FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
September 20, 2011
Contact: HHS Press Office
Hospitals seek to improve health care through faith-based and community partnerships
The White House and the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) today welcomed 16 hospital CEOs and senior leadership from across the country to discuss improving health outcomes through faith-based and community partnerships.
The one-day event also included hospital staff to seek and share best practices on partnerships and programs that work for the good of the community. These health care leaders are proven innovators in pursuing creative and successful public health partnerships.
“In addition to spiritual support, turning to faith and community leaders for health and wellness is a part of many faiths,” said Joshua DuBois, special assistant to the president and executive director of the White House Office of Faith-based and Neighborhood Partnerships. “By linking to the strong infrastructure of congregations, hospitals and care providers are able to reach deep into hard-to-reach and underserved communities to improve the health of Americans.”
“Faith and community leaders are trusted messengers within their communities and are on the front lines of fighting many of the health care issues that are plaguing so many underserved communities,” said Mara Vanderslice Kelly, acting director, HHS Center for Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnerships. “By engaging faith and community leaders in collaborative partnerships, health providers can expand health care access and monitor which best practices are working in local communities and lower costs.”
The health systems invited for the meeting are unique as their faith-based and community partnership programs are fully implemented within rural, urban and suburban communities respectively and demonstrate their impact on the full community.
Representatives from Methodist LeBonheur Healthcare of Memphis, Tenn., Camden Coalition of Health Care Providers of Camden, N.J., and the Southcentral Foundation of Anchorage, Alaska, gave formal presentations on their community health partnership models.
The group was greeted by Nancy-Ann DeParle, assistant to the president and White House deputy chief of staff for policy, along with Rima Cohen, senior counselor to HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius.
A portion of the day’s discussion focused around new health and wellness provisions included in the Affordable Care Act. Under the new law, those with new insurance plans can get preventive services like mammograms and other cancer screenings without paying a penny out of their own pocket. By making Medicare stronger, the law delivers less expensive prescription drugs to millions of seniors and, over time, closes the donut hole and makes preventive services free for everyone with Medicare. These provisions, combined with the innovative health care being provided by the health systems in attendance make our communities healthier.
For more information, please visit: www.hhs.gov/partnerships
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Last revised: September 21, 2011