OSF St. Francis Hospital & Medical Group

Escanaba, Michigan

Community Health

What is a Community Health Needs Assessment?

As part of the new requirements for not-for-profit hospitals, every facility is required to conduct a Community Health Needs Assessment every three years and put together a plan to meet the community needs that the assessment identifies.

Every community has different health care needs, including diabetes management, obesity and weight loss management, chronic illness, substance abuse, sexual health, and more.

That's why our assessment team pulls together a broad set of health care consumers from each service area to help us identify the health needs of each individual community.

2013 Community Health Needs Assessment Report

At OSF St. Francis Hospital & Medical Group we strive to care for the physical, emotional and spiritual needs of those we serve.

After studying our 2013 Community Health Needs Assessment , we identified key health issues affecting individuals and families in the Delta County area. With the help of a local advisory committee, we prioritized the most important issues and selected the top five to focus efforts on.

Criteria included: impact on the community; strategic importance to the community; existing community resources; potential for impact; and trends and future forecasts.

The top five issues identified are:

Community Misperceptions

Inconsistencies exist between people’s perceptions of health issues and actual data.

For example, residents rated diabetes relatively low as a health risk, even though rates in Delta County are higher than state averages.

Risky Behaviors - Substance Abuse

Delta County is 8.5% higher than State averages for the number of smokers per capita, with a 4.5% increase in smokers in Delta County between 2005-2007 and 2008-2010, compared to a decrease Statewide for the same time frame.

Also, in Delta County, 25% of respondents stated they engage in binge drinking versus 18% in the State.

Both figures exceed the U.S. national 90th percentile benchmark of 8%. Alcohol abuse and drug abuse were rated the most prevalent unhealthy behaviors among survey respondents.


Type II Diabetes rates are higher in Delta County (9.8%) versus rates for the State (9.5%).


Michigan had the 5th highest obesity rate in the U.S. in 2011. Data from 2010 indicates 71% of Delta County adults are obese or overweight.

Results from the survey show fewer than 2% of the Delta County population consumes at least the minimum recommended daily servings of  fruits/vegetables, and 25% reported they had not participated in any physical activities or exercises during the past month.

An estimated $3.1 billion in medical costs was spent on obesity-related illnesses in 2008 in Michigan, with figures expected to rise to $12.5 billion by 2018.

Mental Health

The average number of mentally unhealthy days indicated by Delta County residents is 30% higher when compared to the U.S. 90th percentile.

In response to these issues, we continue to work with a local advisory committee to affect positive changes. A Substance Abuse & Violence Education (SAVE) Council meets monthly to address substance abuse and violence in our communities.

The SAVE Council has brought experts on gun violence, school and cyber bullying, underage drinking, and drug use to the community for seminars and presentations to children and adults. They also support the annual New Year’s Eve “Liferides” to prevent drunk driving and national screen-free efforts within the schools.

OSF St. Francis Hospital & Medical Group employs two registered dieticians, one of whom is also a certified diabetic educator who volunteers her time with Escanaba and Gladstone Schools as part of the national “Fuel Up to Play 60” initiative to address childhood obesity.

We also employ a care manager who works with OSF Medical Group patients who have or are at risk for chronic health issues to better manage and maintain good health.

OSF also provides financial support to Catholic Social Services to ensure access to mental health services within the community. We continue to explore opportunities to increase access and provide our community with additional resources, as well.