HHS awards $119M+ for state, territory prevention programs
The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has awarded more than $119 million to U.S. states and territories to support public health efforts to reduce obesity, increase physical activity, improve nutrition and decrease smoking.

Funded under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) of 2009, the States and Territories Policy and Environmental Change Initiative is one of four projects in the department’s prevention and wellness program. Beginning in September 2009, a total of $650 million has been dedicated to reduce risk factors and prevent or delay chronic disease and promote wellness in both children and adults.

According to the HHS, the funding for the states and territories initiative will focus on efforts to help communities and schools support healthy choices through a variety of methods including the use of media to support healthy food and beverage choices and increased physical activity.

Awards to states and territories are in three major categories:
  • Statewide policy and environmental change: $44.6 million will be provided across all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and six Pacific territories for efforts in nutrition, physical activity and tobacco control. The state, Washington, D.C. and Puerto Rico award amounts range from $335,801 to $2.2 million. Territory award amounts range from $99,980 to $100,000.
  • Competitive special policy and environmental change: The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) received applications to implement one or more policy, environmental or system change strategies to eliminate health disparities and achieve health equity related to these individual risk factors or a combination of them. $30 million will fund 13 states to implement a total 15 projects. Award amounts for projects in Colorado, Delaware, Florida, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, New York, North Carolina, Oregon, Rhode Island, Texas and Wisconsin range from $1 million to $3 million per state.
  • Tobacco cessation through quit-lines and media: $44.3 million will be spread across all 50 states, Washington, D.C., Puerto Rico and Guam to expand tobacco quit-lines along with expanded cessation media campaigns. The award amounts range from $50,000 to $2.5 million.
More information on state-specific funding including the 13 state-specific projects can be found on CDC’s Web site.

Awards for other initiatives, including community-based health promotion initiatives, will be announced in the coming weeks, according to the HHS.