Conemaugh Health System Launches Comprehensive Community Health Needs Study

June 3, 2016

Conemaugh Health System (CHS), in collaboration with The United Way of the Laurel Highlands (UWLH), local health professionals and stakeholders, is building a road map to better health for the people of Cambria and Somerset counties, identifying public health needs, goals, objectives and priorities. The health system has launched a comprehensive Community Health Needs Assessment (CHNA), which will provide a rich foundation for improving and promoting the health of each community member.

The CHNA is a systematic collection, assembly, analysis, and dissemination of information about the comprehensive health of the community.  Its role is to identify factors that negatively affect the health of a population and determine the availability of resources with the community to adequately address those factors. CHS and UWLH performed a CHNA three years ago and are now assessing what changes have occurred in the communities we serve and how to address key findings.  The assessment is expected to be finalized by the end of September.  A report of the results will be presented to the community.

“Guided by the results of this important community assessment and the progress we’ve made since the last CHNA, we will soon have a more comprehensive understanding of the health needs of our community,” said Steve Tucker,  CEO of Conemaugh Health System’s hospital division and president of Conemaugh Memorial Medical Center. “This will help us focus our resources as we work towards making communities healthier.”

In June, a community focus group will be conducted to seek input from local residents throughout this process.  Community members will be surveyed about local health issues and what changes they would like to see in the community. That insight, along with the data, will be used to set priorities for health improvement.

“The survey will be looking at what the concerns are as seen through the eyes of the residents of our communities,” said Tucker. 

The information and data is being gathered by Stratasan, Conemaugh Health System’s research partner, who will collect, quantify and interpret the data. The results will be shared with the CHS board of directors and administration to help them develop and refine the health system’s programs and services to ensure the community's healthcare needs are met. Once the data gathering is complete, a Community Health Summit will be scheduled in August.  The summit will share the data collected in the CHNA and serve as a way to gather additional community input into the plan for health improvement.

“As we demonstrated with our last CHNA, our community assessment is meant to create the continuation of an action plan to help us truly improve the lives of the people in our community,” adds Tucker. 

About Conemaugh Health System
Conemaugh Health System, a member of Duke LifePoint Healthcare, is the largest healthcare provider in west central Pennsylvania, serving over a half-million patients each year through the Conemaugh Physician Group and Medical Staff, a network of hospitals, specialty clinics and patient focused programs. Conemaugh’s 4,500+ employees and 350+ physicians are committed to excellence and repeatedly earn state and national recognition for exceptional clinical outcomes.  Conemaugh Memorial Medical Center, the system’s flagship hospital, provides sophisticated technology, the highest levels of trauma and neonatal intensive care and a committed history of training tomorrow’s physician, nurses and allied health providers. For more information on Conemaugh, visit us at or follow us on Facebook.