“Blueprint for Action” outlines nine action steps to improve health outcomes
Natchez, MS—Today, the Clinton Health Matters Initiative (CHMI), an initiative of the Clinton Foundation, along with Humana, Natchez Mayor Larry “Butch” Brown and community stakeholders unveiled the “Natchez and Adams County Blueprint for Action.” This strategic framework for health outlines nine high priority health areas of need with action steps and measurement criteria to drive improved health outcomes in Natchez and Adams County, MS.
The partnership between CHMI and Humana was launched in 2014 with the aim of improving the health and well-being of the residents of Adams County. The collaboration works to achieve CHMI’s mission of decreasing the prevalence of preventable disease by 2020, and achieving its goals of closing gaps in health disparities, and activating community members to lead healthier lives.
“Health Matters applauds Natchez and Adams County for their systems change approach to address the health and well-being of its residents,” said Rain Henderson, CEO of CHMI. “Using a collective impact model to engage stakeholders at all levels of the blueprinting process ensures that there is a seat at the table for everyone. Together we have developed sustainable solutions that are as diverse and deserving as the citizens of this community."
The Natchez and Adams County Blueprint for Action outlines bold action steps to be implemented by 2020 to improve health outcomes in the county. This framework for health was developed collaboratively with local stakeholders, based on national and local data that highlighted the need for health improvements in Adams County. The blueprint targets nine priority areas based on the social determinants of health model that posits that there is a constellation of factors that impacts a person’s health. These factors are:
- Physical Activity: To promote positive behaviors that increase physical activity through social and ecological approaches such as improving infrastructure, access, and creating awareness campaigns.
- Healthy Eating and Food Quality: To provide Adams County residents with access to fresh, nutritious, and high-quality foods.
- Substance Abuse: To reduce substance abuse in Adams County through health education efforts in community environments.
- Sexual Activity: To promote the sexual and reproductive health of residents in Adams County.
- Quality of Care and Access to Care: To increase access to coordinated and comprehensive primary healthcare services to support quality of care improvement among community residents.
- Education, Income and Employment: To develop a non-clinical public health workforce to lead to a stronger, healthier community in Adams County.
- Family and Social Support: To increase access to and utilization of social support services including in the area of maternal and child health and the elderly.
- Community Safety: To scale domestic violence programs and reduce vehicular accidents.
- Physical Environment: To improve the built environment to promote increased physical activity.
“For too long, our nation’s approach to healthcare has emphasized sickness and treating illness after it strikes,” said Emily Allen Kirby, a Humana leader who oversees efforts to improve the health of communities served by the company. “This blueprint is designed to put the emphasis where it should be – on creating healthy habits and a healthy community, so that Adams County can be a place where it’s easy to make healthy decisions and live a healthy life.”
Stakeholders from various sectors including education, healthcare, corporate, governmental, and community based organizations brainstormed sustainable actions under the nine health indicators that could result in system strengthening to support better health outcomes. For instance, a priority for stakeholders is having a smoke-free environment in Natchez and they agreed that it needed to be included in the blueprint.
This is very much in line with CHMI’s philosophy of being able to galvanize stakeholders through its convening power around already existing public health initiatives taking place in a community. Getty Israel, CHMI’s Mississippi regional director said, “Our success will greatly depend on organizations participating in programs designed to help people who are at risk for developing chronic disease.”
The Natchez and Adams County Blueprint for Action incorporates Humana’s goal to improve the health of the communities it serves 20% by 2020. Humana is working to achieve its goal by making it easy for people to achieve their best health, with progress measured by the proven “Healthy Days” methodology, developed by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). The 2020 goal keeps Humana, and its 57,000 associates, accountable for closing the gap between people and care.
The Clinton Health Matters Initiative is a national initiative that works to improve the health and well-being of people across the United States to advance community health by closing gaps in health disparities. CHMI’s focus on systems change enhances collaborations, leveraging of resources and impact.