Planned Approach to Community Health Model (PATCH)

The Planned Approach to Community Health Model was developed in 1983 by the Centers for Disease Control.  State and Local Health Departments use this model to develop community-based health education programs (Kreuter, 1992).  The model is a cycle of five steps that keep going as the created program becomes something of a sustainable activity.  Here is what the model looks like:



As you can see from the model, there are several labor intensive steps.   Mobilizing the community takes time and may not be easy if one is looking at harder to reach communities.  I have learned through my time at Walden University that even being a member of the community does not ensure participation.  This step may involve study of the community itself in order to find out what will mobilize them.  Once the community is mobilized, then more data collection will occur regarding the health education program.  Once the data is collected, priorities are chosen and a plan created.  After the plan is implemented, it is evaluated.

I look at this model to be good if you are working on the topic du jour and bad if your funding is suddenly cut.  I think one of the worst things public health can do when developing programs is to not create them to be sustainable.  This hits really hard when money is obtained to help a diverse community only to yank the rug out in a year or two.  After that happens, trust from the community is gone.  The commitment turns into an empty promise.   I believe we can remedy this by building programs with sustainment in mind. Maybe go with a smaller program that can be sustained over time than the moon shot that cannot be replicated.  The communities you serve will thank you for it.