Health status and quality of life are determined by more than genetics and personal behaviors. Many factors play a role in determining health. Social and economic systems and conditions in which we are born, raised, and age – the safety and cleanliness of our physical environment, our access to safe and affordable housing, our access to nutritional foods, our social and emotional connections to our family and community, and our ability to access education, health care and social services – all play a part in our health status.
Unfortunately, some people and populations are socially, economically, environmentally or geographically disadvantaged, lacking the money, jobs, education, access, and services that others have. Disadvantaged people are likely to experience health inequalities – higher rates of disease, injury, disability, violence, inability to achieve optimal health, and premature death – that might be preventable.
Healthy Communities efforts address multiple factors that determine health. Chelan-Douglas Health District partners with community-based organizations, educational institutions, policy makers, businesses, healthcare professionals and the general community on community health efforts. By working as collaborative partners, we increase the likelihood of regional successes.
CDHD Healthy Communities partnerships focus on policy changes, community design, and educational efforts that support the health of the community, including:
- Preventing and reducing chronic diseases
- Increasing physical activity
- Increasing access to healthy foods
- Supporting early childhood development and early intervention
- Developing trauma-informed communities
- Reducing teen pregnancy rates
- Supporting the safety and well-being of older adults
- Supporting communication pathways between consumers, healthcare providers, and consumer health information
Targeted activities are selected and prioritized based on regional and state data, identified gaps in policies or services, access to evidence-based solutions, and community input. Project examples: 1422 Award, Trauma–Informed Communities, and Healthy Living Wenatchee Valley.
In a partnership with Grant County Health District, Chelan-Douglas Health District is a recipient of federal grant funds that support our work efforts and partnerships focusing on chronic disease prevention, healthy food access, and community-clinical communication linkages.
Teen Pregnancy Prevention
Unplanned pregnancies, particularly for women ages 15 – 19, have many negative health and economic consequences. Unplanned teen pregnancies are associated with increased rates of abortion, low birth weight babies, and increased rates of impoverished babies and children. Teen mothers are less likely to graduate from high school or attain a GED by the age of 30, will earn less income when compared with those who delay childbearing until their 20s, and will receive nearly twice as much Federal aid for nearly twice as long. 1,2 Teen fatherhood is linked to less education and lower income.2,3
A diverse team is working collectively as the Teen Pregnancy Prevention Coalition. Participants are dedicated to helping reduce the incidence of unintended teen pregnancy in Chelan and Douglas counties.
Currently, the coalition is collecting regional health data and inventorying sexual health education programs. We are also collecting input from teens through two anonymous surveys:
Questionnaire for Pregnant Teens – Pregnant teens between 13 and 20 years of age are invited to complete a short questionnaire.
Questionnaire for Teens Being Tested for STI or Pregnancy – Teens being tested for a sexually transmitted infection and/or pregnancy are invited to complete a short questionnaire.
1 Hoffman S, Maynard R, eds. Kids Having Kids: Economic Costs and Social Consequences of Teen Pregnancy, 2nd ed. Washington: Urban Institute Press; 2008.
2 Hoffman S. By the Numbers: The Public Costs of Teen Childbearing. Washington: National Campaign to Prevent Teen Pregnancy; 2006. Available from https://thenationalcampaign.org/resource/numbers
3 Elfenbein DS, Felice ME. Adolescent pregnancy. Pediatr Clin North Am. 2003 Aug;50(4):781-800, viii.
NEAR Science / Trauma-Informed Communities
Chelan Douglas Health District is an active partner on regional education efforts on NEAR Science (the study of Neuroscience, Epigenetics, ACEs and Resilience) and supporting development of trauma-informed communities and schools, working collaboratively with the Coalition for Children and Families of North Central Washington, the North Central Early Learning Collaborative, the Autism Collaborative and Parent2Parent.
Healthy Living Wenatchee Valley
Chelan-Douglas Health District partners with Healthy Living Wenatchee Valley (HLWV) Coalition, a diverse group of community partners working to empower Wenatchee Valley residents to embrace healthy living. Coalition strategies and activities are guided by a 4-pillared plan that emphasizes lifeful living, holistic nutrition, healthy and safe environments, and community-clinical linkages, activities targeted in the District’s Healthy Communities Plan.
For more information about HLWV, email: firstname.lastname@example.org
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