Initiative Goals

Gardening photoThe Healthy People/Healthy Economy initiative has four major goals targeted at stemming the rising tide of chronic illness, reducing the rates of preventable chronic disease, correcting the imbalance between health care spending and investments in health and reducing health care costs through prevention.  The four goals are: expand physical activity; increase access to healthy foods; create incentives for health and wellness; and encourage citizen education and engagement.

Shared Responsibility

It will take all Massachusetts residents, working together, to reach the goals of the Healthy People/Healthy Economy initiative, including: state government, schools, municipalities, payers, employers, food industry, physicians, philanthropies and the news media.

Accountability: Measuring Our Progress

As we work together with our colleagues in virtually all aspects of civic life in the Commonwealth, we do so with a deep commitment to measuring our success in turning our heath crisis around and reaching our goals. The Healthy People/Healthy Economy Report Cards will be annual reports that track progress in Massachusetts towards implementation of policies, practices and programs that improve health and wellness.

Download the HP/HE Initiative's five reports cards from 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014 and 2015.
Healthy People Healthy Economy First Annual Report Card   HPHE Second Annual Report Card   HPHE 3rd report card cover
  HPHE 4thReport Card cover    HPHE 2015 cover


The Healthy People/Healthy Economy Initiative's Four Goals


Goal 1: Expand physical activity


Walking School Bus photoPriority Initiatives:

  • Increase physical activity for children
  • Improve the built environment for activity and fitness


Benchmarks for Success:

  • Expanded physical activity and structured recess in schools
  • Increased out-of-school physical activity and walking to school
  • Increased biking access and walkability
  • Increased usage and number of parks and playgrounds


Bottom Line:
More children and adults engaging in physical activity to achieve healthy weight and improve overall health

Goal 2: Increase access to healthy foods


Healthful School Food photoPriority Initiatives:

  • Increase access to healthy foods in schools
  • Improve availability of healthy foods in all neighborhoods


Benchmarks for Success:

  • More farmers markets and public markets
  • More healthy meals served in schools
  • Reduction in sugar sweetened beverage consumption
  • Elimination of ‘food deserts,’ areas with limited access to healthy foods, through business development
  • Elimination of transfats


Bottom Line:
Increase access and consumption of healthy foods to improve nutrition and health


Goal 3: Create incentives for health and wellness


Create incentives photoPriority Initiatives:

  • Encourage health insurance benefit design to enhance health promotion and prevention
  • Establish health care payment incentives for health promotion, prevention and stronger primary care
  • Create sustainable and appropriate public health funding


Benchmarks for Success:

  • Increase in employee health promotion programs
  • Sustainable public health funding to promote health and wellness
  • Use of payment incentives by payers and employers


Bottom Line:
Incorporate incentives to improve healthy behaviors at the workplace, at home and in the community


Goal 4: Encourage citizen education and engagement


Mass in Motion photoPriority Initiatives:

  • Improve health literacy
  • Develop and implement metrics to track health
  • Define and establish health impact assessments
  • Partner with national health and fitness efforts


Benchmarks for Success:

  • Menu labeling in all restaurants
  • Implementation of Body Mass Index screening and reporting
  • Comprehensive, statewide public awareness campaigns for better health
  • Use of health impact assessments
  • Public understanding of linkages between healthy behaviors and overall health


Bottom Line:
Strengthen public awareness, understanding and motivation to engage in healthy behaviors

Healthy Foods


Administrative support for the
Healthy People/Healthy Economy Initiative
is provided by the Boston Foundation.

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