They’ll come in pairs the first three weekends in October, knocking on doors with a list of questions about your health habits.
If you answer, you’ll be aiding the county and a hospital in figuring out future health programs and policies in Johnson County.
The health assessment survey, done in 87 randomly selected neighborhoods, will update information the county collected in 2011. The survey has been taken every five years since 1996.
Volunteers will knock on doors at every seventh house in the computer-selected neighborhoods. People who agree to answer the survey will give about a 20-minute interview on their health habits and needs. The county hopes to conduct around 650 interviews, said Barbara Mitchell, spokeswoman for the Johnson County Department of Health and Environment.
The county uses that information to find how to address health needs of the residents, she said. Results from the most recent survey, for example, helped the county find ways to increase the number of schools that conduct annual dental screenings, as required by state law, Mitchell said.
The surveying can be done on a deck or porch. The questions will be about general health needs of the community, rather than specific health histories of individuals, she said.
Postcards will go out to selected neighborhoods and homeowners associations ahead of the survey.
The survey is being done sooner than the usual five years this year because of a new Internal Revenue Service rule that affects Shawnee Mission Medical Center. Nonprofit hospitals are required to do a community health assessment every three years. Because of that, the hospital and county have teamed up to do the survey more often.
This year’s survey also will be different in the way it is conducted. In the past, the county has done town-hall style meetings, rather than door-to-door. Mitchell said the private interviews will provide a more accurate picture of the county’s health needs.
The survey cost is estimated at $10,000 to $12,000 and will be funded by grant money, some previously budgeted county funds and Shawnee Mission Medical Center.
The most recent survey was the cornerstone of county efforts to increase consumption of healthy foods, physical activity and the connections and referrals between social and health services agencies.
The county is looking for volunteers to conduct the interviews. Training will take place from 2 t o 6 p.m.; Thursday, Oct. 8 and 15 and from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Friday, Saturday, Oct. 9, 10, 16 and 17.
To volunteer, contact Barbara Mitchell at firstname.lastname@example.org or 913-477-8364