Editor’s Note

Editor’s Note: “Live Well Richland” is a 6-part series brought to you by Richland Public Health, highlighting the programs they offer and the lives they impact.

Richland Public Health is conducting their Community Health Assessment (CHA), an anonymous survey with the purpose of gathering information about residents of the area in order to improve the health, well-being, and quality of life of the community. The first assessment was conducted in 2009, followed by another in 2016. The current CHA is more comprehensive and specific for the needs of Richland County.

“It’s covering aspects of people’s physical health, mental health, emotional health, spiritual health, financial health, environmental health…we’re looking at all different aspects of health,” said Dr. Julie Chaya, Director of Community Health & Prevention Sciences.

One unique thing about this assessment is that it has the ability to provide insight on resident’s accessibility to certain Richland County resources. By providing a Richland County address, residents can assess how close they are to hospitals, parks, fresh food and more. This location data provides RPH and other county service providers a better idea of the needs of specific neighborhoods, rather than a mass grouping of everybody in Richland County.

“A lot of times when data is collected, the major focus is the City of Mansfield, but there’s a lot more to Richland County than Mansfield. We wanted to make sure that everyone is being equally represented and that their stories are being told through the data,” Chaya said.

“It’s very important that all Richland County residents take the time to participate in the survey so we can see what it is that they need, and find a way to provide programming or resources,” Chaya said.

A steering committee made up of a large diverse group of people from all sectors of Richland County was formed to ensure relevant survey questions represented as many people as possible. The data collected from the survey really needs to accurately tell the story of all residents.

There is one Community Health Assessment, which takes about 15-20 minutes to complete, for each of the following age groups: Children (0-11 years-old), Youth (12-18 years-old) and Adults (19 years and older).

“For the youth survey, for the most part we’re having that survey being facilitated within the schools. We’re still trying to work with a couple of school districts to empower them to do it in school time,” Chaya said.

“Taking 20 minutes out of your day to tell us your health story really makes a huge difference down the line,” Chaya said.

Please visit https://richlandhealth.org/livewell/ to complete the survey. If you cannot access the internet, a staff member of Richland Public Health will guide you through the survey if you call 419-774-4761 and request assistance. A print version of the survey is also available upon request.

“If you want to see more programming, more free resources, more access, equitable things happening in your specific part of Richland County, then we need you to take this survey,” Chaya said.

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