Healthiest Cities & Counties In the News


U.S. News and Aetna Foundation Release Inaugural Healthiest Communities Rankings (Mar. 26, 2018)

Aetna Foundation’s New Awards Shine the “Spotlight” on Programs That Are Improving Community Health (Jan. 31, 2018)

RAND to evaluate Healthiest Cities & Counties Challenge, identify ways to expand public health innovations (Sept. 14, 2017)


Dr. Garth Graham on treating gun violence as a public health issue
Aetna News, Sept. 18, 2018
As Dr. Graham notes, gun-related violence is an incredibly complicated issue, with many interconnected elements. However, if health care organizations viewed gun violence as a public health issue and took the same sort of approach that is typically used with other chronic health care conditions, they have the opportunity to play a role in addressing this problem.

Chester County Takes Three Billion Steps Towards Healthier Living
MyChesCo, Sept. 17, 2018
At their recent Sunshine Meeting public work session, the Chester County Commissioners received a report from Health Department Director Jeanne Casner announcing a milestone in the WalkWorks ChesCo! challenge. Since the launch of WalkWorks in April 2017, Chester County residents have clocked up three billion steps in the WalkWorks ChesCo! program.

Walk with elected officials Saturday, Aug. 14, 2018
If phone calls and emails don’t work, there’s another way to get through to your local elected official, if you don’t mind walking. The next “Walk With Your Local Elected Official” is set for Saturday at multiple locations in Spartanburg County. In its second year, the walk is part of Mary Black Foundation’s goals to healthy eating and active living, and it’s the outgrowth of Spartanburg County having been one of 50 communities chosen in 2016 to participate in a Healthiest Cities and Counties Challenge — a joint initiative of the Aetna Foundation, the American Public Health Association and the National Association of Counties.

The Crucial Need for Holistic and Localized Care
By Karen S. Lynch,  Aetna President
U.S. News & World Report, Jul. 26, 2018
In June, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services said it was considering modifying regulations to support better coordination across outcomes-based reimbursement models—those in which care is paid for based on the quality of service, as opposed to quantity. Geography vs. Genetics. As these types of updates are considered and potentially made, the health care industry’s shift from “sick care” to “well care” will reach its tipping point – no longer presenting itself as the industry ideal, but the norm. Outside forces, including rising health care costs, the growing sophistication of technology and predictive data analytics, and shifting consumer expectations will cement the industry’s transformation. But the success of the transformation will hinge on holistic and localized care.

Kane County, 1 of just 50 in U.S. picked for health challenge, forms community councils
Courier-News, Jul. 19, 2018
A group of residents in Elgin and Carpentersville are actively working to help shape the culture of health where they live, work and play — and success could mean both healthier communities and a financial payoff. One of the efforts being launched in Carpentersville is a free, heart-healthy cooking class, scheduled for 9 a.m. to noon Monday, July 30, at the Dundee Township Park District, 665 Barrington Ave.

The Key to Living Longer: Geography vs. Genetics
By Garth Graham, M.D.
U.S. News & World Report, Jun. 26, 2018
A LITTLE BIT OF creativity can go a long way. Last week at Cannes Lions Health, I had the pleasure of hearing from global leaders in every aspect of health care talk about "Creativity with the Power to Change Lives." While there, we discussed that all heath is local and that sometimes the most ingenious solutions frequently don't come from complex systems or groundbreaking research. Instead, these types of solutions come from the very things we encounter on a daily basis that may seem mundane, but have the power to shape our life expectancy. For instance, how close a person is to the nearest grocery store, the number of parks in their community, whether or not a neighbor smokes and many other factors can add or subtract years from their lifespan. That's because these factors, known as social determinants of health, add up over time and influence both how long and how well we live.

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