Mercy Medical Center Seeks Input From Area Residents About Community’s Health Needs
In an effort to gauge the overall health needs of the community, Mercy Medical Center (MMC) will survey area residents during an approximate four-week period. Results of the survey will provide guidance to MMC on better ways to address health care needs. The survey is part of a community health needs assessment initiated by MMC. MMC is receiving assistance in conducting the assessment from the Center for Rural Health at the University of North Dakota School of Medicine and Health Sciences.
Mercy Medical Center strongly encourages all area residents to participate in the survey. Surveys will be distributed to area residents through various channels, including through members of a Community Group convened by MMC as part of the community health needs assessment process. Residents may access an interactive, online version of the survey at http://www.tinyurl.com/williston-survey or by visiting Mercy’s website mercy “dash” Williston “dot” org. Additionally, written copies are available by calling Mercy Medical Center, Volunteer Services at 701.774.7483. All survey responses are anonymous, and there is no way to track responses back to individuals. Survey responses are returned to the Center for Rural Health to help ensure anonymity. A postage-paid return envelope is included with each written survey.
The survey will allow local providers to learn of the community’s awareness of local health care services being provided, receive suggestions and help identify any gaps in services, learn about community health and other concerns, and determine preferences for using local health care versus traveling to other facilities. In addition to specific questions, the survey also seeks general, open-ended input from residents about the community’s health needs and the delivery of local health care. Completing the survey takes about 10 to 15 minutes.
“Feedback from our community is greatly needed and appreciated, in helping us to identify community health needs. Once our assessment is complete, we will review the results and identify a couple of primary concerns that fall within our scope of service and begin to work on providing viable solutions. We will also share our findings with other civic organizations if a specific need falls within their jurisdiction of care or service”, stated Matt Grimshaw, CEO at Mercy Medical Center.
A periodic community needs assessment is one of the new requirements of the Affordable Care Act. The new regulations require non-profit hospitals such as Mercy Medical Center to assess the community’s health needs periodically. The cost of the survey is covered by the Medicare Rural Hospital Flexibility (Flex) Grant Program, a project of the Center for Rural Health. The Flex Program is a state-based partnership that works with and assists all rural hospitals to stabilize and sustain their local health care infrastructure.