Dissertation Defense Announcement
The School of Public Health announces the Final Dissertation Defense of
for the Degree of Doctor of Philosophy
on June 22, 2018 at 10:00 AM in Robinson Hall, Room 117
Advisor: Erik L. Carlton
Essays on Collaboration Between Local Health Departments and Non-Profit Hospitals as a Path to Improve Population Health
ABSTRACT: Collaboration between local health departments and nonprofit hospitals around community health needs assessment (CHNA) is increasingly recognized as a key strategy to improve U.S population health. This dissertation consists of three essays on collaboration between local health departments and nonprofit hospitals around community health needs assessment. Essay one investigates whether collaboration between local health departments and nonprofit hospitals around community health needs assessment is associated with community health outcomes. This study guided by the Donabedian model focused on two major questions: a) what factors are associated with collaboration between local health departments and nonprofit hospitals around community health needs assessment and b) Is there a relationship between collaboration around community health needs assessment and community health outcomes? The results of this study suggest that structural factors may influence collaboration, and collaboration is further associated with better community health outcomes. Essay two utilizes a qualitative approach to explore motivating factors, barriers, and perceived benefits of collaboration by conducting semi-structured interviews with local health department and hospital leaders across the U.S. Following analysis of the transcripts, 10 major themes were identified including 4 motivating factors, 4 barriers/ challenges, and 2 perceived benefits. Essay three further examines the dimensions of collaborative activities between local health departments and hospitals around community health needs assessment. This study focuses on whether collaboration between local health departments and nonprofit hospitals be measured by a few common factors, as well as the relationships between those factors and specific community health outcomes. Results showed two common factors and suggest that some collaborative activities have greater impact on community health outcomes. In conclusion, findings from this dissertation will be of interest to public health and healthcare practitioners as well as policymakers seeking to address how to promote effective collaboration to improve population health.