations to ensure the CDC’s national framework for chronic disease prevention remains rooted in the experiences of local communities. Coalitions participating in the Plan4Health project are working to increase access to nutritious foods or to increase opportunities for physical activity. All coalitions include planners and public health professionals as well as a range of community-based organizations, universities, local governments—and others committed to building healthy, vibrant communities. The full abstract is available online.


  • Working Locally to Build Healthy Communities: Surveillance to City Planning
    4:30pm to 6pm
    As part of this session, Kim Irwin will present: Prioritizing Health, Safety and Equity to Make Indianapolis More Walkable
    In early 2015, Health by Design, a coalition working throughout Indiana at the intersection of the built environment and public health, was awarded funding through the American Planning Association Plan4Health initiative. The project included several strategies designed to make Indianapolis more walkable and to get more people walking, anchored by the development and adoption of Indianapolis’ first Pedestrian Plan. In addition, the project served to strengthen coalition partnerships and members’ skillsets, engaged a diverse set of stakeholders, and explicitly addressed equity and health disparities. This project incorporated extensive public outreach and engagement, intended to help make the case for the need to prioritize limited resources, as well as to seek input on trade-offs, project and program options, and funding allocations. In the end, targeted investments were identified that best achieve the stated goal of a healthier, safer, resilient and economically vibrant community. The full abstract is available online.

Another event of note for Plan4Health communities and those interested in similar work is the Call to Action for Healthy Communities, which takes place from 10:30am to 12pm on Tuesday, Nov. 1. A brief description of this event is below:

For a complete list of sessions and events visit the online program.

Pictures courtesy of APHA and Pixabay. 

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