UP Health System-Portage Establishes Community Health Worker Program with Federal Grant Funding – UpperMichigansSource.com

HANCOCK, Mich. (WLUC) – UP Health System – Portage announced it has received funding as part of a federal grant awarded to AdvantagePoint Health Alliance – Great Lakes, a clinically integrated network (CIN) built in partnership with leading national healthcare company LifePoint Health.

The Health Resources & Services Administration (HRSA) grant will provide $200,000 annually for the next four years to help establish a Community Health Worker Program in Marquette and Houghton Counties. The program is designed to help connect underserved members of the community with the appropriate resources to support their overall health and wellness. The project will focus on addressing barriers to healthcare, increasing access to primary care, and reducing overuse of the Emergency Department for non-urgent care. The grant funds will cover training, supplies, travel, and administration, in addition to the salaries of the Community Health Workers.

“We are excited to be able to start our own Community Health Worker Program so we can help remove barriers and connect members of our community with the resources they need to be healthy and thrive,” said Ed Freysinger, CEO of UP Health System – Portage.

“This is our mission of Making Communities Healthier in action, and we look forward to the positive impact it will have on countless lives in the years ahead.”

A community health worker (CHW) is a specially trained individual with intimate knowledge of the local community. He or she is responsible for helping clients navigate and access community services and resources, as well as adopt healthy behaviors. A CHW also provides social support and informal counseling, and advocates for individuals and community health needs. Importantly, CHWs help address key social determinants of health, the economic and social conditions that impact one’s health status, such as transportation, housing, and nutrition. Interested applicants can learn more about the Community Health Worker position and apply here.

This project is supported by the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) as part of an award totaling $800,000 with eight percentage financed with non-governmental sources. The contents are those of the author and do not necessarily represent the official views of, nor an endorsement, by HRSA, HHS, or the U.S. Government. For more information, please visit HRSA.gov.

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