Online Program

Oregon Tobacco Prevention and Education Program Community Readiness Assessment: Informing tobacco prevention with an understanding of the community context

Wednesday, November 4, 2015 :

Colleen Kidney, PhD, NPC Research, Portland, OR
Shaun Parkman, MA, Oregon Health Authority, Portland, OR
Sabrina Freewynn, MPH, Oregon Health Authority, Portland, OR
Anna Malsch, PhD, NPC Research, Portland, OR
Chad Rodi, Ph.D., NPC Research, Portland, OR
Background: Public health programs often follow work plans and are evaluated without empirical knowledge of the community-level impact on the community and program success. The Community Readiness Model (Tri-Ethnic Center, 2014) provides theoretical grounding and methods for assessing the community’s opinions on and preparedness to address a public health issue. Understanding community readiness provides information about the context and environment of public health programs and interventions that may guide future work in the community, as well as inform evaluation.

Methods: The Oregon Public Health Division Tobacco Prevention and Education Program (TPEP) contracted with NPC Research to assess the community readiness to reduce and prevent tobacco use in each of the 34 local public health departments across the state. Up to five key stakeholders in each county were interviewed, and interviews were coded. Community Readiness scores were determined on the county and state level.

Results: Findings were disseminated to administrators and staff in the local public health departments, with recommendations for next steps based on the county-level findings. Materials were tailored for use by TPEP staff and local public health departments. Findings were used to frame evaluation results on local programs’ challenges and successes, as well as for framing county work plans.

Discussion: The Oregon TPEP Community Readiness Assessment provided county-level and state information on the community context of tobacco prevention. While the assessment included some challenges and limitations, the findings may aid in choosing and planning appropriate tobacco interventions and in the evaluation of their successes.

Learning Areas:

Conduct evaluation related to programs, research, and other areas of practice
Public health or related research
Systems thinking models (conceptual and theoretical models), applications related to public health

Learning Objectives:
Explain the value of conducting a community readiness assessment for evaluating public health programs. Discuss the background, methods, and materials of a community readiness assessment. Identify ways to utilize findings from a community readiness assessment.

Keyword(s): Evaluation

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am a trained and experienced program evaluation designer, manager, and author with more than 15 years as a principal investigator or project director on federal, tribal, county and foundation- funded contracts and grants across a range of topical areas from tobacco cessation to teen pregnancy prevention.
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.