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2015 Pratt County
Community Health Needs Assessment
An assessment of Pratt County conducted jointly by Pratt Regional Medical Center and the Pratt County Health Department.

This Community Health Needs Assessment was conducted for Pratt County by Pratt Regional Medical Center and the Pratt County Health Department with oversight from the Pratt Health Coalition. The purpose for conducting a Community Health Needs Assessment is to identify, prioritize and address current health issues in Pratt County.

Pratt Regional Medical Center and the Pratt County Health Department primarily serve the medical needs of the citizens of Pratt and the surrounding rural area in Pratt County, a population totaling 9,850 residents. Pratt County includes its county seat, Pratt, a city of approximately 6,000 residents located in the plains of south-central Kansas. Since 2010, Pratt County’s population has increased by 2%, which is higher than the state’s 1.8% increase. (County population in 2010 was 9,656.)

Description of the Community Served

Deemed the "Gateway to the High Plains" the area in which Pratt is located is a rolling plain of green grassland, broken by the Ninnescah River and the hills along Elm and Turkey creeks.

Pratt is proud of its 270 acres of parks. Once a tall-grass prairie, Pratt is known as "a tree city." The largest park in Pratt, Lemon Park, is approximately 117 acres and has a nature trail, wood sculptures, pond, shelter houses, gazebo, lighted walking path, baseball, softball, and playground facilities.

Pratt is a regional center for shopping, medical care, higher education, cultural activities, outdoor recreation, agriculture, and industry. The hub of Kansas Wildlife and Parks management is located near Pratt and the Kansas Department of Wildlife and Parks Nature Center is located just two miles east and one mile south of Pratt.

The median income for Pratt County is $46,035 for 2009-2013. The 2013 population breakdown by age group is: 50.2% ages 19 to 64; 24.4% under the age of 18; 7.3% under the age of 5. Pratt’s 65 and older population (18.1%) is higher than the state percentage, which is 14%. Data detailing current demographics, including income levels, age and educational attainment for the area with a comparison to state and national information is included in Attachment A.

The community survey process began in March 2015. The feedback portion of the assessment was completed in July 2015. The data processing and action planning took place in July and August 2015. Feedback from the survey (Attachment B), combined with data from sources such as, County Health Rankings and Roadmaps, and Healthy Kansas 2020 helped health care providers, community leaders and volunteers identify and prioritize strategies to address current health needs in Pratt County.  Data is included in Attachment A.

A healthy community is not based solely upon physical health, but on other factors such as: the economy, economic development and the environment. Three years ago (in 2012), a Community Health Needs Assessment was completed for Pratt County. That assessment identified a number of health needs in Pratt County, and as a result, priority was given to these identified issues:

  • Obesity/Healthy Lifestyles
  • Community Building/Economic Development
  • Positive Decision Making for Adolescents and Teens
  • Access to Healthcare

The 2015 Community Health Needs Assessment confirmed that the community and collation work has been heading in the right direction; therefore these priorities will remain our priorities for the next three years.

Question #2 in the 2015 CHNA survey asked: As a result of the last Community Health Needs Assessment (completed in 2012) priority was given to these identified issues:

1. Obesity/Healthy Lifestyles
2. Community Building/Economic Development
3. Positive Decision Making for Adolescents and Teens
4. Access to Healthcare.

In your opinion, should these priorities remain the same or should they change?

Answer Choices % of Responses Number (284)
Remain the same 76.68% 217
Need to change 23.67% 67

More than 75% said we need to keep them the same, and about 23% said they need to change. The written comments did not specifically address why or how the priorities needed to change. Responses focused on the four priorities being put in different order, for example move 1 to 4 and change 4 to 1. There were not many suggestions to add new priorities, although mental health, affordable health insurance, and care for the elderly were mentioned.

Obesity/Healthy Lifestyles

Educating the community on healthy lifestyle choices, coupled with a health friendly environment, should result in improving the health of citizens and the obesity rates in Pratt County.

For the past several years, the Pratt Health Coalition has been working together to create a more healthy environment for Pratt County. The Coalition has worked with city officials to create designated bike paths and additional sidewalks. They have worked with area businesses to create healthier work environments through Work Well Kansas, encouraging employees to be active and eat healthy foods. They have also hosted two Pratt Adventures, which are free events that encourage families to get outdoors and enjoy the parks and activities available in Pratt.

In January, 2015 the Pratt Health Coalition was awarded a $2500 Blue CHIP Award from Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Kansas and the Kansas Recreation and Park Association. The Foundation intends to use the award toward expanding Pratt’s sidewalk system, linking destinations such as the grocery store, downtown, and parks and recreation areas. The Coalition is working to create an environment that promotes healthy lifestyles by building sidewalks, walking trails and bike paths. Building it a little bit at a time will help create a healthier environment.

The Pratt Health Foundation hosts an annual Bicycle Safety and Fitness course for third and fourth grade students in Pratt as well as the annual Dental Check-Up event at Pratt and Skyline schools. The bike safety and fitness course and the dental screening both began with grants. The Pratt Health Foundation does not receive grant money to conduct either one of them anymore, but because of the benefit both events provide, they choose to continue to have them every year with a minimal cost and a great return.

