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Published on Thursday, July 25, 2019

City of San Antonio Metropolitan Health District Honored for Excellence in Public Health

CONTACT: Michelle Vigil 
Office: (210) 207-8172  


SAN ANTONIO (July 25, 2019) – The City of San Antonio Metropolitan Health District was honored with the Model Practice Award at the 2019 Annual Conference of the National Association of County and City Health Officials (NACCHO). The award celebrates local health departments for developing programs that demonstrate exemplary and replicable best practices in response to a critical local public health need. The “Healthy Neighborhoods Program” was one of 53 local health department programs to receive NACCHO’s prestigious Model Practice Award.


Healthy Neighborhoods is an innovative place-based childhood obesity prevention program in which community health workers, serve as health educators, connectors, and community organizers who empower residents to become active voices of the community. Community health workers work closely with a high-health disparity but asset-rich neighborhood to implement policy or environmental change projects. By working with families in economically disadvantaged communities that experience health disparities, Healthy Neighborhoods supports environments that can lead to families developing healthy habits that will last a lifetime and have the potential to shift a community closer to achieving equitable health outcomes. Projects conducted by Healthy Neighborhoods are implemented with community support and partnerships and the health change projects that this program supports will last long after the funding cycle is complete.  


“We are proud to see another Metro Health program earn the NACCHO Model Practice Award. While the Healthy Neighborhoods program is uniquely tailored to San Antonio, we believe that many more communities could benefit from neighborhood-led obesity prevention programs that create healthier environments. This is a great accomplishment for our team because it demonstrates that leading with an asset based approach is not only a positive form of community development, but also a legitimate public health practice,” said Jennifer Herriott, Interim Director, City of San Antonio Metropolitan Health District.


Since 2003, NACCHO’s Model Practice Awards have honored programs, resources, and tools that demonstrate how local health departments and their community partners can effectively collaborate to address local public health challenges. Each innovative project receiving the Model Practice Award was peer-reviewed and selected from a competitive group of over 100 applicants.


“We are proud to recognize local health departments who have excelled and developed innovative public health projects that are making local communities healthier and more secure,” said NACCHO’s Chief Executive Officer Lori Tremmel Freeman. “The 2019 Model Practice Awards are a showcase of the best and brightest in local public health. Winners display a diverse range of topics including issues such as supporting incarcerated moms’ breastfeeding efforts, food safety protections, HIV Pre-exposure prophylaxis (PreP), door to door emergency medication dispensing, sustaining community-based immunizations, prevention of falls in older adults and many more issues.” 


The Healthy Neighborhoods Program is now part of an online, searchable database of successful public health practices in areas that range from immunization and maternal and child health, to infectious diseases and emergency preparedness. The NACCHO Model Practice database allows local health departments, public health partners, and other important stakeholders to learn about the good work being done by local health departments across the country. The database also provides users an opportunity to learn from best practices and what resources are needed to implement comparable programs in other jurisdictions that produce results.


Read more about these award-winning programs here

Categories: City News, Health