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Dignity Health Gives $796,202 to Help Thousands in Need

Grants given to nonprofits working in collaboration to address priority health needs in the community.

Dignity Health, which operates the Mercy, Methodist, Woodland and Sierra Nevada affiliate hospitals in the greater Sacramento region, has awarded $796,202 to 21 nonprofit organizations in Sacramento, Yolo and Nevada counties. 

The nonprofit organizations that received grants have grouped together as partners to address priority health issues in the communities they serve. “Through the Dignity Health Community Grants Program, these collaborative partnerships among nonprofit organizations will provide much-needed, coordinated services to the underserved in our community,” said Laurie Harting, Senior Vice President, Operations, Greater Sacramento Service Area. “These grants allow our hospitals and community non-profit organizations to work together to strengthen safety net capacity, leverage resources and build a greater continuum of care for those we serve.” 

The nonprofit organizations that received community grants to form partnerships in Sacramento County are: 

Grant recipients Turning Point Community Programs, My Sister’s House, Consumers Self Help Center and Crime Victims Assistance Network (I-CAN) will work collaboratively on The Navigation to Wellness Program, an effort to alleviate the mental health crisis in the hospital emergency departments through the utilization of a navigation team comprised of clinicians and a peer support specialist who will work closely with Dignity Health emergency department staff in identifying individuals with a self-reported behavioral health problem. The navigation team will support evaluation of the individual to determine if outpatient behavioral health services are necessary. They will also support the individual through the discharge planning process, address any immediate needs of the individual, and provide a warm handoff to appropriate linkages such as public and behavioral health services.

Grant awards were also made to Sacramento Step Forward, Sacramento Loaves & Fishes, Downtown Sacramento Foundation, and TLCS, Inc. to develop a partnership to put skilled outreach workers and master’s level mental health specialists on the streets of downtown Sacramento to work with hard-to-reach chronically homeless individuals and connect them with medical, behavioral, supportive, and housing services. Through the network of downtown navigators provided by the Downtown Sacramento Partnership, the outreach worker and mental health specialist are able to locate and begin working with the most vulnerable people on the street. Throughout this process, an integrated assessment tool will be utilized to help identify the level of vulnerability and the appropriate housing placement option for each person. The collaborative partners will also work with Mercy General Hospital to ensure patients utilizing the ED who are chronically homeless can be referred back to the available supportive services through a seamless process. 

Sacramento county Grant recipients WayUp Sacramento, Sacramento Covered, and WellSpace Health are collaborating to create The WayUp Station, a place-based program that creates a major hub at the Oak Park Community Campus providing resource referral services, primarily health-related, to Sacramento’s Oak Park community. The primary purpose of the WayUp Station is to expand access to health-related resources and other social services for the Oak Park community including underserved residents and families whose children are enrolled in local schools. In addition, patient navigators located in the hospital emergency departments will be able to utilize the station by connecting patients to this community resource for additional services. 

In Yolo County, two groups of nonprofit organizations received grants to address behavioral health and the elderly in underserved communities. 

Suicide Prevention and Crisis Services of Yolo County, Yolo Community Care Continuum, and Yolo Family Service Agency have joined forces to address the gap that exists within the community for short-term crisis residential and outpatient mental health services. Suicide Prevention of Yolo County is working directly with Woodland Healthcare to support individuals who need short-term crisis residential services rather than inpatient treatment, linking them to Safe Harbor Crisis House in Woodland for intervention and stabilization. Individuals will also receive follow-up care and outpatient mental health care through Yolo Community Care Continuum and the Yolo Family Service Agency. 

The collaborative project between Yolo Healthy Aging Alliance, Legal Services of Northern California/Senior Link of Yolo County, and People Resources, Inc./Elderly Nutrition Program with in-kind services provided by Caregiver Support Program aims to provide resources for the growing population of elderly residents in Yolo County. Partners have three primary goals; 1 to engage community resources in developing a referral and care planning program for seniors; 2 to bring community leaders together to begin planning a Yolo Center for Aging to serve as a home for information, consultation and referral services, and; 3 to help Woodland Healthcare clinicians and staff increase their awareness and skills when dealing with people who suffer from dementia through evidence-based training.

In Nevada County, the Integrated Care Coordination for Family Wellness Program is a collaborative led by FREED Center for Independent Living in partnership with Western Sierra Medical Clinic (WSMC) and Community Recovery Resources (CoRR). Their primary objective is to improve patient care and health outcomes by addressing social determinates of health and by streamlining access to preventative and treatment services. This partnership would help continue to strengthen the collaboration and integration of several preventative services including Care Transition Intervention (CTI), Care Management and Patient Navigation, and co-location of WSMC and CoRR. The partnership will focus on coaching, case management, health care enrollment, and navigation between organizations and additional resources. The project is an extension of the partnership developed in 2014 through Dignity Health and expands the collaboration to provide Patient Navigation services on-site.

The Dignity Health Community Grants Program is open to all non-profit community service organizations that share Dignity Health’s mission and values and are dedicated to building healthier communities by improving health and living disparities. The program supports organizations that increase access to care for the poor and address the underlying causes of illness – such as physical and substance abuse, neglect, poverty and homelessness – as well as specific health issues. Grants are funded by contributions from Dignity Health’s member hospitals. In the Greater Sacramento region, Dignity Health hospitals that contribute to the grants program are Mercy General Hospital, Methodist Hospital, Mercy San Juan Medical Center, Mercy Hospital of Folsom, Woodland Healthcare, and Sierra Nevada Memorial Hospital. Across the Dignity Health system, 99 community grants were awarded totaling $4.3 million. 

Publish date: 

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

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Lindsay Leszczynski 
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