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Delaware Department of Health and Social Services

Cross-sector Collaboration to Promote Health

The Delaware Department of Health and Social Services (DHSS) has a long history of interagency collaboration to support cross-sector health promotion efforts. DHSS recently expanded its commitment to leadership in this area by joining in a National Prevention Strategy (NPS) Learning Community (hosted by the Association of State and Territorial Health Officials). As a member of the Learning Community, DHSS exchanges resources and insight about cross-sector collaboration with two other State health agencies; its goal is to identify ways to enhance the work of the cross-sector Delaware Governor’s Council on Community Health Promotion and Disease Prevention (CHPDP) around the NPS Active Living Priority.

Delaware Governor Jack Markell and Richard Killingsworth, Division of Public Health, stand together in support of Delaware's commitment to promote physical activity.

Delaware Governor Jack Markell and Richard Killingsworth, Division of
Public Health, stand together in support of Delaware's commitment to
promote physical activity.

Foundation of the Council 

CHPDP was established by Executive Order of Delaware Governor Jack Markell. Charged with developing a statewide strategy for health promotion and advising the Delaware Executive Branch on the coordination of policies, programs, and actions to facilitate healthy lifestyles, CHPDP drew its recommendations from many of the same documents reviewed by the National Prevention Council, such as the USDA’s Dietary Guidelines for Americans, 2010 and HHS’s 2008 Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans. CHPDP used these guidelines—reinforced by the publication of the NPS—to conduct a comprehensive assessment of chronic disease burden in Delaware and create specific recommendations for improving the health of Delawareans, released in 2011. It then built on these recommendations by creating a health promotion campaign honoring Delaware municipalities that promote the health of their citizens through projects that fulfill the recommendations, inspiring conversations on healthy community design in municipalities all across the state.

Maintaining a Vision

CHPDP is using the NPS Learning Community as an opportunity to explore methods for fostering a community norm of shared spaces and joint use. By embracing change and facing challenges head-on, CHPDP will further Delaware’s commitment to leveraging cross-sector partnerships to improve the health of its citizens.

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