Center for Health Equity Newsletter -- August 2018

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August 2018

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A Louisville where every person and every community can enjoy hope, happiness, and wellness.

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CHNA Update – CHE Newsletter

Community Health Assessment and Community Health Improvement Plan

The Community Health Assessment (CHA) is a process that is required every three to five years by the Affordable Care Act for all non-profit hospitals, as well as by the Public Health Accreditation Board for all local health departments. This process is considered so important and necessary because we need to be able to understand what is happening within the community and to get community feedback on what the priorities and needs are moving forward.

Our process started in January 2017, and has involved a variety of partners ranging from hospitals to JCPS to community organizations. All of these organizations are working together to ensure that we have a coordinated approach to public health. Our survey reached over 3,500 residents of Jefferson County, and we are in the midst of conducting 8 different focus groups with priority populations. In addition to direct data collection, we are using what we have learned from our Health Equity Report, and what we learned from a Forces of Change assessment completed in April 2018.

All of this information will be shared out to the community in a report in fall of 2018. This report will be presented on September 12th, as part of a larger kick-off to the Community Health Improvement Plan (CHIP). During this event, organizations and residents will have a chance to reflect on the data, examine themes, and decide what priorities the community should focus on to improve health. These priorities will guide workgroups to decide on strategies and objectives.

As always, our goal is to work together, combining our resources, to make Louisville Metro a place where everyone and every community can enjoy hope, happiness and wellness. We hope you will join us.


CSA as an Employee Benefit in Louisville Metro Government

By Jessica Miller Klein

Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) is a weekly or bi-weekly subscription to a box of farm-fresh, local produce for approximately 20-23 weeks during the growing season, primarily May-October. Three departments in Louisville Metro Government have decided to pilot a CSA program as a benefit to their employees for 22 weeks June-November 2018. The 35 participants in Louisville Metro Public Health and Wellness, Resilience and Community Services and Youth Detention Services received a $200 discount towards their purchase of a vegetable CSA. Participants purchased a CSA in May, using their discount, and receive a small or large box of local, certified organic vegetables from Rootbound Farm, located in Crestwood, delivered directly to their workplace.

LMPHW receives administrative support from the Organic Association of Kentucky and the University of Kentucky to provide the program and study the self-reported benefits and motivations behind participating in the program.

So far, the feedback has all been positive at LMG. Co-workers are able to conveniently access organic vegetables, try new seasonal produce each week and talk about recipes and meal preparation with their colleagues. Youth Detention Services has even purchased an additional 5 boxes for their Employee Engagement Committee to provide nutrition and cooking demonstrations to their employees.

What are the benefits of this benefit?

Firstly, it benefits employees. The University of Kentucky’s Department of Agricultural Economics has studied the self-reported health of participants in the Lexington-Fayette County Health Department and results have shown:

  • Increased vegetable and fruit consumption per day
  • Increased salad consumption
  • Decreased consumption of processed snacks and meals
  • Statistically measurable decrease in doctor’s visits
  • Food preparation skills improved
  • Participants preserved food more often (canning, freezing, etc.).
  • Overall increase in self-reported health

Additionally, it benefits the farmers. The upfront payment structure of a CSA ensures organic farmers have some financial stability to their business model and guaranteed customers to prevent food waste.

We look forward to the final results of the Louisville Metro Government CSA pilot in the fall of 2018.

image of box used to hold csa vegetables

If your workplace is interested in participating in a CSA program, contact Brooke Gentile: or 502-219-7378. To learn more visit

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What We're Reading

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An Unlikely Group Of Billionaires And Politicians Has Created The Most Unbelievable Tax Break Ever

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map which shows what areas within Louisville have been designated as opportunity zones

Opportunity Zones

By Rebecca Hollenbach

Opportunity Zones are a new community development program established by Congress in the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017. This national program identifies low-income census tracts for investment through the creation of Opportunity Funds. Investments are incentivized through tax credits for investors, who can re-invest their “unrealized capital gains” in these funds. 

Unrealized capital gains are profits which exist from an investment, but have not yet been sold for cash. Through the creation of Opportunity Funds, these investments can be used for a variety of projects and developments. 

In Louisville, the Governor has designated 19 census tracts as Opportunity Zones.

According to Insider Louisville:

“The Opportunity Zones program establishes the framework for investors to inject investment into projects in our city that will have a significant social impact,” said Mayor Greg Fischer in a news release. “Projects like the redevelopment of the Louisville Gardens, the Track on Ali at Heritage West, and projects from Butchertown to downtown to west Louisville are great examples of developments that could benefit from this program.”

The goal of the program, according to prior reports, is to encourage investors to put money currently sitting idle in bank accounts or other financial holdings into redevelopment projects in economically distressed urban and rural areas. The incentive for investors is deferred, reduced or eliminated capital gains taxes; the tax break an investor receives would depend on how much is invested and for how long.

According to previously released information, capital investors must use private sector investment vehicles called Opportunity Funds and invest at least 90 percent of the capital within the bounds of an Opportunity Zone.

Nonprofit Access Ventures, which mostly funds projects in the Shelby Park neighborhood, is the only local organization to formally announce it is exploring the possibility of creating an Opportunity Fund. Shelby Park is one of the designated Opportunity Zones.

Louisville Metro Government has released an interactive map of the 19 census tracts in Louisville dubbed Opportunity Zones. Beyond the map, there was no new information provided about Opportunity Zones, and many questions remain about how the federally created program will operate.

To learn more about Louisville’s Opportunity Zones, visit:

Health Equity in the News


'Enough is enough': Residents fight new liquor stores in poor areas

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