National Association of County and City Health Officers (NACCHO) rolls out new toolkit for county health departments to adapt global intervention strategies for local needs.
NACCHO collaborated with the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation to develop a toolkit that highlights the benefits of global solutions as well as replication steps, tools, and guidance. This toolkit is intended for local health departments (LHDs) and other local public health organizations interested in leveraging evidence-based, community-driven approaches to address health concerns in their communities. It provides insight and resources to leverage these global resources effectively.
The packet that launched in late May outlines how to adapt and adopt global health approaches to the needs of U.S. communities. The research even includes a case study from the Calvert County Health Department and their experience adapting World Health Organization resources to bolster their mental health and substance use disorder responses in the wake of the COVID-19 public health crisis.
Global health interventions and practices–which include a slate of demonstrated, evidence-based approaches–are often developed and tested in low-resource settings, which makes them more affordable to implement and easy to adapt, especially in rural and resource-limited communities. Using a global-to-local approach—applying global solutions at the local level in the U.S.— enables LHDs to diversify their responses to existing and new public health challenges and mitigate the impact of these issues.
Implementing new and innovative ideas derived from global health practice can also boost fundamental public health protections and preparedness capabilities in the U.S. These steps can bolster prevention, detection, and response to emerging and future epidemics and pandemics. While the U.S. traditionally has not leveraged international health approaches, health provision is inherently a transnational issue that benefits from global health’s emphasis on partnerships and pooled expertise to address persistent health challenges.