March 2003

Grant Results

SUMMARY

In 2000 and 2001, the Nevada Public Health Foundation collected and assessed information on public health policy-making in Nevada and produced a plan to address population-based health problems throughout the state.

Nevada has some of the nation's most severe health problems, ranking at or near the top in rates of cigarette smoking, asthma, teen pregnancy, suicide and alcohol consumption, according to the Nevada Public Health Foundation.

Key Results

  • Nevada's Public Health Partners: A Resource Directory of Organizations Providing Public Health Services in Nevada, a listing of more than 250 organizations with information on their mission, jurisdiction, funding sources, duties and data they collect.
  • The State of Public Health in Nevada, an assessment of the current public health system. The report identified the lack of capacity to mobilize citizens and communities for change as the most compelling issue facing the state's public health systems.
  • Nevada's Partners for the Future of Public Health: A Strategic Plan for Improving Nevada's Public Health System, offered 19 recommendations for addressing the issues identified in the assessment report.

Funding
The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF) supported the project from September 2000 through November 2001 with a grant of $74,560.

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RWJF STRATEGY

Nevada has some of the nation's most severe health problems, ranking at or near the top in rates of cigarette smoking, asthma, teen pregnancy, suicide and alcohol consumption, according to the Nevada Public Health Foundation.

RWJF's national program Turning Point: Collaborating for a New Century in Public Health provided technical assistance to the project, which became known as the Nevada Turning Point Project. Turning Point, started in 1997, is an initiative of RWJF and the W.K. Kellogg Foundation. Its mission is to transform and strengthen the public health system in the United States by making it more community-based and collaborative.

The initial idea for Turning Point came from the RWJF's concerns about the capacity of the public health system to respond to emerging challenges in public health, specifically the system's capacity to work with people from many sectors to improve the health status of all people in a community.

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THE PROJECT

Under the grant, the Nevada Public Health Foundation used a mail questionnaire to identify local organizations providing public health services in the state. With the help of a consultant, the Center for Progressive Policy and Practice, it surveyed public health stakeholders and Nevada legislators and conducted 10 issue-oriented focus groups along with one-on-one interviews with key public health leaders.

It also co-sponsored a statewide Cooperative Action Workshop, which was funded by the Nevada State Health Division, to determine stakeholders' assessments of the current public health system and its needed improvements. An eight-member Turning Point Steering Committee with representation from public health organizations and institutions from around the state guided the assessment and planning activities of the project.

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RESULTS

The project produced three publications:

  • Nevada's Public Health Partners: A Resource Directory of Organizations Providing Public Health Services in Nevada, a listing of more than 250 organizations with information on their mission, jurisdiction, funding sources, duties and data they collect.
  • The State of Public Health in Nevada, an assessment of the current public health system. The report identified the lack of capacity to mobilize citizens and communities for change as the most compelling issue facing the state's public health systems. Other issues identified were: rural service delivery, disparities in the health of minorities, public health infrastructure, data collection and analysis, education of elected officials and public health professionals, impact assessment, performance evaluations and improved prevention and forecasting.
  • Nevada's Partners for the Future of Public Health: A Strategic Plan for Improving Nevada's Public Health System, offered 19 recommendations for addressing the issues identified in the assessment report.

Communications

The Nevada Public Health Foundation printed 200 copies each of the assessment report and strategic plan and mailed them to public health stakeholders throughout the state.

The Savitt Medical Library at the University of Nevada School of Medicine created a Web-based database for the Resource Directory and helped the foundation upgrade its own Web site.

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LESSONS LEARNED

  1. Data-gathering efforts should define precisely the information sought and be clear about the purposes of the effort to make sure the information being gathered is not available elsewhere. This project's effort to compile a database of providers of public health services proved costly and time-consuming, and produced little information that was not already known about the state's public health system.

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AFTER THE GRANT

In April of 2002, RWJF awarded a four-year follow-up grant to the Nevada Public Health Foundation (ID# 045051) for capacity-building activities — including the creation of a Citizens' Public Health Network of policy-makers, business and industry, citizens and communities and public health professionals — to mobilize change that will improve public health. This grant officially made the Nevada project a part of the Turning Point national program. The Nevada foundation has taken the following actions to implement other elements of the Turning Point strategic plan:

  • Project staff is collaborating with the Utah Department of Health to establish the Great Basin Public Health Leadership Institute. The Nevada Public Health Foundation has received a $40,000 grant from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Association of State and Territorial Health Officials to contribute to this effort and intends to offer its first leadership event in the spring of 2004.
  • The Nevada Public Health Foundation applied for a Health Resources and Services Administration Rural Health Network Development Grant to assist in establishing local public health services for the Consolidated Municipality of Carson City, one of the fifteen rural counties in Nevada. The grant requested $600,000 over three years for integration of health care and public health services and planning for the local health services system.

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GRANT DETAILS & CONTACT INFORMATION

Project

Coordinating a Population-Based Health Policy Plan in Nevada

Grantee

Nevada Public Health Foundation (Carson City,  NV)

  • Amount: $ 74,560
    Dates: September 2000 to November 2001
    ID#:  039525

Contact

Lynn Carrigan
(775) 884-0392
nphf@sbcglobal.net

Web Site

http://www.nphf.org

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BIBLIOGRAPHY

(Current as of date of this report; as provided by grantee organization; not verified by RWJF; items not available from RWJF.)

Reports

Nevada Partnerships for the Future of Public Health: A Strategic Plan to Strengthen Nevada's Public Health System. Carson City, Nev.: Nevada Public Health Foundation, 2001.

Nevada's Public Health Partners: A Resource Directory of Organizations Providing Public Health Services in Nevada. Carson City, Nev.: Nevada Public Health Foundation, 2001.

The State of Public Health in Nevada. Carson City, Nev.: Nevada Public Health Foundation, 2001.

Survey Instruments

"Turning Point Stakeholders Survey." Nevada Public Health Foundation, fielded June 2001.

"Survey to Measure Policymaker Perceptions about Public Health." Nevada Public Health Foundation, fielded September 2001.

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Report prepared by: Lauren Green
Reviewed by: Robert Narus
Reviewed by: Molly McKaughan
Program Officer: Susan Hassmiller

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