Across Kansas, many families are facing significant barriers to better health, such as transportation, availability of physicians, affordability and location of services. According to United Health Foundation's America's Health Rankings, there are only 129 primary care providers per 100,000 people throughout the state.
In 2016, United Health Foundation announced a $1.9 million partnership grant to aid the Community Health Council of Wyandotte County (CHC) in improving access to care for Kansas families. The grant will help increase the number of community-based caregivers available to conduct outreach and reduce barriers to care for Wyandotte County residents over the next three years.
In June this year, the CHC celebrated a major milestone with Kansas Lt. Gov. Jeff Colyer, UnitedHealthcare Community Plan of Kansas CEO Kevin Sparks and more than 100 local residents. Since August 2016, more than 1,000 Wyandotte County patients who are uninsured or underinsured have received enhanced, personalized care from CHC community health workers.
"Our underserved community faces many challenges, so it is beautiful to be there to help families connect with resources and be by their side," said Carolina Biagi, one of the Wyandotte County community health workers.
The CHC's community health workers serve as "accountability partners" for their patients by scheduling doctor appointments, finding affordable health care services and medications, and ensuring their patients understand their diagnosis and treatment plan. They also help with overcoming challenges such as language barriers and securing resources such as food and housing.
Follow the story of several health care workers as they make an impact in the Kansas City, Kan., area, and learn more about our partnership in the state here.