The Health Section

50 cities, counties join together to build healthier communities

Whether increasing walkability and bikability or working to reduce the incidence of heart disease in specific areas, public officials, consumer groups and residents across the country are working together to improve the health of their communities.

After submitting proposals outlining specific projects aimed at creating healthier communities for residents, 50 cities and counties across the country have been chosen as finalists to participate in the Healthiest Cities and Counties Challenge.

The Healthiest Cities & Counties Challenge is a partnership between the Aetna Foundation, the American Public Health Association (APHA), the National Association of Counties (NACo) and is administered by CEOs for Cities. The challenge will award $1.5 million in prizes to communities that show measurable improvements in health indicators and social determinants of health.

Hundreds of applicants applied to participate in the challenge. Earlier this year, officials from six Innovator Cities and Counties, or early adopters, revealed what projects their respective communities were focusing on.

Here’s a list of the 50 finalists of the Healthiest Cities & Counties Challenge.

  1. Municipality of Anchorage Wayfinding — Alaska
  2. City of Avondale — Arizona
  3. City of Perris — California
  4. County of San Diego — California
  5. Greater Bridgeport Opportunities Industrialization Center Inc. — Connecticut
  6. New Haven Health Department — Connecticut
  7. City of Miami — Florida
  8. Florida Department of Health — Florida
  9. City of St. Petersburg — Florida
  10. Hillsborough County MPO— Florida
  11. Healthy Savannah — Georgia
  12. Polk County Housing Trust Fund – Des Moines — Iowa
  13. Dekalb County Community Gardens — Illinois
  14. Kane County Health Department — Illinois
  15. Building a Thriving Compassionate Community (BBTCC) – Monroe County — Indiana
  16. Jump IN for Healthy Kids – Larenceville — Indiana
  17. Unified Government of Wyandotte County/Kansas City — Kansas
  18. The West Louisville Outdoor Recreation Initiative — Kentucky
  19. Metropolitan Area Planning Council – Lynn — Massachusetts
  20. Baltimore City Healthy Department — Maryland
  21. Ingham County Health Department — Michigan
  22. Independence Health Department — Missouri
  23. City of Kansas City Missouri Health Department — Missouri
  24. Mississippi State University: Gulfport — Mississippi
  25. Chatham County Public Health Department — North Carolina
  26. Davidson County — North Carolina
  27. Duke University: Durham and Cabarrus Counties — North Carolina
  28. Mecklenburg County Health Department — North Carolina
  29. University of Nebraska Board of Regents: Dodge, Saunders and Washington Counties — Nebraska
  30. City of New Jersey — New Jersey
  31. Coopers Ferry Partnership, City of Camden — New Jersey
  32. Sandoval Health Booklet — New Mexico
  33. Dutchess County Government — New York
  34. Union Community Health Center — Bronx
  35. Cleveland Department of Public Health — Ohio
  36. Franklin County Public Health — Ohio
  37. Tulsa Healthy Cities Coalition— Oklahoma
  38. Chester County — Pennsylvania
  39. Crispus Attucks Association – York County — Pennsylvania
  40. Allentown Health Bureau — Pennsylvania
  41. Blair County Planning Commission — Pennsylvania
  42. Center for Prisoner Health and Human Rights at The Miriam Hospital — Rhode Island
  43. Mary Black Foundation Inc. – Spartanburg County — South Carolina
  44. Wichita Falls – Wichita County Public Health District — Texas
  45. Build Brownsville Community Project— Texas
  46. Waco-McLennan County Public Health District — Texas
  47. Danville Pittsylvania County Unity Fund — Virginia
  48. Lenowisco Health District — Virginia
  49. Active Design for a Healthier Thurston County — Washington
  50. West Virginia University – Morganstown —West Virginia