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San Miguel County Public Health News

Posted on: February 1, 2023

San Miguel County Community Health Assessment Survey Concludes



Public Health receives feedback from residents to prioritize future goals and programs

Media Contacts: Mike Bordogna, County Manager, 970.728.3844,

(February 1, 2023) – San Miguel County, CO – San Miguel County Public Health and the West Central Public Health Partnership (WCPHP) have concluded the 2022 community health assessment survey conducted from September 24 through December 16, 2022. Of the 2,333 survey responses collected, 564 were from San Miguel County residents, with 520 County responses in English and 44 in Spanish.

Open to residents of San Miguel, Ouray, Delta, Montrose, Gunnison, and Hinsdale counties, the survey was conducted to help local and regional public health officials evaluate the strengths and strains of the communities, prioritize services, and weigh in on the priority health needs of our residents.

Initial survey findings suggest over 90% of west central residents feel they are in "good or better” health and have some form of health insurance. The survey also reinforced key areas for improvement throughout the region, establishing that about 70% of residents have concerns about access to mental health care, over 20% are unable to meet basic needs with their household income, and approximately 15% worry about not having enough food. 

Furthermore, about half of regional parents surveyed noted access to childcare is stressful, especially as it pertains to availability, and over 10% of residents say they are concerned about immigration matters for themselves or their families.

San Miguel County (SMC) residents who participated in the survey were given the option to enter a raffle to win one of three $100 gift cards to their grocery store of choice, with an impressive 346 entering the raffle. The three winners were notified and will be mailed their gift cards in the following weeks.

"We would like to express our gratitude for the support from our partner organizations including Tri-County Health NetworkWilkinson Public LibraryLone Cone Library and larger area employers, as well as the enthusiasm of the community,” said Public Health Director Grace Franklin, “We exceeded our goal for the number of surveys collected by over 50%, making our County data particularly robust. We are super grateful for everyone who participated, and for the hard work by WCPHP which has so adeptly managed the whole survey process.”

Additional qualitative analysis of 'key informant' and community member interviews is currently underway. WCPHP leadership will use all findings to set priorities in the spring of 2023 which will inform a regional health improvement plan by the fall of 2023.

"In the coming months, we expect the regional analysis to be refined while we look more closely at data specific to San Miguel County. Insights from the findings will also help in developing a local work plan," added Director Franklin. "We look forward to sharing data and findings with the public as they are presented."

Since 2005, San Miguel County Public Health has worked in collaboration with the West Central Public Health Partnership to strengthen the region's public health infrastructure. The partnership completed two rounds of health assessments in 2011 and 2016 to better inform regional and county-specific health plans and developed community health improvement plans in 2013 and 2018, respectively.

To be added to the list of San Miguel County stakeholders and for those interested in learning more about WCPHP's Community Health Improvement Plan, please contact Anne Brown, SMCPH Health Educator at



San Miguel County Public Health's mission statement is to protect and enhance the health of the people and environment of San Miguel County by identifying and equitably addressing existing and emerging public health needs with the vision to support the communities of San Miguel County to live better and longer.


In 2005, acknowledging the public health needs of their rural communities, public and environmental health officials from six counties along Colorado's western slope came together to strengthen the region's public health infrastructure. With support from The Colorado Trust (The Trust), representatives embarked on a six-month strategic planning process, culminating in establishing the West Central Public Health Partnership (WCPHP). In the years that followed, officials enacted intergovernmental agreements outlining partnership roles and responsibilities, and participants embarked on numerous multi-jurisdictional public health campaigns and programs. The partnership completed two rounds of assessments in 2011 and 2016 to better inform regional and county-specific health plans and develop community health improvement plans in 2013 and 2018, respectively.

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