Community Service Plan (CSP)

Dear Chief Executive Officer:

In keeping with the Commissioner of Health’s statewide mission to improve the health of all New Yorkers, the Department requests your participation in a new public health initiative. This initiative seeks to integrate traditional medical services with public health interventions that stimulate positive behavioral changes to improve health status. It calls on your hospital to participate in a collaborative approach to community health assessment and planning and to document those efforts in your hospital’s Community Service Plan (CSP). The Department asks hospitals to work together with their community partners, including local health departments, to address the Commissioner’s public health priorities identified in the Prevention Agenda toward the Healthiest State. By participating in this public health effort, you will support the overall goals of the Department, which are to focus on primary/secondary disease prevention, promote access to quality health care services and eliminate health care disparities where they exist.


In April of 2008, Commission Daines launched the Prevention Agenda for the Healthiest State. The Prevention Agenda established 10 public health priorities and asks that hospitals, local health departments, and health care and community partners work together to bring about measurable progress toward mutually established goals. The public health priorities include:

  • Access to Quality Health Care
  • Chronic Disease
  • Community Preparedness
  • Healthy Environment
  • Healthy Mothers, Healthy Babies
  • Infectious Disease
  • Mental Health & Substance Abuse
  • Physical Activity & Nutrition
  • Tobacco Use
  • Unintentional Injury

Local Health Departments (LHDs) have received similar encouragement from the Department to participate in this process and to record their efforts in their Community Health Assessments (CHA) and Municipal Public Health Service Plans, due in July of 2009. By collaborating with community health partners and developing a collaborative approach, all participants will be better able to meet the needs of their community while avoiding duplicative efforts and achieving economies of scale. Further information regarding the Prevention Agenda can be found at the following link:

Community Service Plan

The comprehensive 3-year CSP will be due on September 15, 2009. The Department has revised the content of the 3-year plan in accordance with Attachment 1 of this letter. The CSP should reflect the collaborative process between each hospital, LHD(s) and other community partners. The CSP should also explain the strategies that will address the selected health priorities and list the overall goals of this collaborative process. The subsequent annual report submissions in 2010 and 2011 will ask for updates on the progress toward the overall goals.

Dissemination of CSP information to the public is a vital part of the CSP mission. The Department recommends that hospitals disseminate a written summary of the CSP to the public and encourages hospitals to post information to their organizations’s website so that it is readily accessible by the public. Hospitals must be sure to include pertinent financial data that demonstrates its current and future commitment to public health programs and financial assistance in the written summary developed for the public.

In addition, the Department is moving toward electronic submission of the CSP and expects that this function will be operational for the September 2009 submission. Further information about electronic reporting will be provided closer to the submission deadline.

Please refer to Attachment 2 for answers to some frequently asked questions. In addition, you may contact Ruth Leslie of the Division of Certification and Surveillance at 518-402-1003 or Thank you for your anticipated cooperation with this important initiative.


Mary Ellen Hennessy
Deputy Director
Division of Certification and Surveillance


  1. Comprehensive 3-Year Plan Format
  2. Question and Answer Document