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Florida Department of Health in Hernando County Addresses 2019 County Health Rankings

By Ashley D. Thomas, DOH-Hernando PIO

March 19, 2019

Brooksville, Fla. —The Florida Department of Health in Hernando County (DOH-Hernando) recognizes the value in measuring health outcomes and today acknowledged the 2019 County Health Rankings & Roadmaps tool released by the University of Wisconsin and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. This study highlights the many community factors that influence health and uses established data, much of which is available from the Department at Rankings show how Hernando ranks on factors that influence its overall health, ranking 40 of 67 counties.

“These rankings compare the overall health of nearly every county in the nation,” Robin Napier, Hernando County Health Officer shared. “The health of our community is influenced by the engagement and collaboration of our county health systems in conjunction with the social determinants of health and role of health equity. The Rankings show that where you live influences how well and how long you live.”

The Rankings show Hernando has strengths in the area of Health Behaviors, where it ranked 23 of 67 counties and in the Physical Environment ranking 21 of 67. Additionally, it can shed light on obstacles to health for our residents, and identify opportunities for improvement -including Social and Economic Factors- that can make Hernando a healthier place to live, learn, work and play.

As a snapshot of health, the Rankings emphasize that health is not a singular effort but a combined work in progress across all community partners. The Department works in collaboration with local governments, non-profit organizations, health care facilities, business groups, schools, faith-based organizations and many other stakeholders to improve the health of all people in the community. These rankings use data related to physical environments, social and economic factors, health behaviors and clinical care.

In Hernando County, the Community Health Improvement Plan (CHIP) is designed to address specific opportunities for improved health that have been identified by the community. The Department has partnered with many stakeholders to implement the CHIP and collaborates regularly to track progress.

“The Rankings provide us with an opportunity to make people aware of our collective efforts to improve the health of our residents, such as through the Hernando County Community Health Improvement Planning Partnership (CHIPP),” Cheryl Pollock, Premier Community Health Care
spokesperson and CHIPP Chair shared. “We know that someone’s environment has a big impact on their health. Economic, community and social factors play a large role, which is why our partnerships with a wide-range of public and private organizations are so critical in addressing the factors that determine a healthier Hernando for everyone.”
To that end, the Department is requesting Hernando County residents to visit and complete the Community Health Survey between 3/18/19 – 5/26/19.

Survey results, along with research and health-related data, will be used in a Community Health Needs Assessment to be completed in fall 2019.

Hard copies of the Community Health Survey are also available. For more information on the survey, please contact Christine Abarca at or 352-727-3767.

To explore more health indicators in your county, visit
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