From Jan Bergen, President & CEO
Access to high-quality, affordable health care is essential to staying well. But we are increasingly recognizing that many additional factors can support—or undermine—our patients’ efforts to achieve and maintain good health.
2019 was a very busy and exciting 2019 at Penn Medicine Lancaster General Health. Now that the new year is well underway, I’d like to outline some of our priorities for the 2020 and beyond.
Every three years, LG Health completes a Community Health Needs Assessment to identify the greatest health and health-care needs of Lancaster County residents. We use the results of the assessment to develop a Community Health Improvement Plan that addresses those needs.
Last fall, I wrote about LG Health’s longstanding commitment to addressing the nonmedical factors that can greatly impact our patients’ ability to maintain their health and well-being. Our latest Community Health Improvement Plan places an even greater emphasis on these “social determinants of health,” which range from housing and food insecurities to limited transportation.
In the next three years, LG Health will continue to work with our community partners to develop programs and services in these areas:
- Increase access to free and low-cost health-care services through school-based clinics, prenatal care, cancer screenings and vaccination programs, as well as substance abuse and mental health treatment
- Improve mental health by becoming a trauma-informed health system and training individuals and organizations to recognize and respond to trauma and adverse childhood experiences
- Enhance access to safe, affordable housing for everyone in our community
- Address food insecurity by increasing access to healthy food through free food pantries, the Food Farmacy and healthy corner stores
- Contribute to a healthy environment by creating safe places for walking and bicycling, encouraging LG Health employees to use environmentally friendly transportation and more
Teams throughout LG Health are currently developing strategies to ensure that we meet the objectives outlined in our Community Health Improvement Plan, which runs through the end of fiscal year 2022. We will monitor and report on our progress regularly to the community and to you.
Thank you for your support of LG Health’s efforts to establish and maintain the basic conditions that support good health for our patients. By addressing the social determinants of health, we will give everyone in our community the opportunity to achieve their best health.