Recap: RWJF Sentinel Communities Surveillance Project

Recap: RWJF Sentinel Communities Surveillance Project

RWJF Sentinel Communities Surveillance Project - Louisville Community Portrait

The May 2018 RWJF Culture of Health Portrait for Louisville, KY overviews the progress Louisville has made in its efforts to create a healthier and more equitable city for all residents. A large driver of the city’s efforts is the local government including the Louisville Metro Department of Public Health & Wellness and its Center for Health Equity, the first of its kind in the country. Local schools, health systems, businesses and nonprofits are also working toward the goal of improving the health of all Louisville residents. These organizations are not just considering the traditional avenues of promoting health, rather they are focusing on the social determinants of health, such as food scarcity, transportation, employment, air quality and violence. While the progress in Louisville faces many challenges, the city has dedicated individuals and organizations working toward the ultimate goal of creating a healthier environment for all.

  • Efforts in Louisville include:

    • Encouraging resident engagement on topics that affect health and well-being

    • Collaboration between the government, education and business sectors, and community-based organizations

    • Increasing the tree canopy within the city

    • Research to discover connections between equity and health drivers

    • Improving data collection and its availability to the public

The full Community Portrait drafted by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation can be accessed here.

The Sentinel Communities Surveillance Project is involved in collecting data on 30 communities across the United States that are building their own Culture of Health. The project aims to discover the various ways a community may successfully improve its health and reoccurring themes across all 30 communities. The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation expects to monitor these communities for at least five years. Click here to learn more about the project.

The video below provides more information on how Louisville is building a Culture of Health.

Inspiration from the Ring through AHA! Moments

Inspiration from the Ring through AHA! Moments

On Thursday June 7, a cross-sector group gathered at Top Notch Boxing in Louisville for AHA! Moments: Mind/Body Health as part of the Year of Arts, HeALIng & Action! The #YearofAHA was born out of a collaboration between IDEAS xLab, the Muhammad Ali Center, and the Louisville Health Advisory Board (LHAB) to engage Louisvillians around creative approaches to improve social, mind/body, environmental, and economic health through lightning talks, art+health activities and arts/culture performances.

The June event, facilitated with strong leadership from the Louisville Sports Commission, featured lightning talks from Carlos Rivas (ProFormance Health & Wellness), Dr. Val Slayton (Humana and LHAB Behavioral Health committee), Herb Henry (former University of Louisville football star; Competitor's Edge Sports Apparel) and Montre Davis of Linkin' Bridge, along with an arts and cultural performance demonstration by David Thurman of Developing Excellence Together. From the ring, each speaker delivered a unique yet complementary message about mind and body, our ability to take action, and inspiring others to improve our community's health.

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Carlos Rivas opened the event with a focus on two words: “I am.” Two words with the power to attribute anything that follows to ourselves; yet, every morning most people say “I am tired.” That, Carlos explained, gives us a negative start to our days. When we think about change, we ought to begin with spirit and positivity. Carlos highlighted how Muhammed Ali did that perfectly, by making his mantra “I am the greatest.”

 Photo by  Josh Miller

Photo by Josh Miller

Dr. Val Slayton took to the ring next, providing the history of his work with the Louisville Health Advisory Board (LHAB), a community-based organization comprised of nearly seventy businesses, government, schools, civic and nonprofit organizations focused on Louisville’s well-being. Dr. Slayton shared a personal story to create perspective and gravitas to an initiative the LHAB is spearheading for September 9th-15th, National Suicide Awareness Week: setting a world record in the number of people trained in Question, Persuade, Refer (QPR). The LHAB will facilitate QPR—an established program dedicated to reducing suicidal behaviors and save lives—training the entire week to achieve this goal. To get trained or host one of the 90-minute classes please email louisvillezerosuicide@gmail.com.

 Photo by  Josh Miller

Photo by Josh Miller

Next up, Herb Henry provided some inspiring advice. To improve our health, we ought to be mindful of what take in, and put out. When working on ourselves, we have to do research, work slowly, and be confident. Herb provided the perspective of a former athlete: in order to change the game, we must play the game. He finished with a call to action: by actively creating ways to improve our communities, our individual spaces will transform, as well.

 Photo by  Josh Miller

Photo by Josh Miller

Montre Davis of Linkin’ Bridge graciously shared his journey. America’s Got Talent, he says, changed his life. By believing in his dreams endlessly, he was able to achieve the astounding success that Linkin’ Bridge has. However, Montre knows fame isn’t all good: his touring has made him careless with his health, and he’s now taking action to work with Heuser Health, a local physical therapy facility in Louisville, to lose 250 pounds. Good luck Montre!

 Photo by  Josh Miller

Photo by Josh Miller

James Dickson entered the ring next with ease—after all, boxing is his wheelhouse. James told us about his experience in foster homes, and when he was formally adopted at 13. His adoptive parents gave him the opportunity to pursue his dreams, and now he’s able to give back. Now, James works with children from all around Smoketown, providing them with academic and athletic support while simultaneously being an incredible role model.

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The event closed with a performance demonstration by David Thurmond, a former dancer with the Louisville Ballet, along with a multitude of other roles. David led the audience, including the previous speakers, in a dance lesson. However, this wasn’t just any dance—the dance was comprised of sports movements supplied by the audience, strung together into fluid motion. The demonstration got the audience up and moving, but it also served as a comfortable gateway into dance for non-dancers.

Before everyone left, there was a call to action. We were handed forms to say what we could do to help the greater Louisville community in the goal of becoming more active. The morning was filled with inspiration, and the audience was finally able to reflect on how we can exercise everyday activism to shape our community’s health. After all, the amazing speakers at Top Notch Boxing once asked themselves that same question.

