Mandan News

New collaboration for Custer Health means better district service

Responding to an opportunity created by the last North Dakota Legislature, Emmons County Health, Kidder County Health and rural Burleigh have started a collaboration with Custer Health in Mandan. They intend to improve access, pool expenses, and raise the quality of public health services in the eight county region. This new collaborative has been awarded $200,000 from the North Dakota Department of Health to make the partnership sustainable over the next two years.

Bringing these health departments together will allow them to pool resources and provide more services for a larger population. In order to determine which services will be necessary for each county, a community health assessment of each county will be performed.

Following community health assessments and evaluation, a plan of action will be developed to target the greatest needs in each community. In this way, the regional public health network will be able to provide the greatest good for the greatest number of people. Health services that will be a focus of this regionalization will be environmental health, mental health, promotion of healthier lifestyles, and substance abuse prevention and treatment.

Custer Health is a five county district health unit providing health services to the people of Mercer, Oliver, Grant, Morton, and Sioux Counties. Emmons and Kidder County Health Units serve their respective counties, and Burleigh County contracts with Bismarck-Burleigh Public Health to serve their residents. “This diversity can be a strength.” said Keith Johnson, Administrator for Custer Health. “But it also presents a big opportunity for advancing the health of our residents through cooperation. It’s going to be an exciting time for us all.”

For more information on this regional public health network, please call Erin Loeb at 701-667-3370. For more information about Custer Health visit