As health care organizations develop programs and services to improve health care outcomes and reduce disparities, input from the community is necessary to make sure their needs and concerns are acknowledged and addressed. How successful we are in addressing key issues will depend upon how well we bring people together and build relationships.
Before moving forward with potential community health initiatives, a workgroup co-chaired by the Associate Vice-President of the Office of Community Health and the Director of the Durham County Health Department was charged with developing principles of community engagement. The principles provide practical guidance for engaging the general public, health care professionals, and community leaders as we work collaboratively to develop programs to improve health outcomes for the community.
The Principles of Community Engagement have been incorporated into the Duke University Health System Community Event Approval process currently managed by the Department of Community and Family Medicine and the Duke Center for Community Research Request for Proposals (RFP) review process.