Health System Innovation: Community Stakeholder Engagement Report and Appendix: These documents summarize the results of community meetings and input sessions that were organized and hosted by the County and Tribal Health Councils during the summer and fall of 2015. This was part of New Mexico's Health System Innovation planning process, which included Stakeholder Summit Meetings and Steering Committee meetings that occurred at the state level. This was truly a collaborative effort, involving the health councils, Department of Health staff, the Alliance of Health Councils, and many community partners.
Highlights of the HSI community engagement results: There were over 130 community meetings conducted by and with health councils, and every one of them had diverse comments about the health challenges that we face, as well as the approaches and solutions that can contribute to improving the health of New Mexico communities. Among health challenges, the communities cited the need for greater access to health care at all levels, including primary care, specialty care, urgent care, and hospital services. The information shows that New Mexico faces a continuing crisis in behavioral health--there is a need for additional prevention, intervention, and treatment services, in mental health substance abuse, and related problems like interpersonal violence and drug-related deaths. At the same time, New Mexico has a wealth of resources and approaches that are working, and that in many cases should be expanded. A few of these are community health centers and Health Commons facilities; community-based emergency medical services; community health workers; telehealth networks; food policy councils; community food, nutrition, and exercise programs; and health fairs and other health education efforts. A number of communities talked about the value of coordination of services and resources at the local and statewide levels. Having agencies and community groups that talk to one another and work together is critical to improving the health of communities.
Roles of the health councils: The County and Tribal Health Councils continue to be at the center of efforts to improve coordination, communication, planning, and mobilizing communities to identify and address local health needs. In the HSI community engagement process, there were many comments about the current and future roles of health councils. Many people felt that the health councils should be at the center of local coordinating hubs that will ensure the success of the HSI Design at the community level.
Many, many thanks to all who helped make this process work: Health council members and coordinators, other community participants, New Mexico Department of Health regional and statewide staff, and others. It could not have happened without you. Thank you.
The other Health System Innovation documents may be seen on the NM Department of Health website, at http://nmhealth.org/about/asd/opa/sim/