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The Maricopa County Department of Public Health: 1st Place Winner, "I'm Your Community Guide!" Contest


Community Guide Use
The Maricopa County Department of Public Health (MCDPH), Office of Performance Improvement in Arizona used The Guide to Community Preventive Services (The Community Guide) to enhance the implementation of evidence-based practices (EBPs) throughout MCDPH. Specifically, MCDPH used The Community Guide to develop a database of 800 itemized public health-related EBPs. MCDPH also used The Community Guide to develop the Maricopa County Community Health Improvement Plan (CHIP), a five-year community-wide action plan for addressing priority health issues in Maricopa County. Click the PDF icon to download the full text of this success story.
To help deliver effective services and improve quality throughout the community and organization, MCDPH utilized the evidence-based practices outlined in The Community Guide to catalog an extensive list of public health-related EBPs into a searchable, sortable database. MCDPH used The Community Guide as an authoritative and reliable source of information. MCDPH replicated the categories from The Community Guide (mental health, asthma, diabetes, cancer, etc.) to set up the database. The EBP database currently contains nearly 800 itemized EBPs pulled from a variety of sources, including nearly all of the recommendations listed within The Community Guide.
MCDPH also used The Community Guide to help develop the CHIP. MCDPH convened several meetings with community stakeholders to solicit potential strategies that would address community health priorities identified through the Community Health Assessment: tobacco free living, healthy eating, active living and linkage to care. At the meetings, stakeholders recommended actions to address health priorities based largely upon an extensive, organized list of EBPs, including those from The Community Guide. Potential EBPs from The Community Guide were also selected by internal MCDPH leadership and staff as part of a process to strategically re-organize internally around community health priorities and address service delivery gaps. The final list of recommendations from community stakeholders was so useful, it ultimately ended up being included in the 2012-2015 Arizona Chronic Disease Strategic Plan
MCDPH now has an EBP database that contains nearly 800 itemized EBPs that is easily accessible and searchable for all public health workers in the organization. It serves as a reliable, one-stop source for workers to find EBPs. The approaches taken to create the EBP database helps guarantee that items are strategically categorized in ways that are useful, relevant, and easily accessible at both the programmatic level and at the departmental level where organizational planning and strategic collaborative activities are leading MCDPH towards Public Health Accreditation.
The CHIP helps to identify areas where MCDPH can have the largest impact on improving the quality of life and reducing preventable illness and death for all Maricopa County residents, particularly the most vulnerable in the community. MCDPH plans to incorporate this database into an evidence-based toolkit available for the department and community use located on its website. 
Model Capacity
MCDPH’s method of incorporating EBPs at early strategic planning stages could serve as a model for other public health departments. The Community Guide was the first resource used in developing the CHIP and helped facilitate the use and application of EBPs in the department’s strategic processes, and guiding both MCDPH and the community to undertake actions that are impactful and result in a healthier community.
Partnerships and Collaborations
MCDPH leadership and staff convened several meetings with community stakeholders to discuss appropriate EBPs for their community. The final list of recommendations were also included in the 2012-2015 Arizona Chronic Disease Strategic Plan.
View all of The Community Guide success stories from the 2013 "I'm Your Community Guide!" Contest.​


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