Healthier Northshore Launches Collaborative Community Health Needs Assessment

Healthier Northshore, an initiative dedicated to bringing people, organizations, and resources together to amplify healthier living throughout St. Tammany and Washington Parishes, is approaching the triennial Community Health Needs Assessment (CHNA) from a fresh, collaborative lens.

“For this iteration of the Community Health Needs Assessment, Healthier Northshore engaged our hospital and health system stakeholders, in a unified effort to produce a regional picture of the health of our community to inform our strategy moving forward,” said Joan Coffman, president and CEO of St. Tammany Health System. “This broader picture — painted by the data we take in from across our two-parish region, will help us to make an even bigger impact in the work we do.”

Senator Bill Cassidy was on hand to help announce the joint Healthier Northshore CHNA with community stakeholders and offered his support of the effort.

“We want every family in Louisiana to have opportunity for themselves and for their children and grandchildren. Healthier Northshore is taking a total view of how to achieve this. It’s my privilege to partner with many of their members along this pathway,” Senator Cassidy said.

Every three years, hospitals and health systems throughout the country are required by the IRS to complete a CHNA. This systematic process evaluates the health needs and priorities of communities, through the data gathered during the assessment period to identify gaps, develop strategies and allocate resources to improve community health.

"The CHNA process affords all of us an opportunity to add our opinions and ideas towards the betterment of our collective health. Aligning the focus of the Northshore's healthcare providers with the greater needs of the communities we serve is critical to improving outcomes," said Tim Riddell, MD, CEO of Ochsner's Northshore and Mississippi Gulf Coast Region. "We want to encourage everyone in the region to participate in this assessment so that we may correctly set the most impactful priorities for the next three years."

The Louisiana Public Health Institute and United Way of Southeast Louisiana have been engaged to help facilitate and develop the Healthier Northshore Community Health Needs Assessment.

"In the past, individual hospitals and health systems conducted CHNAs specific to their populations. While the data collected was valuable, it lacked a comprehensive view of the community's true needs," said Michael Williamson, United Way of Southeast Louisiana President, and CEO. "With this joint CHNA, we are collaborating with our trusted community partners to gather and analyze the data, resulting in an actionable plan that addresses our region's most pressing health needs."

This joint Healthier Northshore CHNA will serve to guide the efforts of the initiative and the following health systems/hospitals in St. Tammany and Washington Parishes: St. Tammany Health System, Ochsner Health, Slidell Memorial, Riverside Medical Center Lakeview Hospital, and Northshore Rehabilitation Hospital.