Access and Coordination of Services Workgroup

The power of community to create health is far greater than any physician, clinic or hospital."
— Mark Hyman, author




The mission of this workgroup is to close the gap between the health needs of the community and the availability of and access to services intended to meet those needs.

The workgroup is composed of a diverse set of community stakeholders who care about improving community health through increasing access to and coordination of services, especially for our vulnerable populations.


A main outcome of the Community Health Improvement Planning process was the identification of a lack of awareness of services in the community. An effort is currently underway outside of the access to services workgroup to create an online resource directory that is publicly available to the community.

Since that time, the workgroup has also identified two additional issues.

First, the lack of coordination of services is a major barrier to achieving positive health outcomes for clients and the community in Riley County.

This problem manifests in a variety of ways. However, a growing cohort of residents are utilizing a large amount of resources and yet are not benefiting from those services, returning to service agencies and providers on a regular basis. For example, since July 2016, nine people in our community have generated 86 calls for service for the Riley County Police Department due to mental health-related issues. In fact, three people were responsible for 51 of those calls. They are receiving services at a high frequency, but still are not able to create long-term stability. As the severity of an individual's illness increases, we have the opportunity to mediate the impact of their illness through improving coordination of services to help clients get the services that they need at the time that they need them. We are currently exploring strategies to increase collaboration and coordination of services among local service providers to better meet the needs of our friends and neighbors who are among this high-need, vulnerable population.

Second, Riley County is on the verge of a crisis related to access to healthcare.

Fewer and fewer providers are accepting Medicare and Medicaid, the ratio of providers to patients continues to decline (fewer providers for more patients) and, given the current social and political climate, more residents are likely to be un- or under-insured in the near future.The workgroup is currently exploring local solutions to help address these issues and to increase access to healthcare, especially among the vulnerable populations within our community.

Get involved

The workgroup meets every 4th Wednesday of the month at 10am in the Board Room of the Riley County Health Department.

You can find our meeting minutes and relevant documents in the Access and Communication of Services Workgroup Google Doc folder (click here).

For questions, comments, or more information contact Brandon Irwin ( or Deb Nuss (