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Improving the Health of Our Communities

Because we know that people’s overall health and wellbeing are greatly influenced by the conditions in which they live, work and play, Swedish is committed to addressing the most pressing needs in our communities.

We recently completed a Community Health Needs Assessment (CHNA) to better understand the challenges our patients face. We will use the information we gathered to develop strategies that address each community’s health needs through the programs and services we offer and to identify opportunities to partner with other organizations.

The three top issues that emerged from the CHNA in all our communities were mental health, drug addiction and homelessness. They were followed by obesity, joint or back pain, diabetes, high blood pressure, cancer and alcohol overuse.

Health care providers such as Swedish have an important responsibility to confront urgent challenges in our communities, including the social factors that impact health such as housing insecurity and homelessness. In a previous blog, I wrote about Swedish’s commitment to join with partners such as Plymouth Housing to make real progress toward eliminating homelessness.

In the coming months, we will develop a community health improvement plan (CHIP) with specific actions to strengthen our existing programs and partnerships, undertake new initiatives to increase our impact, and extend our collaborations with others to find solutions.

I will continue to provide updates on my blog about our progress. If you are interested in more information about Swedish’s 2018 CHNA, I invite you to read the executive summary here and the more detailed reports about our five campus communities here.

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