Draft HEZ Eligibility Criteria
The following are proposed criteria for which geographic areas are eligible for designation as a Health Enterprise Zone. Selection and funding will then be based on the review of an application from an organization seeking to establish an HEZ in an eligible area.
The proposed criteria for HEZ eligibility below cast a wide net and allow many communities to apply to become an HEZ. It is expected that communities experiencing significant disparities, including significant racial and ethnic disparities in health will be well represented in the set of communities that meet these proposed eligibility criteria.
Casting a wide net will allow the State to receive a large number of innovative proposals from which the HEZs will be selected. The selection process will be the point at which more stringent criteria are used and communities have the opportunity to further demonstrate the existence of health disparities and poor health outcomes in their communities.
Under the proposed criteria submitted for public comment, it is envisioned that HEZs could be one or more zip codes that meet each of the four proposed criteria below. Based on these proposed criteria, the state is making available statewide maps that show the zip codes that would be eligible to apply. Also attached is an initial eligibility assessment of each zip code.
In choosing the proposed eligibility criteria, several indicators were rejected because there were too few events to produce meaningful, reliable data at a sub-jurisdictional level (ex. diabetes mortality, heart disease mortality, teen birth rates). Considering both availability of data and indicators that could best identify areas of need, the data team developed the following proposed HEZ eligibility criteria:
Plan to Make Data Available to Potential HEZ Applicants
- Using the data sources outlined above, create five maps that indicate which zip codes fall within the eligibility criteria for resident population, Medicaid enrollment, WIC participation, life expectancy, and low birth weight.
- Zip codes that have fewer than 5,000 residents are ineligible to apply alone and will be encouraged to partner with neighboring areas. These small zip codes have somewhat unstable life expectancy and low birth weight numbers and will therefore not be included in the data released. Data for grouped zip codes will be provided upon request. Although some zip codes may not have adequate data, they are still allowed to apply and eligible to be considered as part of an HEZ.
- Make the zip code map and the eligibility criteria tables available to the public by posting on the HEZ website.
- Provide technical assistance to potential applicants.
Questions for Public Input
Public comment will be accepted on the following questions from June 15 to July 20. All public comments and responses to these questions should be sent to email@example.com.
- Should there be additional requirements for data at the zip code level?
- Should any of the above criteria be removed from the list?
- Should any additional criteria be added?
- Should the economic and health outcome measurements be lowered from the median value as currently proposed?