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2020 County Health Rankings Data

– For the past decade, the County Health Rankings have taken the pulse of the nation, showing us where we live matters to our health. The County Health Rankings & Roadmaps program, a collaboration between the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and the University of Wisconsin Population Health Institute, has updated its web site with new data, state reports, evidence and guidance designed to accelerate community learning and action.

To view the State Report for New Jersey, click here.
Visit the County Health Rankings & Roadmaps web site


Investing in Equitable Urban Park Systems: Case Studies & Recommendations by City Parks Alliance

– City parks provide access to recreational opportunities, increase property values, spur local economies, improve safety, and mitigate stormwater runoff and other environmental threats. With support from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, City Parks Alliance is leading a national initiative to research, collect, and disseminate innovative strategies and models for funding parks and green infrastructure in low-income communities. The Alliance’s “Investing in Equitable Urban Park Systems” report  spotlights seven communities that are leading the way in using data-driven approaches to ensure more equitable distribution of funding.

View the Report

“The State of Transportation and Health Equity” Report

– This field scan developed by Smart Growth America outlines the most pressing challenges to health equity facing the U.S. transportation system and the tools and strategies to address them, particularly in small and mid-sized cities and rural communities. Informed by nearly 100 health and transportation experts from across the country and featuring community success stories, the report shows available solutions to advance health equity through transportation.

Read key takeaways and download the full report

New Jersey Department of Transportation’s Complete and Green Streets Model Policy and Guide

– The New Jersey Department of Transportation, with support from New Jersey Future, Jersey Water Works Green Infrastructure Committee and additional partners, released this guide to support municipalities in creating complete streets policies that also incorporate green infrastructure. In addition, the model policy includes language addressing health, economic development and equity, and provides strengthened implementation mechanisms.

Read more and download the guide
View examples of Green Streets in New Jersey

“Community Approaches to System Change: A Compendium of Practices, Reflections, and Findings” and 19 Community Stories from the BUILD Health Challenge

– What does it take to create lasting change when it comes to health in communities? The BUILD Health Challenge® (BUILD) worked with 19 communities across the country over the last two years to find out. Together BUILD sites were able to achieve nearly 60 new systems-level changes that resulted in policy shifts, new funding streams, stronger community leadership, and ultimately improved health outcomes.

Learn about the dynamic programs these sites created to tackle a wide variety of issue areas, including food insecurity and asthma, to lead poisoning and tobacco cessation, and more. The “Community Approaches to System Change: A Compendium of Practices, Reflections, and Findings” and a set of 19 Community Stories highlight the experiences and learnings of each awardee community.

These materials are critical reading for practitioners and leaders looking to move resources, attention, and action upstream—to make meaningful change in the complex systems that affect health in our communities.

Browse the Compendium

Read Community Stories from three BUILD Health Challenge awardees in New Jersey:

Access the complete set of 19 Community Stories

Community Health Workers in New Jersey: The Question of Certification – An Issue Brief

– Community Health Workers are trusted liaisons devoted to community-based problem solving, health education and bridge-building to needed resources and services, especially in underserved neighborhoods. Through outreach, community education, informal counseling and advocacy, they facilitate residents’ access to services and increase health knowledge.

An Issue Brief by the Seton Hall Law School Center for Health & Pharmaceutical Law & Policy explores the current status of Community Health Workers in New Jersey through a regulatory lens. With appreciation of Community Health Workers’ roles in the health care system, this analysis provides recommendations and suggestions for advancing the consideration of state-level regulatory and credentialing options for Community Health Workers in New Jersey.

Read the Issue Brief

Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs): Opportunities to Prevent, Protect Against, and Heal from the Effects of ACEs in New Jersey

– This new report developed by the New Jersey Funders ACEs Collaborative of the Burke Foundation, The Nicholson Foundation and the Turrell Fund, details the challenges New Jersey faces in addressing Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs) and calls for a coordinated statewide response to mitigate their lasting effects on children’s health and well-being. This resource includes:

  • NJ Highlights: Examples of current work around the state to address ACES within communities
    To learn more about Middle Township Police Department’s work highlighted in the report, click here
  • From the Field: Direct quotes and insights from experts
  • Possible Actions: talking points to promote further discussion

The global social impact consulting firm FSG partnered in producing this report.

Read more and access the report

Places for Bikes 2019 City Ratings

– The Places for Bikes City Ratings are a data-driven, global, resource that shows a complete picture of how bikes fit into a given community. Developed by PeopleForBikes, the largest bike advocacy organization in the nation, the annual ratings provide a snapshot of the work a community undertakes to improve bikability. By scoring factors such as Ridership, Safety, Network and Acceleration and Reach, the ratings define and measure great places for biking and facilitate shared learning around city design that promotes ridership.

Find a city, or compare cities, here



– PolicyMap is an online data and mapping application that allows organizations and community members to visualize and analyze geographic data in one place. Designed for those without Geographic Information System (GIS) experience, PolicyMap provides access to demographic, health, income, education, employment, housing and economic development data, has the ability to generate instant reports, and can also allow users to upload their own project data to better understand their communities. PolicyMap was launched in 2007 out of Reinvestment Fund, which provides financing for affordable housing, healthy food access, clinics and schools in underserved areas. Users can access the tool for free, or purchase a subscription to access additional features.

Click here to visit the PolicyMap tool


The Practical Playbook II: Building Multisector Partnerships That Work

– Described as “the definitive guide to the secret sauce of improving public and population health,” this new resource from the deBeaumont Foundation, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and the Duke University School of Medicine brings together more than 100 public health, medicine, urban planning, business and public works experts from across the country to answer questions about building, scaling and sustaining cross-sector partnerships to maximize impact.

The playbook consists of eight sections:

  • Introduction: Accelerating Partnerships for Health
  • Collaboration: Engaging Diverse Sectors
  • Data: Finding and Using Information
  • Innovation: Enhancing Coordinated Impact Through New Roles and Tools
  • Sustainability and Finance: Supporting Partnerships over Time
  • Policy: Achieving Sustained Impact
  • Training and Workforce: Preparing for the Future that is Already Here
  • Conclusion: Taking the Next Steps toward Population Health

Browse the Table of Contents and links to each section here
View Acknowledgments and Contributors
Purchase a hard copy here


Building a Culture of Health: A Policy Roadmap to Help All New Jerseyans Live Their Healthiest Lives

– Creating health equity through public policies is the focus of this new report by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation in partnership with the Center for State Health Policy and the John J. Heldrich Center for Workforce Development at Rutgers University. “Building a Culture of Health: A Policy Roadmap to Help All New Jerseyans Live Their Healthiest Lives” identifies 13 policy priorities for improving health and well-being in the state in three areas: healthy children and families, healthy communities, and high-quality, equitable health and social service systems.

In addition, the report recommends a series of specific evidence-based actions that span many sectors and will help to close health gaps, broaden opportunity, and ensure that everyone in New Jersey can live the healthiest life possible.

Click here to learn more and download the report.

2019 County Health Rankings Released

The University of Wisconsin’s Population Health Institute and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation have released the annual County Health Rankings. The County Health Rankings show us where we live matters to how well and how long we live. An easy-to-use snapshot that compares counties within each state, the Rankings provide information on factors communities can do something about – such as housing, jobs, education, community safety, and more.

Learn where your county ranks at

Read news coverage from across New Jersey:
Study: County Drops to 7th Healthiest in State
New Jersey Herald/ Comstock, L. (2019, March 19)

Which NJ counties have the worst health outcomes?
Cherry Hill Courier-Post/ Mulford, K., Diamond, M., and Deak, M. (2019, March 19)