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HHS’ Charge to the Committee for Phase II Efforts

RADM Slade-Sawyer then explained specific products that HHS would like to receive from the Committee during Phase II. They included:

  • Feedback on objectives, topic areas, target-setting and cross-referencing of objectives.
  • Broad guidance for translating Healthy People to the federal, state, and local levels, including assistance with implementation strategies and tools to assist users. Should materials be strategically released throughout the decade to encourage momentum?
  • Suggestions for types of companion documents and case studies to be included, along with strategies for using new media, such as Webinars and other options.
  • Further detail on specifications for the proposed relational database format.
  • Recommendations for increasing public engagement in Healthy People 2020 during three critical time periods: the final year of development, launch, and post-launch.
  • Further detail on how to develop the Consortium, engage more partners, and increase public involvement.
  • Feedback on what services should be developed for interfacing with partners? (This could include concrete examples of how technical assistance for users could be provided to encourage creativity and flexibility to meet individual users’ needs.)
  • Guidance on data mining, including sustaining reliable data for the objectives and finding reliable, population-specific data. Healthy People will be changing, adding, and eliminating objectives throughout the decade, making timely and transparent information related to objective revision very important.

Dr. Fielding said there is a need to prioritize these questions and to think about the level of detail the Committee can provide in response. He asked for clarification of timeframes and whether there are critical things that should be addressed right away. At the Committee’s January 2009 meeting, the FIW could provide briefings on issues where multiple courses of action are being considered so that the Committee can opine on which ones might be most fruitful. He suggested that the Committee start by thinking about what the end-products of its work should be, and then decide how to get there. Mechanisms for completing the Committee’s work could include ad hoc groups and subcommittees.

RADM Slade-Sawyer indicated that the most important areas where input is needed right now are target-setting methodologies. The FIW would also like the Committee’s input on topic areas and how they are going to fit together across the whole document.

Dissemination of the Committee’s Phase I Report

Dr. Fielding asked what can be done to maximize dissemination of the Phase I report, which is of significant interest to many people at the local and state levels. He asked if there had been any effort to have the report disseminated through other members and organizations. RADM Slade-Sawyer said the primary dissemination vehicle is the Healthy People listserv. ODPHP is working to make the report available, but there are privacy issues that are challenging. These issues should be sorted out within the next couple of weeks.

Dr. Fielding requested that the National Opinion Research Center (NORC) be enlisted to send out the report to relevant organizations, highlighting the report’s availability and offering a brief summary of its contents. RADM Slade-Sawyer indicated that this would be acceptable. Dr. Fielding asked NORC staff to distribute notification of the report to any organizations that they are aware of. Committee members should also help disseminate the document in the short term, as ODPHP resolves issues with the Healthy People listserv.
He also asked whether there had been feedback on the Phase I report. RADM Slade-Sawyer said ODPHP has received positive feedback about the report, along with questions about when the FIW report would be available.

Dr. Fielding asked NORC to produce briefing papers to help guide the Committee’s discussions of target-setting and topic areas in January. Karen Harris (NORC) noted that NORC had already produced two draft briefing papers for the Committee in preparation for this session—one on target-setting, and a second on knowledge-based resources. Dr. Fielding noted that he had reviewed the papers and asked whether the additional, more specific information from the FIW is available to update the briefing papers. Carter Blakey (ODPHP) responded that there was no additional information from the FIW at that point.

IV.  Committee Goals, Products and Work Plan for Phase II

Dr. Fielding asked Committee members to discuss their activities for Phase II, including how they should be prioritized and what subcommittees would be needed. He felt the most important issue to be discussed in January would be the question of what would make Healthy People 2020 a successful effort. This discussion can be informed by NORC’s earlier review of previous Healthy People initiatives, as well as peer-reviewed articles that have chronicled the successes and challenges of previous iterations of Healthy People.

Overview of Issues for Phase II

Dr. Fielding said health disparities could increase with the current economic downturn. Although the Committee may not be able to address macro issues on a topic-by-topic basis, they may want to comment on economic development as a way to improve health and possibly reduce disparities. A member said that economic recovery will be a major focus going forward, and that the Committee’s work in 2009 should address the role of Healthy People 2020 with regard to improving the nation’s economy. He also recommended that the Committee address the issue of health reform.

Another Committee member commented that access to health insurance coverage and primary health care services are critical. She emphasized the need for engaging communities in the process. Commenting on the nomination of Chicago Public Schools CEO Arne Duncan as Secretary of Education, a member indicated that education will be a top priority for the administration, and the relationship between health and education will be very important. RADM Slade-Sawyer reminded the Committee of Dick Riegelman’s presentation at an earlier meeting on the Healthy People Curriculum Taskforce. This group focuses on education across the lifespan, including what Dr. Riegelman is calling the "Educated Citizen," as well as prevention education through college into graduate and medical school.