Last updated: July 25. 2013 9:02AM - 502 Views
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Wayne Allen

PDT Staff Writer

A draft of the 2013 Scioto County Ohio Community Health Improvement Plan has been sent to the membership of the Scioto County Health Coalition for consideration and revision. The coalition will be meeting Friday to make final revisions to this years plan.

“We have our community need assessments, the health department did one. SOMC (Southern Ohio Medical Center) did one on their own, KDMC (King’s Daughters Medical Center) is doing one now and Adena Medical Center is also doing one,” said Chris Smith, city of Portsmouth Health Commissioner. “From those health assessments we know our problems. The community health improvement plan gets all of the different organizations in the county on the same page.”

The introduction of the draft plan states, “In 2013, Scioto County ranked last out of all Ohio counties in health rankings and health outcomes, according to the Robert Woods Johnson Foundation annual report. Scioto County’s reaction to this crisis was to form the Scioto County Health Coalition in 2012. After a year of organization, initial projects, compiling of the public health and hospital community needs assessments, as well as assessments done through the Mobilizing for Action through Partnership and Planning (MAPP) Process, the Coalition has defined its path forward for 2013 through this Community Health Improvement Plan. While not traditional in the field of public health, this plan also address economic development issues, in acknowledgement of the strong link between income and health outcomes.”

Smith compared the plan to a strategic plan for the health coalition for the remainder of 2013.

“This plan lays out the work of the coalition more clearly and gives everyone a chance to have input. We want to make sure all of the agencies, citizens and businesses gets the opportunity to read it over, gets to have input and knows we are all working in the same direction,” Smith said.

He said the Friday meeting will allow each of the committees to have an opportunity comment and have input on the final draft of the plan.

Smith said once the plan is completed, it will then be updated on a yearly basis.

The coalition will be meeting this Friday at ADAMHS Board offices located 919 Seventh St, Portsmouth. The first meeting of the day starts at 9 a.m. with the All Hands meeting.

The plan lists six priorities and the committee responsible for achieving those priorities. The Wellness Committee is tasked with improving lifestyle choices such as nutrition, physical activity and tobacco use reduction, according to the plan. The Drug Action Team Alliance will confront illegal drug and alcohol abuse while the Medical Committee will increase access to affordable health care. The Medical Committee will also coordinate community health screenings.

According to the plan, the Economic Development Committee will attempt to decrease unemployment while the Community Initiatives group will be tasked with cleaning up neighborhoods.

For more information about the coalition or to view a copy of the 21-page draft plan visit www.sciotohealth.org.

Wayne Allen may be reached at 740-353-3101, ext. 228, or tallen@civitasmedia.com. For breaking news, follow Wayne on Twitter @WayneallenPDT.

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