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Cynthia Telles Discusses New Initiative to Address Root Causes of Poor Health

A mayor, city council, or the city manager can have just as much of an impact on your health as your doctor.  In fact, most people spend only few hours each year in the doctor’s office. The other 364 days out of the year, people are in the care of their city.

Improving the health of our communities is a challenge that requires “all hands-on deck,” including local policy makers.

CityHealth, an initiative of the Beaumont Foundation and Kaiser Permanente, provides civic leaders with a package of evidence-based policy solutions that will help millions of people live longer, better lives in vibrant, prosperous communities. This policy agenda sends a clear message to policy makers that the root causes of poor health do not start in hospitals or clinics.  Rather, what drives poor health outcomes is largely the conditions in the communities we live.

“Serving the health needs and advancing the quality of care in communities is an expansive mission that requires the dedication, talent and input of various city leaders, medical professionals, and policy makers,” said Dr. Cynthia Telles, Chair of the Community Health Committee for the Kaiser Permanente Foundation. “We are excited to be a part of the critical CityHealth initiative to better address the root challenges to healthy people and communities.”

For civic leaders who want to improve the health of the communities they serve, the CityHealth agenda is an excellent starting point.  It is a consensus agenda that hits a sweet spot for local health policy options that are evidenced based, with a history of enjoying some bi-partisan support.  Moreover, CityHealth has dedicated staff that provides cities with expert technical assistance and to ensure success. CityHealth Learn more at