For the first time, Northland residents can learn about the health and wellness of their community through a free, interactive dashboard created by the Northland Health Alliance (NHA) and mySidewalk. Tri-County Mental Health Services is a member of the Northland Health Alliance.
This comprehensive tool uses easy-to-understand language and images to explain the relationships between environments, health behaviors, illnesses, disease outcomes and length of life.
Every three years, the Northland Health Alliance brings together information from resident surveys, public health data, census reports and hospital data to create an updated Community Health Assessment (CHA). Thanks to the format offered by mySidewalk, the 2021 CHA is much easier for Northland residents and stakeholders to access and understand, even offering downloadable health information and graphics.
“We’re very excited about this new format for our Community Health Assessment,” said NHA President Gary Zaborac. “We’re hopeful it can be more engaging for our community partners and residents, allowing them to be more aware and invested in what’s impacting health in the Northland.”
Common themes identified in the 2021 CHA include:
- Health disparities: Differences in life expectancy and the ability to access the health care and resources needed to live a healthy lifestyle impact overall health outcomes.
- Community capacity to meet need: Health care and social services will be strained to meet the need for services as the number of Northland residents increases and demographics change.
- Mental/behavioral health services and treatment: This need, especially for those experiencing substance use issues, is increasing.
- Barriers to solving community health problems: Misinformation/disinformation about health data and mistrust of health and political leaders is undermining the community’s ability to solve health problems. Building relationships between health organizations and those living and working in the Northland will be essential to improving the health of all.
Findings from the 2021 CHA will be used to create a new Community Health Improvement Plan (CHIP). This plan prioritizes health needs and determines where to invest community resources to address those needs most effectively.
To access the Community Health Assessment dashboard, visit northlandkchealthalliance.org/CHA21. ###
About Northland Health Alliance
The Northland Health Alliance (NHA) is dedicated to empowering the local public health system to improve the health status and health outcomes of all residents in the Northland. Its members include local health departments, hospitals, mental health organizations and other social service providers in the Northland (Clay and Platte counties). For more information, visit northlandkchealthalliance.org/.
mySidewalk builds data tools for people who aren’t data scientists, equipping change-makers with tools to access data, derive insight and communicate impact. With an extensive data library and mobile friendly, ADA-accessible publishing platform, mySidewalk works with hundreds of public, private and non-profit clients across the country to break down barriers to knowledge and inspire change. For more information, visit mysidewalk.com or contact firstname.lastname@example.org.