Making it Better: Minnesota's Health Improvement Log

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Making it Better: Minnesota's Health Improvement Log

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May 2, 2019

Spring Regional Meetings

Registration still available for two remaining regional meetings

There are two regional meetings left! Join OSHII and other regional SHIP staff in a discussion about our collective vision for the next round of SHIP. This will be an important starting point to our SHIP planning process. Please encourage your public health leadership to attend as well.

Metro, Ridgedale Library, 12601 Ridgedale Dr., Minnetonka - May 15

Southwest, The Plaid Moose, 2630 Broadway Ave., Slayton - May 21

Register today.

Provide feedback for next cycle of SHIP

Survey for those unable to attend SHIP regional meetings

OSHII is offering structured conversations at the SHIP Regional Meetings as the first of several formal opportunities for local public health to have input into a participatory planning process for the next funding cycle of SHIP.

For those who are unable to attend the meetings, we created an opportunity to provide feedback for the next funding cycle of SHIP. Your answers will be summarized along with the input from the meetings, shared back through the Making it Better log and move us into the next phase of planning.

Provide feedback by completing a survey.

SHIP planning timeline

See the proposed SHIP planning timeline below.

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2019 Summer Institute in Adolescent Health

Summer institute

Register for institute focused on marijuana, e-cigarettes and opioids

Information about how e-cigarettes, marijuana and opioids affect adolescent mental health, relationships, sexual health, brain development and overall health and safety is vital to consider in our efforts to support healthy decisions among youth.

During the 2019 Summer Institute, July 29 - 31, explore current research, legislation and prevention strategies regarding adolescents’ use of e-cigarettes, marijuana and opioids. Talk with health and social service providers, counselors and teachers and explore strategies for building partnerships and prevention efforts that best serve adolescents.

Anyone who works with parents and youth is encouraged to attend. The institute will take place at the Midpointe Event Center in St. Paul, MN.

Learn more and register.

Safe Routes statewide meet-up is May 21

Keynote speaker is announced

Transportation habits are some of the hardest to change, but new research about behavior economics can help in learning more about how to create campaigns and programs that actually change habits. Jessica Roberts of Alta Planning + Design is a leader in the field of behavioral economics and active transportation with almost two decades of experience.

The Safe Routes meet-up will take place on May 21, from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. at the Hutchinson Event Center in Hutchinson, MN.

Roberts' keynote presentation will help Minnesota Safe Routes practitioners learn how to develop smart, effective programs that inspire people to change their transportation habits and encourage more walking and bicycling to school or other destinations.

Join this daylong training and networking event to help advance your Safe Routes to School program!  

Learn more and register.   

OSHII staffing update


The Evaluation and Surveillance Unit has a new staff member

Jacob Walker-Swaney, MPH (Piqua Shawnee, Potawatomi) is the new research scientist for the Evaluation and Surveillance Unit of OSHII. He is also a current doctoral student at North Dakota State University studying health and traditional Native American foods of the Great Lakes Region. He received his Master of Public Health with a focus on American Indian Health from NDSU in 2017 where he analyzed the public health role of wild rice for Anishinaabe communities in the Western Great Lakes Region.

Jacob will lead OSHII’s surveillance work, be the tribal evaluation liaison and be engaged in the evaluation of SHIP and other federal grants. We are excited to welcome his passion for advancing healthy eating, reducing health disparities and advancing health equity that stem from his roots in his native cultures.

Tobacco regional meeting evaluation

Survey with feedback from tobacco virtual regional meetings

If you participated in one of the tobacco virtual regional meetings, please share your feedback by taking a quick evaluation to help MDH better plan for upcoming trainings and technical assistance opportunities. 

Complete the survey today.

SHIP Financial Guide FAQ

SHIP Financial Guide questions answered

Q: What types of sporting equipment are allowable expenses within the community active living strategy?

A: The answer is none. Sporting equipment for activities like snowshoeing, canoeing and soccer do not support every day physical activity. The objective of the active living strategy is to support every day physical activity through the development and implementation of policies and practices that increase opportunities for walking and bicycling.

See page 30 of the Financial Guide (PDF) for more information.


Partnership call: Good Food Sold Here

Date: May 8
Time: 8:00 - 9:00 a.m.

Join for the spring Good Food Sold Here partnership call with guest speaker, Jeff Luedeman, from the Minnesota Department of Agriculture. Luedeman is the Retail Food Program Manager in the Food and Feed Safety Division and will be talking about some exciting education possibilities for stores related to regulatory expectations.

Join the call on the MDH WebEx page. Details are available on Basecamp.

This week's gem

St. Cloud Bike racks

Effort encourages more people to bike to work in St. Cloud

Integrating physical activity, such as bicycling, into daily routines helps to improve overall health. To encourage more bicycling as a form of transportation, St. Cloud is installing a network of new bright green bike racks. The installation is to encourage employees who work downtown to bike to work, as well as to provide secure bicycle parking for those visiting and shopping downtown businesses.

The 22 bike racks are being installed prior to Bike to Work Week, which runs May 13-17.

The bike racks are part of the ongoing efforts of Bike St. Cloud to make bicycling in the city safer and more convenient. The new bike racks are being funded through the Statewide Health Improvement Partnership (SHIP), which is administered locally by the Public Health Divisions of Benton, Sherburne and Stearns Counties.

“There is growing interest in biking to work both among employees and businesses for its multiple benefits,” says Jolene Foss, Executive Director of St. Cloud Downtown Council. “It improves health, lowers employer healthcare costs, reduces stress and can increase job performance.”

St. Cloud has shown a commitment to improving conditions for bicyclists and in 2018, was awarded as a Bronze Bicycle Friendly Community by the League of American Bicyclists. Keep up the great work!