Community Health Needs Assessments

Population health focuses on the factors that influence health during a person’s lifetime, with an emphasis on prevention and health optimization across an entire lifespan. To achieve this, hospitals look at barriers to good health.

Under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2010, not-for-profit hospitals are required to conduct Community Health Needs Assessments (CHNA) every three years. These assessments identify the main health needs and challenges facing the patients and communities that the hospital serves. Hospitals get this information through focus groups, interviews, surveys, analysis of health indicators, and data collection. They determine how to approach these health problems by developing, implementing, and evaluating improvement plans.

Community Exercise Room


Schedule H Form

The Affordable Care Act implements the needs assessment requirement through changes in the Internal Revenue Code. The Internal Revenue Service's Schedule H form and instructions address how not-for-profit hospitals report community health needs assessment activities on their Form 990. Additionally, Schedule H, Part V, incorporates the requirements of the Internal Revenue Code Section 501(r) as contained in the Affordable Care Act. 

A CHNA is not restricted to just a single hospital assessment. In many cases, a regional approach may make sense. The challenges facing the community are often felt equally among neighboring hospitals. By identifying regional challenges, hospitals may be able to achieve greater improvements through the collective impact of additional participants.

Hospitals place their CHNA and improvement plan on their websites.

Multi-facility/Regional Community Health Needs Assessments

HAP has partnered with two leading organizations that have experience working with hospitals to create multi-facility/regional community health needs assessments. In addition to these firms’ significant experience in designing collaborative CHNAs, both organizations have offices in Pennsylvania.

To learn more about how this type of CHNA may benefit your organization, please contact the following representatives to set up an introductory call:

HAP Contacts

For more information, contact Robert Shipp III,  PhD, BSN, RN, vice president, population health and clinical affairs. For media inquiries, contact Rachel Moore, director, media relations.

HAP News

October 28, 2020

Pennsylvanians Urged to Get Vaccinated Against the Flu

Today HAP, in partnership with more than 50 other organizations and entities, released a statement encouraging Pennsylvanians to get their flu shot. As the flu season rapidly approaches, this effort aims to bring awareness to the importance of getting vaccinated. 

October 27, 2020

Health Literacy is Critical to Patients Getting the Care They Need

In the midst of a worldwide health care pandemic, it is more vital than ever that patients get reliable, accurate information. Likewise, health care providers must ensure that patients and their family members understand the medical information they are given.

+