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United Health Foundation and National Business Coalition on Health Award Community Health Planning Grants

Six NBCH-member coalitions each receive grants of up to $50,000 to help improve public health in their communities

MINNETONKA, Minn., and WASHINGTON (April 27, 2011) – United Health Foundation and the National Business Coalition on Health (NBCH) have awarded community health planning grants of up to $50,000 each to six NBCH-member coalitions. The grants, funded by United Health Foundation, will help the coalitions address priority public health challenges in their communities.

The community health planning grants were created in response to the increasing incidence in debilitating and expensive preventable chronic diseases, as highlighted in the Foundation’s 2010 America’s Health Rankings®. The funds will enable the coalitions to launch or advance existing “community summits” with local business leaders, nonprofit organizations, mental and public health professionals, elected and public officials and community advocates. The summits will develop strategies to identify and address local health challenges, mobilize public and private resources, and create programs that can be implemented within their communities.

The six NBCH-member coalitions awarded the grants are: Chicago-based Midwest Business Group on HealthIndiana Employers Quality Health Alliance in Indianapolis; Memphis Business Group on Health of Memphis, Tenn.; Rockford, Ill.-based Employers’ Coalition on HealthSavannah Business Group of Savannah, Ga.; and the St. Louis Area Business Health Coalition.

“Our business coalition members across the country care deeply about the health of their communities,” said Andrew Webber, NBCH president and CEO. “Coalitions have a strong track record of galvanizing people and organizations to get things done. We are energized and encouraged by United Health Foundation’s recognition and support of the important role that the private sector plays in collaborating with communities to identify and address priority health problems. This is especially important given the well-documented financial challenges confronting so many of our states.”

“United Health Foundation is investing further in the public-private partnerships at the state and local level that we believe experience shows are most adept at addressing local health challenges,” said Reed Tuckson, M.D., United Health Foundation board member and executive vice president and chief of medical affairs, UnitedHealth Group. “As health care costs continue to rise, due in large measure to the increasing burden of preventable chronic illness, it is important for all stakeholders to work together to develop realistic, measurable solutions to prevent disease and optimize health in their communities.”

About the National Business Coalition on Health
NBCH is a national, non-profit, membership organization of 53 purchaser-led business and health coalitions, representing over 7,000 employers and 25 million employees and their dependents across the United States. NBCH and its members are dedicated to value-based purchasing of health care services through the collective action of public and private purchasers. For additional information visit www.nbch.org.

About United Health Foundation
Guided by a passion to help people live healthier lives, United Health Foundation provides helpful information to support decisions that lead to better health outcomes and healthier communities. The Foundation also supports activities that expand access to quality health care services for those in challenging circumstances and partners with others to improve the well-being of communities. Since established by UnitedHealth Group [NYSE: UNH] in 1999 as a not-for-profit, private foundation, the Foundation has committed more than $176 million to improve health and health care. For more information, visit www.unitedhealthfoundation.org

About America’s Health Rankings®
America’s Health Rankings® is the longest running report of its kind. For 21 years, the Rankings has provided an analysis of national health on a state-by-state basis by evaluating a historical and comprehensive set of health, environmental and socio-economic data to determine national health benchmarks and state rankings. The Rankings employs a unique methodology, developed and annually reviewed by a Scientific Advisory Committee of leading public health scholars. For more information, visit www.americashealthrankings.org.


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