Eighteen regional hospitals in Bucks, Chester, Montgomery, and Philadelphia counties, supported by the Health Care Improvement Foundation, Philadelphia Association of Community Development Corporations, and the Philadelphia, Chester, and Montgomery County health departments, have published a comprehensive report detailing community health issues that affect their patient populations.
“With the criteria that the institutions used to do the ratings, you think about what issues are having a big magnitude in terms of impacting a larger number of community members. And then you think about what’s actually on people’s minds, what they are feeling the burden of,” said Raynard Washington, the chief epidemiologist for Philadelphia’s health department.
The opioid crisis, he said, was at the top of both lists.
“It’s virtually impossible not to see it as a major health issue,” he said.
By Aubrey Whelan
The report focuses on communities and their needs, which meant going into neighborhoods and interviewing individuals served by the hospitals. Dr. Raynard Washington with the Philadelphia Department of Public Health says they learned it’s not easy for people to find the resources they need.
“A common theme is additional supports to help people navigate the very complex healthcare and health resource systems that we have,” Washington said.
By Hadas Kuznits