Photos by Josh Miller

Louisville's Multi-year Focus on Suicide Prevention Ramps up to Set a World Record, Save Lives

Louisville's Multi-year Focus on Suicide Prevention Ramps up to Set a World Record, Save Lives

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According to recently published data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), suicide rates are on the increase, and more than half of people who died by suicide did not have a known mental health condition.  For the years 2008-2014, Jefferson County ranked 11th out of 50 peer counties in terms of highest rates of suicide.  This is a change from the prior ranking of 8th, however the suicide mortality rates were higher nationally.  In essence, while other counties increased at a higher level, our suicide mortality rate still increased.  These statistics are what inspired a cross-sector of community partners to come together and set an objective to design and implement a community-wide, evidence-based and data-driven program to eliminate suicides in Louisville.

So, what are we doing about it?

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This group, called the Louisville Health Advisory Board (LHAB) Behavioral Health committee,  is focusing its full energy towards the setting of a world record during National Suicide Prevention Week,  September 9-15, 2018. The committee wants Louisville to have the most individuals trained in Question, Persuade, Refer (QPR) in one week. Similar to CPR, QPR is an emergency response to someone in crisis and can save lives. The committee is currently investigating trainers and locations to offer the 90-minute training classes, and is especially interested in connecting with local employers, who may have interest in hosting this training at their facilities and/or for their employees. If you are interested in getting involved, please email Louisvillezerosuicide@gmail.com. 


For those who like history, here is a bit of background of the LHAB committee’s work as we lead up to a record setting initiative:

Bold Moves Against Suicide Summit 2016

In the fall of 2016, the Louisville Health Advisory Board’s (LHAB) Behavioral Health committee hosted the community’s first ever Bold Moves Against Suicide Summit – designed to bring together thought leaders and community partners to raise the level of awareness for the issue, increase the sense of responsibility in our community to reduce suicide, provide tools and resources to address the issue of suicide and discuss adopting the Zero Suicide initiative across the city. The Summit accomplished these goals, and since then we have been engaging key stakeholders in a community-wide coalition to consider how to implement Zero Suicide across a variety of organizations in Louisville. 

 

On June 26, 2017, the LHAB’s Behavioral Health committee shared a condensed version of the Zero Suicide Academy and how one might implement at his or her organization.  The group spent the afternoon with grounding on what Zero Suicide is, and resources available to implementing within an organization.  The group reflected on its experiences within its respective organizations and learned about the Zero Suicide Organizational Assessment.  Next, participants created a 90-day plan for implementing Zero Suicide at their organization, and wrapped the day with an interactive assessment of Louisville’s current state as it relates to suicide prevention. 

Then, on November 28, 2017, 25 individuals representing 15 organizations from a cross-sector of our community spent time together recapping the Zero Suicide framework, brainstorming solutions to opportunities in our city, and learning about early successes as they have engaged in their 90-day plans.  In learning from Jeff Felty, Compliance & Privacy Officer from Centerstone, the group addressed one of the biggest challenges discussed in the June session about how to effectively transition individuals across our organizations.

And most recently, on February 21, 24 individuals representing 17 organizations gathered for continued discussion about how to eliminate suicides in our city.  The group heard from guest speaker Andy Lawrence, Director of Suicide Prevention for Centerstone who walked through his organization’s initiation of the Zero Suicide framework and learnings on the journey, since launching in 2011.  Then, at the request of participants, a discussion was facilitated with several local media partners to learn more about their experiences covering suicides in Louisville.  Then, the group discussed the concept of setting the world record for the most individuals trained in QPR (Question, Persuade, Refer) in a week. 


We hope you will join us in our effort September 9-15, National Suicide Prevention Week.

Please remember there are resources for you, family and friends related to suicide prevention.  The national suicide prevention hotline is 1-800-273-8255 and a local (Louisville) crisis line number at Centerstone (formerly Seven Counties) is 502-589-4313.

 Graphic Facilitator Katalyst Creative Consulting captured this graphic rendering of the community discussion at Louisville's first ever Bold Moves Against Suicide Summit, in the fall of 2016

Graphic Facilitator Katalyst Creative Consulting captured this graphic rendering of the community discussion at Louisville's first ever Bold Moves Against Suicide Summit, in the fall of 2016

Dreaming Big with AHA! Moments

Dreaming Big with AHA! Moments

“If your dreams don’t scare you, they aren’t big enough.” 
— Muhammad Ali

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The sun rose over Louisville, illuminating the 6th floor of the Muhammad Ali Center on April 13, 2018 for the inaugural AHA! Moments event as part of the Year of Arts, HeALIng, & Action!

The #YearofAHA was born out of a collaboration between IDEAS xLab, the Muhammad Ali Center, and the Louisville Health Advisory Board to engage Louisvillians around creative approaches to improve social, mind/body, environmental, and economic health through lightning talks, art+health activities and arts/culture performances.

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Recap of April’s AHA! Moments…

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“There is so much potential for artists and what art can do to shape change in a school with students,” shared artist Brianna Harlan of her artist engagement as part of the Hero+Shero Journeys project organized by IDEAS xLab at Meyzeek Middle School.

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“Together, the Smoketown HOPEBOX and The People’s Corporation will focus on positively impacting mind/body, social, economic, and environmental health while meeting needs and desires of community,” shared Tom Walton [Executive in Residence at UofL] and Tonia Phelps [Bates Community Development Corporation].

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“I want Ali to hear us rumble up in here,” shouted Trinidad Jackson of the Youth Violence Prevention Research Center. “The Ferguson uprising was in my neighborhood, and our office @yvprc has deep connections to these efforts… our responsive approach includes being critically conscious and focusing structural violence prevention.”

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“This year we partnered with @LouMetroHealth on our latest series of billboards in #Smoketown,” explained artist and IDEAS xLab team member Hannah Drake. “Whatever it is you want to do, you can do it. These are regular people in Smoketown — that was very important to us.”

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“The Guide to Greatness is an art + health neighborhood toolkit being designed and organized by IDEAS xLab with support from the Humana Foundation and Fund for the Arts,” shared Josh Miller, co-founder of IDEAS xLab before engaging participants to try one of the activities titled, “We are Worthy.” The toolkit will be free and available to community members, neighborhoods and organizations to use starting Spring/Fall 2018.

