At TMC, our Community Health Strategies & Innovation (CHS & I) department provides a holistic, 360 approach to preventative health. We strategically partner with community stakeholders to develop sustainable programs that achieve impactful outcomes. A heightened focus on schools allows CHS & I to deliver health education and resources to instill healthy lifestyle habits at a young age. As experts in the community, Community Health Strategies & Innovation is leading the way to a healthy community outside the four walls of the hospital.
TMC’s Healthy Harvest Mobile Market is TMC’s front line approach in effort to combat chronic disease through nutrition education and advocacy. This “Classroom on Wheels” delivers fresh, affordable healthy foods throughout Kansas City, Missouri and Eastern Jackson County. With a strong presence in area schools, the Healthy Harvest Mobile Market team also creates and facilitates interactive nutrition focused lessons and activities to improve family diet and nutritional well-being.
The Healthy Harvest Mobile Market bus is handicap- accessible and offers more resources for maintaining a healthy diet. Along with increasing opportunities to buy healthy foods, the Healthy Harvest Mobile Market team can help answer questions like: What are the best food and vegetables for diabetics? What are the best weight loss friendly foods? What foods help reduce high blood pressure, prevent obesity and help prevent strokes?
Shop for fresh fruits and healthy foods weekly, as the Healthy Harvest Mobile Market bus travels near your Kansas City neighborhood. The Mobile Market bus will be at the Jackson County Courthouse, Don Bosco School of English, Samuel U. Rodgers Health Center, Westport House, MCC-Penn Valley, Armour Corridor, Linwood YMCA, Fairmount Plaza and local schools on a weekly basis through spring, summer and early fall. See the Healthy Harvest Mobile Market schedule and route below.
TMC’s Community Health Strategy & Innovation team finds new ways to educate our community to promote long-term solutions to maintaining a healthier lifestyle. Utilizing the Wellness Connection model, our Community Health Nurse delivers preventative health initiatives directly to the underserved. Additionally, we provide evidence-based, sustainable programming to community members designed to overcome social determinants regarding health education and access to care.
The Wellness Connection is a collaborative partnership between TMC and community partners. There are currently three Wellness Connections in Kansas City, Missouri, and are located at the Don Bosco English as a Second Language School, the Bluford Library, and the Palestine Senior Activity Center.
The innovative platform creates new solutions tailored to the health issues of the community and provides education so community members can advocate for their own health, while taking the proper steps to reduce risk and fight chronic diseases. The Community Health Nurse tracks and measures improvement in self-management with an ultimate goal of reducing Emergency Department visits for manageable health care needs.
The Wellness Connection offers a physical space with a blood pressure cuff and a litany of health education and resources. Programs are designed based on the need of the community, and include the Weight Loss Challenge at Bluford Library, and educational field trips at Kansas City and Independence Public Schools, utilizing the Healthy Harvest Mobile Market and the Mobile Wellness Unit.
In response to the health disparities, Truman Medical Centers and the Bluford Library developed a 12 week Healthy Living Challenge. The Challenge consisted of work out classes, weekly educational topics, cooking demos, and fresh produce from the Healthy Harvest Mobile Market. Pre and Post screenings measured total cholesterol, triglycerides, high-density lipoprotein (HDL), low-density lipoprotein (LD), body mass index (BMI), weight, height, body part percentage, waist circumference, glucose, and blood pressure. Dr. Lindquist, TMC’s weight loss doctor, also conducted popular Q & A sessions for interested participants.
Diabetes Self-Management Program is directed towards persons with diabetes, and their relatives who need information on self-care. The program is designed based on participatory education methodology. It utilizes principles of adult education and group work techniques that promote learning as well as progression towards a healthy lifestyle.
CDSMP is an effective self-management education program for people with chronic health problems. The program specifically addresses arthritis, diabetes, lung and heart disease, but teaches skills useful for managing a variety of chronic diseases.
