Press Release

November 8, 2010


An Updated Roadmap to Illinois’ Health

 2010 State Health Improvement Plan  

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. – The newest plan to improve the health of Illinois residents and the effectiveness of the state’s public health system is now available. The State Health Improvement Plan (SHIP) is a long-term, strategic roadmap identifying areas that both government and private organizations can work on to help prevent disease and promote the overall health of the state.

“The Plan addresses priority health concerns that affect almost all of us - obesity, violence and alcohol, tobacco and drug abuse to name a few. By focusing prevention strategies on these conditions, we can reduce chronic conditions such as heart disease, diabetes, cancer and mental health problems,” said Illinois Department of Public Health Director Dr. Damon T. Arnold. “This Plan recommends strategies and actions for each priority health concern that local health departments, state agencies, health care providers, the legislature, community-based organizations and others can take to help improve the health of our state.”

Signed into law in August 2004, the State Health Improvement Plan Act calls for the Illinois State Board of Health to deliver a plan every four years. Engaging the Illinois Public Health Institute to assist in the planning process, the Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) appointed members to a State Health Improvement Plan Team, which met monthly between October 2009 and March 2010. The Team updated and refined the previous 2007 SHIP based on its analysis of several detailed assessments of the health of Illinois residents and how well the state is doing in promoting good health. The Illinois State Board of Health then convened three public hearings across Illinois and recommendations were incorporated into the final document.

“As the SHIP was being developed, the Team recognized that health care reform represented an unprecedented opportunity to not only provide insurance and increase access, but also an opportunity to prevent illness and promote health,” said Illinois State Board of Health Chair Dr. Javette C. Orgain. “The SHIP identifies numerous ways in which health care reform can be leveraged to help achieve its goals.”

The vision of the State Health Improvement Plan is optimal physical, mental and social well-being for all people in Illinois through a high-functioning public health system comprised of active public, private and voluntary partners.

The team identified five Public Health System Priorities (not ranked by importance):


Improve Access to Health Services


Enhance Data and Health Information Technology


Address Social Determinants of Health and Health Disparities


Measure, Manage, Improve and Sustain the Public Health System


Assure a Sufficient Workforce and Human Resources

The team also identified nine Priority Health Concerns (not ranked by importance):


Alcohol/ Tobacco


  • Decrease tobacco and excessive alcohol use by adults; prevent among youth


Use of Illicit Drugs/ Misuse of Legal Drugs


  • Decrease use of illegal drugs and intentional misuse of legal drugs


Mental Health


  • Prevent, intervene early and increase treatment


Natural and Built Environment


  • Reduce exposure to pollutants and infectious disease; improve built environment


Obesity: Nutrition and Physical Activity


  • Individual, family, environmental and policy initiatives to increase physical activity and improve nutrition


Oral Health


  • Ensure access to preventive services; screening and treatment for oral cancer


Patient Safety and Quality


  • Implement processes that promote safety and reduce errors


Unintentional Injury


  • Promote personal safety devices and safe habits




  • Increase protective factors; early interventions; reduce risk factors

Governor Pat Quinn signed House Bill 5565 in July, which called for the creation of a SHIP Implementation Coordination Council. The Council will include public, private, and voluntary stakeholders, as well as participants in the public health system. The Council will coordinate efforts to implement the SHIP. Those wanting to apply to be a member of the Council will be able to get more information in the coming weeks at

The new Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Task Force will also be integral in implementing the SHIP by considering ways to reduce the burden of chronic diseases in Illinois.

To see the 2010 State Health Improvement Plan log onto

idph online home
idph online home

Illinois Department of Public Health
535 West Jefferson Street
Springfield, Illinois 62761
Phone 217-782-4977
Fax 217-782-3987
TTY 800-547-0466
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