For the evening event, Steam Exchange setup their mobile screen printing cart to print posters with attendees!

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Louisville Health Advisory Board Quarterly Meeting: March 2018

Louisville Health Advisory Board Quarterly Meeting: March 2018

On March 7, 2018, the Louisville Health Advisory Board (LHAB) held its quarterly meeting at Metro United Way, bringing together over 50 LHAB members representing 33 organizations.
 
From Humana Foundation’s CEO Walter Woods who talked about the Foundation’s BOLD new 3-year plan embodying its mission to “co-create communities where leadership, culture, and systems work to improve and sustain positive health outcomes” to opportunities for leveraging technology to support the social determinants of health including LouieConnect, and updates from all six committees, the half-day session reminded attendees of the complexity of cross-sector work, and further demonstrated the opportunities for driving toward more healthy days in Louisville and beyond.

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Quarterly Meeting Highlights included:

Humana Foundation – Strategic Vision for Louisville

  • Kicking off the day, Humana Foundation CEO Walter Woods shared the Foundation’s BOLD new strategy that will launch in April. “Everyone does better when everyone does better,” said Walter, quoting T. Vaughn Walker, Ph.D., Senior Pastor of First Gethsemane Baptist Church while describing how he and his team have been engaged in a listening tour, engaging with over 100 organizations in Louisville and across the country to realize their mission to “co-create communities where leadership, culture, and systems work to improve and sustain positive health outcomes.”

Walter cited the Center for Health Equity’s 2017 Health Equity Report and Louisville Urban League’s State of Black Louisville as important and informative in shaping a focus for addressing health disparity. 

As Walter and Remy Noble of the Foundation shared, their grant making will focus on two key areas in Louisville:  Post-secondary Success and Sustaining Employment, and Asset Security.  The grant cycle will kick off in April and more information can be found on the Humana Foundation’s website.

In addition, the Humana Foundation in partnership with Humana Inc. will launch this year a Community Relations Program in Louisville providing grants to organizations providing critical safety net services as well as those focused on civic and cultural opportunities. In addition to the financial support, the new program also aims support local nonprofits through skills-based volunteerism. Details about the new Community Relations program will be available in the coming months.

Leveraging Technology to Support Social Determinants of Health in our Community

  • LouieConnect, a web-based application designed for people who are in crisis is currently being beta-tested by Family Scholar House. “You can’t handle a lot of info when in crisis,” shared Tony Whelan of Family Scholar House about the app's design. “You just want the facts - Who, what, when, where, and why. And, the Live Help button connects you to a 211 operator.”

    Tony is looking for opportunities to train organizations and their staff on the tool.  If you would like your staff to be trained, please email Tony at  LouieConnect@familyscholarhouse.org.
     
  • Jan Sherrell, Senior Manager Basic Needs, Metro United Way and LHAB Community Coordination of Care Committee Member shared how LouieConnect features 212 resources and serves as a nice complement and connection point into Metro United Way’s 2-1-1 tool which has 17,000 resources associated with 900 organizations.  2-1-1 has been in Louisville now for 11 years and has served over 750,000 individuals.  Individuals can access the system and its information via a phone call (dial 2-1-1), via text message (text your zip code to 898211) and online (www.metrounitedway.org/211).  Calls are answered in the Center for Women & Families Call Center. 
     
  • Theresa Reno-Weber, President and CEO, Metro United Way shared with the group the desire of Metro United Way to serve as a unifier, bringing together historical and present conversations and associated stakeholders around how we best utilize technology to assess for social needs and connect individuals to those programs and resources designed to help.  She shared how the group has been exploring a specific technology solution from a firm called PCCI (Parkland Center for Community Innovation) that has been operating successfully in Dallas for 3 years.  As part of the presentation attendees watched a video that highlights this technology, and Theresa expressed her interest in engaging the full community as she highlighted next steps of confirming feasibility of incorporating health, education, & social services within one system or two that are linked, conducting readiness assessments with community partners and fundraising for a joint investment. 
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Committee Updates – Progress Toward 2018 Goals

  • 1 in 3 persons has prediabetes, yet only 115 persons participated in a Diabetes Prevention Program in Louisville in 2017.  The Diabetes Committee seeks to address this gap by understanding barriers and partnering with employers and physicians to screen for, diagnose and route individuals through completion of a Diabetes Prevention Program. There are three pilots currently underway – two with local employers Norton and Papa Johns and one with UofL Physicians.
     
  • The Community Coordination of Care committee is seeking to build awareness for 2-1-1- and the PRAPARE needs assessment as well as pilot screening and community services with Family Health Center patients.
     
  • The Behavioral Health committee recently held its third Zero Suicide Community Action Planning session at the end of February, where the group heard from Centerstone Tennessee’s Director of Suicide Prevention about how they have implemented the Zero Suicide framework within their organization.  The group also engaged in an enlightening fireside chat with three media representatives about how suicides are covered in the press.  The committee has set a goal for Louisvlile to set a world record for most individuals trained in QPR (Question, Persuade, Refer) in a day, targeting National Suicide Prevention Day on September 10.
     
  • The Respiratory Health committee highlighted its advocacy work to increase the cigarette tax as well as support public housing facilities who will be required beginning in August, 2018 to be smoke-free.
     
  • The Culture/Social Impact Committee announced the Year of Arts, HeALIng, and Action! (AHA!) that will launch it’s year-long AHA! Moments event series on April 13. AHA! will focus on how creative approaches and grass-roots to grass-tops network building can impact social, mind/body, environmental and economic health in Louisville, KY. 

    From providing opportunities for co-creation, customer discovery and launching the GUIDE TO GREATNESS, an art + health neighborhood toolkit being developed by IDEAS xLab in partnership with the Muhammad Ali Center, with support from the Humana Foundation and Fund for the Arts to operationalizing the 6 Core Principles of Ali, the committee is excited to engage everyone from corporate leaders to neighborhood associations in the planning and implementation of AHA! Click here to learn more.
     
