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Promoting Health Communities Windshield Survey

This article discusses Promoting Health Communities Windshield Survey.

Instructions

Review Section 21. Windshield and Walking Surveys from Community Tool Box.

Review the Scorecard example provided in Section 18. Creating and Using Community Report Cards fromCommunity Tool Box.

Review the Windshield Survey Resources activity in this week,which includes data analysis and plan/implementation activities to improve population health; this has been designed to apply course content in a practice setting.

Observe your family’s community by driving around the area. Consider aspects of the community that could affect residents\’ health and any Healthy People 2020 Leading Health Indicators that may be applicable to the community.

Conduct your own Windshield Survey. Be sure to include the following components: 

  • The age, nature, and condition of the community’s available housing
  • Infrastructure needs
  • Roads, bridges, streetlights, etc.
  • The presence or absence of functioning businesses and industrial facilities
  • The location, condition, and use of public spaces
  • The amount of activity on the streets at various times of the day, week, or year
  • The noise level in various parts of the community
  • The amount and movement of traffic at various times of day
  • The location and condition of public buildings
  • The city or town hall,courthouse, etc.
  • Walkability of community
  • Are there walking paths/biking paths/safety?
  • What is the proximity for walkability to community resources?
  • Availability of public transportation
  • It’s cost?
  • It’s accessibility?
  • Availability of community centers and public spaces, such as social service centers, public libraries, parks, churches, community centers, recreation centers
  • Availability of health care facilities and resources, such as clinics and hospitals
  • How many are there?
  • Food options available and presence of nutrition
  • Does the area have characteristics of food deserts?
  • Are there grocery stores?
  • The presence of homelessness
  • Is there a homeless population?
  • Are there homeless services?
  • Police/Fire presence
  • Schools in the area
  • What is the location and physical condition of the schools?

As you compile your Windshield Survey data, be sure to include:

  • Data overview of all community components as identified in the Community Tool Box Resource
  • Strengths of community as evidenced by Windshield Survey
  • Weaknesses (gaps in service) as evidenced by Windshield Survey
  • 1 problem based on the identified gap in community resources as an indicator of potential poor health outcomes

Compile all your information into the Windshield Survey Template and complete the Data Summary questions at the end. (A Table is provided in the template, but you can create your own table in the document to display your information.)

Note: Remove all personally identifying information such as the family members’ names. Refer to family members by initials only 

Solution

Promoting Health Communities Windshield Survey

Windshield and walking surveys are systematic observations of a community from a moving vehicle and on foot (Rabinowtiz, 2021). Windshield and walking surveys are an important part of a community evaluation, as they are crucial in determining community characteristics by understanding its general/specific conditions such as physical, social, or economic characteristics. This essay presents a Windshield and walking survey of Manhattan valley in New York, United States.

Data Overview

DataStrengthsWeaknesses
The age, nature, and condition of the community’s available housingMost houses are 60 years old but in good condition. The houses are mostly concrete, while the architectural design varies due to preferences and economic conditions. Homes are spacious, with sidewalks on the front and back. New affordable housing projects.A few run-down buildings and rows of dilapidated tenements. Several low–income apartments. Several homeless families. 
Infrastructure needs – Roads, bridges, streetlights, etc. Most roads, streetlights, sidewalks and badges are in functional condition.   Accessible two subway linesA few damaged roads with potholes, nonfunctional streetlights and damaged sidewalks.
The presence or absence of functioning businesses and industrial facilitiesSeveral small, medium and big business premises. No business/industrial parks but has access to neighboring business parksFew businesses in substandard buildings.
The location, condition, and use of public spacesThe neighborhood in the northern part of Upper West Side in Manhattan, New York City. Several gathering squares and Children playgroundsMost public places are occupied, leading to traffic jams and human congestion during rush hours.  
The amount of activity on the streets at various times of the day, week, or yearThere is lots of activity during the morning (7 am – 10 am), evening hours (5 pm – 10 pm), and holidays.More street activities during the day (7 am – 6 pm) and during warm months. This increases crime rates.
The noise level in various parts of the communityQuite and moderate noise levels in residential apartments, health facilities and high-end residential blocks.High noise levels along major highways, in restaurants, bars and in low-income neighborhoods.
The amount and movement of traffic at various times of dayThe movement of traffic includes individuals going to and from work daily.Traffic movement is high during rush hours.  During warm months, the amount of traffic and movement increases. An increase in traffic is associated with a high crime rate.
The location and condition of public buildings: The city or town hall, courthouse, etc. The neighborhood has running and effective schools, post offices, museums, community centers, a police station, and a library.The neighborhood lacks courthouses, town/city halls, consulates, embassies.
The walkability of community:  Are there walking paths/biking paths/safety?Most community resources are walking distances away. There are well maintained walking paths/biking paths pathA seasonal upsurge in crime rates prevents individuals from walking in some areas.
What is the proximity for walkability to community resources? Most community resources are few blocks away.Walkability is limited during the winter and rainy seasons.
Availability of public transportation: It’s the cost? It’s accessibility? Public transportation is available via bus, rail or subway operated by MTA. The average cost of transport is about $2.75 for most people. Express buses cost $6.75. Rail fare varies with time. Disabled people are legible for a reduced fare Children under 44inches tall rides for free. Subways operate 24/7. Enhanced overnight bus service availableSocial distancing due to pandemics has reduced operation capacity. No shared rides. Low-income households cannot use public transport.
Availability of community centers and public spaces, such as social service centers, public libraries, parks, churches, community centers, recreation centersSeveral communities and public service centers are Trinity Lutheran Church of Manhattan, Holy Name of Jesus and St. Gregory the Great, etc. Bloomingdale Library. Frederic Douglass Centre. Franciscan community CentreMost of these community centers and public spaces have specific operating times, conditions, and costs. The Covid-19 pandemic limitation of gathering has affected the functionality of these centers/spaces.
Availability of health care facilities and resources, such as clinics and hospitals. How many are there?There are three health centers, i.e., Riverside health Centre, Ryan health Centre and Ryan Health, women and children. There are two clinics, i.e., Riverside Sexual Health Clinic and Northwell Health-GoHealth.Big hospitals are in the neighboring communities. This increases the risk of death in critical cases. Most homeless and uninsured families’ access to these healthcare institutions is limited.
Food options available and presence of nutrition: Does the area have characteristics of food deserts?There several food options available for both low-income and high-income residents.  Organic and healthy food options are expensive, and affordability depends on family income. Perishable and fresh food desserts are common among middle and high-income households.
Are there grocery stores?  There are various grocery stores accessible to most households. 
The presence of homelessness: Is there a homeless population?Homelessness is on the rise.Homelessness predisposes individuals to various health factors, including cold and microorganisms. Homeless people are also exposed to significant cases of communicable diseases, HIV, and insecurity.
Are there homeless services?There are homeless services, include: Trinity place shelterAn increase in homelessness is associated with increased crime.
Police/Fire presenceThere is a police and fire department presence in the neighborhood.The neighborhood is overpopulated and cannot be optimally served by single police and fire presence.
Schools in the areaSchools include: Montclare Children’s School, Holy Name School, Public School 163, Schechter Manhattan, BASIS Independent School, Edward A. Reynolds West Side High School, The Alfred E. Smith School, Morningside Montessori School, The BloomingdaleThere are no public universities or private higher institutions in the neighborhood. Covid-19 pandemic has disrupted the normal in-attendance learning method.
What are the location and physical condition of the schools?Schools are uniformly distributed in the neighborhood. The schools are in an appropriate state in terms of structures and facilities.Segregation between high and low-income students in schools is prominent.

