Community Benefits and Health Assessment
Each year, Harrington HealthCare works in conjunction with the Massachusetts Hospital Association and the Attorney General's office to produce a Community Benefits Report, which highlights the previous fiscal year's services, outreach and education to our most deserving populations. Our programs are a collaboration of medical services within the hospital, as well as outside organizations and businesses that share the desire to help educate and prevent chronic diseases and reduce health disparities.
Community Benefits Mission Statement
The mission of Harrington HealthCare is to build healthier communities by providing education and outreach for identified health deficits through collaborative initiatives and programs.
Community Health Assessment
In accordance with the AG guidelines, a Health Assessment must be produced every three years to ensure the proper populations are receiving the necessary medical care and education. In late 2009, Harrington recognized the need to update our assesmment data and community information from previous study. A seven-member committee was organized in October 2009. The group's leadership came from the Harrington Marketing Department. Members ranged from those in the medical field to community liaisons and town/league representatives, including current Harrington Hospital Board Member. Meetings were held approximately once per month from January-December 2010.
In designing a health needs assessment survey, the committee utilized third-party data from MassChip, Mass DPH, Department of Education and the CDC to originate initial data on region. The committee made a decision to focus on a new survey to gain better exposure to our community and area. Members worked with third party market research company over several months to develop a 20 question survey to be distributed to seven of the major towns Harrington services.
The survey included Demographic Indicators (Age, Income, Household Members, Ethnicity, Zip Code of Residence, Gender, Education Level) and Community Health Indicators. Most questions ranked health conditions on a 1-5 scale and included rating conditions/issues in order of priority for funding, and a separate health condition analysis for youth and seniors.
From June-July 2010, the survey was sent to hundreds of communtiy members via electronic communication (email blasts, newsletters and social media), to local libraries, business and institutions. A 4,000 sample survey was sent via postal mail to garner additional responses via telephone. The Committee set a goal of 400 returned responses. At closure, Harrington succeeded and surpassed its goal, collecting 363 online surveys and 116 phone surveys.
Data was trended, analyzed and sent to Committee for review in the Fall 2010. Using that data, members worked to highlight areas of opportunity based on participant feedback, data results and third-party demographic information.
The Committee created three areas of health disparities to focus a structured Community Benefits plan and program(s) for the next three years, through the end of 2013. The identified needs were Mental Health, Obesity and Diabetes.
Results of the HNA can be viewed by clicking on this link (2 MB PDF).
The Committee continues to communicate regularly to develop programs that will carry forward the goals of our Health Assessment. Harrington wishes to thank everyone in the community that participated in, or helped promote, the health assessment. Educational outreach opportunities in the coming weeks and months will truly help deliver medical information and resources to the target populations, and the thousands of families and invidiuals cared for on a daily basis.