  • The Communications Committee outlined the results of the Communications Survey, announcing that LHAB Committees and members can self-select into using Slack as a communications channel – How To Use Slack instructions will be provided to all Committee Co-Chairs for sharing with members. In 2018, the Communications Committee will focus on deploying a comprehensive bi-monthly newsletter “Our Healthy Days” to highlight and share the work of LHAB Committees and member organizations, along with opportunities for LHAB members to participate, support and promote various health and wellbeing initiatives.

Engaging local Physicians in our Work

  • Dr. Wayne Tuckson, President Elect, Greater Louisville Medical Society said, "An educated populous makes for an ideal patient." He used the analogy of grace notes making something better to describe the mission of the Greater Louisville Medical Society to improve health literacy in our community. He echoed the sentiments of other speakers and the work of the LHAB, that the social determinants of health are the most important factors affecting the health of patients, stressing that health literacy is one piece of ensuring that patients are able to get the care they need and are able to implement the care that is recommended by health providers. Dr. Tuckson praised the work that the Louisville Metro Department of Health and Wellness is doing around the social determinants of health and especially the recently published Health Equity Report.

Walking the Talk – Volunteer Experience

  • Thank you to Metro United Way for hosting our second group volunteer experience – something LHAB members requested as a way to directly contribute to the community during  quarterly meetings.  The group enjoyed building snack bags with inspirational messaging for participants of the Louisville Urban League’s Street Academy program, engaging 4th and 5th grade males at high schools in the Zones of Hope, where 4 of the 5 participating schools are located in food deserts. 

Healthy Food for All Hackathon

Healthy Food for All Hackathon

The Healthy Food for All Hackathon was held on Saturday, February 17th, 2018 at the PNC Gigabit Experience Center in Louisville Central Community Center’s Old Walnut Street building. The event brought approximately 70 civic innovators and dozens of engaged youth together to brainstorm solutions for Louisville’s food access resources.

 Photos by Monique Kuykendoll Quarterman.

Photos by Monique Kuykendoll Quarterman.

Prior to the event, participants were provided a video reel of eligible projects to spark their curiosity and creativity. Hackathon organizers kicked off the event with live project pitches from local food organizations and individuals seeking new food-related technologies. Attendees ranged from local tech legends to community organizers to people actively suffering from food insecurity.

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New Roots, a local organization that organizes the Fresh Stop Markets each year, used the hackers to rethink their digital and consumer engagement strategies. One team began work on an application to support the organization’s complex partnership with local, organic farmers. Another team focused solely on New Roots’ consumer engagement strategy, from assessing their overall marketing strategy to evaluating their new Pollinator model of neighbor-to-neighbor food access support. For more on New Roots, please visit: http://www.newroots.org/.

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The Lazarus team from the University of Louisville developed a map of local food sources, as part of a project with the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). They leveraged data from the federal SNAP program and Dare to Care food bank’s online resources to identify specific food access points throughout Louisville. The main goal of their project is to increase access to data that can promote the development of vacant and/or underutilized properties.

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Good to Grow Green (GTGG), an organization managed by local high school students, gives back to the community by building vertical gardens in classrooms. The gardens are then used to introduce food education and literacy. After the learning modules, the vegetables are harvested and offered to students as a free way to introduce fresh produce into their diet. A group of hackers united to advise GTGG on next steps to market and grow their organization.

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As progress continued in the main area, Pat Smith of Civic Data Alliance and team members from IDEAS xLab engaged young innovators in the instruction area. IDEAS xLab led the group of high school students, from Eastern Kentucky and Louisville, to explore issues in community culture and representation. One activity involved the design of a more truthful commercial, empowering the students to take control of how their communities’ needs are represented in the media. The students presented their commercials to their peers and other hackathon attendees.

Themes of innovation, inclusion and dignity flowed throughout the hackathon. Individuals from all backgrounds were empowered to express community needs and lead projects, including youth and people who struggle with food access. When solutions are developed in diverse partnership, they are more relevant and respectful to the communities they will serve. The Healthy Food for All Hackathon’s unique collision of participation and compassion could serve as a model for future civic projects in the greater Louisville community.

If you are interested in volunteering your help to an organization, please visit VolunteerMatch Louisville to find posts related to hunger.

The Hunger Innovation Fellowship is a collaboration of the Lift a Life Foundation and the Community Foundation of Louisville to support systems-level food access in Louisville, KY. For more stories from the 2018 Hunger Innovation Fellowship, click here!


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Monique Kuykendoll Quarterman, MBA specializes in community-focused innovation and partnerships in the Louisville, KY area. As the 2018 Hunger Innovation Fellow, she is actively working to accelerate and elevate the collective efforts of local food access organizations and their partners. The Hunger Innovation Fellowship is a collaboration of the Lift a Life Foundation and the Community Foundation of Louisville.

Louisville’s Journey to Eliminate Suicide

Louisville’s Journey to Eliminate Suicide

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The second Louisville Health Advisory Board Zero Suicide Community Action Planning Session occurred on a beautiful sunny day in November. Twenty-five community members gathered at Metro United Way on Tuesday, November 28 to discuss the city’s collective interest in eliminating suicide by embracing the Zero Suicide framework - Our target is Zero Suicide in our community.

Participating organizations included:

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  • Centerstone
  • Department of Public Health and Wellness
  • JCPS
  • Wellspring
  • Family & Children’s Place
  • Our Lady of Peace
  • VA Medical Center
  • Department of Neighborhood Health
  • Jensen (J&J)
  • Humana
  • Louisville Urban League
  • Louisville Metro Police Department
  • Assure Partners (Employer Wellness)
  • Passport
  • University of Louisville. 

Community members were greeted by Wayne Crabtree, Director of the Office of Addiction Services at Louisville Metro Department of Public Health and Wellness. He shared the history of the Louisville Health Advisory Board Behavioral Health Committee, provided an overview of the committee’s goals, and its focus on Zero Suicide. Wayne shared current statistics on suicide rates in Louisville compared to peer cities and left us with the important message that “Zero Suicide is not a mental health issue. It’s a public health issue.”

