Back to Annual Meeting
Back to Annual Meeting
APHA Scientific Session and Event Listing

[ Recorded presentation ] Recorded presentation

Assessment in action: Using data to make a difference in Washington communities

Carrie J. McLachlan, MPA, Assessment & Community Development, Island County Health Department, P.O. Box 5000, Coupeville, WA 98239, 3602218486, carriem@co.island.wa.us and Barbara J. Baker, MPH, Assessment in Action, Washington State Department of Health, P.O. Box 47812, Olympia, WA 98504-7812.

Assessment in Action (AIA) is a CDC-funded project that uses a state-local partnership to meet the goal of enhancing and improving community health assessment practice in Washington State. Project objectives are to improve community health assessment through various methodologies including developing new learning resources to increase knowledge and skill levels of assessment staff; tracking and reporting on outcomes of community health assessments; advancing health assessment data systems; and increasing public health leadership support for assessment. Key to the project is the core belief that the goal of community health assessment is to improve population health outcomes. Effective assessment activities should contribute to data-driven public health decisions resulting in public health services that are aligned with the health needs of local communities.

In 2005, local health jurisdictions (LHJs) began reporting on the impacts and outcomes of assessment activities. A tracking tool was designed to identify short- and long-term outcomes of LHJ assessment activities, based on a logic model. Fifty reports of assessment impacts and outcomes have been submitted. Some of the outcomes include: identifying critical health issues; prioritizing health needs; compiling inventories of community resources; generating new resources; exploring effective interventions and making subsequent service changes; implementing policies that improve the health of the public; and evaluating changes in health status. Collection of these reports is ongoing and accessible to all Washington State assessment staff on the members-only section of the AssessNow website (www.assessnow.info). Through this effort, we are increasing our understanding about assessment practices that are effective and replicable.

Learning Objectives:

Keywords: Assessments, Community Health

Related Web page: www.assessnow.info

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Any relevant financial relationships? No

[ Recorded presentation ] Recorded presentation

Where Data Meets Practice: Evaluating Community Health Assessments

The 134th Annual Meeting & Exposition (November 4-8, 2006) of APHA