Designing Healthy Communities: Uniting the Missions and Perspectives of Public Health and Urban Planning
A Conversation with Richard Jackson, MD, MPH
Please join us for this interactive Web Forum
Wednesday, October 12
11:00 AM to 12:30 PM Pacific Daylight Time
Richard J. Jackson, MD, MPH, has dedicated his career to raising the public's consciousness about how we design the built environment and implications for health equity and to address and prevent many of the nation's devastating childhood and adult health concerns. This Web Forum offers a chance to learn first-hand from this expert about the root causes of our malaise and how healthy community designs can be achieved by planners, designers, and community leaders working together. The session is also a unique opportunity to meet the author, as Dr. Jackson's book, Designing Healthy Places, will be released in October, 2011, and a public television documentary based on his work will be aired early in 2012.
Healthy people and a healthy environment are inseparable, according to Dr. Jackson, a professor at UCLA and former Director of the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)'s National Center for Environmental Health. It is possible, Dr. Jackson believes, to create communities around people, not vehicles. The design and construction of the built environment have broad implications for all our health. Health promotion can occur at all scales of the built environment, including buildings, communities and global infrastructure. The disabled, poor and other disadvantaged groups may benefit most from built environment improvements. These improvements require partnerships among urban planners, engineers, architects, developers, public health practitioners and communities.
Urban planning and public health both aim to improve human well-being, emphasize needs assessment and service delivery, manage complex social systems, focus at the population level, and rely on community-based participatory methods. Both fields focus on the needs of vulnerable populations. Integration of these fields is essential in restoring and enhancing the health and vitality of the nation's places and people.
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