Kelly Gannon, Chief Operating Officer at Centerstone, reviewed an exercise completed during the first Community Action Planning session on June 26that was designed to capture strengths and opportunities for how we currently address suicide in our city. She and community members looked at all four areas of the “SWOT” diagram to identify additional strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats for the Zero Suicide efforts in Louisville. Many other partners were identified as needed voices to fully represent all of Louisville.

Guest speaker Jeff Felty, Compliance & Privacy Officer for Centerstone, presented information about health information privacy. During the last planning meeting, the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) was identified as a barrier for communication between community partners. Jeff provided guidelines based on covered and non-covered entities, following the strongest language of the law, exceptions such as medical emergency, psychotherapy notes and programs providing substance abuse treatment. Jeff recommended making sure to always ask for a release of information, making sure your agency’s release contains the ten elements required by HIPAA and 42 CFR Part 2, and documenting when there is a need for disclosure. A key insight from this session is that there can be non-emergent (though not drug/alcohol related) communication between covered entities for treatment purposes with or without the client’s authorization.

Wayne facilitated a discussion about early successes and barriers to implementing Zero Suicide, based on the 90-day plans that were assigned and completed at the first planning session.  It was exciting to learn of the ground taken by a number of community organizations! Kelley wrapped the session by reiterating the importance of this work to our community and thanking all attendees for their commitment and progress within their organizations. The Louisville Health Advisory Board Behavioral Health committee will be reviewing session notes and action items as they set forth their 2018 goals.

Post authored by members of the LHAB Behavioral Health committee.

HiAP Ambassadors share what a "healthy day" means to them (Part I)

HiAP Ambassadors share what a "healthy day" means to them (Part I)

 Members of the first class of HiAP Ambassadors.

Members of the first class of HiAP Ambassadors.

In 2017, the Institute for Healthy Air Water & Soil launched the Health in All Policies Ambassadors (HiAP Ambassadors) program in Louisville, KY.

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The goal of the HiAP Ambassadors is to bring together people of all ages and backgrounds to represent each petal of the Harmony Circle.

The idea is for the Ambassadors to be bridge-builders among companies, schools, elected officials and government employees throughout the city. The Ambassadors advocate for a health in all policies approach whether it is at a personal, organizational, community, or state/federal level. This is a collaborative approach to improving the health of all people by incorporating health considerations into decision-making across sectors and policy areas.

From environmental and financial health to spiritual and physical, the HiAP Ambassadors program has brought together two cohorts of more than 70 individuals.

As an initiative supported by the Louisville Health Advisory Board’s Cultural/Social Impact Committee, we are excited to share how members of the inaugural cohort think about a Healthy Day – and its all encompassing impact across the networks where we live, work, worship, learn and play.

To see a full list of the HiAP Ambassadors click here.

We asked several Ambassadors what a Healthy Day meant to them – how does a good day make you feel? What would you do with a Healthy Day?

Here are their answers.


Nasra Hussein, PACT in Action

When I wake up happy and energized, ready to tackle whatever life is throwing at me. A healthy day for me is when I’m happy and able to make someone else happy and that person is able to make some else happy and so on, a happy you is a happy neighbor and a happy neighbor is a happy community.


Pam Darnall, Family & Children’s Place

Personally, a healthy day includes a full day of work at F&CP, coordinating and collaborating with staff, donors, funders, partners and policy makers to help ensure the children and families that need us the most receive exceptional services, assuring we have the resources we need to provide these critical services, and sharing the mission of F&CP with the entire community. Following work, a five-mile run helps to manage the stress of the day and get the endorphins flowing, and get the heart rate up.


Dr. Eddie Woods, No More Red Dots

No gunshot wound victims, a Healthy Day.


Rev. William D. Hammer, St. Margaret Mary

It begins after a good night’s rest and some time for prayer. A light healthy breakfast and walk to work, my residence is not far from the office. I try to get in as much walking as possible during the day, always a goal of 10,000 steps. Being an extrovert, the day also includes time socializing with students in our elementary school, and a time for non-work related conversation during lunch. The evening meal is the main meal of the day and it is one that is one filled with fresh produce and heart healthy protein in the meat selection. Evenings involve relaxing for at least an hour before going to bed, working the crossword puzzle to relax the mind and prayer before sleeping.


Sadia Abdirahaman, PACT in Action

A healthy day to me looks like a day where everything around me is positive. Everyone is on the same page where I don’t have go on the news and all I hear is about violence and hate. A Healthy Day is when everyone around me is having a good day where certain people don’t have to worry about anything going outside. A Healthy Day to me is when everyone is POSITIVE.


Hannah Drake, IDEAS xLab

Peaceful, rest, love, no hate, no racism. Needless to say, I have not seen a healthy day in a long time.


Michael Fraade, Jewish Community Center

It involves lots of fruits and vegetables! It also includes exercise or outdoor time, ideally in the garden. Whenever possible I like to create space for others to be healthy as well, especially through the teaching work that I get to do at the J. To me, educating others — especially youth, like our preschoolers — about health is a critical part of creating strong communities.


Theo Edmonds, IDEAS xLab

A day when my “lived experience” of Louisville is one where I witness the care and celebration of one another as our highest priority and justice as our guiding value.


Chanda Glover, National Black MBA Association, Kentucky Chapter

A healthy day to me is being able to have a good meal with good friend with as little worries as possible and the ability to simply enjoy life.

CEO Roundtable Held During World Diabetes Month

CEO Roundtable Held During World Diabetes Month

Louisville Health Advisory Board & CEOs Come Together to Prevent Diabetes

 Jenny Goins, Commissioner, Department of Employee Insurance, State of KY.

Jenny Goins, Commissioner, Department of Employee Insurance, State of KY.

Did you know? 

