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When zip code trumps genetic code: the power of prevention, community and convergence
Tuesday, November 18, 2014: 10:30 AM - 12:00 PM
Ever since the genetic code was "cracked" 60+ years ago, we have been schooled by science articles, crime shows and medical breakthroughs, that DNA is the master of one’s destiny. But that doesn’t even come close. Healthography dramatically illustrates that one’s zip code sheds more light on life expectancy than one’s genetic code. Place matters. Even when access to medical care is factored in, it is the variation in the determinants of health – such as education, income, race, ethnicity and lifestyle - that explain much of the difference.
Last year, APHA set a goal to become the healthiest nation in one generation. We did so recognizing that more than half of all newborns today are children of color, and by 2043, America will become ethnic majority. If our goal is to become “the world’s healthiest nation by 2030,” we must close the gap, by intervening where population growth and disparities are the greatest. Why? Because we have an economic and social imperative to do so. Health inequities costs America $1.24 trillion dollars. If we do nothing to close the gap, the gap will deepen and widen. If we invest in prevention, and change behavior and the built environment, we create more sustainable outcomes. If we invest in community engagement and empowerment, we transform the community. That’s why we need invest today, and leverage today, for a healthier tomorrow. We can start by addressing the health of the nation’s fastest growing populations – the widening income divide between the 99% and the 1%, Asian American Native Hawaiian Pacific Islanders, Latinos, children, the elderly and those with disabilities.
Our session focuses on hope, optimism, real-life solutions, and strategic action. It is not enough to map health. We must use healthography to take action to prevent disease/accidents/deaths; engage, empower and transform communities; and converge through public/private funding, collaboration and partnerships. By doing so, we can strengthen public health infrastructure and capacity, create health equity, and ensure the right to health and health care.
To understand the promise of community transformation and the healthy communities movement, we have invited four nationally recognized leaders from multiple sectors to focus on the progress made within the last year in various arenas – government, non-health sectors, philanthropy, and the grass roots. Our first speaker will talk about the power of prevention, community and convergence. She will discuss lessons being learned from the healthy communities and community transformation grant process, and how community-level programs to prevent chronic disease are expected to improve the health of 130 million Americans. The second speaker will talk about building a "culture of health" and developing partnerships that may seem outside the health sector that are really important to health (i.e., education, business, and housing). The third will talk about the power of community and place-based giving, and the process and outcomes of building healthy communities and a health movement. The fourth speaker will talk about the power of convergence, where new and innovative sustainable resources are being identified, such as wellness trusts, social impact bonds, redirected funds from payment reform population-health metrics, and the Convergence Partnership.
Together, they will talk about community resilience and community transformation, and lay the groundwork for a public health movement that will close the disparities gap over generations to come.
Session Objectives: Explain the power of prevention.
Explain the power of community engagement.
Explain the power of convergence and convergence funding.
Discuss the demand for health and the value of engaging new partners and community members.
List practical applications in supporting community change strategies that improve health for public and private funders.
See individual abstracts for presenting author's disclosure statement and author's information.
Organized by: APHA-Special Sessions
Endorsed by: Injury Control and Emergency Health Services, Public Health Education and Health Promotion, Public Health Nursing, Public Health Social Work, Women's Caucus, Cancer Forum, Breastfeeding Forum, American Indian, Alaska Native and Native Hawaiian Caucus, Asian Pacific Islander Caucus for Public Health, Black Caucus of Health Workers, Caucus on Homelessness, Community Health Planning and Policy Development
Medical (CME), Health Education (CHES), Nursing (CNE), Public Health (CPH)