The County Health Rankings are a key component of the Mobilizing Action Toward Community Health (MATCH) project. MATCH is a collaboration between the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and the University of Wisconsin Population Health Institute. The web site provides access to the 50 state reports, ranking each county within the 50 states according to its health outcomes and the multiple health factors that determine a county’s health. Each county receives a summary rank for its health outcomes and health factors and also for the four different types of health factors: health behaviors, clinical care, social and economic factors, and the physical environment. Each county can also drill down to see specific county-level data (as well as state benchmarks) for the measures upon which the rankings are based.
The Rankings are a real “call to action” for state and local health departments to develop broad-based solutions with others in their community so all residents can be healthy. Through a strategic planning initiative, the Arkansas Department of Health determined that to solve today’s health problems would require cooperative action and creative solutions at the local level. The Rankings team is working with Arkansas Department of Health to take advantage of the discussions and opportunities that will arise from the release of the Rankings. Current Hometown Health Improvement efforts will continue to mobilize community leaders in and outside the public health sector to take action and invest in programs and policy changes that address barriers to good health and help residents lead healthier lives. Hometown Health Improvement brings together a wide range of people and organizations including consumers, business leaders, health care providers, elected officials, religious leaders, and educators to identify community health problems and develop and implement ways to solve them.