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December 14, 2017 (Cleveland)

Hospitals Collaborating with Public Health on 2018/2019 Health Assessment Planning

A concerted effort is underway in Cuyahoga County to identify areas where hospitals, the Cleveland Department of Public Health (CDPH) and the Cuyahoga County Board of Health (CCBH) can collaborate on 2018/2019 health assessment planning. For both hospitals and public health, health assessments provide useful tools for identifying opportunities to improve the health of the community with a particular focus on populations that have the greatest health needs.

Hospitals are required by the IRS to conduct a community health needs assessment (CHNA) once every three years. Public health departments in Ohio are newly required by the Ohio Department of Health to shift from conducting a community health assessment (CHA) once every five years to once every three years to align with hospital reporting timelines. Guidance released by the state also encourages hospitals and public health partners to collaborate on health assessments and improvement plans.

2018/2019 Health Assessments Happening in Parallel

Several stakeholders – including the Cleveland Department of Public Health, the Cuyahoga County Board of Health and University Hospitals – are required to conduct a health assessment in 2018. These partners are in the process of meeting monthly to develop a 2018 joint health assessment.

The majority of Cuyahoga County hospitals are required to conduct a health assessment in 2019. In parallel to the 2018 joint health assessment discussions that are underway, and to help achieve alignment with Cuyahoga County hospital stakeholders that are required to report in 2019, CDPH, CCBH and University Hospitals are also participating in 2019 health assessment planning. In addition to University Hospitals, hospitals involved in the 2019 planning meetings include Cleveland Clinic, MetroHealth, Southwest General Health Center and St. Vincent Charity Medical Center. Stakeholders are in the process of determining areas where they may be able to collaborate. 

These parallel 2018/2019 health assessment planning efforts will ensure that all stakeholders are able to satisfy regulatory requirements while enabling Cuyahoga County hospitals and health departments to align on the same health assessment planning timeline. Dr. Heidi Gullett, Assistant Professor at Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine, Department of Family Medicine and Community Health, and Kirstin Craciun, director of community outreach at The Center, are co-leading the 2018/2019 health assessment planning meetings.

On the public health side, this work supports HIP-Cuyahoga’s goal of more closely linking clinical and public health. On the hospital side, these efforts support population health planning efforts and help realize the CHNA vision of identifying the health needs of vulnerable populations. 

For more information on 2018/2019 health assessment planning, contact us.