UMass Worcester PRC Publications

UMMS Affiliation

Division of Preventive and Behavioral Medicine, Department of Population and Quantitative Health Sciences; Clinical and Population Health Research Program, Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences; UMass Worcester Prevention Research Center

Publication Date


Document Type



Behavioral Medicine | Community Health and Preventive Medicine | Exercise Science | Health Policy | Preventive Medicine | Public Health Education and Promotion | Transportation


BACKGROUND: Local health departments (LHDs) are increasingly involved in Community Health Improvement Plans (CHIPs), a collaborative planning process that represents an opportunity for prioritizing physical activity. We determined the proportion of LHDs reporting active transportation strategies in CHIPs and associations between LHD characteristics and such strategies.

METHODS: A national probability survey of US LHDs ( < 500,000 residents; 30.2% response rate) was conducted in 2017 (n = 162). LHDs reported the inclusion of 8 active transportation strategies in a CHIP. We calculated the proportion of LHDs reporting each strategy. Multivariate logistic regression models determined the associations between LHD characteristics and inclusion of strategies in a CHIP. Inverse probability weights were applied for each stratum.

RESULTS: 45.6% of US LHDs reported participating in a CHIP with > /=1 active transportation strategy. Proportions for specific strategies ranged from 22.3% (Safe Routes to School) to 4.1% (Transit-Oriented Development). Achieving national accreditation (odds ratio [OR] = 3.67; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.11-12.05), pursuing accreditation (OR = 3.40; 95% CI, 1.25-9.22), using credible resources (OR = 5.25; 95% CI, 1.77-15.56), and collaborating on a Community Health Assessment (OR = 4.48; 95% CI, 1.23-16.29) were associated with including a strategy in a CHIP after adjusting for covariates.

CONCLUSIONS: CHIPs are untapped tools, but national accreditation, using credible resources, and Community Health Assessment collaboration may support strategic planning efforts to improve physical activity.


community health planning, physical activity, public health systems research, UMCCTS funding

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© 2019 The Authors. Published by Human Kinetics, Inc. This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License CC BY NC ND 4.0, which permits unrestricted noncommercial distribution of the original work in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited, the new use includes a link to the license, and any changes are indicated. See This license does not cover any third party material that may appear with permission in the article. For commercial use, permission should be requested from Human Kinetics, Inc, through the Copyright Clearance Center ( Permission to adapt, build upon, or transform all or part of the article in a way that is copyrightable must be granted by the author(s) before the modified material can be distributed.

DOI of Published Version



Sreedhara M, Valentine Goins K, Frisard C, Rosal MC, Lemon SC. Stepping Up Active Transportation in Community Health Improvement Plans: Findings From a National Probability Survey of Local Health Departments. J Phys Act Health. 2019 Sep 1;16(9):772-779. doi: 10.1123/jpah.2018-0623. Epub 2019 Jul 30. PMID: 31365900. Link to article on publisher's site

Journal/Book/Conference Title

Journal of physical activity and health

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Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.