Community Health Assessment and Health Improvement Plan (CHA CHIP) Guidance

This page provides guidance for completing community health assessments (CHAs) and community health improvement plans (CHIPs).

For a quick snapshot of CHA/CHIP best practices and resources, view this flyer.

Step-by-Step Guide 

The following CHA CHIP guide consists of basic steps and tools for community assessment and planning. Key elements include an analysis of community health needs and assets and developing a set of priorities and objectives for taking action. The process calls for community-wide participation in shaping decisions about improving the community’s health and mobilizing support and resources. The basic steps in the guide are consistent with the assessment and planning requirements in the Public Health Accreditation Board (PHAB) Public Health Standards (Domains 1 and 5) and IRS requirements for tax-exempt hospitals based on Section 501(r)(3) of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act . However, additional documentation is required to demonstrate compliance with PHAB and IRS requirements. See the documents referenced above for specific documentation requirements.

Step 1: Adopt a Planning Structure

Step 2: Identify & Engage Stakeholders as Partners

Step 3: Identify & Secure Resources

Step 4: Identify Data that Describes Community Health Status & Needs

Step 5: Analyze the Data & Develop a CHA Summary

Step 6: Review Factors that are Important for Health & Well-Being (Priority Setting)

Step 7: Document Stakeholder Discussion & Invite Broader Community Participation & Input

Step 8: Develop the Community Health Improvement Plan (CHIP)

Step 9: Implement, Track Progress, & Sustain the Process

Step 10: Establish & Implement a Communication Plan

Step 11: Evaluate Goals, Objectives, Strategies, & the Communication Plan


Page last updated: June 11, 2022.

Content source: Iowa Department of Public Health, Bureau of Public Health Performance

For more information:

Jonn Durbin
Lucas State Office Building
321 E 12th Street
Des Moines, Iowa 50319-0075
Phone: (515) 452-5766

Use the "Contact Us" page to submit questions online.