  • Kentucky is 4th in the nation for deaths related to diabetes,
  • 1 in 8 Kentucky adults are estimated to have diagnosed diabetes (138K undiagnosed),
  • 1 in 3 KY adults are estimated to have prediabetes (1.1M); 90% do not know they have it,
  • Diabetes leads to many complications including stroke, heart attack, cataracts, glaucoma and amputation,
  • One-third of Kentucky adults with prediabetes will develop diabetes within 5 years,
  • Individuals with diabetes have a medical expenditure 2.3x higher than people without diabetes,
  • The American Diabetes Association estimates diabetes costs KY $3.85 billion in total medical costs, lost work and lost wages.

As a part World Diabetes Month in November, the Louisville Health Advisory Board (LHAB) Diabetes Committee sponsored a CEO Roundtable on November 2, bringing together 30 community leaders from 18 local organizations to discuss the prevalence of diabetes and prediabetes (a condition that can ultimately lead to diabetes).

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The morning’s event included speakers who addressed the employer audience on the growing epidemic of diabetes in Kentucky. Two large employers - the Kentucky Employee Health Plan and Humana – shared what they are doing to help their employees avoid prediabetes and manage diabetes, as well as reducing medical expenditures for the employer health plan and improving their employee’s Healthy Days*.

Both employers identified the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Diabetes Prevention Program (DPP) as an excellent resource for their employees who currently have prediabetes. A research-based prevention program like DPP shows that a lifestyle change program is a proven way to prevent or delay diabetes.

Jenny Goins, Commissioner, Department of Employee Insurance, for the state of KY was very passionate about the DPP results generated for their employees. The KEHP’s DPP program has 416 employees actively enrolled in classes. Overall their employees have had an average of 5% weight loss and an average of 196 minutes of physical activity per week. DPP is a covered benefit for their plan. Jenny said, “DPP is making a big difference for our KEHP employees.”

You too can join the fight against prediabetes and diabetes in Louisville! Here are 6 ways how:

  1. Learn about the potential opportunity for addressing prediabetes in your organization with the CDC’s employer calculator.

  2. Provide education to your employees about prediabetes and/or host a screening event at your worksite.

  3. Consider covering the cost of a Diabetes Prevention Program in your workplace.

  4. Look for approved DPP providers in your area. A statewide list of CDC recognized programs can be obtained here.

  5. Learn more about Louisville’s activation of World Diabetes Day on November 14.

  6. Join the LHAB Diabetes Committee. To learn more about our work visit the Louisville Health Advisory Board website and Facebook page.

*Healthy Days is a tool created by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) that tracks quality of life by measuring individual physical and mental health in a 30 day period. The LHAB is using Healthy Days to track progress toward our Bold Goal – to make Louisville 20% healthier by 2020.

Post authored by members of the LHAB Diabetes Committee.

Culture, policy and data as key drivers of community health.

Culture, policy and data as key drivers of community health.

 One Poem At A Time billboard as part of Project HEAL.

One Poem At A Time billboard as part of Project HEAL.

It’s time for Louisville to lead in health, and that means taking three steps.

The first is to ensure that everyone can afford to see a doctor when they’re sick.

The second is to make preventive care, like screening for cancer, available to people who otherwise won’t or can’t go in for it.

The third is to stop thinking of health as something we get at the doctor’s office but instead as something that is rooted in the culture of our families, neighborhoods, schools, and workplaces.

The more health is seen this way, the more opportunities are available to improve it. This is why the Louisville Health Advisory Board’s Cultural/Social Impact Committee is focused on culture, policy and data as key drivers of community health.

Some may think that culture, policy and data aren’t related. However, it is the intersection of these three things that we often find breakthrough solutions that drive social innovation.

Core Cultural/Social Impact committee strategies include:

  • Health in All Policies Ambassadors – This networking opportunity organized by the Institute of Healthy Air Water & Soil brings together everyday citizen’s who have made the health of their communities a priority. The group shares learnings, and best practices.
  • One Poem at A Time – a policy initiative stemming from IDEAS xLab’s Project HEAL that seeks to mitigate the negative impact of the predatory, high-density messages on billboards and posters in low-income neighborhoods with significant health disparities like the Smoketown neighborhood.
  • Health Impact Assessments – the committee is playing a supporting role in promoting the use of Health Impact Assessments in Louisville.
  • Creating a Wellbeing Index for Louisville – through an innovative partnership with the City of Santa Monica's Office of Civic Wellbeing (CA), the committee is in the early stages of developing a create a "wellbeing index" for Louisville as part of IDEAS xLab’s Project HEAL. This new data, which will be open-source, development and planning tool for all Louisville neighborhoods, assesses 5 factors (data, impact, equity, culture, policy) of community readiness for change across 5 dimensions: Community; Place + Planet; Learning; Health; Economic Opportunity. 
  • Louisville Sports Commission – the committee is engaged in finding new ways to build active lifestyles into the culture of Louisville’s many diverse neighborhoods. Example of projects include: Louisville Active; Kids Finish First; Corporate Games; and Play It Forward.

Our understanding of what creates healthy communities is in a period of significant change. Grappling with the authenticity that makes each community unique; ensuring equity for the most vulnerable; and actively creating new models for wellbeing, inclusive economies and civic engagement; these are the challenges that may also present significant opportunities to accelerate the pace of positive impact in community health.

Thanks to the work of the LHAB Cultural/Social Impact Committee, a cross-sector team is coming together for a learning exchange and to create innovative approaches to policy change and new data tools that can support the social, economic, and environmental health of Louisville communities. The unique approach being deployed by this committee is also geared toward building civic trust, opportunities to increase transparency, and nurture a shared desire to make government more accessible and responsive to the needs of all people.

About the authors:

Theo Edmonds and Grace Simrall co-chair the Cultural/Social Impact Committee for LHAB.

 Theo Edmonds, JD, MHA, MFA is Chief Imaginator + Co-Founder of IDEAS xLab. He is a futurist, artist, poet and social entrepreneur. A former healthcare executive and champion clogger, he was named as one of "50 People Changing the Face of the South" by Southern Living Magazine.

