261003 Evaluating the assets-based approach to addressing health inequalities in Scotland: Utilizing a community-based participatory research approach

Monday, October 29, 2012

Damien Williams, BSc(Hons) PhD FRSPH , School of Medicine, University of St Andrews, St Andrews, Scotland
Fergus Neville, Dr , School of Medicine, University of St Andrews, St Andrews, Scotland
Michael Harvey, MPH , School of Medicine, University of St Andrews, St Andrews, United Kingdom
Prof Peter D. Donnelly, MD MPH FRCP FFPH , Professor of Public Health Medicine, University of St Andrews, St Andrews, Fife, Scotland, United Kingdom
Health inequalities are a significant issue in Scotland. Recently, the Scottish Government endorsed the assets-based approach (ABA) as a means of addressing these inequalities. The ABA utilizes a bottom-up approach, empowering communities to identify and exploit pre-existing resources/assets to foster community development and cohesion, and promote health and well-being. One of the first areas in Scotland to implement ABA was North-West Kilmarnock, which has a health profile that is significantly worse than the national average. As ABA is an innovative strategy for Scotland there are currently no performance measures. A mixed-methods evaluation involved a survey to assess changes in health and social factors, along with focus groups to further explore these issues. A community-based participatory research approach was utilized, involving local community partners (local council, residents' federation, local health authority, etc.) and residents. Community groups were involved in developing the survey. Where possible, validated scales were included and suggestions from the community groups were used to ensure the survey was relevant to the wider population. Moreover, the distribution and collection of the survey was undertaken by residents, while community partners were available to assist residents complete the survey. Further, focus groups with residents discussed patterns in the survey data, providing an additional level of reflexivity to the analysis. The relationship between local community partners and residents in North-West Kilmarnock, and the university team was integral to the evaluation of the ABA to address health inequalities. This can serve as the model for evaluating future ABA implementations.

Learning Areas:
Conduct evaluation related to programs, research, and other areas of practice

Learning Objectives:
1. Explain the assets-based approach 2. Describe how community-based participatory research was used to evaluate the North-West Kilmarnock assets-based approach 3. Discuss the implementation of an assets-based approach in areas outside Scotland

Keywords: Community Assets, Evaluation

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I have been involved in the evaluation of a community-based public health intervention. Among my interests are health inequalities and violence prevention, which are two issues targetted by the intervention in the abstract.
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.