Creating a Culture of Health in Appalachia: Disparities and Bright Spots

Creating a Culture of Health in Appalachia: Disparities and Bright Spots” is an innovative research initiative that aims to identify factors that support a culture of health in Appalachian communities.

This multi-part health research project will produce a series of reports. The first report  measures population health and documents disparities in health outcomes within the Appalachian Region and compared to the United States as a whole. The second report will identify “Bright Spots,” communities that exhibit better-than-expected health outcomes given their resources. The third report will explore a sample of the Bright Spot communities through in-depth, field-based case studies. Taken together, these reports will provide a basis for understanding and addressing health issues in the Appalachian Region. This work will help others explore activities, programs and policies that encourage better-than-expected health outcomes and translate these ideas into actions that other communities can replicate. You can find the reports here:

This initiative is sponsored by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF) and the Appalachian Regional Commission (ARC), and is administered by the Foundation for a Healthy Kentucky. The Sheps Center is performing this work in collaboration with PDA, Inc.


Sheps Staff: Mark Holmes, Randy Randolph, Sharita Thomas
Sheps Contact: Mark Holmes, 919-966-7100,
Press contact: Wendy Wasserman, ARC Communications Director, 202-884-7771