Every three years, a group of stakeholders and residents entitled Together! Healthy Linn conduct a community-wide discussion about the community’s health needs. After identifying needs in the community, the next step is to identify objectives and strategies to address those needs. This process is called the Community Health Assessment & Community Health Improvement Planning (CHA & CHIP). Through the Community Health Assessment process, Together! Healthy Linn identified several areas of focus for its Community Health Improvement Plan. “The CHA CHIP was the result of 36 community partners identifying the priorities which will be addressed in a phased and systematic way. This is an action-oriented plan that outlines strategies developed by our workgroup to improve the health and wellbeing of Linn County Resident,” said Pramod Dwivedi, Health Director for Linn County Public Health. The priority areas that were identified are: •Social determinants of health which includes increasing affordable housing, decreasing adverse childhood experiences, and increasing access to health care. •Behavioral health which includes reducing substance abuse, increasing access to mental health services, and reducing suicide rates. •Health promotion which include reducing chronic disease, increasing health education, and increasing data sharing among organizations. “We are asking for residents’ help in developing strategies to address these issues,” said Dwivedi. “Everyone is welcome and encouraged to help brainstorm ideas to improve these rates over the next five years and work towards connecting individuals with the proper resources they may need.” The Steering Committee will meet quarterly on the second Thursday of the month beginning in May from 12:30-2:30 at the Linn County Public Service Center. For more information about the meeting, please call 319-892-6000. If you’d like to see the Linn County Community Health Needs Assessment report, copies are available on the Public Health website, http://linncounty.org/613/Reports-and-Publications or by emailing [email protected].