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For those of you who have used MAPP before or have completed the 3rd phase (4 assessments)---what ideas/suggestions do you have for truly finding out what the community feels is important in regards to health. We're planning to do a community 'opinion' survey that we plan to saturate the community with this summer...but somehow I feel that's starting to look a little bit like the BRFSS (duplication of effort AND have to consider 'human subjects'/IRB approval)...not to mention the length which may turn people off from completing it. How do we ensure that we get an adequate sample of responses? How do we ensure that it is a random enough sample so we can generalize for the entire community?

Also, any suggestions on transitioning from the assessments phase into the prioritization phase would be greatly appreciated! Should we make posters to bring to public events, host focus groups/town hall meetings, etc.?

We've only had 18 months to plan and implement this process---deadline for the written report (including everything through prioritization & 'recomendations' to key players in the community to take action) is due to be finalized and printed the end of November 2012.

I look forward to and welcome your thoughts/ideas/suggesitons! Thank you!

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Hi Rebecca,

I'm facilitating MAPP for the first time too.  I'm working now in a 4-county region in MIchigan's "ring finger" region.  Each county has customized their approach for the Community Themes and Strengths Assessment.  In one county, we worked with Michigan State University and designed a (long) survey instrument.  All best practices:  postcard mailed to random registered voters before the survey, then the survey mailed, then second survey mailed.  Over 50% returned the survey.  Results skewed older, more wealthy, and insured.   We also conducted a very brief survey.  800+ returned either a hard copy widely distributed or completed it with a Zoomerang link.  Even though we tried really hard to get young families and lower income people to respond (no real minorities up here), the vast majority were working, making $60K or more per year, and insured.  We decided at our committee meeting this week to supplement the survey with several focus groups (low income, parents of young children, disenfranchised, etc and coordinate a Photovoice project with members of the Youth Advisory Committees of local community foundations.  So we can be sure to have their input.

As for transition, we're planning on promoting Strategic Issue meetings using as many methods as possible--all the ones you listed. 

I'm on NACCHO's MAPP committee and would be happy to connect you with someone more experienced if you like...let me know.



Thank you! This is very helpful! I have been in contact with NACCHO regarding our process, thank you for the offer though!


We decided to conduct a random telephone survey through a local university and thought it would provide us with the best results. Results were weighted based on our population data. The survey combined both CTSA & CHSA questions. The CHS questions were similar to BRFSS but we have been actually able to drill down into subpopulation data and do GIS mapping by census tract. We also thought by keeping questions similar we could have comparable results since we will not be doing the survey each year. We did need to priorize the data we needed most to cut the survey time to something managable.


Our quality of life questions were very different and selected from a quality of life survey put together by the same university. I would be happy to share the questions...just email me.

We asked a few opened ended questions about most important community issue and most important health issues. Almost, 50% of the community did not have an answer. We think it could be a great opportunity for education. We are using our focus groups to target specific population and assess if they agree with our established priorities and the best strategies to use to improve these issues.


Good luck with your assesssments! Let me know if I can help further...I see your deadline is approaching.


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