/Public health priorities identified for Southern Nevada

Public health priorities identified for Southern Nevada

Health District and community partners begin work on Community Health Improvement Plan

October 26, 2021

LAS VEGAS – What are the most pressing public health issues facing Clark County? That’s the question nearly 100 community members asked at a recent Community Health Assessment Prioritization meeting. The meeting was a continuation of Southern Nevada Health District and partner efforts to identify strategic priorities for the Community Health Improvement Plan (CHIP), a guide for public health activities and interventions through the next three years.

The CHIP is the second step in a process that began with the 2020-2021 Community Health Assessment (CHA). The CHA was released in August 2021 and is designed to inform the public, stakeholders and organizations about the current health status of Clark County residents and provide guidance for making shared decisions for improving the public health status of the community. During the prioritization meeting held on October 22, stakeholders used the findings from the CHA and identified four priorities that will be the focus of the Community Health Improvement Plan (CHIP).

The priorities were determined by ranking and measuring the seriousness of each issue’s burden to the community as well as how many people are impacted directly or indirectly, and the cost to the community and the economy. The four priority areas are:

  • Access to Health Care: Access to affordable, quality health care is an important element to physical, social and mental health. Insurance coverage, systemic racism and health disparities, lack of access or poor quality of health care, lack of providers and lack of reliable transportation were identified as impacting members of the community.
  • Chronic Disease: Approximately six in 10 adults in the United States have a chronic disease, and four in 10 have two or more. Chronic disease is a condition lasting longer than a year or more and requires ongoing medical attention, limited activities of daily living or both. Social determinants of health, such as safe housing; job opportunities; discrimination and violence; language and literacy skills have an impact on the prevalence of chronic diseases in the community.
  • Funding: Just 3 percent of health care dollars in the United States are spent on preventing disease and 75 percent of health care costs are related to preventable conditions. A high unemployment rate, high health care and transportation costs, limited public health funding, and lack of education funding have been identified as funding focus areas.
  • Transportation: Reliable access to transportation can increase employment rates, access to healthy foods, access to health care providers and facilities, and access to parks and recreation for a healthy lifestyle. Approximately 8.4 percent of Clark County households do not have a vehicle. The assessment identified the high cost of transportation, accessibility to transportation and an insufficient utilization of transportation funding as areas to address.

The CHIP is a collaboration between government agencies, health care providers, non-profit organizations, and academia. The Health District welcomes individuals who would like to participate in the CHIP committee. Interested individuals or organizations can contact Carmen Hua at huac@snhd.org for more information.


The Southern Nevada Health District serves as the local public health authority for Clark County, Boulder City, Henderson, Las Vegas, Mesquite and North Las Vegas. The agency safeguards the public health of the community’s residents and visitors through innovative programs, regulations, and initiatives focused on protecting and promoting their health and well-being. More information about the Health District, its programs, services, and the regulatory oversight it provides is available at www.SNHD.info.

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