The Pratt Health Coalition and the Pratt Health Foundation will continue to work to educate the community about healthy lifestyles while they continue to focus on creating a healthier environment in Pratt County.  

Pratt Health Coalition Members
Kansas Dept. of Wildlife, Parks and Tourism – Linda Lanterman
Pratt City Commission – Bill Hlavachick, Luke Kumberg
Pratt County Commission – Glenna Borho
Pratt Recreation Dept. – Bruce Pinkall
Pratt County Health Dept. – Deb McGraw
Pratt County Extension – Jody Drake                                     
PRMC – Kim Stivers
Pratt Chamber of Commerce – Kim DeClue
Pratt Community College – Rita Pinkall
Pratt Health Foundation – DeWayne Bryan
Agape Health Clinic – Jeanette Gaider
USD 382 – Suzan Patton
USD 438 – Mike Sanders
Blythe Family Fitness – Kristina Kauffman

Community Building/Economic Development

There is a need to improve or focus on community building and economic development in Pratt County.

The Circles program has begun in Pratt County and volunteers are working to provide support and help families learn new ways to overcome poverty, which in turn economically benefits the community. The Circles program is based out of the Hope Center in Pratt. Individuals who are willing to work together with others can create a positive outcome and gain the knowledge and support they need to overcome poverty. Volunteers are coming together to offer support and guidance to those who want to make a positive change in their lives.

The Hope Center is an example of collaborative community effort. It provides a one stop shop for people who are looking for community resources. PRMC relocated the Prescription Assistance Program to the Hope Center. The Hope Center is located on South Main Street in Pratt.

Collaboration is important to community building. Through volunteer efforts, the Hope Center and Circles program will be a focus for the future. There are many other collaborative efforts taking place in the Pratt community. These collaborative efforts were brought to light in question #5 of the 2015 CHNA:

5. There are groups of people working together in Pratt to improve the health and quality of life in our community. Which of these community resources are you aware of?

Answers Responses (287)
Hope Center 86.41% - 248
Agape Health Clinic 84.67% - 243
Pratt County Food Bank (Was listed as Pratt Christian Food Bank) 84.32% - 242
Friendship Meals 73.52% - 211
Leadership 2000 62.72% - 180
Retired Senior Volunteer Program 58.54% - 168
Pratt Health Coalition 46.34% - 133
Circles 43.90% - 126
Eagle Wings Ministry (Pratt Presbyterian Church Mentors) 24.74% - 71
Pratt Community Resource Council 18.47% - 53
Pratt County SWAT (Solutions With Actions Together) Team 14.29% - 41

This list of collaborative efforts generated comments from survey respondents to include other collaborative efforts that are taking place in Pratt County.

5. Other groups that should be included:

Other Groups to Include
Pratt Young Professionals Mom to Mom
Nursing Mama's Group -
Breastfeeding Support Group
Parents as Teachers
Crossroads Pregnancy Center 4-H and K-State Research and Extension
Bread of Life South Central Community Foundation
Pass it Forward Chamber of Commerce and ED Board
Pratt Music Group at the Episcopal Church Filley Art Group
Jr. Leadership Club 62
Ministerial Alliance Horizons
South Wind Hospice Beyond the Bell
Civic Clubs: Kiwanis, Rotary, Optimists Vocational Rehab
Youth For Christ  

Positive Decision Making for Adolescents and Teens

Young people are faced with many decisions that could affect their lives in either a positive or negative way. Concerns regarding teen pregnancy, drug, and alcohol use and other risky behaviors are important to the community. Our youth are our future.

Another local coalition, the Pratt County SWAT (Solutions With Actions Together) Team has been meeting regularly for the past three years to build a foundation for a sustainable coalition that will work to help youth in the Pratt community make positive decisions and avoid using drugs and alcohol.

The SWAT Team has been working in partnership with the Kansas Preferred Family Health Regional Prevention Center. Together, they have put up a billboard on the east side of town that reminds people of the consequences of purchasing alcohol for minors; hired a part-time community mobilizer; hosted a speaker and panel discussion event at LMS and PHS; hosted a sticker shock event to help prevent underage drinking; and continue to pursue grant opportunities for implementation of evidence based strategies.

In June 2015, the SWAT Team received a $25,000 grant from Kansas Strategic Planning Framework. The grant money will be used to:  pay for the new Pratt High School random drug testing program; provide educational speakers for Pratt and Skyline school districts; collaborate with Pratt law enforcement; and promote the It Matters media campaign.

The SWAT Team meets on the first Wednesday of every month at noon at Pratt Regional Medical Center. The group welcomes anyone who is interested in helping youth make positive decisions and say no to drugs and alcohol.

