Wisconsin Healthy Communities Designation

West Allis is proud to receive the highest Wisconsin Healthy Communities Designation - GolWHC_logo_mediumd!

In 2021 the Wisconsin Healthy Communities Designation recognized 28 communities in Wisconsin for achievements in health improvement in Wisconsin.  West Allis is proud to receive the highest Wisconsin Healthy Communities Designation - Gold! West Allis has previously received a Silver designation in 2018 for work made towards improving local health. Reaching this higher tier is recognition of the significant progress made in those efforts. 

The Wisconsin Healthy Communities Designation program is an initiative offered by the University of Wisconsin Population Health Institute’s Mobilizing Action Toward Community Health (MATCH) group, in collaboration with diverse statewide partners. The program, funded by the Wisconsin Partnership Program, is designed to celebrate Wisconsin communities, and to serve as a guide for communities to expand and enhance their health improvement efforts. The program is designed to be accessible to communities of all shapes and sizes, both rural and urban. The definition of community is broad and can include counties, municipalities, neighborhoods and other self-defined, place-based communities in Wisconsin.

FAQs

What is the Healthy Communities Designation program?

  • The Wisconsin Healthy Communities Designation is a program intended to recognize and encourage achievements in health improvement in Wisconsin communities, and to promote cooperation across multiple sectors.
  • The program is designed to be accessible to communities of all shapes and sizes, both rural and urban. The definition of community is broad and can include counties, municipalities, neighborhoods and other self-defined, place-based communities in Wisconsin.
  • The program uses a three-tiered approach – gold, silver and bronze – which allows communities to apply for the designation level that makes the most sense for them.

What is the purpose of the designation program?

  • Communities that conceptualize health more broadly by examining and working across multiple health factors and that focus on sustainable solutions, have better outcomes. 
  • The designation program is intended to celebrate health improvement efforts in communities around Wisconsin and to give communities a concrete way to acknowledge the good work that they are doing.
  • Overarching program goals:
    • To recognize local communities’ efforts to improve health in multiple areas such as health behaviors, clinical care, social and economic factors, and physical environment.
    • To encourage communities to conceptualize health improvement.
    • To promote partnering across multiple sectors to improve community health.

What does it mean? What it does not mean?

  • Receiving a designation is intended to recognize local communities’ efforts to improve health. The tiers are meant to provide a trajectory and serve as a guide for communities as they continue to strive toward better health – the gold level representing the most difficult to achieve.
  • Receiving a designation – at any level, including gold – does not indicate that health or health equity has been achieved in any community; rather, it’s meant to celebrate the rich partnerships and the efforts across a community.

What are the criteria for receiving a designation?

What does a community get for receiving a designation?

  • The designation program is primarily about recognition. It’s designed to be something tangible for communities to hang their hats on, and to support their ongoing work toward better health.
  • Access to participation in a network of other communities, through which communities can collaborate, encourage one another and share successes and stumbling blocks experienced during their health improvement efforts.

Who staffs the program?

  • The Wisconsin Healthy Communities Designation program is an initiative of the Mobilizing Action Toward Community Health (MATCH) Group within the University of Wisconsin Population Health Institute. The Healthy Communities Designation program is funded by the Wisconsin Partnership Program of the UW School of Medicine and Public Health.

Supporting information

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