Over 80 percent of the US population lives in urban areas, yet for mayors, city managers, and local health officials seeking to drive health improvements, there has been no standardized tool for understanding and benchmarking a city’s performance and relative standing on actionable and widely accepted indicators of health and health risk.
Previously, decision-makers and community stakeholders lacked a common framework for prioritizing health improvement strategies, which is vital not only to containing health care-related costs but also to optimizing economic productivity and community well-being. With so many factors that influence health and well-being shaped at the municipal level, it was time to support city-level decision making with a standardized, comparative, and actionable dashboard for health.
The City Health Dashboard, sponsored by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, has been built to fill the gap on measuring and comparing health at the city level. This pilot effort has been conducted for and with support from four cities: Flint, Michigan; Kansas City, Kansas; Providence, Rhode Island; and Waco, Texas. By presenting the evidence necessary to understand population health status and its actionable determinants and allowing ready comparisons across cities, this tool is designed to help city officials and key community and other stakeholders to drive improvements in population health.
This project is led by the NYU School of Medicine’s Department of Population Health and NYU’s Robert F. Wagner School of Public Service, in partnership with the National Resource Network.