150055 Is moving health prevention to the mountain an effective intervention to increase access to care for exceptional remote communities in Northen Arkansas? A community-academic partnership helps answer that question

Monday, November 5, 2007: 3:00 PM

Marguerite Baty, PhD(c), MPH, RN , School of Nursing, Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, MD
Fannie Fonseca-Becker, DrPH , Director, J&J Community HealthCare Scholars Program, Bloomberg School of Public Health, Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, MD
Sara Bates , Community Wellness, Ozark Mountain Health Network, Clinton, AR
Background: The Ozark Mountain Health Network (OMHN), a network of providers, health educators, and pharmacists in Searcy and VanBuren counties of Arkansas, launched the Reach Out and Connect (ROAC) program to improve health awareness of the medically underserved in these counties. Health screenings and education on cholesterol, diabetes, and high blood pressure are delivered to exceptionally remote communities. As part of this initiative, the OMHN and the Johns Hopkins School of Public Health, with funding support from the Johnson & Johnson Community Health Care Program, formed a community-academic partnership to develop a program evaluation of the ROAC Project. Methods: The community and academic partners collaboratively designed the ROAC Program evaluation plan using a conceptual framework of program activities and intended outcomes. Based on this framework, the partners created measures by which to evaluate program implementation and effectiveness and built a data management system using EpiInfo for data collection and analysis. The methods emphasize a hands-on, participatory approach. Results: As a result of the partnership, the ROAC project's capacity to conduct program evaluation has increased by utilizing specific evaluation skills that included creating conceptual frameworks of program activities, developing appropriate indicators to measure program effectiveness, in addition to data collection, management and analysis. Conclusions: Partnerships between community organizations and academic institutions provide a valuable opportunity to increase the sustainable in-house capacity for program evaluation and to provide increased understanding of key determinates essential for improving the health and health awareness among the people in these remote and medically underserved communities.

Learning Objectives:
Identify three ways in which a conceptual framework is a valuable tool for program evaluation Discuss how community-academic partnerships lay the foundation for in-house capacity building in program evaluation Apply conceptual frameworks in program evaluation for community-based health care organizations

Keywords: Evaluation, Community-Based Partnership

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Any relevant financial relationships? No
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I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.