Pennsylvania Unveils New Plan to Improve Public Health

Pennsylvania Department of Health

PENNSYLVANIA — The Pennsylvania State Health Improvement Plan (SHIP) seeks to give Pennsylvanians a better quality of life and vitality, and the 2023-2028 SHIP plan was developed with hundreds of health care professionals, associations, local public health agencies, government agencies and stakeholders collaborating under the Healthy Pennsylvania Partnership (HPP). Aimed at improving the state’s overall health through the provided goals and strategies in the five-year plan, this unveiling of SHIP coincided with National Public Health Week (April 3 – April 9), emphasizing greater statewide initiatives towards health promotion. Thanks to support from Harrisburg University, SHIP is expected to have a positive effect on Pennsylvanian communities for years to come.

“The Department’s vision is to create a ‘Healthy Pennsylvania for All,’” said Dr. Debra Bogen, Acting Secretary of Health. “Achieving that vision will take all of us working with people and organizations across the Commonwealth to increase opportunities for people to access quality health care, impactful programs, and needed resources.”

Under the overarching goal of improving the health status and life expectancy of Pennsylvanians, and eliminating health inequities, there are nine goals in the 2023-2028 SHIP:

  • Increase financial well-being, food security, and safe affordable housing;
  • Increase community safety by reducing the number of violent incidences that occur due to racism, discrimination, or domestic disputes;
  • Improve environmental health, focusing on environmental justice communities;
  • Increase the population at a healthy weight through increasing availability and accessibility of physical activity and affordable nutritious food;
  • Reduce the impact of tobacco and nicotine use;
  • Increase access to medical and oral health care;
  • Improve mental health and substance use outcomes through improved mental health services, trauma-informed trainings, and substance use interventions;
  • Improve health outcomes through improved chronic diseases management; and
  • Improve maternal and infant health outcomes by improving prenatal, perinatal, and postnatal care.

The SHIP acts as a road map for the HPP and others to improve health outcomes and eliminate health disparities by working across the continuum from the social determinants of health, preventative interventions, and accessing quality and culturally humble care.

More information on the SHIP can be found on the Department of Health’s website at the State Health Improvement Plan (

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