197657 Healthy Communities: An Interactive Policy Vision

Monday, November 9, 2009: 11:30 AM

Eugenia Elizabeth Gratto, MA , Public Health Law and Policy, Oakland, CA
Quang "Q." Dang, JD , National Policy and Legal Analysis Network to Prevent Childhood Obesity, Public Health Law & Policy, Oakland, CA
Stephanie Stevens, JD , National Policy & Legal Analysis Network to Prevent Childhood Obesity, Public Health Law and Policy, Oakland, CA
Nathan Gasser , Principal, Rock River Star, Downingtown, PA
Owen Winkler , Lead Developer, Rock River Star, Downingtown, PA
Although public policy is a powerful tool for social change in public health, it is often difficult to illustrate the many benefits public policy change can provide to a community. To help our wide range of audiences—from community members and advocates to policymakers—Public Health Law & Policy is developing an interactive graphic tool, available through our website, to help show how extensively public policy can strengthen the health of a community.

The online tool will invite users to select a particular building or feature of the community—a crosswalk, community garden, school playground, or fast food restaurant, for example—and see what related policy tools are available to the user. This interactive graphic will allow a variety of audience members with different levels of policy sophistication to easily find tools to build a healthier community in which to live and work.

The interactive graphic will have a similar functionality to a Google map: users will be able to zoom in on and pan around the community-scape, and related results (i.e. factsheets, model ordinances, checklists and toolkits) will appear in a clickable list in the left sidebar on the page. The tool takes the abstract vision of a community supported by healthy policy and makes it tangible, concrete, and available at any time to any user with an Internet connection.

Learning Objectives:
1. Demonstrate an innovative use of technology that helps better communicate an organization’s objectives and resources. 2. Evaluate tool based on search and usage statistics from before and after implementation on the Public Health Law & Policy website. 3. Identify other opportunities for implementation of similar tools in the public health arena.

Keywords: World Wide Web, Communication

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am managing the web and technology development program for Public Health Law and Policy and am responsible for the strategic direction of the PHLP web program. My experience includes project management for an Internet services firm, management and redevelopment of a major labor union website, and management of other non-profit and commercial websites.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.