County News

NACo, Health Means Business campaign join forces to create healthier counties

Tags: Health

The National Association of Counties (NACo), with your incredible network of more than 2,000 county leaders, brings tremendous influence and power to its collaborations. The U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation also has a large network of businesses of all sizes — the largest business network in the country. We’ve seen, first-hand, the positive and enduring impact that is possible when businesses come together with our cross-sector partners, including those in county government. That’s why we are asking NACo leadership and membership to sign up as Health Means Business champions and join us by taking our Wellness Pledge.

In 2015, the U.S. Chamber Foundation, with the support of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF), launched the Health Means Business campaign, a two-year commitment to foster business engagement in a national wellness movement to help create healthier citizens and a healthier workforce.

According to the RWJF’s County Health Rankings report, an estimated 40 percent of our health condition is influenced by the environment where we live, work and play. These intrinsic links between health, education and economic outcomes are among the reasons why American businesses — and our partners in county government — care deeply about building healthy communities.

It’s no secret that national health trends are alarming. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, largely preventable productivity losses cost employers $225.8 billion, or $1,685 per employee per year. Employers cite even higher costs in intangible financial terms and in lost opportunity. These findings emphasize again that good health is linked to economic success.

Recently, the Health Means Business campaign unveiled a new initiative, called the Champions Network. The Champions Network provides community stakeholders with resources, skills and support needed to become leaders in community wellness, including peer-to-peer best practice sharing, learning modules, fast tracks, and an online resource center.

The first step begins with taking our Wellness Pledge here.

This simple action can help unite leaders in 3,069 counties with businesses of all sizes and others in an important cause: empowering our citizenry to lead happier, healthier and more productive lives.

We urge NACo members to utilize the Health Means Business Champions Network as a resource for cross-sector discussion and cooperation to foster civic engagement within your own county

Many counties across the nation are already pursuing comprehensive approaches to improving community health. We believe the Health Means Business campaign, and importantly, our Champions Network, will be instrumental in furthering NACo’s own vision of healthy, vibrant and safe counties across the United States.

We encourage county elected officials to seize this opportunity to make a difference by taking the Wellness Pledge. If the over 25,000  members of NACo got involved by taking the Health Means Business Wellness Pledge, the impact in counties across America would be dramatic and far-reaching.

Working with NACo, the Health Means Business campaign can reach the heart of American communities to advance a national culture of wellness. 

We value the hard work you are already doing in America’s counties — and we look forward to future collaborations to promote healthier communities, healthier citizens and a healthier workforce.

Please join us by taking the Health Means Business Wellness Pledge today. I commend NACo President Bryan Desloge for providing the opportunity and for supporting this endeavor.

Contact the Editor

Bev Schlotterbeck
Executive Editor
(202) 942-4249
bschlott@naco.org