In this case, “groups” of people are defined by geography, gender, race/ethnicity, socio-economic status, or health status. Additional groups could include employees, disabled persons or prisoners, among others.
Here at FDRHPO, our work within the realm of population health took off in 2013, when our agency secured a grant from the state Department of Health to become one of several Rural Health Network Development Programs across the state. This work was bolstered in 2015 with the award of another state grant, which made FDRHPO one of just 11 Population Health Improvement Programs (PHIPs) in New York.
Most recently, in 2017, we became one of six recipients of the Linking Interventions For Total Population Health (LIFT Population Health) grant, awarded by the state Department of Health. Under this program, FDRHPO is responsible for implementing coordinated activities that focus on preventing and controlling obesity and diabetes in Jefferson, Lewis and St. Lawrence counties by January 2020.
To improve the health of all populations in our region, our efforts are focused on four key strategies:
- Data collection & analysis
- Stakeholder engagement
- Infrastructure development & support
- Health messaging & promotion
Our approach to improving population health in the North Country is multi-faceted. To gauge the unique health concerns of our region, we conduct thorough community health surveys every few years. Then, we assess the results and form a community health improvement plan.
Currently, our region’s priority areas are:
To achieve our goals, FDRHPO relies heavily on strong partnerships with the North Country community.
In 2013, we convened the North Country Health Compass Partners to assist and inform our work around population health. The North Country Health Compass Partners is a collaborative of local hospitals, public health agencies, behavioral healthcare providers, prevention councils, education institutions, insurance providers and community-based organizations. The group meets monthly to discuss, brainstorm and review the community’s population health priorities.
It also serves as the steering committee for a regional health data website, which contains interactive charts, graphs and dashboards for all of our population health priority areas. It can be accessed at www.ncnyhealthcompass.org.
In 2017, FDRHPO and the North Country Health Compass Partners began developing a health and wellness fact sheet to educate the public on a variety of population health issues. This fact sheet, called the Regional Health In Focus, contains background information on each topic, as well as local data and ideas for health improvement. Topics have ranged from Diabetes and Oral Health to Poverty, Social Connectedness and Early Childhood Nutrition.
Initially, the Regional Health In Focus was shared on a monthly basis. In 2019, it was scaled back to a quarterly distribution and was redesigned to be more visually appealing and easy to read for all ages. Want to learn more? Browse all issues of the Regional Health In Focus below!
Regional Health In Focus Library:
If you have questions about FDRHPO’s population health priorities or initiatives, our population health team can help you out! Get to know us below to see who might be your best contact.