By the end of 2025, Midland County will achieve improvements in healthcare system financial sustainability, care delivery, environmental quality, and lifestyle choices to move Midland’s health ranking into the top 10 counties, according to the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation’s (RWJF) annual County Health Rankings (CHR).
Ensure the continued financial stability of, and quality of care provided by, Midland Health.
Facilitate development and expansion of existing wellness programs, while educating Midland County on the local resources through enhanced communication methods.
Develop a strategy to acquire resources to increase the number of primary care providers in the Midland community by 40 in the next 5 years.
Improve specific, modifiable health behaviors – sexually transmitted infections, adult obesity, teen pregnancy, and alcohol-related traffic deaths – to enhance Midland’s position in RWJF’s annual CHR.
Q: What is the most important takeaway for the community regarding the Health & Wellness objective and strategies?
A: The Working Group’s focus on increasing the number of primary care providers in the Midland community in the next 5 years establishes the commitment of ensuring quality and accessibility of care for all residents of Midland County. Primary care providers are vital for the health and wellness of our community because of the role they play in preventative medicine, early identification of a wide variety of medical conditions, and treatment. This combination of care delivery will lead to high quality healthcare availability and delivery in our community.
Q: How does Priority Midland define “health & wellness”?
A: Priority Midland defines health and wellness broadly to encompass multiple components including the quality of care delivery by Midland’s health system, the environmental quality of Midland County, and the availability of quality lifestyle choices that enhance the community’s overall health.
Q: How do you define “primary care provider” (strategy #2)?
A: A primary care physician (PCP), or primary care provider, is a health care professional who practices general medicine. Primary care providers are the standard first access point for medical care. Most primary care providers are physicians, including family physicians, internists and pediatricians. Nurse practitioners (NPs) and physician assistants (PAs) can also be primary care providers, usually in team practices with physicians.
Q: Why was health & wellness identified as an area of need for Midland?
A: Health & wellness was identified as a key focus area for Midland because access to quality healthcare and wellness opportunities are core elements of a strong, world-class community, which is Priority Midland’s vision.
Q: Why is the focus specifically on primary care providers (strategy #2)?
A: Primary care providers are vital for the health and wellness of our community because of the role they play in preventative medicine, early identification of a wide variety of medical conditions, and treatment. This combination of care delivery will lead to high quality healthcare availability and delivery in our community.
Q: Why is Priority Midland specifically focused on adding 40 providers (strategy #2)?
A: Adding 40 providers is based on projections from the Midland Economic Impact Study and Midland Health’s economic analysis of anticipated requirements for forecasted demand. The intent of this goal is to increase Midland’s primary care providers per 100,000 population to equal or exceed the average for the state of Texas.
Q: What is the significance of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF) annual County Health Rankings (CHR)?
A: The RWJ county health rankings compares the health of nearly all counties in the United States to others within its own state, and supports coalitions tackling the social, economic and environmental factors that influence health. Therefore, this data serves as a reliable and nationally recognized baseline for the overall health of our community.
Q: Where does Midland County currently rank in the RWJ annual CHR?
A: Midland County currently ranks 29th out of 244 Texas counties rated by RWJ.
Q: Which RWJ health factors has the Health and Wellness workgroup identified to target?
A: The Health and Wellness workgroup has chosen to focus on the health factors progressing in a potentially harmful manner per RWJ tracking.
Declining health factors for Midland County: Adult Obesity, Alcohol-impaired driving deaths, and sexually transmitted infections.
Q: What would achieving this objective mean for Midland?
A: Achieving this objective would place Midland in the top 10 healthy counties in Texas, representing a significant enhancement in our quality of life and making Midland a more attractive place to live and work.
Q: What characterizes Midland’s current state of health & wellness?
A: Midland has a strong health & wellness community, with a premier hospital and numerous independent physician practices and nonprofit organizations providing various services across the health & wellness field. Our community has opportunities for improvement, particularly within the targeted health factors of the RWJ community health ranking. Like other Texas communities, Midland has a very high rate of uninsured residents, making access to healthcare a challenge for nearly 20% of our neighbors.
Q: How will the continued financial stability of, and quality of care provided by, Midland Health be ensured (strategy #1)?
A: Initiatives are currently in development to address this strategy.
Q: How will existing wellness programs be developed and expanded, while educating Midland County on the local resources (strategy #2)?
A: The second strategy will be achieved through three priority initiatives:
- Identify current local programs with the ability to scale up.
- Focus on developing collaborations between similar existing initiatives.
- Develop, produce, and maintain a centralized repository of community resources.
- Communicate with diverse community leaders to identify local needs
- Provide information on available community resources via varied communications methods.
Q: How will primary care providers be increased by 40 in the Midland community (strategy #3)?
A: The third strategy will be achieved through three priority initiatives:
- Expand the Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center Family Medicine Residency program.
- Establish a comprehensive database of current primary care providers in Midland County.
- Renew and increase funding for physician recruitment, focused on primary care expansion.
Q: How will targeted health factors identified by RWJ be improved (strategy #4)?
A: Further community engagement and development of these focus areas is currently underway.
Q: How will this work be funded?
A: Each initiative will require different funding sources due to the varied requirements and populations they will serve. As individual projects develop, then funding requirements will be evaluated and a plan to locate funding sources will begin.
Q: Who is leading this effort?
A: The Working Group members were selected due to their wide breadth of connections across the health & wellness spectrum in addition to their varied experience, skills, and willingness to contribute their time and effort to the initiative. They are from across Midland’s entire health landscape, including representation from Midland Health, the Midland Behavioral Health Initiative, Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center, Midland College, Midland Children’s Rehabilitation Center, University of Texas of the Permian Basin, Permian Strategic Partnership, Midland Independent School District, FMH Foundation, and many more.
Q: Who will undertake the work required to meet the objective and strategies?
A: The Working Group will appoint individual volunteers who will maintain responsibility for progress on each initiative. These include cross-functional support from across the health spectrum.
Q: Is there an opportunity for Midland-area residents to get involved with and support this endeavor?
A: As the Working Group continues to develop its initiatives, Midland’s support of these initiatives will be critical to their success. For more information, please fill out the form on the prioritymidland.com homepage, and note your interest in Health & Wellness. The Working Group will be providing more specific guidance and requests in the upcoming weeks and months.