The Role of Community Health Centers in Assessing the Social Determinants of Health for Planning and Policy: The Example of Frontier New Mexico

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Abstract

This article examines the experience of a frontier-based community health center when it utilized the Tool for Health and Resilience in Vulnerable Environments (THRIVE) for assessing social determinants of health with a local health consortium. Community members (N = 357) rated safety, jobs, housing, and education among the top health issues. Community leaders integrated these health priorities in a countywide strategic planning process. This example of a frontier county in New Mexico demonstrates the critical role that community health centers play when engaging with local residents to assess community health needs for strategic planning and policy development.

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