A community health improvement plan is a long-term, systematic effort to address public health problems in a community. The plan is based on the results of community health assessment activities, and is part of a community health improvement process. 
A community health improvement plan is developed through a collaborative process, and defines a vision for the health of the community. In Minnesota, community health improvement plans are developed for the geographic regions covered by community health boards (CHBs). A community health improvement plan is a customary practice of public health and also is a national standard for all public health departments. Since the passage of the Local Public Health Act in 1976, Minnesota CHBs have been required to engage in a community health improvement process, beginning with a community health assessment.
The community health improvement planning process is mapped out below:
A community health improvement plan provides guidance to the health department, its partners, and its stakeholders, on improving the health of the population within the health department’s jurisdiction.  The plan is critical for developing policies and defining actions to target efforts that promote health. Government agencies, including those related to health, human services, and education, use the community health improvement plan in collaboration with community partners to set priorities and coordinate and target resources.
A community health improvement plan is guided by the same or similar broad, community-level partnership that was previously established for the CHB's community health assessment.
PHAB Standard 1.1.1 requires participation in a partnership with other organizations to access data, provide various analytical perspectives, present data and findings, and share a commitment to using the data. Members of the partnership should include participants who will provide a broad range of perspectives, represent a variety of groups, sectors, and activities within the community, and bring the necessary resources and enthusiasm to the table. Broad community participation via community meetings, focus groups, and other mechanisms, is necessary to ensure that the process results in a community-driven and owned community health improvement plan. 
|MDH Support for Process|
Staff from the Public Health Practice Section and the Minnesota Center for Health Statistics are available to help with the community health improvement plan, including data analysis, strategy development/selection, and community engagement. Tools, templates, and other supporting materials are available at Community Health Improvement Plan: How to Do It. All guidance and technical assistance are designed to help CHBs meet national public health standards.
- Adapted from Public Health Accreditation Board (PHAB) Acronyms and Glossary of Terms, Version 1.0 (PDF: 512KB / 38 pages)
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- Public Health Accreditation Board (PHAB) Standards and Measures, Version 1.0; Standard 5.2.2, p. 127 [Return to the text]
- PHAB Standards and Measures, Version 1.0; Standard 1.1.1, p. 11 [Return to the text]