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Cambia Health Foundation Empowers Communities to Improve Children's Mental Health, Advance Palliative Care and Promote Health Care Innovation

PORTLAND, OR--(Marketwired - February 22, 2017) - The Cambia Health Foundation is making a dramatic impact by advancing projects that create a more person-focused health care system. Improving children's mental health, expanding access to palliative care and streamlining the way the health care system works are all at the forefront of the Cambia Health Foundation's efforts. To support programs that raise the standard of health care, the Cambia Health Foundation has awarded over $1.2 million in grants to non-profit organizations both regionally and nationally.

Listed below is a synopsis of the eight efforts that were recently funded by the Cambia Health Foundation.


The VitalTalk program was granted $279,725 over two years to develop and pilot a regional training hub in Salt Lake City in partnership with the University of Utah School of Medicine. This is the second regional hub that has been developed in an effort to expand the VitalTalk program on a national level. The goal of the program is to help train physicians to build communication skills that help support the seriously ill and their families. The program will provide a regular offering of one-day communication courses for clinicians in Utah and Idaho with a goal of training 240 clinicians. A recent survey funded by the Cambia Health Foundation, the John A. Hartford Foundation and the California Health Care Foundation demonstrated that even though 99 percent of physicians surveyed felt that advance care conversations were 'very important', only 14 percent of these physicians had billed Medicare for actually conducting one of these conversations. In addition, most physicians reported having no formal communication skills training which is critical in helping these patients and their families make the right decisions in difficult situations.

Ariadne Labs

A Joint Center for Health Systems Innovation at Brigham and Women's Hospital; and the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health

The Ariadne Labs program was granted $70,000 for one year to support the consensus process and writing of a white paper and journal article after a two-day Summit on Quality Metrics in Serious Illness Communication which will take place at the Cambia Grove in May 2017. The white paper will summarize the state of the evidence about measurement of communication, key themes and recommendations for a national strategy for implementation of a consistent, scalable measurement framework across health systems. Additional activities will focus on engaging national advocacy and policy organizations to promote the framework and infrastructure nationally.

Unity Center for Behavioral Health

The Unity Center for Behavioral Health was granted $225,151 over two years to assist individuals who are experiencing a behavioral health crisis, 30 percent of which are living unsheltered according to the 2015 Point-In-Time Count study. The behavioral health emergency room model will be staffed by both psychiatric and medical providers as well as social workers, peer specialists and other resource specialists who can address a patient's acute care needs as well as initiate therapeutic intervention and connect individuals with appropriate community resources.

Neighborcare Health

Neighborcare Health was granted up to $200,000 over two years to completely transform the business and service model based on Lean Management and Leadership Development. Serving as the first Federally Qualified Health Center System in the country, the goal is to develop a business model that focuses on improving health outcomes, reducing costs and inefficiencies, and creating an unparalleled consumer experience. The work will take place across 24 health centers in King County, Washington, serving over 60,000 patients.

Virginia Garcia Memorial Fund

The Virginia Garcia Memorial Fund was granted $250,000 over two years to achieve better mental health for children through an innovative school-based model of integrated primary care and mental health care. In addition, they will develop an agency-wide assessment and action plan to initiate a system-wide transformation to trauma-informed care. The goal of the program is to increase access to sustainable mental health care for priority patients and identify how to integrate a trauma-informed approach across Virginia Garcia's six School-Based Health Centers (SBHCs) and primary care clinics.

CHOICE Regional Public Health Network

The CHOICE Regional Public Health Network was granted $87,500 for one year to support four pilot schools to provide a better support structure for care to support at least 200 children. The program is designed to connect children with unmet behavioral health needs to the services that they need, including behavioral health, physical health, and social support services, and to ensure that communities in this region are aware of trauma-informed practices and the effects of Adverse Childhood Experiences. A standard teacher training program will be developed that can easily be shared across school districts all over the region in the most cost-effective way.

North by Northeast Community Health Center

The North by Northeast Community Health Center was granted $41,000 for 18 months to deliver personalized, high quality, cost effective care designed for the African American community in the Portland Metropolitan Region. The project will double its successful primary and preventive care model from approximately 525 patients in 2017 to more than 1,100 by the end of 2019. The expanded, culturally specific primary care model will be supported by chronic disease prevention and management groups, health screenings, and their Cuts&Checks™ barbershop blood pressure program.

Healthy Living Collaborative of Southwest Washington

The Healthy Living Collaborative of Southwest Washington was granted $45,000 for 18 months to continue support for their Community Health Worker programs in Clark, Cowlitz, and Wahkiakum counties. Each of the projects are improving consumer knowledge, increasing healthy behaviors, and mobilizing community advocate for healthier communities. The three pilot sites have formed a regional learning and navigation network that supports individual and population health goals.

About Cambia Health Foundation

Based in Portland, Ore., Cambia Health Foundation is the corporate Foundation of Cambia Health Solutions, a total health solutions company dedicated to transforming the way people experience health care. Founded in 2007, Cambia Health Foundation awards grants in three program areas: Palliative Care, Transforming Health Care and Children's Health. The Foundation has funded just over $29 million in grants to support these causes. Cambia Health Foundation's investments in palliative care advance patient- and family-centered care that optimizes quality of life by anticipating, preventing and treating suffering. Learn more at www.cambiahealthfoundation.org, and follow us on Twitter: @CambiaHealthFdn.