Many communities develop programs and events as part of its strategic plan for improving residents health, but a more sustainable approach to gain traction is known as “Policy, Systems and Environmental Change” (PSE). The major difference between PSE compared to traditional approaches such as events and programs is that the PSE approach is aimed at long-term, sustainable and ongoing behavioral change.
The reason PSE is useful for improving health in a community is because encouraging people to live healthier lives isn’t just about changing individual behaviors and creating good habits. Communities need to be places that encourage and promote healthy choices. A PSE approach makes healthier choices a real, feasible option for every member of the community by looking at the laws, rules and environments that impact behavior.
- Policy interventions are laws, ordinances, resolutions, mandates, regulations or rules (both formal and informal).
- Systems interventions are changes that affect all elements of an organization, institution or system.
- Environmental interventions involve physical or material changes to the economic, social or physical environment.
The infographic, The Path to a Culture of Health: The Policy, Systems and Environmental Change Approach for Community-Based, Healthy Eating and Physical Activity, highlights examples of PSE interventions designed to increase the number of residents eating healthy foods as well as engaging in more physical activity. Learn more by visiting the Community Action Guide.
You can download the full version in PDF format by clicking on the image above and saving to your computer. You can also download the individual Healthy Eating and Physical Activity infographics by clicking on the images below.