Intermediate outcomes of a tribal community public health infrastructure assessment. Academic Article uri icon


  • The purpose of this collaborative participatory project was to assess the strengths and needs of a tribal community as part of a larger public health capacity building program. Key project partners included: the Ramah Band of Navajo Indians, the Albuquerque Area Indian Health Board, the University of New Mexico Masters in Public Health Program, and the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, American Indian Research and Education Center. Principal intervention steps entailed: 1) relationship-building activities among tribal programs and between the Tribe and the scientific community; 2) an orientation to public health; 3) a comprehensive public health infrastructure assessment, utilizing a standardized CDC instrument; and 4) a prioritization of identified needs. The direct outcome was the development and beginning implementation of a community specific public health strategic action plan. Broader results included: 1) increased comprehension of public health within the Tribe; 2) the creation of a community public health task force; 3) the design of a tribally applicable assessment instrument; and 4) improved collaboration between the Tribe and the scientific community. This project demonstrated that public health assessment in tribal communities is feasible and valuable. Further, the development of a tribally applicable instrument highlights a significant tribal contribution to research and assessment.

publication date

  • January 1, 2004