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Promoting health communities windshield survey
Promoting Health Communities Windshield Survey

Data Summary

Please summarize your data by responding to the following: 

  1. Describe the strengths of the community as evidenced by Windshield Survey. 

The strengths of the community rely on the availability of community and social services for its population. These resources, both public and private, serve to promote healthy living and in meeting certain needs. According to DeSalvo et al. (2017), community resources and services are crucial for socio-economic and environmental conditions that affect health and health equity. For instance, local schools serve as learning centers, churches serve as places for spiritual growth, health centers provide clinical services, and police stations provide security.

  • Describe the weaknesses (gaps in service) as evidenced by Windshield Survey. 

The community’s weakness is the upsurge in the crime rate attributed to increased homelessness and low-income levels. Another significant weakness in the community is the lack of high-level hospitals to meet critical needs, e.g., accidents. Statistics show that the population density in Manhattan Valley 88,223 people/mi2 against 27,486 people/mi2 in the wide New York state (City-Data.com, 2020). Lack of these vital services predisposes individuals to disparities, which can encourage crime rates, as is the case in the neighborhood. Increasing homelessness is also associated with more cases of covid-19 infections. Consequently, the lack of high-level hospitals has led to the conversion of hotel rooms to isolation centers for covid-19 patients.

A significant gap in the Manhattan Valley neighborhood is homelessness – a social health determinant (Healthy People, 2020). With the upsurge in homelessness, most people are predisposed to poor living conditions and food insecurity.  When sick, homeless patients often face relapse due to inadequate conditions and exacerbating factors. Safe homes and neighborhoods constitute healthier people (Rolfe et al., 2020).  Besides, the places that people live affect their health. In Manhattan Valley, homeless individuals live from food deserts and have meager incomes.

References

City-Data.com, (2020). Manhattan Valley neighborhood in New York, New York (NY), 10025 detailed profile. Available at http://www.city-data.com/neighborhood/Manhattan-Valley-New-York-NY.html (Accessed 10 June 2021)

DeSalvo, K. B., Wang, Y. C., Harris, A., Auerbach, J., Koo, D., & O’Carroll, P. A Call to Action for Public Health to Meet the Challenges of the 21st Century. 10.5888/pcd14.170017

Healthy People 2020. https://www.healthypeople.gov/2020/leading-health-indicators/2020-LHI-Topics (Accessed 10 June 2021)

Rabinowtiz, P. (2021). Chapter3: Section 21. Windshield and Walking Surveys. Community Tool Box. Available at https://ctb.ku.edu/en/table-of-contents/assessment/assessing-community-needs-and-resources/windshield-walking-surveys/main (Accessed 10 June 2021).

Rolfe, S., Garnham, L., Godwin, J., Anderson, I., Seaman, P., & Donaldson, C. (2020). Housing as a social determinant of health and wellbeing: developing an empirically-informed realist theoretical frameworkBMC public health20(1), 1-19. https://doi.org/10.1186/s12889-020-09224-0

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