Careers in health care are endless yet many high school students and middle school students are unaware of the array of potential healthcare careers. Education Services opens the doors for students of all ages, cultures and backgrounds to learn about these careers in medicine, nursing and allied health. The creative programs increase diversity in health professions and assist students in their investigation of a career in health care.
Truman Medical Centers hosts two Medical Explorers Programs through the Boy Scouts of America/Exploring. High school students enjoy monthly hands-on workshops which include suturing pig’s feet and putting an arm cast on a fellow Explorer. Additionally, Truman Medical Centers staff including physicians, allied health and nursing professionals, share relevant information about the healthcare professions. High school and middle school students get an opportunity to learn about educational paths that can lead to professional school admission as well as an array of career options in the health care field.
Truman Medical Centers Education Services hosts a 2 week summer camp for Blue Springs Middle School students interested in a healthcare career. These 2 weeks include hands-on activities and simulations in physical and occupational therapy, pharmacy compounding to create your own lip balm, CPR certification training, and more. Additionally, TMC staff including physicians and allied health and nursing professionals, share relevant information about medical and nursing professions. High school and middle school students get an opportunity to learn about educational paths and programs that can lead to professional school admission.
Summit Tech Academy (STA), part of the Lee’s Summit R-7 district, has a Pre-Allied Health program for students interested in a healthcare career. STA draws students from 25 surrounding districts including Raytown, Blue Springs, Odessa and Kansas City. The Career Exploration team partners with the Pre-Allied Health program to shadow varying clinics at TMC Lakewood. Students complete several clinical rotations in Radiology, Surgical Tech, Respiratory Therapy, and many more. Students receive the unique experience of interacting with TMC’s Allied Health professionals, and broadening their understanding of potential career’s in healthcare.
Truman Medical Centers Community Health Strategies and Innovation department, together with Truman Medical Centers Women’s Health department has collaborated with Nurture KC and the Healthy Start Initiative to bring onboard a Community Health Program Nurse. The Community Health Program RN specializes in medically high - risk pregnancies and newborn care. The Healthy Start Initiative serves 14 zip codes within the Kansas City metro, with these zip codes representing the areas with the highest rates of infant mortality in the city.
The nurse educates and supports Healthy Start participants by providing adequate prenatal, postpartum and newborn care and creating solutions to overcome barriers. The collaboration strives to reduce the rates of infant and maternal mortality within the most at-risk populations in the Kansas City metro through prevention and health education. Education will center on the diagnosed high-risk medical condition of either the mother or infant, such as:
‘YOUR HEALTH IS YOUR WEALTH’
The CHSI team dedicates considerable resources in the local schools and has forged strong partnerships with the Kansas City and Independence School District. Students at an early age must learn the importance of adopting a maintaining a healthy lifestyle. ‘Your Health is Your Wealth’ curriculum was strategically designed program to address four main points:
‘Your Health is Your Wealth’ (YHYW) is a 12 week curriculum designed to supplement high school health classes. The community nurse and nutrition education team lead several of the sessions. TMC professionals representing Behavioral Health, Trauma Services, among others, provide real world experience and a hands-on teaching style to better connect with the students.
Students take Mid-Term and Final exams, as well as weekly quizzes counted as a portion of their final health grade.
“Summer Camp helped me to know that there are all different careers in the medical field”
- Blue Springs Middle School
“The Healthy Harvest Mobile Market helps me afford to buy fresh fruits and vegetables. My doctor wants me to eat more vegetables because I am pre-diabetic. Thank you for helping me because I cannot afford the vegetables in the grocery store”.
- Mary Lou, Healthy Harvest Mobile Market Customer
“Ms. Raquel provided interesting and educational information that I will treasure. This was such a positive and enlightening experience for me, that I will strive to attend all other workshops regarding health”.
- Emma Ponder, Chronic Disease Self-Management Participant
“The collaboration between TMC’s Wellness Connection and our library produces remarkable results. In March 2018, we facilitated a successful Weight Loss Challenge, lowered cholesterol, blood pressure, and triglyceride counts for participants”
- Beth Edson, Branch Manager- Bluford Library