Norwalk Health Department

Students at Texas Southern University sit at desks in a classroom, listening to a speaker.

A Connecticut health department and hospital share resources to identify and begin to address community health needs.

The Issue:

As part of applying for national accreditation from the Public Health Accreditation Board, a health department must complete a self-assessment against standards and measures. The department also then must identify a partner for conducting a community health assessment (CHA) and creating community health improvement plan (CHIP).

Key Findings

  • Norwalk (Ct.) health department chose to partner with Norwalk Hospital on the CHA-CHIP, building on previous successful collaborations.

  • The health department received a National Association of County & City Health Officials grant designating it as a national CHA-CHIP demonstration site.

  • The core team established a timeline to complete the six steps recommended by the Association for Community Health Improvement.

  • The team formed a task force with stakeholder representation that spurred community interest in improving health.

  • After data collection and analysis, the task force selected priority improvement areas.


The health department improved its readiness for accreditation and increased staff knowledge of health improvement processes.

About the Study:

The CHAP was conducted from March to August 2012; the CHIP completed by December 2012; the final strategic plan by March 2013.