One of the requirements of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act is for non-profit hospitals to conduct a Community Health Needs Assessment or CHNA. The purpose of the requirement is to ensure non-profit facilities are addressing health needs of the communities they serve. As a district hospital GVMH is not required to perform a CHNA but we are committed to the health and wellbeing of our community and the CHNA process helps us fulfill our Mission “To provide exceptional health and wellness services with friendliness and compassion” and Vision “To make a positive difference in the health and wellness of each life we touch”.
The CHNA is a multi-step process that started last fall with a survey to our primary service area. The survey was administered on paper and electronically and we had more than 500 people complete the survey. The survey process provided a good baseline of perception of community health needs. After the survey results were tabulated GVMH then hosted a town hall meeting in January of 2014 to prioritize the survey results. Participants at the town hall voted for areas that they believed were most important for addressing the health needs of our community.
The final step of the CHNA is to create action plans and assign accountability to address community health needs over the next three years. GVMH partnered with Compass Health and the Henry County Health Center on the Community Health Needs Assessment and we gained input from the City of Clinton and Clinton Schools as well.
The top eleven priorities from the CHNA that GVMH and the partners listed above will be addressing over the next three years are:
• Obesity (Fitness/Nutrition)
• Drugs (Prescription & Meth)
• Emergency Room Wait Time
• Oral Surgeon Services
• Pediatric Care Services
• Mental Health (Access/Planning)
• Specialty Physician Access
• Quality Nursing Home Care Services
• Dentists who take Medicaid
• Education/Information on Wellness
Please remember the items identified in the survey are community perception but I believe you’ll agree that focused efforts to improve access and availability of services listed above will benefit our community. We are fortunate to have partnered with Compass Health, the Henry County Health Center, the City of Clinton and Clinton Schools in the process because their involvement and leadership will be critical to effectively addressing several of the issues identified in the process.
In the coming weeks you’ll be able to see the full CHNA report and action plans posted on our website and you’ll begin to see focused action on each of the above items.