Health Equity

Health Equity

Health inequities exist among groups based on gender, sexual orientation, race, ethnicity, education, income, disability, and geographic location. ASTHO's health equity strategic plan's central challenge is to mobilize leadership to achieve health equity. Its four objectives are:

  • Foster societal understanding and the will to achieve health equity.
  • Leverage and engage broad public/private partners in health equity solutions.
  • Leverage existing and new funding for health equity.
  • Strengthen organizational effectiveness in support of health equity.

A crosscutting strategy addresses the root causes of health inequities as well as measurement and evaluation.

Health Equity Strategic Map

The Role of the State/Territorial Health Official
in Promoting Health Equity

ASTHO's 2016 President's Challenge: Advancing Health Equity and Achieving Optimal Health for All

Triple Aim of Health Equity ASTHO President and Minnesota Commissioner of Health Edward Ehlinger, MD, MSPH, has issued ASTHO's 2016 President’s Challenge: Advance Health Equity and Optimal Health for All. His goal for this challenge is to promote the objectives in the Triple Aim of Health Equity: 1) Expand our understanding of what creates health, 2) Take a “health in all policies” approach with health equity as the goal, and 3) Strengthen communities’ capacity to create their own healthy future.
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Infographic: Health Equity at ASTHO

Infographic: Health Equity at ASTHO

ASTHO has created an infographic that highlights state and federal initiatives in health equity. The infographic also features a timeline of ASTHO’s own health equity program, which promotes health equity to our members, states, and partners through resources, policies, and technical assistance. View the infographic »


State Snapshots

In 2014, ASTHO conducted its third Health Equity/Minority Health Survey to assess health equity efforts in the states and territories. The survey examines health equity infrastructure, funding allocation and expenditures, and strategic plans and partnerships. The analysis allows for comparison of data longitudinally and between the states and is foundational for ASTHO’s efforts to support its members and state public health infrastructure through best practices research.

These State Snapshots summarize data that state health officials and their teams can use to highlight activities to improve health for all populations that they serve. View state snapshots »

Health Equity Webinars

To view recordings, slides, and supporting resources from past ASTHO webinars, visit the health equity webinars page.

Achieving Health Equity: ASTHO Reports and Case Studies

ASTHO provides information and resources to state health officials on health equity and health disparities issues, including resources on the economic case for health equity, health equity case studies, maternal and infant disparities, and state stories. Read more »

Example Health Equity Reports from States and Territories

This page showcases a variety of selected state-produced health equity reports. Read more »

ASTHO Minority Health Survey

ASTHO collected data on state minority health and health disparities programs and documented the variations in infrastructure, capacity, history, goals, major activities (including programs and populations served). Read more »


Mary Ann Cooney, Chief, Center for Population Health
Melissa Lewis, Director, Health Equity