Community Needs Health Assessment

In 2012, the Internal Revenue Service required all for-profit hospitals to conduct an assessment of the population’s health needs (CHNA) this year and every three years in the future. In addition, these hospitals are required to submit an annual report describing the progress the community has made in meeting the identified needs. This type of assessment is a good example of primary prevention strategy in public health management. Primary prevention strategies are aimed at preventing disease or increasing disease resistance, usually drawing attention to environmental factors.

I think it’s a great luck that for-profit hospitals are doing this in their area. By assessing the needs of the community and working with community groups to improve community health, great progress can be made in improving public health, which is a major determinant of overall human health. As the Blue Shirt blog of the Institute for Health Improvement (CHNAs and Beyond: Hospital and Community Health Improvement) notes, “There is a growing recognition that the social determinants of health – where we live, work and play, the foods we eat, the opportunities we need to work, move and live safely – all lead to positive health outcomes. community lies. To manage real public health, i.e. community health, hospitals and health systems must work with a wide range of stakeholders who share the responsibility to improve health in our communities. “I believe that such community participation will become more and more important, because the payback is determined by the cost.

Historically, health care providers have managed people’s health, and local health services have managed the community’s environment to promote healthy lifestyles. Now, with the IRS’s demand, the work of the two is beginning to intersect. In addition to the recent connection between the two, there are local coalitions and community organizations such as religious organizations.

The community I live in is a great example of the new relationships of different organizations to jointly improve community health. In 2014, nine nonprofits, including three hospitals in Kent County, Michigan, conducted a CHNA district to assess the strengths and weaknesses of the county and assess how the public perceives pressing health needs. The review concluded that the main interventions for improving public health are:

Mental health problems

Poor nutrition and obesity

Drug abuse

Violence and security

At this stage, the Kent County Health Department began to develop a strategic plan for the community to address these concerns. A wide variety of community groups have started to meet each month to develop this strategic plan. There are four working groups, one for each of the main areas. I’m on the Drug Addiction Working Group as a representative of one of my clients, the Kent Mid-Level School District. Other members include the Substance Abuse Prevention Coalition, a federally-compliant medical center, an addiction treatment center and a local YMCA. Local hospitals participate in other working groups. One of the representatives of the medical group is the co-chair of our group. The Department of Health wants to make sure that the strategic plan is determined by the community.

At the first meeting, the health department’s leadership stated that the strategic plan should be determined by the community. This is to ensure that the various organizations in the community are strategically aligned and work together to provide the most effective prevention and treatment services without duplication. Money spent on services will be more effective if different agencies try to maximize each other’s work.

At the first meeting, the health department’s leadership stated that the strategic plan should be determined by the community. This is to ensure that the various organizations in the community are strategically aligned and work together to provide the most effective prevention and treatment services without duplication. Money spent on services will be more effective if different agencies try to maximize each other’s work.

The Working Group on Substance Abuse is currently reviewing relevant data from the 2014 CHNA study and other local sources. The health epidemiologist discusses the relevant data with the team so that all decisions about the objectives of the strategic plan are based on evidence. Using data to make decisions is one of the cornerstones of the group’s work. All the objectives of the strategic plan are specific, measurable, achievable, realistic and time-bound (SMART).

Once the strategic plan is complete, the teams will continue to implement it, evaluate the results of the implementation, and adjust the plan in light of the assessment if necessary. ChNA working groups can apparently follow the classic planning-execution-check-action process. This process is demonstrated time and time again in many areas – in healthcare, business, manufacturing, etc. – to produce excellent results with proper compliance.

As mentioned above, I encourage health care providers to engage with community groups to apply population-level health management strategies to improve overall community health. A good area of participation is the Public Health Needs Assessment Project, which is being implemented by the local health department and non-profit hospitals.

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