Services & Programs


Every five years, Palmer Community Health leads a community-wide discussion with stakeholders and residents about their community's health needs. After identifying needs in the community, strategies to address those needs are identified. The process, Community Health Needs Assessment and Health Improvement Plan (CHNA & HIP), is a fundamental piece of statewide health planning. CHNA & HIP has more than a 20 year history in Iowa and represents local action to promote and protect the health of Iowans.

In February of 2011, all 99 counties submitted a brief report on their needs assessment and health improvement plans to the Iowa Department of Public Health (IDPH). Thousands of Iowans participated in the process in their communities. Community engagement included community-wide meetings with residents and health stakeholders, survey participation, and direct comments.

For the first time, IDPH has completed a comprehensive analysis of the CHNA & HIP submissions and issued a report, Understanding Community Health Needs in Iowa. The report demonstrates the scope of Iowa's health needs and identifies critical issues affecting the health of Iowans. This report is part of IDPH's commitment to use local input and health needs to guide statewide health improvement planning. The next step in the health planning process is the development of the statewide plan, Healthy Iowans which is expected to be released near the end of 2011.

From the 2011 plan, the following three objectives were determined as a priority for Fayette County:

  1. Decrease the percentage of obese adults in Fayette County from 22.8% to less than 20% and decrease the percent of children over the age of 2 that are overweight and obese children by 3% by 2015.
  2. Establish a website to list services available for residents of Fayette County by 2013 (Currently we do not have a website).
  3. Educate the community on Public Health Emergencies and Preparedness by decreasing the number of respondents from 29% to 20% who report preparedness is available but fails to meet needs adequately by 2015.

To view a report of the 2010/2011 Palmer Community Health CHNA-HIP, click here.