Healthy Communities Indicator Project

Background: The Healthy Communities Indicator (HCI) Project is a 2-year collaboration of the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) and the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF) to create and disseminate indicators linked to the Healthy Communities Framework. This framework was developed by the State Strategic Growth Council’s Health in All Policies Task Force with extensive public discussion and input from community stakeholders and public health organizations. The framework identifies 20 key attributes of a healthy community through all stages of life, clustered in five broad categories: meets basic needs of all (housing, transportation, nutrition, health care, livable communities, physical activity), environmental quality and sustainability, adequate levels of economic and social development, health and social equity, and social relationships that are supportive and respectful.

  • Click here for a 1-pager from CDPH describing the project.
  • Click here for the preliminary list of indicators developed to reflect the Healthy Communities Framework.
  • Click here for more information on the Healthy Communities Framework/ Health in All Policies Task Force.

Scope of the HCI Project: The project includes developing the list of potential indicators, building out the data for selected indicators across the state, refining the indicators based on local feedback, and developing narratives, maps, and technical guides for the use of this information.

Alliance Pilot: The Public Health Alliance and partners are focused on indicators related to transportation/built environment, food systems, and equity.  At the beginning of the pilot, Data Committee members voted on which indicators they were most interested in piloting.

Status of Indicators Selected in the Alliance Pilot:

Indicator: Neighborhood Completeness Index (<½ mile radius for 8 out of 11 common public services and 9 of 12 common retail services).

Status: Under development.


Indicator: Percent of households within ½ mile of a full-service grocery store, fresh produce market, or store with fresh produce.

Status: Under development.


Indicator: Severe and fatal road traffic injuries (rate per mile traveled).

Status: Available on CDPH website under “Meets Basic Needs of All”.  Future Data Committee work will focus on how better data can be collected for miles traveled by active transport (bike/walk) modes.


Indicator: Percent of residents mode of transportation to work.

Status: Available on CDPH website under “Meets Basic Needs of All”.


Indicator: Percent of population residing within ½ mile of a major transit stop.

Status: Available on CDPH website under “Meets Basic Needs of All”.


Indicator: Percent of household income spent on travel.

Status: Under development.


Indicator: Retail Food Environment Index (ratio of healthy to unhealthy food outlets).

Status: Available on CDPH website under “Meets Basic Needs of All”.


Indicator: Miles per capita by car, public transit, and walk/bicycle.

Status: Available on CDPH website under “Meets Basic Needs of All”.


Indicator: Percent of residents by time walking and bicycling.

Status: Available on CDPH website under “Meets Basic Needs of All”.


2013 Data Committee Meetings Focusing on HCI Pilot

March: Inaugural Data Committee Call—What is the current indicator project environment?

April: Introduction to HCI Project

May: Voting on indicators for pilot

June: Phasing and data acquisition for indicators

July: Discussion of “Miles Traveled by Mode” and “Transit Access” methodology and definitions

August: Discussion of “Mode of Travel to Work”

September: Discussion of “Miles Traveled by Mode”

October: Discussion of “Road Traffic Injuries” and “Access to Transit”

November: Discussion of “Food Retail Environment Index” and “Percent of population walking/biking greater than 10 minutes to work”

December: Discussion of “Disadvantaged Communities” definition for new ATP program, and data gaps and recommendations that have emerged from HCI Project