Clark County Public Health releases report examining community health needs

Clark County Public Health will use findings from the assessment to demonstrate community need when applying for grants and identify areas of emphasis for prevention work

VANCOUVER — Clark County Public Health and its partners in the Healthy Columbia Willamette Collaborative recently released the 2019 Community Health Needs Assessment. The assessment highlights community health needs across the Portland-metro area, including Clark County and Clackamas, Multnomah and Washington counties in Oregon.

Clark County Public Health will use findings from the assessment to demonstrate community need when applying for grants and identify areas of emphasis for prevention work. Collaborative members will work together to address the issues impacting all four counties. The full report is open to the public, and other organizations are invited to utilize it.

The report looks at factors contributing to the core issues and uses data to provide an overall picture of the metro area, as well as compare the four counties. Along with identifying the core issues, the report offers specific avenues of approach for addressing them.

With an emphasis on using community input, the collaborative identified discrimination, racism, and trauma as the overarching issues influencing health concerns of people living in the region. The assessment explores seven other core issues impacting the health of community members in the region:

  • chronic conditions
  • sexually transmitted infections
  • behavioral health
  • community representation
  • culturally responsive care
  • access to health care, transportation and resources
  • isolation

To identify these areas of focus for the 2019 Community Health Needs Assessment, the collaborative and partners hosted four town halls and 18 community listening sessions across the region, with more than 200 participants.

In addition to the regional core issues, some statistics and data points are shared in the appendices for each county. Here are some of the Clark County highlights (as compared to the other three counties):

  • Lowest median income among Hispanics/Latinos ($15,171) and those reporting two or more races ($15,935)
  • Highest percent of residents commuting to work by driving alone (78.9 percent)
  • Lowest percent of residents commuting to work using public transportation (2.3 percent), carpooling (9.0 percent), or walking (1.9 percent)
  • Lowest percentage of 8th graders that were food insecure (8.6 percent)
  • Lowest rate of social associations, indicating isolation from the community
  • Highest percentage of population with a routine checkup in the previous year (68.6 percent)

The Healthy Columbia Willamette Collaborative includes four health departments, 15 hospitals and one coordinated care organization from the four-county metro area.

The full report is available to the public and can be found at https://comagine.org/program/hcwc/2019-community-health-needs-assessment-report .

Direct link to a PDF of the report: https://comagine.org/sites/default/files/resources/HCWC-Community-Health-Needs-Assessment-Report-July2019.pdf

Information provided by Clark Co. WA Communications.

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