Catalyzing Healthier communities in Southern and Appalachian States:
Grant Amount: 7 grants for up to $45,000 each
Opportunities for better health begin where people live, learn, work, and play. Every day, policymakers in sectors such as housing, labor, and education make choices that could, if health were considered during the decision-making process, significantly reduce our nation’s health care costs and remove barriers that keep people from reaching their full health potential.
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Tools and approaches for bringing a “health lens” to decision-making are rapidly emerging. One example is the health impact assessment (HIA), a structured process that uses scientific data, professional expertise, and input from stakeholders—including decision-makers and community members—to identify and evaluate public health consequences of proposals and suggests actions to minimize adverse health impacts and optimize beneficial ones.1 HIA can also be a valuable tool for promoting health equity in decision-making through assessment of the distribution of potential health impacts across vulnerable populations and meaningful participation of affected communities throughout the process.2 In addition to HIA, checklists, guidelines, and other approaches can be used where sufficient evidence and support exist to embed health directly into policies and to stably integrate the consideration of health in other sectors’ decision-making. See the appendix for examples of HIAs and other related approaches.
The Health Impact Project, a collaboration of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF) and The Pew Charitable Trusts (Pew), will award grants through this Call for Proposals (CFP) to selected leaders and their organizations to use these tools to address factors outside of health care that influence population health and health equity in seven Southern and Appalachian states: Alabama, Arkansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Tennessee, and West Virginia.