County Health Rankings & Roadmaps

2019 County Health Rankings

Key Findings Report

New! Explore our interactive County Health Rankings Model

Discover your State & County Health Ranking
Discover your State & County Health Ranking

What Works

Maximize your chances of success by choosing policies and programs that have been shown to work in real life and that are a good fit for your community. Our What Works for Health database provides evidence summaries and ratings for policies, programs, and systems changes that can improve health. A sampling of them is included below.

Healthy home environment assessments

Train volunteers, professionals, or paraprofessionals to help residents assess and remediate environmental home health risks and recommend low cost changes (e.g., improved ventilation, integrated pest management, etc.)

HOME Investment Partnership Program

Provide grants to states and localities to fund activities that build, buy, or rehabilitate affordable housing for rent or homeownership or provide direct rental assistance to low income households

Housing trust funds

Support funds that help create or maintain low income housing, subsidize rental housing, and assist low income homebuyers and non-profit housing developers

Take Action

The Action Center lays out a series of steps for creating healthy communities. Explore each of the seven steps below to find guidance and tools for taking action.
  1. Work Together
  2. Assess
  3. Focus
  4. Choose
  5. Act
  6. Evaluate
  7. Communicate
  1. Work Together

    Working together is at the heart of making meaningful change. Every community is different, and as a result, efforts to improve health will vary. However, there is one constant we know: when people work together with a shared vision and commitment to improve health, it can yield better results than working alone.

    Learn more

    Common Questions

    • We want to include partners from all sectors to improve health, so how do we invite people to be part of our team when we don’t know them?
    • How do we build trust?
    • How do we move to action?
  2. Assess Needs & Resources

    Start by taking stock. Consider the challenges you face. Identify your strengths, assets, and resources. Ask if there are some who face challenges that others do not.

    Learn more

    Common Questions

    • What data will help us understand our community?
    • Where do we find data?
    • How do we know we have enough data?
    • What does all this data mean?
  3. Focus on What's Important

    Decide which problem(s) to tackle. Without focus, all issues seem equally important. Taking time to set priorities will ensure that you direct your community’s resources to the most important issues.

    Learn more

    Common Questions

    • What if everything feels like a priority?
    • How many priorities are reasonable?
    • What if members of our team disagree about priorities?
    • How can we narrow our focus?
  4. Choose Effective Policies & Programs

    Evidence matters. Selecting and implementing policies and programs that have been shown to work in real life and that are a good fit for your community will maximize your chances of success.

    Learn more

    Common Questions

    • How do we know if a strategy will work?
    • Should we always pick the strategy that has the most evidence?
    • What about innovative approaches?
  5. Act on What's Important

    Move to action. Since there are no “one size fits all” blueprints for success, communities build on strengths, leverage available resources, and respond to unique needs.

    Learn more

    Common Questions

    • What does it take to move from planning to action?
    • How do we create political will for our leaders to adopt new approaches?
    • How do we support our strategies?
  6. Evaluate Actions

    Ongoing evaluation of your efforts helps you know if what you’re doing is working the way you intended and achieving the results you desire.

    Learn more

    Common Questions

    • Where do we start with evaluation?
    • How do we know if we are making a difference?
    • How can we demonstrate progress in the short term?
  7. Communicate

    Effective communication throughout each step is essential for your efforts to be successful. What you say and how you say it can motivate the right people to take the right action at the right time. How will you get your most important messages to the people who influence your work?

    Learn more

    Common Questions

    • How do we keep everyone who is working on our strategies up to date and in the loop?
    • How do we share our story so that others are inspired to improve health?

Join us for a webinar on Housing as a Foundation for Good Health

Register today for our next webinar on May 21 to explore the connection between housing and health.

You'll hear from community guests including: 
  • Sarah Norman, Director of Healthy Homes & Communities with NeighborWorks America, who will highlight the ways in which partnerships among health, housing and community development stakeholders can strengthen affordable housing opportunities.

  • Roseann Bongiovanni from Green Roots Chelsea and Rafael Mares from The Neighboorhood Developers who will share how Chelsea, MA, a 2017 RWJF Culture of Health Prize winner, is implementing a comprehensive housing strategy to address homelessness and housing in their community.