SWAT (Solutions With Action Together) Team Members
Counseling Center - Tracy Green
Pratt County Health Department - Suzanne Hageman, RN
Pratt Police Department - Lyda Kasselman
Pratt Teen Center - Kim Evert
USD 382 - Suzan Patton
USD 438 - Julie Ewing
Family Crisis Center - Sandy Armstrong
Pratt County Attorney - Ken Van Blaricum
Recovery Community - Jimmy Jack Bailey
Pratt Regional Medical Center - Kim Stivers
KMMM Radio - Lisa Coss
Eagle Wings Ministries - Carol Stull
Horizons Mental Health Center - Brenda Moser
Open Door Ministry - Sharon Schmidt
Pratt County Community Mobilizer - Misty Piester

Access to Healthcare

Continuing to support the activities and efforts of the Agape Health Clinic will take a commitment from volunteers, physicians and the community. Remaining focused on the mission to provide access to health care is a priority.

For several years now, local healthcare providers have been providing care for those who are uninsured through the Agape Health Clinic. The free clinic is open on the first Saturday of every month. Local doctors, mid-levels, nurses and volunteers work together to provide this service for the Pratt community.

PRMC hired a Marketplace Navigator to assist those who need health insurance through the marketplace. This position was created through a shared expense with a grant from United Methodist Ministries. The Navigator helps consumers understand the new requirements to enroll in health coverage and to understand their options under the Affordable Care Act. The Marketplace Navigator is available to the community from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday and is willing to meet after hours or on weekends at the office if necessary.

Overall, the community is doing a good job of providing quality healthcare. Providing access to healthcare remains a priority. It is important not to lose sight of this priority, as there will always be room for improvement.

In the 2015 CHNA, question #1 asked: How you would rate the "Overall Quality" of healthcare in Pratt County?

Answer Choices % of Responses Number (290)
Very Good 31.38% 91
Good 53.45% 155
Neutral 10.34% 30
Bad 3.10% 9
Very Bad 1.72% 5

Who was Involved in the Community Health Needs Assessment? How was it conducted?

The Community Health Needs Assessment was initiated and chaired jointly by Pratt Regional Medical Center and the Pratt County Health Department. Each provided roughly equal financial and in-kind support for the assessment process. Oversight of the assessment was provided by the Pratt Health Coalition.

PRMC and Pratt County Health Department representatives researched other Kansas Community Health Needs Assessment processes and developed a series of questions that would relate to and help measure progress from the work done since the 2012-13 CHNA. It was decided that an online survey would be the most efficient way to gather feedback from the community. The online survey questions were designed to find out if the coalition work that has been done in Pratt County over the past several years was working. Are we headed in the right direction? Are our priorities still relevant? Where do we go from here?

An online survey was launched on Pratt Regional Medical Center’s website in March 2015 and remained open until June 1, 2015. To encourage a wide range of participation, special invitations that included a link to the survey were sent via e-mail to key community leaders; large employers; and all educational, governmental, civic and health related organizations within Pratt County. Paper surveys were distributed at PRMC, the public library and the Health Department. To ensure input from persons with a broad knowledge of the community, notice of the available online and paper surveys were announced, as a public service, on the local radio station, on the PRMC Facebook page and in the local newspaper. Overall, 294 people participated in the survey. Complete results and written comments from the survey are included in Attachment B.

A town hall meeting took place at Pratt Regional Medical Center on July 9, 2015. Approximately 20 people attended the meeting. There were representatives from the community, business sector, schools, county, city, hospice, health department and hospital in attendance. Although there were not many people in attendance, there was representation from a broad community spectrum.

At the town hall meeting, results from the online survey were reviewed and discussed. Data from the website was reviewed. Key health indicators were reviewed and discussed. Comments and feedback took place after reviewing the data and survey results. The general consensus was to continue with the current priorities, and build upon local coalitions and community collaboration.

Feedback from the online survey and town hall meeting was then reviewed by the Pratt Health Coalition. They also reviewed data collected, discussed trends and identified comparisons within the community and with similar sized counties. Coalition members agree the priorities should remain the same, and the coalitions and volunteer efforts in the community should continue their work to make improvements.

Community Assets Identified

Question #4 in the CHNA survey asked: What makes you most proud of the Pratt community? 294 responses were given and the following themes were mentioned throughout those responses:

Themes (294 comments)
People are friendly and caring
Beautiful Parks, Variety of Recreation Activities, Walking Trails
Schools: Pratt, Skyline, PCC (help for special needs children is also available)
Healthcare Services: doctors and new hospital
Resources: Circles, Hope Center, Agape Health Clinic, Civic Clubs and Volunteer Organizations, Community Leaders Trying to Make a Difference
Filley Art Museum
Blythe Family Fitness Center
Local Businesses Thriving: retail, banks, downtown
Small town: safe, clean, good for families, quality of life, simple

Next Steps

Building upon the coalitions and collaborative efforts that are in place will continue to improve the health of Pratt County residents. The past three years have allowed the community to lay a foundation for collaboration and communication. Maintaining interest and activity are challenges we face. Expanding the dialogue about the health needs assessment, priorities and activities that are taking place will generate motivation to continue working on the priorities.

This assessment is available on Pratt Regional Medical Center website A copy may also be obtained by calling Pratt Regional Medical Center at 620-450-1160.


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