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SHIP : va2toolbox

State Health Improvement Process (SHIP)

Healthy Social Environment Tools
1. Child maltreatment is a risk factor for poor physical and mental health in adulthood, injury, substance abuse, and suicide. Promote positive early childhood development, including positive parenting and homes free from violence. Check out CDC’s Child Maltreatment Prevention Program Guide to start an evidence based program or check out CDC’s adolescent and youth violence prevention resources.
2. Suicide is often the outcome of unrecognized depression. See how you can increase access to recommended clinic and home based programs to prevent and control depression. The National Prevention and Health Promotion Strategy p. 48-50 also provides helpful ideas for how you can expand access to mental health services and suicide prevention. See also adolescent-focused resources for suicide prevention.
3. Alcohol impaired driving accounts for a great percentage of Maryland’s traffic fatalities. Localities can reduce Alcohol Impaired Driving by implementing recommended school based programs, media campaigns or designated driver programs.
4. Also, given that excessive alcohol use is a leading cause of preventable death generally among all age groups, implement policies that facilitate the provision of Screening, Brief Intervention, and Referral to Treatment (SBIRT) or offer alcohol or substance abuse counseling in clinical care or employee assistance programs.
5. Proper use of child safety seats is the best way to prevent childhood injuries and deaths in car accidents. Promote 100% compliance with child safety seat guidelines. Also – check out resources for children with special health care or medical needs.
6. School Readiness is an important determinant of health throughout life. Early learning opportunities create a critical foundation for children’s academic success, health, and general well-being. Check out the Community Guide for information on evidence-based comprehensive, center-based programs for children of low-income families.
7. Graduating from High School is the single biggest predictor of how well and how long a person will live. There are ways you can help to decrease dropout rates in your community.
  a. Support comprehensive school reform to promote achievement.
  b. Expand mentorship programs proven to increase high school graduation rates, like the Check and Connect Program or the Valued Youth Program. Make sure you make it easy for people to connect to resources for high school dropouts to get their GEDs.
8. Domestic Violence has profound physical, psychological and social consequences with huge lifelong costs for victims. Link those in need to Maryland resources to prevent sexual assault. Also hospital based domestic violence programs can link to the Delphi Instrument for Hospital-based Domestic Violence Programs. This tool was developed by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality to help hospitals track their progress in improving institutional response to domestic violence.
9. Workplace Wellness Programs are helping to control employee health risks and health care costs, reduce absenteeism, reduce injuries, and improve quality of life. Make your worksite a place that supports health and consider joining Healthiest Maryland Businesses.
10. Catholic Healthcare West created web-based zip code level and county level maps of its community needs index displaying a composite picture of the degree to which communities are socially and economically health.