Theo Edmonds, JD, MHA, MFA is Chief Imaginator + Co-Founder of IDEAS xLab. He is a futurist, artist, poet and social entrepreneur. A former healthcare executive and champion clogger, he was named as one of "50 People Changing the Face of the South" by Southern Living Magazine.

 Grace Simrall was named Chief of Civic Innovation and Technology for Louisville Metro Government in August 2016 and in that role is responsible for advising the Mayor and leading Louisville Metro’s initiatives on emerging technologies and breakthrough innovations.

Grace Simrall was named Chief of Civic Innovation and Technology for Louisville Metro Government in August 2016 and in that role is responsible for advising the Mayor and leading Louisville Metro’s initiatives on emerging technologies and breakthrough innovations.

Respiratory health... Let's breathe better.

Respiratory health... Let's breathe better.

   
  
 
  
    
  
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  Veronica Combs of the Institute for Healthy Air, Water and Soil describes the work of AIR Louisville during LHAB quarterly meeting.

Veronica Combs of the Institute for Healthy Air, Water and Soil describes the work of AIR Louisville during LHAB quarterly meeting.

The Respiratory Health sub-committee is the youngest of the Louisville Health Advisory Board (LHAB) sub-committees, having formed in August 2017. Many of our committee members have been involved with other committees or have been interested in serving since LHAB launched in fall 2015. 

We remember at the inaugural Clinical Town Hall, Humana shared data about the many health conditions that were driving unhealthy days and lung health was one of the major contributors. Sadly, at the kickoff meeting when committees formed, there were not enough folks interested to get a workgroup going at that time. Fast forward a few years and a number of developments have occurred that allowed us to rekindle the flame. 

For example, the community asthma intervention project called AIR Louisville launched two years ago, and today, under Veronica Combs' (Institute for Healthy Air, Water and Soil) leadership, there are many community stakeholders that are excited to tackle asthma and make our city a place that promotes lung health. Similarly, a short time ago, Ben Chandler took the reigns at the Foundation for a Healthy Kentucky and made “Smoke Free Kentucky” a major focus of their work. The clinical science is definitive that reducing smoking is one of the best ways to get more healthy days in Louisville and surrounding counties.

Beyond this new energy, the committee is trying to embrace the best of the ideas of the Bold Goal effort. The idea was always to align the stakeholders in the community to work together to make more progress. We have taken that to heart. For example, we know the Foundation for a Healthy Kentucky needs help getting their policy and program ideas shared across communities that simply have not taken steps to reduce smoking. We are working together to rally the networks of AIR Louisville, supporting employers and the great grass roots of the ALA to move advocacy to the next level. Similarly, the American Lung Association has partnered with Revon Systems to help the Community Health Clinic in Butchertown, and now holds regular lung screening clinics for those without health insurance. These are just some examples of how we are trying to maximize the common interests of our committee members.

Our committee recognizes that this is a bit of an experiment. Engaging around respiratory health at this point is new territory, and we hope to benefit from the pioneering work of the other LHAB committees, who share in the philosophy of a Bold Goal that is not time-bound and is inclusive. We care about the health of our community in 2017, 2020, 2040 and beyond.

We will work hard to raise awareness for the many important and simple things that our community can do to breath better and promote the good health of future generations, and welcome others to join us.

About the authors:

As co-chairs of LHAB’s Respiratory Health sub-committee, Deena Adams brings the full force of the American Lung Association, and Ted Smith brings the health tech entrepreneurial community to the table.

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Deena Adams is Development Manager for American Lung Association in Kentucky and advances the capacity for the organization to deliver health- promoting programs.

 

 

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Ted Smith is CEO of Revon Systems which develops lung health tools for those suffering from COPD and Asthma and he has many years of community-based civic health tech experience.

 

 

Our Target - Zero Suicides.

Our Target - Zero Suicides.

 Photo from the 2016  Bold Moves Against Suicide  Summit in Louisville, KY.

Photo from the 2016 Bold Moves Against Suicide Summit in Louisville, KY.

We as a society have a difficult time dealing with the subject of death. When someone takes their own life, that conversation proves even more difficult. No other situation can elicit such immense grief and remorse as the subject of suicide. Losing a loved one to suicide forever changes a family. For those left behind there is the litany of, if only I had… I should have… I could have… etc. 

Louisville ranks 8th for the highest rate of suicide compared to peer cities.

It is for this reason that the Louisville Health Advisory Board’s Behavioral Health sub-committee (LHAB) decided to take on the challenge of addressing suicide in our city.

This Behavioral Health sub-committee reviewed the suicide data in our city and at first looked at reducing the incidence of suicide in Louisville Metro, but after much discussion agreed that not even one suicide is acceptable. We decided that the Zero Suicide Initiative was the only real option for our city. This initiative does not settle for the reduction of suicide, but its elimination. This is our only target. 

In November, 2016, LHAB and the Behavioral Health sub-committee sponsored the “Bold Moves Against Suicide Summit” where community partners, clinicians, educators, social service providers, and faith-based organizations convened to raise the level of awareness for this issue. 

The goals were to:

  1. Increase the sense of responsibility in our community to eliminate suicide,
  2. Provide tools and resources to address the issue of suicide,
  3. Discuss the goal of Zero Suicide,
  4. Create a community approach to eliminate suicide.

At the close of the summit, the attendees were asked to pledge their commitment to Zero Suicide and to continue meeting to explore ways to implement it throughout the city. On June 26, 2017, about 25 organizations rose to this challenge and met to develop their 90-Day Action Plan to implement Zero Suicide in their organization.

We are in the process of meeting again in early October to discuss and encourage these organizations to continue their implementation of Zero Suicide. We invite any organization wanting to assist us in this initiative to join us. Together we can become a city where not even one suicide is acceptable.   

About the author: Wayne Crabtree serves as the Director of the Office of Addiction Services at Louisville Metro Department of Public Health and Wellness. He has served there for over 26 years with some great community partners in order to increase the health and well-being in Louisville metro citizens.

