Strategic Plan Summary

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APHA's vision: create the healthiest nation in one generation

The U.S. is ranked 34th globally in life expectancy.

The foundation of all APHA work builds on three overarching priorities:

Ensure the right to health and health care
Create health equity
Build public health  infrastructure and capacity

We will achieve our mission if we:

Support a diverse public health workforce
Foster new public health science
Facilitate cross-sector efforts
Strengthen our core
Expand our base
Advance health in all policies 
Configure components, staff and programs to maximize opportunities to achieve central challenge
Ensure responsible stewardship
[Venn Diagram: Strengthen Public Health Practice, Build a public health movement, Align organizational infrastructure in each of three circles, THE HEALTHIEST NATION in center of diagram]

APHA created Generation Public Health — a movement of people, communities and organizations

Map of United States


Arrow with 46 icons:
a building, a pill, a plus sign
adult holding child's hand, a farm grain silo, a tree, a person with cane and seeing-eye dog
a person raising one hand while sitting in desk, a barn, a person in wheelchair, a basket, circles with a dollar sign to represent coins and money, two trees
A crane, a heart, person washing hands, an ambulance, an adult with child wearing backpack, a mortar and pestle, a person sawing wood, a crescent moon and star
an apple on top of books, a flowering tree, a person holding onto IV pole, an open sign, a tractor, a building
A storefront, a piggy bank, a factory, man and woman with canes, pillars
A van, a person carrying boxes, a Star of David, a schoolhouse, stacks of coins
A bricklayer, credit cards, a van, a syringe, a ladder
An X-ray of two bones, a cross, wheat, a shopping car, a factory, a bus

Generation Public Health helps us create conditions to improve health, achieve health equity, and increase life expectancy.

[graduation cap]
Help all Americans achieve at least a high school education
[stack of dollar bills]
Increase economic mobility
Give everyone a choice of safe, healthy food
Build a nation of healthy, safe communities
Provide quality health care for all
[silhouette of head with gears inside brain]
Encourage healthy behaviors and choices
Create a healthy environment

initial set of measurable metrics to give us snapshots of our progress toward creating the healthiest nation

Life expectancy
Strategic Plan Health Indicators: Increase life expectancy, Increase healthy life expectancy at birth.
Domestic Targets: Increase from 79 years. Increase from 69 years.
Strategic plan measures:
Domestic U.S.: Increase life expectancy. Increase healthy life expectancy at birth.
International: increase life expectancy.

Strategic Plan Health Indicators: Increase educational attainment
Domestic Targets: 82.4 percent
Strategic Plan Measures:
Domestic U.S.: Increase on-time high school graduation
International: Increase high school graduation rate 

Healthy Communities
Strategic Plan Health Indicators: Reduce firearm-related deaths, Improve social capital and well-being
Domestic Targets: 9.3 per 100,000 deaths, 55.9 percent, 80.1 percent, 79.8 percent
Strategic Plan Measures:
Domestic U.S.: Reduce firearm-related deaths, increase social and emotional support, increase proportion of adults with good or better mental health, increase proportion of adults with good or better physical health
International: Reduce assault by firearm, Increase social vs. health care spending, Increase having someone to rely on in time of need, Improve happiness (general satisfaction with life)

Income Mobility
Strategic Plan Health Indicators: Increase number of persons living above federal poverty level
Domestic Targets: Increase from 85.7 percent (above 100 percent of FPL), increase from 49.1 percent (above 300 percent FPL)
Strategic Plan Measures: 
Domestic U.S.: Increase proportion above 100 percent FPL, Increase proportion above 300 percent FPL
International: N/A

Food and Nutrition
Strategic Plan Health Indicators: Increase children and adults at a healthy weight
Domestic Targets: Increase from 22.7 percent
Strategic Plan Measures
Domestic U.S.: Increase proportion with healthy weight (BMI 18.5-24.99) (age-standardized estimate)
International: Increase proportion with healthy weight (BMI 18.5-24.00)(age-standardized estimate)

Strategic Plan Health Indicators: Improve air quality
Domestic Targets: 1,980,000,000 Air Quality Index-weighted-person-days
Strategic Plan Measures: 
Domestic U.S.: Reduce number of days Air Quality Index exceeds 100 (weighted)
International: Reduce greenhouse gas emissions, Reduce CO2 emissions

Healthy Behavior and Choices
Strategic Plan Health Indicators: Increase non-smoking adults
Domestic Targets: 88 percent
Strategic Plan Measures:
Domestic U.S.: Increase non-smoking (cigarettes) adults
International: Incresae non-tobacco-using adults and adolescents

Health Care
Strategic Plan Health Indicators: Increase access to physical, mental and oral health care
Domestic Targets: 100 percent (proportion with medical insurance), 49 percent (proportion who use oral heatlh care ysstem)
Strategic Plan Measures:
Domestic U.S.: Increase proportion with medical insurance, Increase proportion who use oral health care system 
International:  Increase health insurance coverage, TBD - WHO is developing oral health database

1--Data sources for measures are: Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System, Healthy People 2020, Leading Health Indicators, World Health Organization, and Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development.
2--Specific targets for improvement are aligned with national recommendations given Leading Health Indicators and Healthy People 2020. Where no national target is specified, our target is to observe an increase or improvement in prevalence.
3--Targets for international change are to observe an improvement in our rank so we become healthier.

You can play a role!

By working together, we can improve the nation's health through:

  • Mobilizing members, colleagues and the public:
  • Developing strategic partnerships both internal and external to APHA:
  • Promoting educational and health initiatives:
  • Implementing effective interventions:
  • Developing policy resolutions:
  • Engaging in advocacy:
  • Donating to support Generation Public Health: