Fitzgibbon Hospital releases Community Health Needs Assessment and its plan to address those needs

Monday, April 29, 2013

Fitzgibbon Hospital has released its 2013 Community Health Needs Assessment and its collaborative plan to address the most pressing health needs in its service area. The CHNA report is the culmination of nearly a year of study and data analyses, including direct input from the community solicited during the fourth quarter of 2012. That direct input included an online survey, targeted interviews and focus groups conducted with experts in public health and key stakeholders, to ensure the most vulnerable and disparate populations were represented.

The Fitzgibbon Hospital Board of Trustees at its April 23, 2013, meeting voted to approve the CHNA and Implementation Plan.

The report incorporates components of primary data collection and secondary data analyses, which focus on the health and social needs of Fitzgibbon Hospital patrons and those living in its service area. The Implementation Plan takes into consideration the mission of the hospital, its short and long term strategic plan, the health needs of the community and input from community partners and their respective strategic plans.

"The goal of our Community Health Needs Assessment was really to form more collaborative partnerships, listen to the people we serve and garner input from experts in public health. We want to be certain we are being as responsive as we can be to the community we serve," said Ron Ott, President and CEO of Fitzgibbon Hospital. "We can accomplish more through collaboration and synergistic work than each can do individually."

Conducting a Community Health Needs Assessment is a requirement of the Affordable Care Act for charitable, 501(c) 3 hospitals at least once every three years.

"We ultimately want to impact healthy behaviors in our community," said Ott. "Only by understanding our community's needs can Fitzgibbon Hospital ensure it is responsive to the people it serves and develops programs and services -- sometimes in collaboration with other agencies -- to best benefit the community. Special thanks to all agencies and individuals who assisting in providing input for this survey, especially our partnering agencies: Saline County Health Department, Salt Fork YMCA and Marshall Housing Authority. Additional thanks to Jack Uhrig, M.D., Melanie Elfrink, M.D., Marshall Public Schools and Powerhouse Community Development Corp."

As a direct offshoot of the needs assessment, Marshall Mayor Mark Gooden announced on April 24, 2013, the establishment of a Mayoral Task Force focused on improving health behaviors in Marshall. He indicated he would be attacking smoking and obesity, which were identified as two of the most pressing problems facing the community.

Copies of the report can be downloaded at www.fitzgibbon.org

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