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Supporting Community Health in New Mexico

​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​Presbyterian Healthcare Services envisions a healthy New Mexico. We exist to improve the health of the patients, members and communities we serve.​​​

This means a commitment to improving access to health care, health insurance coverage, community supports, healthy food, and opportunities for exercise, and supporting everyone to have the opportunity for good health and well-being in the Land of Enchantment.

In support of this critical mission and as part of a requirement of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, Presbyterian completed its first community health needs assessment in 2013 and updated the community health needs assessment in 2016. By conducting a community health needs assessment at least every three years we are able to identify the priority health issues facing each of our communities. As part of the community health needs process PHS partners with local health councils and conducts forums to help us better understand the key drivers of some of the health issues our communities face. These reports, including the updated CHNAs are available for your review and comment.

Health Council Support 2017

We are proud to support both county health councils and the New Mexico Alliance for Health Councils. For 25 years health councils have played a key role in the state’s public health system by identifying local health needs, establishing community priorities and plans, and implementing local solutions. The health councils have also leveraged small investments like ours to attract additional funding to support programs and services to improve the health of their communities. We currently work directly with nine county health councils in the communities where we have hospitals. Together with the health councils we identified needs, heard what the community was asking of us, and developed our plans to address those needs together. This allows us to reduce duplication and promote alignment and collective impact with our community partners. By working together we can be more effective and implement quality, sustainable programs and strategies which lead to better health for our communities.

Learn more about health issues facing the communities of New Mexico

Community Health Priorities

In alignment with the health needs of each community we serve, Presbyterian has decided to continue to focus on the three core priorities: healthy eating, active living, and prevention of unhealthy substance use, chosen in 2013 because they impact a number of the root causes of the poor health of New Mexicans.

Three Core Priorities in All Counties

  • Eat Well. Presbyterian's healthy eating initiative includes a variety of projects designed to improve the nutrition of our residents. Specific areas of focus include nutrition education, school gardens, community-supported agriculture, and supporting growers markets and policy changes to increase the availability of healthy foods in schools and workplaces.

  • Be Active. Our active living initiative works to get New Mexicans moving. We focus on community programs to encourage indoor and outdoor activities and improving the community infrastructure to create more parks, playgrounds, safe sidewalks, and bike and walking trails.

  • Avoid Unhealthy Substance Use. Though initially focused on encouraging tobacco cessation, Presbyterian's prevention of unhealthy substance use initiative works to increase public awareness of the dangers of using unhealthy substances, supports policy changes to support prevention of unhealthy substance use, and creates incentives to encourage healthy behavior.

Community-Specific Health Priorities

In response to the specific needs of the communities identified as part of the 2016 Community Health Needs Assessment process, additional priorities targeting factors that directly affect the health and well-being of individuals and communities were added for several communities. Presbyterian will prioritize behavioral health in Bernalillo, Sandoval, Rio Arriba, Socorro, Torrance, and Valencia counties; violence prevention in Bernalillo and Valencia counties; economic development in Sandoval County, and access to care in Quay County.

Central New Mexico

The central region includes Bernalillo, Torrance, Sandoval, Santa Fe, and Valencia counties. As with most of the other areas of New Mexico, some parts of this region demonstrate low need and low barriers to care, while others, such as southern Bernalillo County, and rural parts of Sandoval, Torrance and Valencia counties, have high need and high barriers to care. While the primary contributors to poor health vary slightly from county to county, they include poverty, drug and alcohol use, physical inactivity, nutritional status, and access to mental and behavioral healthcare.

The central region is currently served by Presbyterian Hospital, Presbyterian Kaseman Hospital, and Presbyterian Rust Medical Center, as well as various clinics and Presbyterian Medical Group locations. The new Santa Fe Medical Center will also serve the community in Central New Mexico.

The Center for Community Health is measuring impact and outcomes in many ways; below are some of the evaluation reports that have been completed on the implementation of strategies identified in our community health plans.​

Curry County

Curry County is served by Plains Regional Medical Center, as well as affiliated clinics. The top three causes of death in Curry County are heart disease, cancer, and chronic lower respiratory disease. Some of the contributing factors to poor health in Curry County include alcohol consumption, smoking prevalence, drug use, physical inactivity, nutrition status, and access to healthy foods.

Curry County Community Health Implementation Plan 2013

Lincoln County

Lincoln County is served by Lincoln County Medical Center. The three leading causes of death in Lincoln County are cancer, heart disease, and unintentional injuries. Some of the contributors affecting these death rates are alcohol consumption, smoking prevalence, drug use, physical inactivity, prevalence of high blood pressure, access to nutritious foods, and access to primary care and health insurance.

Lincoln County Community Health Implementation Plan 2013

Quay County

Quay County is served by Dr. Dan C. Trigg Memorial Hospital. The three leading causes of death in Quay County are heart disease, cancer, and lower respiratory disease. A much higher proportion of adults in Quay County smoke cigarettes when compared to the state and the nation. Other factors contributing to poor health include low physical activity, poor access to nutritious food, health literacy levels, and access to care.

Rio Arriba County

Rio Arriba County is served by Presbyterian Española Hospital. The three leading causes of death in Rio Arriba County are unintentional injuries, cancer, and heart disease. Contributors to high rates of both injuries and chronic diseases include alcohol consumption, drug use, poverty, and access to healthcare and health insurance.

Socorro County

Socorro County is served by Socorro General Hospital. The three leading causes of death in Socorro County are cancer, heart disease, and unintentional injuries. Factors that lead to increased disease and death rates include poverty and unemployment, access to mental and behavioral healthcare and behavioral factors like alcohol and drug use, low fruit and vegetable intake, and lack of physical activity.

The Southwest Region is served by.

To open these files, you will need Adobe Acrobat

To provide feedback on any of these documents or to request a printed copy, please contact Leigh Caswell with the Community Health Team

If you are trying to access our financial assistance policy, you can find that here: Financial Assistance Policy

Connect to Our Community Health Initiatives

Would you like to participate in a class we are offering, learn more about the community health initiatives, or partner with us?