256771 Academic-community practice partnerships: Effectiveness evaluated beyond the ivy walls

Tuesday, October 30, 2012 : 10:32 AM - 10:44 AM

Rosemary M. Caron, PhD, MPH , Health Management and Policy, University of New Hampshire, Durham, NH
Jessica Ulrich, MS , Sociology Department, University of New Hampshire, Durham, NH
Catherine Lafferty, BS , Health Management and Policy, University of New Hampshire, Durham, NH
Community-based participatory research has furthered our understanding of the working principles required for academic-community partnerships to address persistent public health problems. However, little is known about how effective these academic-community partnerships have been in eliminating or reducing community-based public health issues. To address this gap in the literature, the authors studied the feasibility, value, and effectiveness their joint efforts were having in reducing public health burdens in their communities. CEPH-accredited schools and programs in public health in the United States and community groups working with these academic partners were surveyed to: (1) identify the local public health issues addressed geographically; (2) examine the characteristics of the partnership and the actual or perceived benefits and challenges for each partner; (3) assess the effectiveness of the partnership and the methodology implemented by the partnership to determine its success; and (4) analyze the intent to continue or dissolve the partnership and the associated factors that influence this decision. The authors suggest how effective academic-community collaborations facilitate a broad-based, goal-oriented approach that is flexible enough to allow the partners to implement an institutional and practical evaluation method that moves beyond academic limitations. The approach of combining public health theory with the practical experience, expertise, and leadership offered by the partners was reported as being more effective in addressing their persistent public health problem. The authors identify indicators of success and propose a model for evaluating the effectiveness of academic-community partnerships.

Learning Areas:
Assessment of individual and community needs for health education
Conduct evaluation related to programs, research, and other areas of practice
Implementation of health education strategies, interventions and programs
Other professions or practice related to public health
Planning of health education strategies, interventions, and programs
Public health or related organizational policy, standards, or other guidelines

Learning Objectives:
Learning Objectives: At the conclusion of this session, participants will be able to: Describe the collaborations between academic and community partners to address varied, persistent public health problems at a local level Describe an effective academic-community practice partnership Discuss how a college/university and community practitioner partnership may improve the health of their affected populations through innovative, effective approaches

Keywords: Community-Based Partnership, Community Health Assessment

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am the former Director of the University of New Hampshire's (UNH) MPH Program. I am currently a faculty member in the UNH Department of Health Management and Policy and I teach public health courses to undergraduate and graduate students. Prior to coming to academia, I practiced public health, for ten years, at the local, state, and private consulting levels.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

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.