National Healthy Homes Month Themes and Content
June 5, 2023 - June 30, 2023
National Healthy Homes Month: Connecting Home, Health, and YOU
This year's National Healthy Homes Month focuses on the important relationship between housing quality and health. The goal is to raise awareness about the need to reduce costs for families by preventing injuries and illnesses, improving affordable housing options, and enhancing the quality of life for vulnerable populations.
Everyone desires good health and affordable medical and housing expenses. To ensure this opportunity is available to all Americans, we can all contribute to creating and maintaining healthy homes and communities. Every individual and organization has a role to play in promoting healthy homes for everyone.
The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development's Office of Lead Hazard Control and Healthy Homes (OLHCHH) has a mission to help all Americans, particularly children and other vulnerable populations in low-income households, reach their full potential by ensuring safe and healthy living conditions. HUD's Lead Hazard Control and Healthy Homes initiatives aim to improve health outcomes by addressing housing conditions.
In summary, National Healthy Homes Month emphasizes the connection between housing and health. By addressing housing quality, we can improve the well-being of individuals, families, and communities. Collaborative efforts among individuals, organizations, and government agencies can lead to healthier homes and improved quality of life for everyone.
Week 1 - Healthy Homes Investments Make Local Impacts
During the first week, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, along with partners and grantees, work together to improve the health and safety of housing, especially in disadvantaged communities. The connection between housing quality and health is well-established. By enhancing the quality of housing, we can prevent injuries and diseases, reduce healthcare costs, enhance educational and work performance, increase income and opportunities, and improve the overall quality of life. By addressing unhealthy homes, we promote the well-being of residents, especially children, while also enhancing neighborhoods and increasing the availability of safe and affordable homes.
Improving housing quality is crucial for preserving affordable housing and ensuring a safe and healthy supply of homes for low-income families. By allocating resources to mitigate the effects of unhealthy housing, we can safeguard the limited housing inventory and protect the well-being of at-risk residents. Implementing programs and policies that address poor housing quality, inequities, and environmental justice issues ensures that future generations can thrive.
Week 2 - Housing Performance, Home Maintenance, and Remodeling Professionals' Role in Healthy Homes
During the second week of NHHM, we recognize the important role that housing professionals play in healthy homes. Creating a healthy home involves designing, building, renovating, and maintaining a space that supports the health and safety of its occupants. Professionals involved in housing performance, energy efficiency, property management, renovation, and remodeling play a crucial role in occupant health. By following best practices in healthy homes and educating residents about healthy living principles, these professionals can have a significant impact on reducing occupant exposure to indoor contaminants such as mold, radon, volatile organic compounds (VOCs), lead-based paint, asbestos, and other harmful hazards. This is particularly important after natural disasters. Common indoor health concerns include lead hazard control, air quality, mold and moisture, pest management, and injury prevention. Home improvements that enhance the health of a home can lead to fewer emergency room visits, lower healthcare costs, decreased school absenteeism, and improved well-being for both adults and children. The eight principles of a healthy home guide recommended interventions during housing renovations and repairs.
- Connect Health and Home by Earning the Healthy Housing Principles Certificate
- Healthy Home Evaluator (HHE) Certified
- Lead-Paint Safety Field Guide ( ENGLISH / SPANISH)
- Renovation, Repair, and Painting Program: Contractors
- A Guide to Healthy Homes for Housing Professionals
- OLHCHH Disaster Recovery Materials
- Thermal Comfort - Checklist
- Lead-Safe Work Practices Free Online Course
- Healthy Home Production Grant
Week 3 - Solving Public Health Challenges with Healthy Homes Solutions
During the third week of NHHM, we are recognizing public health’s role in healthy homes. Housing-related illnesses and injuries are not inevitable and can be prevented or minimized through proper design, safe modifications, and changes in housing-related behaviors. Housing-related health issues, such as asthma and childhood lead poisoning, pose significant challenges to our healthcare system and society, costing an estimated $53 billion annually. Housing disparities exacerbate health disparities in many communities. For example, home environmental conditions contribute to about 20-30% of asthma cases, radon in homes leads to 21,000 lung cancer deaths annually, over 24 million homes with lead-based paint hazards put children at risk of irreversible lead poisoning, and preventable home injuries are the leading cause of death for young children.
Reducing exposure to health and safety hazards in the home can yield significant improvements in health outcomes, reduce healthcare utilization, enhance educational outcomes for children, and improve the overall quality of life. HUD's Office of Lead Hazard Control and Healthy Homes programs and services offer a positive return on investment by improving health outcomes through better housing conditions and quality. Collaborative efforts between public health and the housing sector can create equitable and healthy households for present and future generations.
- Connect Health and Home by Earning the Healthy Housing Principles Certificate
- The Surgeon Generals Call to Action to Promote Healthy Homes
Week 4 - Caregivers and Home Occupants Take Action for Healthy Homes
During the fourth week of National Healthy Homes Month, we feature the vital role caregivers and residents play in promoting healthy homes for everyone. Caregivers, including parents, guardians, in-home childcare providers, and those caring for older adults, as well as all home occupants, have a responsibility to foster healthy living environments.
Home injuries are the leading cause of death for young children. Such injuries put 6 million older adults in hospitals and nursing homes due to preventable falls.
Children are particularly vulnerable to home hazards due to their size and behaviors. They are more likely to be harmed by chemicals and other dangers, as they consume more food, water, and air relative to their body size. Their proximity to potential health hazards, like hazardous dust and chemicals on floors, increases their risk.
Additionally, many older adults require home modifications to remain in their homes. The Older Adult Home Modification program offers low-cost, accessible modifications to reduce the risk of falls, improve safety, increase accessibility, and enhance functional abilities for older adults. A healthy home provides a safe and livable environment for occupants of all ages.
Caregivers and home residents play a critical roles in preventing harmful exposures. The Help Yourself to a Healthy Home resource equips caregivers with knowledge about home health and safety to protect occupants from harm.
- Lead-Safe Toolkit for Child Care
- Help Yourself to a Healthy Home – Tribal
- Help Yourself to a Healthy Home
- Protect Your Family from Lead
- Older Adult Home Modification Grant
- Get the Lead Out Training for Landlords and Homeowners
*Over the years, we have been able to expand our programs and broaden our focus beyond lead hazard control. OLHCHH is rooted at the intersection of affordable, safe, and climate-resilient housing that supports and improves the health outcomes of residents, particularly those in disadvantaged communities.
We provide funding and technical assistance to state and local government agencies, tribes and territories, nonprofit organizations, and institutions of higher education. Grantees leverage our investments to improve affordable and sustainable housing, reduce home hazards, build local capacity, advance innovative evidence-based approaches, and undertake home hazard mitigation projects in single- and multi-family housing to protect the health and well-being of the communities they serve.