Developed in 2001, NACCHO’s Mobilizing for Action through Planning and Partnerships (MAPP) framework is now one of the most widely used and reputable community health improvement (CHI) frameworks in the field. MAPP provides a structure for communities to assess their most pressing population health issues and align resources across sectors for strategic action. It emphasizes the integral role of broad stakeholders and community engagement; the need for policy, systems, and environmental (PSE) change; and alignment of community resources toward shared goals. The process results in a community health (needs) assessment (CH[N]A) and a community health improvement plan (CHIP).
Over the years, MAPP has evolved to align with revisions to assessments, such as the Local Public Health System Assessment (LPHSA), and changing community health requirements across sectors, including the requirements of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act for non-profit hospitals to conduct a community health needs assessment and adopt an implementation strategy. In 2011, the Public Health Accreditation Board (PHAB) launched the first national, voluntary accreditation program for health departments and its standards require a CHA and CHIP and explicitly reference MAPP as a model to meet these standards.
The first formal, national evaluation of the MAPP framework was funded by HRSA in 2018-2019, almost 20 years following its launch, to understand MAPP’s value, relevance, utility, and effectiveness as a CHI process. Results from this evaluation demonstrated MAPP’s value in the field as it has proven effective in forging strong partnerships, understanding community perspectives, meeting national standards and requirements, aligning strategy, and laying groundwork for health equity. However, the evaluation also provided foundational evidence for the need to update the framework, specifically ensuring that health equity, community engagement, and policy, systems, and environmental change could be better integrated into the framework.
The MAPP evolution process aims to adapt the MAPP framework and enhance related training, technical assistance, and resources around community health improvement planning to better enable communities to improve population health. Moving from understanding the existing challenges and opportunities in the historical MAPP framework to the redesign and delivery of a revised MAPP framework grounded in evolving public health needs, the figure below summarizes the four phases of the MAPP evolution process. NACCHO has and will continue to engage the field in revisions to ensure that the revised framework is informed by practitioners
We invite you to join us as we collectively move the field of CHI into a new era, one that recognizes the importance of community engagement, seeks to identify and address health inequities and social injustices, and promotes a field-tested, data driven approach.
For more details on the MAPP evaluation, review the MAPP Evolution Foundational Principles and the MAPP Evolution Blueprint Executive Summary. You can also watch a recent webinar on the MAPP Evolution Process.