As a rural area, the Northern Michigan CHIR faces many challenges related to health outcomes across its 10 counties. Communication challenges, geographic constraints, and an overall lack of access to crucial services has negatively impacted social determinants of health(SDoH) for many residents, contributing to poor health outcomes in northern Michigan.

Armed with data from the Community Health Assessment and other sources, the NMCHIR is currently working on a Community Health Improvement Plan (CHIP) to implement real and impactful change throughout the 10-county region. The focus of the CHIP is tackling the 6 key areas of SDoH.

6 key areas of Social Determinants of Health:

In 2018, NMCHIR brought over 90 cross-sector partners together for six days of ABLe Change training. In this training, partners looked at the barriers to health outcomes facing residents. Partners organized themselves into Action Teams to address the SDoH impacting their communities and implemented a four-component process:

The 4-Component Process:

What will the Action Team do to improve outcomes?
How can Action Teams address SDoH?

Which organization will be responsible for the work?
How can local organizations work together?

How will the organizations implement the strategies?
How can the CHIR support this implementation?

How can Action Teams collaborate to do the work?
How can collaboration work to improve SDoH?

By organizing and mobilizing partners to address SDoH in Action Teams, the NMCHIR is building capacity for change between social service agencies and health providers in northern Michigan. Now, partners are aligning their efforts and taking action on innovative strategies they developed to improve SDoH.