Erie County's Office of Health Equity
2023 NACo Achievement Award Winner
Erie County, N.Y., NY
Best In Category
About the Program
Category: Health (Best in Category)
As growing evidence underscores the key role of the social determinants of health in disparities in health outcomes, the Erie County Office of Health Equity (ECOHE) serves as a model for assessing and addressing health equity at a systemic level within local government.
The Erie County Health Equity Act of 2021 (a local law) established ECOHE within the county’s department of health. ECOHE evaluates a wide variety of specific health outcomes among diverse populations to fully understand the depth of health disparities in Erie County and partners with community members, healthcare providers, faith and philanthropic leaders, and organizations to enact programs that help all Erie County residents, especially disadvantaged, marginalized, and diverse populations, achieve maximum health and wellness. Key functions of the ECOHE include analyzing disparities in health, health care, and health access among disadvantaged and marginalized populations in Erie County; understanding and connecting factors that contribute to health outcomes; making recommendations for and piloting models and programs to improve delivery and access to health services and health outcomes; promoting public awareness and education around health equity; and collecting, assessing, and reporting all findings in order to inform and shape more equitable policies and programs.