Health Care Our Communities Public Health

Community health assessments spotlight pressing needs across Central Florida

The Community Health Needs Assessment (CHNA) plays a key role in AdventHealth’s mission of extending the healing ministry of Christ outside its hospital walls. This report is produced every three years, and it identifies major community health challenges and gaps in service that contribute to Central Florida’s overall health. This guides AdventHealth’s community investment and helps direct sponsorships and partnerships, community outreach and volunteer activities to address the true needs of the community.

Orange, Osceola, Lake and Seminole counties

Recently, the 2022 CHNA was released by the Central Florida Collaborative including AdventHealth’s Central Florida Division; Aspire Health Partners; Community Health Centers, Inc.; the Florida Department of Health in Orange, Osceola, Seminole and Lake Counties; Orange Blossom Family Health; Orlando Health; Osceola Community Health Services and True Health.

Access to mental health care services and workforce development are two of the greatest issues facing residents of these counties. Among the findings:

  • About 30% of Florida middle and high school students report feeling sad and hopeless for over two weeks.
  • Over 12% of Florida middle and high school students report self-harm behaviors within the past 12 months.
  • Working-aged people want good jobs with wages that allow them to afford housing, education and transportation.
  • Workforce development and staffing challenges were identified issues at a state or national level and require policy and regulatory change within state and federal laws or system-wide regulations to reduce the impact felt by individual community members.

“AdventHealth is committed to whole-person and whole-community health, and we believe partnerships and collaboration are key to seeing Central Floridians thrive – body, mind and spirit,” said Randy Haffner, president and CEO of AdventHealth’s Central Florida Division. “The CHNA is an important blueprint as we strive to increase access to mental health care, improve workforce development and help bring health equity across our region. We are grateful for the many organizations that are working alongside us to improve the health of Central Florida.”

The CHNA details data on a variety of topics ranging from housing instability to access to medical care. This data allows AdventHealth and others in the Collaborative to develop strategies that will improve the health of residents through specific community health plans.

Data for the assessment was collected from more than 4,200 surveys, 30 focus groups, as well as data from the Florida Department of Health, the U.S. Census Bureau, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and others. Additional findings include:

One in eight participants are worried due to lack of stable housing.

  • One in six participants needed medical care but did not get it.
  • Over 47% of the respondents were unable to get an appointment at a convenient time.
  • Over 45% of the participants were unable to pay for care.
  • One in 12 children needed medical care but did not get it.
  • Ranging from 80% to 90% of the respondents, they stated that they are happy with their social relationships and/or have people in their lives they can ask for help, if needed.

Volusia and Flagler counties

This summer, the 2022 CHNA for Volusia and Flagler counties was released by AdventHealth, Flagler Cares, Halifax Health, SMA Healthcare, county government and health departments and community partners.

The three priorities for these counties identified by AdventHealth include behavioral health with a focus on substance use disorders, education access with a focus on early childhood education and social and community context with a focus on developing awareness of community resources and connecting with our neighbors to build healthy communities. Among the findings:

  • There is low communitywide awareness of available services and resources.
  • In 2020, only about 57% of Volusia County youth were ready for kindergarten entry and 55% in Flagler County.
  • For the past nine years, Flagler County has had a lower percentage of children participating in voluntary preschool classes than the state of Florida average.
  • People with social support, less isolation and greater interpersonal trust live longer and healthier lives than socially isolated individuals.
  • About 19% of Volusia County high school students have vaped nicotine in the past 30 days.

Equity Champions helped collect primary data for the assessment from more than 1,600 surveys provided in English and Spanish, 14 focus groups and 50 stakeholder interviews. Secondary data was collected from the Florida Department of Health, the U.S. Census Bureau, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, as well as others. Additional findings include:

  • Flagler County has a higher rate of infants in foster care than the state.
  • In Volusia County, about 17% percent of adults reported poor mental health.
  • More than one-third of homeowners (about 34%) and over half of renters (about 55%) are paying over 30% of their income for housing.
  • Compared to the state, Volusia County has higher rates of substance overdose deaths from fentanyl, cocaine, heroin and methamphetamine.

AdventHealth appreciates the collaboration of all our community partners in preparing these assessments and looks forward to working together to bring about a positive change in the health of the community.

Click here to download the Community Health Needs Assessment. More information about AdventHealth’s community impact is available here. The complete 2022 Community Health Needs Assessment for Volusia and Flagler counties can be viewed on the DOH-Volusia website.