Graphic Recording by Katalyst Creative Consulting. 

Four parallel, interrelated ways to approach Community Coordination of Care

Four parallel, interrelated ways to approach Community Coordination of Care

  Catalyzed by the Robert Wood Johnson Culture of Health Prize, the Louisville community has decided to hold itself accountable to looking at health as encompassing more than clinical care and health behaviors, but also the social, economic, and environmental factors that collectively have more impact on the health of individuals. Photo by Tyrone Turner, courtesy RWJF.

Catalyzed by the Robert Wood Johnson Culture of Health Prize, the Louisville community has decided to hold itself accountable to looking at health as encompassing more than clinical care and health behaviors, but also the social, economic, and environmental factors that collectively have more impact on the health of individuals. Photo by Tyrone Turner, courtesy RWJF.

There is an emerging consensus in the public health community that the only way to meaningfully impact health outcomes at a community level is to focus outside the traditional definitions of health. Catalyzed by the Robert Wood Johnson Culture of Health prize, the Louisville community has decided to hold itself accountable to looking at health as encompassing more than clinical care and health behaviors, but also the social, economic, and environmental factors that collectively have more impact on the health of individuals.

To successfully address those factors for the community as a whole will require a culture shift - an unprecedented level of coordination across traditional silos of education, workforce development, health care, social services, park systems, the arts community, faith communities, and others. To successfully focus on the needs of individuals across those domains, sharing and layering intersectional data sets and having caring and skilled individuals who can help people navigate the system will be crucial. To do this at scale, both resources and a willingness to disrupt the status quo will be needed.  

In order to create a demonstration case that will most dramatically show impact in terms of outcomes and costs, the Community Coordination of Care sub-committee as part of the Louisville Health Advisory Board decided to focus on chronic disease patients and high utilizers of the health care system. Chronic disease patients are faced with specific challenges due to the complexity of the care they need. These issues are often compounded by socio-economic status, geography, mobility, comorbidities, or family/social situation.

As a sub-committee, we have come together to pilot an assertive care model of medical care and disease management needs along with community needs navigation. This is being done by engaging medical staff in tandem with community, volunteers and social care professionals to meet the chronically ill where they are, working to improve health and quality of life, and thus help community members address their essential human needs.

We are engaged in four parallel and interrelated projects:

  • Adapting a common screening tool across the community that can be used to identify essential basic needs at multiple entry points into our medical, educational, and social services systems.
  • Rallying around a common directory of resources (Metro United Way 211) that can be used to direct people to appropriate services that are convenient to them.
  • Establishing a common set of legal agreements that can be the basis for allowing individuals to share appropriate data between organizations to help ensure the best outcomes.
  • Structuring our work to take advantage of existing research on impact and ensuring that these demonstration cases, if they have the desired impact, can be used to make the argument for scaling across the community.

What feels powerful about this model is that it is not about bringing additional resources to bear, but rather refocusing how we invest those resources in ways that support individual needs, barriers, and aspirations. We believe that in focusing on the whole person and the whole community, we can make our community a place in which every person can reach his or her full potential.

About the authors: Post written by the Community Coordination of Care sub-committee co-chairs Ben Reno-Weber, Greater Louisville Project; Dr. Fairouz Saad, Louisville Metro Department of Public Health and Wellness; and Tom Walton, Executive in Residence, School of Public Health and Information Sciences, University of Louisville.

Targeting diabetes through evidence-based programs and collaboration

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Targeting diabetes through evidence-based programs and collaboration

 People find support in the Y's group-based  Diabetes Prevention Program.  Photo provided by the YMCA of Greater Louisville.

People find support in the Y's group-based Diabetes Prevention Program. Photo provided by the YMCA of Greater Louisville.

Diabetes is a terrible disease. Truth be told, it probably frightens me even more than cancer does. I spent 11 years of my professional life trying to improve outreach to and education of people living with diabetes, to improve their quality and quantity of life. It was frustrating work. This experience led me to join and participate in the Louisville Health Advisory Board’s Diabetes sub-committee.

As a group, our sub-committee made the courageous decision to focus on the ‘long game’ by choosing to target preventing Type 2 Diabetes with the CDC-approved, evidence-based Diabetes Prevention Program (DPP).

DPP focuses on lifestyle changes for people diagnosed with prediabetes, which is very common and tremendously underdiagnosed. Participants in DPP programs can often prevent or delay the onset of diabetes. In fact, research from the National Institutes of Health shows that DPP can reduce the onset of diabetes by 58%.

The YMCA of Greater Louisville has been a national and local leader in DPP programming, deploying dozens of specially-trained lifestyle coaches, who offer DPP in a variety of locations, including YMCAs across Jefferson County and in southern Indiana. The list of CDC-approved DPP providers across Jefferson County is growing, but demand for the class continues to lag.

So we’ve been busy working to build a pipeline to shepherd people with prediabetes from diagnosis to successful completion of a CDC-approved DDP program. This pipeline is taking shape—thanks to multi-sectorial collaborations highlighted by:

  • Private sector engagement of more physicians in the work of testing for and diagnosing prediabetes,
  • State and local government development of resource guides and training for referral center staff,
  • Non-profit innovations around employer engagement. 

Realizing a future without the debilitating effects of diabetes will require an ongoing commitment for each of us to share the best of our knowledge and resources. We’re on it!

Stay tuned for National Diabetes Month in November, when we’ll roll out two projects that demonstrate the power of collective action to improve health and wellness.

About the author: Leanne French serves as the Administrator for Maternal and Child Health at the Louisville Department of Public Health and Wellness, where for the past 13 years she’s worked with amazing community partners to develop infrastructure for better health for all.

French is a leader within the Louisville Health Advisory Board’s Diabetes sub-committee, which is co-chaired by Steve Tarver, CEO of YMCA of Greater Louisville and Andrea Dougherty, Community Health Supervisor for Louisville Metro Department of Public Health and Wellness.

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