Cynthia Telles Reflects on Kaiser Permanente's 2018 Community Health Initiatives
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Cynthia Telles Reflects on Kaiser Permanente's 2018 Community Health Initiatives

Wednesday, May 29, 2019 8:00 AM
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LOS ANGELES, CA / ACCESSWIRE / May 29, 2019 / Since its establishment as a mission-based nonprofit organization over 70 years ago, Kaiser Permanente has remained dedicated to its mission of providing high-quality, affordable health care services and improving the health of its members and communities. As the needs of communities have evolved over the years, Kaiser Permanente has continued to advance its community health strategy and expand the way it partners with communities.

In 1945, Kaiser Permanente's work to serve its communities focused on providing health care for workers in steel mills and shipyards. In 2018, this work resulted in awarding 2,000 community grants, providing $2.5 billion in health care services, and extending community health resources to 12.2 million members and 68 million people. Support for patients included nearly 310,000 people served through Kaiser Permanente's charitable health coverage and medical financial assistance programs, as well as nearly 970,000 people served through Medicaid and CHIP.

Fueled by its long-standing passion for community, in 2018 Kaiser Permanente focused on the goal that, as Community Health Committee Chair Cynthia Telles affirmed, "The long-term health and wellness of our communities must be our priority."

As such, Kaiser Permanente's efforts extended beyond health care to include housing and education. The organization joined forces with mayors and CEOs for the U.S. Housing Investment initiative to address the nation's housing crisis and brainstorm ways to assist the half-million people without consistent, stable homes. Additionally, acknowledging the impact wellness has on learning, Kaiser Permanente empowered more than 472,691 students and 29,345 teachers in more than 700 schools to eat healthier, be more active, and increase wellness.

While Kaiser Permanente prioritized addressing timely, urgent issues, the organization's strategy also extended into the ongoing wellness of people and advancing the future of community health. For example, Kaiser Permanente pledged to use science, research, and partnerships to combat health challenges worldwide and devise creative, innovative solutions. This manifested in nearly 1,800 published journal articles, sharing collective knowledge to identify more equitable health outcomes to complex health problems.

Last year, Kaiser Permanente also embarked on a forward-looking strategy focused on climate change, preventable weapon-related deaths, and inspiring future health care professionals. Within the past year alone, Kaiser Permanente successfully powered 35 percent of its operations with renewable energy, and further pledged to be carbon neutral in 2020. The organization also began researching strategies to prevent the 30,000 firearm deaths that occur in America each year.

In 2019 and beyond, Kaiser Permanente will continue its commitment to expanding and innovating on its founding mission. Acting boldly and working humbly with others, the organization looks to lead the charge in solving the most pressing health challenges, preventing health epidemics, and ensuring the wellness of current and future communities.

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SOURCE: Kaiser Permanente

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