Sustainable Public Health: The Florida Experience

Sandra Whitehead


This session will review and analyze the approach the Florida Department of Health has taken to address sustainability issues in order to promote health communities and healthy living, and how they might be applied to your organization. Model practices that will be explored include:  partnerships between public health agencies and planning agencies that benefit smart growth goals; educating decision-makers and evaluating proposed policies using health impact assessments; providing education to employees and the community about the benefits of  locally-grown healthy foods; and altering transportation policies, just to name a few. The department has also implemented a community-based environmental health protocol in over 30 communities statewide and developed a memorandum of agreement with three other state agencies to promote smart growth. Experts will discuss the challenges and opportunities that led to the development of these innovative smart growth practices, and the successful outcomes that have been achieved as a result of their adoption.