Community assessment guides health programming

BAR HARBOR — The 2016 Community Health Needs Assessment for the Mount Desert Island region identifies top community health needs for the MDI Hospital service area, including the outer island communities and the towns of Bar Harbor, Mount Desert, Southwest Harbor, Tremont, Trenton, Hancock and Lamoine.

“The 2016 Community Health Needs Assessment serves as a framework and guide for Mount Desert Island Hospital and Healthy Acadia in developing and strengthening our programming to fulfill the needs of our community,” said Shoshona Smith, Healthy Acadia’s systems and innovations coordinator. “The report is available to all local organizations and community members to support their efforts to address and coordinate community health improvement.”

Over the past year, MDI Hospital and Healthy Acadia have gathered data from community members through a local advisory council, discussions with community groups and a collection of 382 surveys from participants across MDI Hospital’s service area. This data collection, combined with local demographic and health information, brought forth six strategic issues: health care, food, physical activity, substance use, social/mental health and healthy environments. In order to address these issues, “Theme Teams” comprised of Healthy Acadia and MDI Hospital staff and community stakeholders met to develop goals and strategies to address each issue.

Goals and strategies for addressing each issue takes into consideration both the availability and access of resources and strategic environmental and systems-level change that will allow for healthier communities, workplaces and schools for all.

To view the full 63-page report, visit and search for “community benefits reporting” or visit and click on “Health Assessments” under the “resources” tab.

Contact Oka Hutchins at 288-5082, ext. 1423, or at [email protected], or Shoshona Smith at 667-7171, ext. 11, or [email protected].

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