The Indiana Clinical and Translational Sciences Institute (CTSI), the Indiana State Department of Health, and the IU Simon Cancer Center (IUSCC) have come together to strengthen their partnership to improve health in Indiana by forming Connections IN Health. This alliance unites the state’s health coalition development work, and the IUSCC’s community and engagement initiatives with that of Indiana CTSI. Connections IN Health is led by the Indiana CTSI’s Community Health Partnerships program, which works to improve health in Indiana through community-university partnerships and community-based health research.
Connections IN Health supports stakeholders, organizations, advocates, and residents as they come together to improve health and address chronic diseases. Connections IN Health facilitates collaboration within communities by connecting stakeholders with evidence-based practices, identifying funding sources, and addressing health equity for all.
Connections IN Health includes four statewide chronic disease initiatives:
The Indiana Joint Asthma Coalition is developing Indiana’s statewide strategic plan, collaborating with other agencies, health departments, and stakeholders
in rural and urban communities to address and create long term sustainability of asthma programming. The coalition aims to increase asthma awareness and education, create asthma action plans, and decrease the prevalence of asthma in adults and children throughout the state.
The Cancer Control Outreach initiative will expand and enrich statewide partnerships, offer evidence-based cancer control strategies and coalition capacity assistance in order to decrease cancer morbidity and mortality throughout the state.
Indiana Healthy Weight seeks health-focused initiatives that are implemented through collaboration of state and community coalitions with a focus on the reduction of risk factors specifically related to nutrition and physical activity, contributing to the chronic diseases that affect many Indiana residents.
The Cardiovascular and Diabetes Coalition of Indiana (CADI) has a long-standing history of engaging various partners throughout the state to work on reducing cardiovascular disease, diabetes and stroke. The coalition has successfully been able to develop and launch the Better Together Plan, Indiana’s first statewide strategic plan to address cardiovascular disease, diabetes and stroke together.
Over the last decade, all four of the coalitions have made significant progress promoting local community health efforts. The Connections IN Health team’s primary goal is to further these health promotion efforts across the state.
Connections IN Health partners with statewide organizations including Purdue Extension, which is
involved in more than 60 health coalitions across the state and has educators in all 92 Indiana counties.