Community-based participatory research is used to engage communities in Healthy People 2020 by using the guide MAP-IT. This is a simple guide that is usually used to involve the people in changing the health conditions of their community. MAP-IT includes the five foloowing steps: mobilize, assess, plan, implement, and track (U.S. Department of Healht and Human Services, 2014).
There are four questions to be asked and answered in this step of creating public health involvements.
- What is this coalition trying to accomplish?
- Why is it important to bring the community together?
- Who are the people that should be represented?
- What organizations or businesses are going to help in this coalition?
In order to start assembling important partners in this coalition, look for organizations or businesses that have important roles in creating a healthy community. These partners of the coalition chosen need to have specific roles and responsibilities assigned for them, which will help them stay involved in the program (U.S. Department of Healht and Human Services, 2014).
In this phase, vital data is collected. This data that is collected is the starting point that will be presented and used before the program starts and will allow accurate review of the program throughout the process. When getting into this phase there are two important questions that need to be asked and answered:
- When the program starts, who will it affect and how?
- What resources are available at that time and what resources are needed?
When the needs and resources are assessed in the community, it will help determine what can actually be done rather than what the program would like to do. It is important to work with the partners of the coalition to set important areas of concern (U.S. Department of Healht and Human Services, 2014).
A decent plan needs to have clear goals and solid steps in order to achieve those goals. When starting this phase of the program, there are three questions asked and answered:
- What is the primary goal of this program?
- What is needed in order to reach those goals and who will reach those goals that are set?
- How will the coalition know when the goals are reached?
The goals that are set by the coalition should be specific to the problem that was determined for the community. It needs to be determined where the most change will be made and how the progress will be measured. The goals in the plan need to be able to be met but not too easy (U.S. Department of Healht and Human Services, 2014).
Once the plan is in place, the next step is to put that plan into action. Determine who is responsible for putting specific parts into action. That questions that need to be asked and answered in this phase are:
- Is the planned being followed through with?
- What can be done to make this program better?
It is good to make sure all of the partners of the coalition are on board and know what their part is in this phase. This phase is where the community really gets involved with any activities or events that may be put on by the coalition(U.S. Department of Healht and Human Services, 2014).
The tracking phase of the program lets the coalition reevaluate any data that was collected and make sure that the plan is being followed. The questions that need asked and answered in this step are:
- Is the work that has been implemented being evaluated properly?
- Was the plan being followed? If not, what was changed?
- Was the goal reached?
A good way to get the local community involved is recruiting students or nearby universities to help track data. It is vital to share any progress with the community to let them know that their commitment to the program is important and needed (U.S. Department of Healht and Human Services, 2014).
MAP-IT Applied To a Case Study
There was a case study mentioned by Carolyn Cannuscio called “A Place to Call Home”.This case study applied the phases of MAP-IT evne though it was not a perfect MAP-IT case. The study began by collaborating and finding partners for the project, which is the mobilize phase. They determined who would bring the community together and what they wanted to accomplish with this project. They wanted to represent the under privileged youth in this project. They assessed the situation by directing a study to better understand the range of housing uncertainties for young people. They also conducted a study to understand what impact these housing uncertainties had on those young people’s health, which is the assess phase of the MAP-IT plan. In this case study in Philadelphia, they had determined some major goals that they wanted to accomplish. This is part of the planning phase. The purpose of this project was recognize the familiarities of housing uncertainties in young people. Another main goal was to make those stories of the young people be heard in order to give them a voice, where they may have not had one before. They wanted to introduce the youth to services available to them and help them be more involved in the community (U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Office of Disease Prevention and Health Promotion, 2014).
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They had an implementation phase in this project as well. They had the young people start an art house where their art could be displayed to the public. In the same place, services and referrals of needed resources would be available to them. The whole block was painted in this town and it got the youth involved with the community they lived in. This was the tracking phase of the project. The mission was to get the youth involved in the community and that is exactly what the project did. They were able to track this project just by seeing the art that as displayed (U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Office of Disease Prevention and Health Promotion, 2014).
By the end of this project, it was very successful. The purpose of the project was to get the youth involved in the community and to help them have a voice. During the project, the young people were introduced to some policymakers and were actually able to stand before them and have them listen to their plans. The block that was painted was a drug and gang neighborhood and none of the neighbors really engaged with each other because of the concern for safety. While the block was being painted, the people who lived there came out and helped paint and get involved. This engaged the neighbors to start talking to one another and be social. This changed the social environment of the block which in turn, changed the physical environment. Neighbors weren’t afraid to sit outside on their porch and children weren’t afraid to play with each other while this project was going on (U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Office of Disease Prevention and Health Promotion, 2014).
U.S. Department of Healht and Human Services. (2014). Program Planning. Retrieved from Healthy People 2020: https://www.healthypeople.gov/2020/tools-and-resources/program-planning/Mobilize
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Office of Disease Prevention and Health Promotion. (2014). Part Five: Community Based Participatory Research. Retrieved from Public Health Learning Modules-Module 3: Social Determinants of Health: https://vimeopro.com/aptrmodules/phlm/video/76355206
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