What gets measured gets done, as the saying goes. This year the divisions that make up our department—Health, Community Services, and Senior Services—began a journey to take a closerlook at what we do and how well we do it. Data were collected and measured along the way toinform us of strengths and areas for improvement.
Continuous quality improvement has become the Health Department’s new “mantra” and puttingit to work every day is one of the foundational underpinnings of being nationally accredited as alocal health department. Over the last 18 months we have been preparing our application to thePublic Health Accreditation Board (PHAB). We submitted our application at the end of May andare now preparing for the PHAB team site visit! Guided by our five-year Strategic Plan, we updatedprocedures, synched local ordinances with revised state regulations and continued our workwith local partners to improve health outcomes.
Stratford Partnership for Youth and Families, formally Stratford Youth and Family AdvisoryBoard, in collaboration with Community Services was awarded a federal Drug Free Communitiesgrant. Data were collected to get a better understanding of youth substance use. A public healthplanning model is being used to determine the root causes and local conditions of youth alcoholand marijuana use to plan and implement effective strategies.
This year Senior Services became part of the Stratford Health Department umbrella. We continueto look for ways to leverage resources and address health needs as our residents age. Seniorsare a growing segment of the Stratford population and we are looking to promote “aging inplace” as well as keeping seniors active as long as possible.
Our staff are still very involved in addressing obesity, cardiovascular disease and diabetes, mentalhealth and substance abuse and access to health care with our partners in the GreaterBridgeport area. You may have even received a call to participate in the 2015 Community WellbeingSurvey—it’s similar to the one that was conducted back in 2012 and it’s YOUR chance tobe heard. It’s all about collecting data and measuring progress!I hope you find our third Annual Report useful, providing a snapshot of local public health, highlightingprograms, services, and behind-the-scenes work we do to keep Stratford healthy.
Andrea L. Boissevain, MPH
Stratford Community Organizations Council Stratford, CT 06614