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The 2018 CHA contains the most recent health data and information to provide an understanding of our county’s health status. In this update, we have expanded the CHA to include community-specific health status information as well as countywide health information. The CHA is organized using a population health framework that looks at the physical environment, social and economic factors, health behaviors, access to quality healthcare, and health outcomes. The report presents a general picture of the health of our community, in which health outcomes and disparities are the results of complex interactions between health determinants. This assessment reflects a two-year process that included selection and analysis of over 160 health indicators, multiple community meetings, and interviews with community leaders. This provided information about strengths and challenges, identification of countywide and community-specific assets, and an assessment of the capability of the public health and health care systems to address the health challenges in our community. Much of this report expands information on health issues identified by the dedicated group of community partners who participated in the first cycle of Community Health Improvement. Together they identified, organized, and set in motion efforts to advance equity, support young children and families, respond to the opioid epidemic, help those experiencing complex health issues, and initiate healthy planning actions. As this important work continues, the 2018 CHA offers the opportunity to take a fresh look at the health of our community, identify emerging health issues, and select community priorities. The CHA will serve as the foundation for a process to create our next Community Health Improvement Plan (CHIP). The CHIP will focus on a few selected community health priorities identified through the CHA and create a blueprint for the community to make improvements on the selected issues in a way that is collaborative and coordinated. We would like to extend our sincere thanks to the many community members and organizations who contributed to this project. We hope the 2018 CHA becomes a resource and a point of connection for community members and agencies who are working to improve the health of all residents of Whatcom County

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Healthy Whatcom

Whatcom County Health Department




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