In the United States, seven out of ten deaths and the vast majority of illness, disability, and health care costs are caused by chronic diseases, such as cardiovascular disease, diabetes, asthma, and cancer. The Living Healthy, Living Longer survey conducted in 2006 found that over 80% of Miami-Dade County residents had one or more of the following risk factors: overweight, no physical activity, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and/or cigarette smoke.
The Miami-Dade County Health Department recognized the need for the community to join forces to combat the increasing rates of chronic disease in the county. In September 2003, a meeting of community partners was called and the Consortium for a Healthier Miami-Dade was established. The Consortium is comprised of over 161 organizations, all united by the common belief that through collaboration and prevention-focused initiatives, Miami-Dade County residents can live longer, happier and healthier.
Consortium initiatives are guided by the goals and objectives established in Healthy People 2020, the blueprint for health in the United States. Healthy People 2020 is a comprehensive, nationwide health promotion and disease prevention agenda that contains objectives designed to serve as a framework for improving the health of all people in the United States.
"Healthy Environment, Healthy Lifestyles, Healthy Community"
To be a major catalyst for healthy living in Miami-Dade through the support and strengthening of sustainable policies, systems and environments.
To fulfill its mission, the Consortium works in a collaborative effort to achieve the following four (4) goals:
- Enhance and strengthen the Consortium for a Healthier Miami-Dade membership.
- Increase adoption and implementation of policy, systems and environmental change in creating healthy communities.
- Educate and raise awareness of the benefits of healthy lifestyles and health promoting environments.
- Increase access to resources and information to promote the adoption of healthy lifestyles by Miami-Dade County residents.
For more information on the Consortium goals, objectives and strategies, please review the Consortium strategic plan.
The Consortium for a Healthier Miami-Dade works in a committee structure that allows members to work within their area of interest and expertise. The Consortium is comprised of eight (8) separate committees focused on specific key areas of health. Committees are guided by an Executive Board, which consists of all committee Chairs and Vice-Chairs.
This committee promotes the health and wellness of children in Miami-Dade through the facilitation of policy, systems, and environmental change that support healthy lifestyles among children. Efforts include but are not limited to: increasing breastfeeding practices and access to healthy foods and physical activity in schools and child care centers.
This committee promotes and encourages elder community members to live a safe and healthy lifestyle. Committee initiatives focus on education, chronic disease management and retirement planning to improve quality of life and longevity for the growing elderly population.
Health and the Built Environment
This committee was established in 2006 to enhance the knowledge of public officials and community stakeholders about the health impacts of urban planning and transportation infrastructure. Committee initiatives focus on drafting letters of support, contacting officials, and presenting to various stakeholder groups, detailing the relationship between our built environment and our community's health.
Health Promotion and Disease Prevention
This committee seeks to improve community health through education and the creation of environments that support healthy behaviors. Committee initiatives focus on education, screening, and policy efforts aimed to prevent chronic disease and encourage the adoption and practice of healthy behaviors.
Marketing and Membership
This committee is responsible for disseminating information to the community and other stakeholders about the Consortium initiatives and recruitment and retention of members for the Consortium.
This committee was created to improve oral health in Miami-Dade County. Committee initiatives focus on education, awareness and increasing access to oral health services in underserved populations for positive health outcomes.
This committee focuses on initiatives that aim to reduce and prevent initiation of tobacco use, especially among youth, provide resources for smoking cessation, and establish and advocate for ordinances and laws that eliminate secondhand smoke exposure on a local and state level.
This committee aims to promote healthy lifestyles in the work-setting by sharing resources on best practices, encouraging policy, systems, and environmental change and creating partnerships among the diverse businesses within Miami-Dade County.
For more information on the Consortium for a Healthier Miami-Dade visit the Consortium Web site at www.healthymiamidade.org.