Surveys are the bread and butter of data collection for cities like Kodiak, where organizations need to know what issues affect quality of life in their own communities and find solutions. Providence Kodiak Island Medical Center uses the survey method every three years to connect with its pool of patients and determine Kodiak’s health needs.
Non-for-profit hospitals across the country conduct the Health Needs Assessment as part of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. Providence’s 2013 survey found that substance abuse, suicide and childhood obesity were the top three concerns in Kodiak that year. Carlie Franz, marketing and communications specialist with Providence, says a group called Healthy Tomorrows came from that.
“Healthy Tomorrows is sort of a liaison for the community to improve their health. It’s actually more for youth, but it actually provides programs after school, things for kids to do, and it’s sort of a way of keeping kids out of trouble.”
Healthy Tomorrows has since expanded its vision to include initiatives like Kodiak Strong Community Planning Day, a program where the community worked out goals it would dedicate funds to and strive to reach within a year. One current project it’s responsible for is a community farmer’s market downtown on Wednesdays.
Franz says the results for 2016 might not necessarily lead to the formation of another group like Healthy Tomorrows.
“Just as example, I mean it could, if substance abuse came up again, it could maybe lead to some bolstered services out of the counseling center, or let’s say on the other end, let’s say diabetes was a huge issue, it could open up a diabetes clinic.”
There are a number of opportunities to take the 34-question survey.
Franz says people can find it online and Providence will conduct a round of surveys during Crab Fest.