A Content Analysis of Hospitals' Community Health Needs Assessments in the Most Violent U.S. Cities.Citation: Journal of Community Health. , 2017 Aug 29PMID: 28852912Institution: MedStar Washington Hospital CenterDepartment: Trauma PreventionForm of publication: Journal ArticleMedline article type(s): Journal ArticleYear: 2017ISSN:
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The emergence of evidence-supported interventions allows hospitals the opportunity to reduce future reinjury among patients who are violently injured. However, hospital knowledge of these interventions and their perceived role in violence prevention is unknown. The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act created new legal requirements for non-profit hospitals to conduct community health needs assessments (CHNA) every three years to maintain not-for-profit status. In turn, this allows an empiric evaluation of hospital recognition and response to community violence. To do so, this study performed a content analysis of hospital CHNAs from the 20 U.S. cities with the highest violent crime rates. A total of 77 CHNAs were examined for specific violence-related keywords as well as whether violence prevention was listed as a priority community need. Overall, 74% of CHNAs mentioned violence-related terms and only 32% designated violence prevention as a priority need. When discussed, 88% of CHNAs referenced community violence, 42% intimate partner or sexual violence, and 22% child abuse. This study suggests that hospitals may lack awareness of violence as an actionable, preventable public health issue. Further, evidence-based program models are available to hospitals that can reduce the recurrence of assaultive injuries.