San Antonio Express News: Report: S.A. has improved public health policies

By Krista Torralva

San Antonio showed “major” improvement in its public health policies and got special recognition for high-quality prekindergarten education and the city’s tobacco ordinances, according to an annual national ranking released last week.

CityHealth, a nonprofit advocacy group, awarded San Antonio an overall silver medal in an evaluation of public health policies in the nation’s 40 most populous cities. San Antonio did not receive a medal last year, the first year CityHealth put out its report.

“San Antonio was the only city that shot up like this,” CityHealth President Shelley Hearne said. “A lot of cities are paying attention to what happened in San Antonio.”

CityHealth identified nine evidence-based policies that could be implemented in the cities it evaluated. Of those, San Antonio was recognized for its pre-K education, raising the legal smoking age to 21 and its ban on indoor smoking, its complete streets and restaurant food-safety policies.