College of Public Health

TNIPH Highlighted by County Health Rankings and Roadmaps


The Tennessee Institute of Public Health, housed within the East Tennessee State University College of Public Health, was recently highlighted by the County Health Rankings and Roadmaps’ County by County blog.  The post, Building Roadmaps to Better Health in Tennessee, discussed the institute’s data-guided approach to community change.

Since its inception in 2011, the County Health Rankings and Roadmaps coaching program has partnered with individuals and teams in nearly every state across the United States to help them identify and work toward their health and equity goals. Over the next five months, the blog’s authors will be speaking with five CHR&R Action Learning Coaches and the communities they've coached to learn more about how they worked together to move with data to action.  Ginny Kidwell, Executive Director of the Tennessee Institute for Public Health, invited County Health Rankings & Roadmaps Action Learning Coach Aliana Havrilla to speak at one of the Regional Roadmaps Project community forums in 2015, where Havrilla facilitated a discussion with a range of regional partners.  

“The Tennessee Institute of Public Health has used the County Health Rankings & Roadmaps data as the guiding framework for statewide outreach since 2011,” stated Kidwell. “The nucleus of our work centers on the three-legged stool - economic development, education and health.” 

Building on the data-to-action community coaching Havrilla provided, Kidwell led the way for further success with the Correctional Career Pathways program, a workforce development initiative that provides education and job skills to individuals incarcerated in county jails. Due to this connection and cross-state network available through the Regional Roadmap Project, the program was able to flourish. The program was later reproduced in six additional Appalachian region counties, with the added peer-to-peer recovery piece to counteract recidivism.

“Our relationship with the County Health Rankings & Roadmaps team has always been positive,” continued Kidwell. “Their data allows us to focus on the social and economic factors that influence positive outcomes at the community level.”