Amarillo, TX – Northwest Texas Health System (NWTHS), in conjunction with the City of Amarillo Department of Public Health (DPH), sponsored a Community Health Assessment (CHA) and a Community Health Improvement (CHI) planning project earlier this year. The results will be presented to the community on Tuesday, December 10, at 10 a.m. in the Community Lecture Room at NWTHS.
“This has been a great opportunity for us to partner with the City of Amarillo’s Department of Public Health and to identify our most pressing challenges and rally other agencies and organizations to address them,” says NWTHS Chief Operating Officer Sharon Oxendale. “We want to foster collaboration with others to focus on health issues in the Amarillo area.”
As part of Tuesday’s presentation, DPH representatives will summarize the results of the assessment performed by the University of North Texas Survey Research Center (UNTSRC). UNTSRC conducted a random-digit dialed telephone survey to compare health trends in Potter and Randall counties with Texas and national numbers.
“It’s important to compare trends, over time, with Texas and the United States so that we can quantify the changes in our community’s health,” says Dr. Matt Richardson, director of Public Health for the City of Amarillo. “We need to be data driven to guide future programs and projects, and this partnership is the first step. We hope to continue to build on this information and make the findings available to any agency or organization involved in health services for our citizens.”
In addition to the CHA summary, NWTHS has invited the Texas Health Institute to present its findings and recommendations from the Community Health Improvement Plan (CHIP) project that was also commissioned by the partnership. These findings and recommendations will be presented based on information gathered from the CHA, key informant surveys and focus group interviews.
“We want this to provide a resource for any hospital, health service agency or non-profit group to use in improving health – we’re excited about thinking beyond business models and market share,” says Oxendale. “We want to make a real difference with these results.”
The DPH has previously commissioned health assessments in 1999, 2007, and 2010. They plan to repeat the community health assessment every three years. A copy of the CHA and CHIP will be available on the DPH’s web page at www.amarillopublichealth.com.