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,, vice president, quality and population health. For media inquiries, contact Rachel Moore, director, media relations.

HAP News

May 29, 2020

New KFF Poll Reveals Americans’ Views about COVID-19’s Impact

As Americans continue limiting social interaction—many just emerging from their homes after months-long state mandates—a newly released Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation (KFF) poll represents their views about some of the most significant details surrounding how COVID-19 has affected the country.

May 21, 2020

The ACA Will Cover More People as a Result of Job Losses Due to COVID-19

The Kaiser Family Foundation estimates that 26.8 million people across the country will become uninsured due to the loss of job-based health coverage. While many of those people qualify for full coverage under the Affordable Care Act, estimates suggest that 5.7 million people will not be eligible and will have to pay the full cost for health coverage.

May 06, 2020

Health Care Groups Press for HAP-Supported Prior Authorization Reform

Yesterday, a broad coalition of doctors, hospitals, patient advocates, and others conducted a press conference to ask the state House Insurance Committee to take action on HAP-supported House Bill 1194, sponsored by Representative Stephen Mentzer (R–Lancaster). The bill would provide common sense solutions to help reduce barriers and delays to patient care by reforming the prior authorization practices of many insurers, imposing strict deadlines and curbing excesses.

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