Partnerships to Improve Community Health

Partnerships to Improve Community Health (PICH) grants are part of a U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) initiative to improve the health of Americans. HHS created PICH to support collaboration within communities to create vibrant, safe and engaging environments that support wellness and reduce chronic disease. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is funding the initiative, which will bring $1.8 million to Delaware over a three-year period, from September 2014 to September 2017. This funding is made possible by the Affordable Care Act (ACA) provisions supporting prevention and public health, which, coupled with other statewide efforts, will transform clinical and preventive services.

Nemours Children’s Health System received a PICH grant to support collaboration among several Delaware organizations, all of which are proud to be a part of this national movement to improve community health.  Partners on the Wilmington PICH Initiative include Nemours, the Delaware Coalition for Healthy Eating and Active Living (DE HEAL), West Side Grows Together, Urban Acres, the South Wilmington Planning Network, the New Castle County Department of Community Services, and the Food Trust.

While this initiative is focused in the City of Wilmington and surrounding areas of New Castle County, it builds upon and aligns with statewide efforts to improve the health of Delawareans. It will help to address goals identified by residents through community needs assessments, such as improving access to foods that are healthy and affordable, and creating safe places to be active—making the healthy choice the easy choice.

A leading organization in the Wilmington PICH Initiative, DE HEAL is focused on increasing opportunities for physical activity through comprehensive land use planning, increasing worksite wellness programs among targeted businesses, and convening local coalitions to increase communication and collaboration. The DE HEAL Policy & Environment Committee has been working with the New Castle County Department of Land Use and the New Castle County Planning Board to educate them on best practices for incorporating health into the Comprehensive Land Use Plan and the supporting Unified Development Code. DE HEAL is also collaborating with worksites to assess their policies, programs and environments with the aim of improving employee access to healthy foods, healthy beverages and opportunities for physical activity.

Learn more about PICH by reading this newsletter.

PICH Newsletter #4