Public health surveyors gathering Meagher County data on June 26th and 27th.
In an effort to gain a deeper understanding of the health conditions and needs of local residents, Meagher County Public Health officials, in collaboration with the Montana Department of Health and Human Services, are rolling out an extensive community health survey. This initiative spans across a multi-county region, including Lewis and Clark, Jefferson, Powell, Broadwater, and Meagher counties. The Community Assessment for Public Health Emergency Response (CASPER) survey is set to be conducted the last week of June, targeting neighborhoods within these five counties. The survey aims to gather detailed information on a wide range of health conditions, behaviors, and social determinants of health. These include cancer, heart disease, substance use, mental health, housing, childcare, and food security. CASPER represents a unique opportunity for local, state, and federal agencies, as well as nonprofit organizations, to engage directly with the community. The survey will be conducted door-to-door today and tomorrow (June 26th and June 27th) in Meagher County, with teams visiting White Sulphur Springs, Martinsdale, Springdale Colony, Ringling, and other locations nearby. The collected data will be instrumental in the creation of the 2024 Community Health Report, which will be published by the Meagher County Health Department and Mountainview Medical Center. This report will serve as the cornerstone for the Community Health Improvement Plan, scheduled for release in 2025. The plan will outline public health priorities and strategies to improve health outcomes for county residents. In such a rural area, specific data is imperative in addressing the niche needs of the region’s population. Survey teams, consisting of two members each, will be identifiable by their bright vests and identification cards on the 26th and 27th of June. They aim to reach seven respondent households within each census block and, notably, will not collect any personal information to protect privacy. Moreover, the teams will operate only during daylight hours, concluding their visits by 7:30 pm, meaning that residents will be ensured of safety and convenience. The CASPER Survey is a quick and reliable series of questions designed to gather household-based information about the community, thereby enhancing the county's public health response and resilience. Survey teams will inquire about residents' safety concerns, access to healthcare, awareness of mental and behavioral health services, barriers to receiving care, and preferred communication methods. All responses will be confidential and will not be graded. Residents interested in contributing to the CASPER community health efforts are encouraged to apply and volunteer as surveyors. Community participation is vital, as the survey teams will be gathering insights on residents' safety concerns and overall health needs. By participating in this survey, residents can play a crucial role in shaping the future of public health in Meagher County and beyond. For any inquiries regarding the CASPER survey, community members are encouraged to contact Meagher County Public Health at 406-547-3234.