Creating lasting partnerships between agencies to better serve their respective communities was the goal of a recent morning meeting between 1889 Jefferson Center for Population Health Executive Director Jeannine McMillan and Project Manager Leanna Bird, who met with Kristin Lazzara and Stuart Fisk from Allegheny Health Network’s Center for Inclusion Health out of Pittsburgh.

“We were able to learn more about their work in Allegheny County and share information on our work at the 1889 Jefferson Center for Population Health and Community Care HUB in Cambria and Somerset counties. We are grateful for the opportunity to brainstorm with organizations like theirs who are doing amazing work with Community Health Worker and public health programming,” said Jeannine.

During the sit down, Jeannine and Leanna explained how the Community Care HUB’s Community Health Workers follow the Pathways Community HUB model to assess participants based on 21 standardized pathways. Currently, the priority populations the CHWs focus on are pregnant women in Cambria and Somerset counties who are receiving or are eligible for medical assistance or have been diagnosed with gestational diabetes and families of the Greater Johnstown School District students who struggle with attendance, grades and social determinants of health needs.

Kristin and Stuart shared that their CHWs are focused on homelessness and the post-incarceration population with plans of moving into assisting the transgender population. They also lead the CHW Community of Practice group, whose membership includes CHW employers from across the southwest PA region. The group focuses on sharing best practices for CHWs across organizations.

Before heading back to Pittsburgh, Leanna took Kristin and Stuart to visit two of the HUB’s three care coordination agencies, Beginnings, Inc. and Community Action Partnership of Cambria County. There, the group met with CHWs, CHW supervisors and executive directors and heard impact stories.

The two entities will continue their collaboration in the future, especially in regards to pursuing sustainable financing for Community Health Workers in the region.