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Health First Taking Major Steps to Accommodate Community Health Needs

New Initiative Spurs Further Community Collaboration

Rockledge, FL (July 2, 2013) – Health First is pleased to announce its Board of Trustees has approved a three-year plan to help meet the healthcare needs of our community. As a result of a Community Health Needs Assessment (CHNA) conducted by the Health Council of East Central Florida, Health First plans to enhance programs aimed at creating a healthier Brevard County.

The Affordable Care Act (ACA) is mandating all not-for-profit hospitals conduct a Community Health Needs Assessment once every three years. The CHNA is a systematic process that identifies and analyzes community health needs for prioritization, planning, and action upon unmet needs. Efforts must be measured and tracked to ensure improvements are being made in areas identified. Health First is maximizing its resources by addressing seven priorities – as opposed to the industry standard of three.

Health First leadership has recommended the following disparities be addressed:

  • Adults without Health Insurance
  • Adults without a Regular Dentist
  • Adults without a Primary Care Physician/Provider
  • Adults with Cerebrovascular Disease
  • Adults with Cardiovascular Disease
  • Adults & Children who are Overweight or Obese
  • Adults & Children Having a Poor Diet and/or Lack of Physical Activity

"Health First has provided funding and resources to many programs in our community over the years and this new initiative will allow us to build on the strong foundation we have already created," said Health First Executive Vice President and Chief Strategy & Growth Officer Drew Rector. "The implementation strategies to address the disparities identified in the Community Health Needs Assessment will increase our emphasis on preventive care and management of chronic diseases. Health First is anticipating further collaborations with our community partners in fulfilling our mission of creating a healthier Brevard County."

Health First supports many not-for-profit healthcare-related organizations in Brevard County including the Brevard Health Alliance, the Brevard County Health Department’s Adult Dental Clinic, and Brevard Public Schools. Health First annually supports the Brevard Health Alliance, the county’s only Federally Qualified Health Center, with a $1.1 million grant and more than $400,000 in in-kind diagnostics. Health First’s total value to the community in fiscal year 2012 totaled over $118 million.

About Health First
Founded in 1995, Health First is Central Florida’s only fully integrated health system and employs more than 7,500 people and has four hospitals (including Holmes Regional Medical Center, Palm Bay Hospital, Cape Canaveral Hospital, and Viera Hospital). Health First Health Plans also offers a wide variety of health insurance plan options for Brevard and Indian River Counties. In addition, Health First is home to Brevard County’s only Trauma Center. With 246 employed physicians, Health First Medical Group is the largest multi-specialty physician group on the Space Coast. Health First offers numerous outpatient and wellness services, including four Pro-Health and Fitness Centers. Visit www.Health-First.org for more information.