For Immediate Release: February 15, 2017
Contact: Jessica Good
Media Line: (
714) 834-2178
Email: JGood@ochca.com

 

Orange County’s 2017-19 Health Improvement Plan Now Available

(Santa Ana, CA) – On behalf of the Orange County Health Improvement Partnership (HIP), the Health Care Agency is pleased to announce that Orange County’s 2017-19 Health Improvement Plan is now available online at www.ochealthiertogether.org. The plan lays out assessments, goals, objectives and strategies for addressing the priority health areas and overall public health system over the next three years.

The health of the Orange County community continues to fare well compared to other California counties; the County Health Rankings ranked OC the 4th healthiest county in California. Despite that, the county is experiencing poorer outcomes than in the past on issues such as diabetes and Alzheimer’s disease. In addition, we know not all communities experience the same level of health. As examples, youth in South Orange County are more likely to smoke tobacco or drink alcohol; and Latinos have higher rates of obesity and lower access to healthcare.

The 2017-19 plan builds off the inaugural 2014-16 plan and continues efforts in four priority health areas: 1) infant and child health; 2) older adult health; 3) obesity and diabetes; and 4) mental health and substance use. Three new areas of interest have been identified for exploration: 1) access to health care; 2) oral health and 3) social determinants of health, which are factors such as economic stability, affordable housing, access to education, and public safety that have an indirect but real impact on individual health.
 
Since the Orange County’s Healthier Together initiative launched in 2014 to implement the plan, over 80 partners have come together under the umbrella of the Health Improvement Partnership to improve the health of Orange County. Active work groups meet regularly to coordinate services and identify new strategies to tackle the greatest health issues in Orange County. The American Diabetes Association is leading a coalition working to stabilize increasing rates of diabetes. The OC Diabetes Coalition will be working to expand the availability and utilization of diabetes prevention and self-management programs. The Health Care Agency will be promoting use of safe prescribing guidelines by health care providers to reduce opioid abuse in Orange County; opioid-overdose emergency room visits almost doubled between 2007 and 2014. The Orange County Healthy Aging Initiative will be promoting the use of Annual Wellness Visits, a covered benefit under Medicare that can help identify conditions and safety risks for older adults early.

The 2017-19 Orange County Health Improvement Plan identifies the objectives and strategies the partnership is committed to in the next three years. Learn more at www.ochealthiertogether.org.

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