Cleveland, OH,
09:34 AM

UnitedHealthcare Grants MetroHealth $500,000 to Advance Programs that Address Social Determinants of Health

Cleveland - UnitedHealthcare will provide $500,000 in funding to help expand two MetroHealth programs addressing social determinants of health for underserved populations in the greater Cleveland area. The three-year collaboration expands initiatives targeted at high-risk pregnant mothers and medically complex patient populations. Both programs provide or connect participants to wrap-around services such as housing support and food assistance, as well as financial and employment resources to improve health outcomes.

MetroHealth’s Red Carpet Care program for patients who frequently visit the emergency room and those with medically complex conditions provides food and housing assistance to address the issues that prevent many of these patients from achieving better health. The program aims to improve overall health and reduce the need to visit the hospital by establishing a primary care provider for patients and offering well-coordinated services that meet their basic needs.

MetroHealth’s Mom & Baby Bundle program brings providers and community-based organizations together to support pregnant women and their infants who are at higher risk for poor birth outcomes, including those with opioid use disorder and those experiencing housing insecurity. The program identifies and engages at-risk patients and establishes connections to needed resources in a team-based care environment.

The funding from UnitedHealthcare will enable MetroHealth to increase capacity for both programs, track patient outcomes, as well as identify drivers of poor outcomes. The two organizations will collaborate to design and test effective care management strategies based on program findings, which will have a direct impact on many of UnitedHealthcare’s Medicaid members in the Cleveland area.

“We are proud to partner with UnitedHealthcare, and their support will make a big difference in the lives of so many people in our community,” said MetroHealth CEO and President Akram Boutros, MD, FACHE. “Both programs focus on long-term, sustainable transformation. Whether it is helping mothers and their babies get off to a healthy start or working with people with complex medical issues that often come to our Emergency Department, thousands of people in Northeast Ohio will be better off because of this effort.”

“The need for payer and provider partnerships to address the health needs of the underserved has never been more evident. The COVID-19 pandemic has required all of us to step up our support services and come together for the sake of community health,” said Mike Roaldi, chief executive officer, UnitedHealthcare Community & State Ohio. “We are committed to helping drive better health outcomes for underserved populations in Ohio and are grateful to partners like MetroHealth for their commitment to a mission we both share.”

Research shows that 80 percent of an individual’s health is determined by what happens outside of a doctor’s office.1 Addressing barriers to better health is one part of UnitedHealthcare’s multi-pronged commitment to redefine healthy living for the uninsured and underserved. UnitedHealthcare, a UnitedHealth Group company, is also investing in programs and partnerships focused on food, transportation and social isolation. To date, UnitedHealth Group has provided over $100 million in support to support those most impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic, including health care workers, hard-hit communities and older adults.

About The MetroHealth System

The MetroHealth System is redefining health care by going beyond medical treatment to improve the foundations of community health and well-being: affordable housing, a cleaner environment, economic opportunity and access to fresh food, convenient transportation, legal help and other services. The system strives to become as good at preventing disease as it is at treating it.

The system’s more than 600 doctors, 1,700 nurses and 7,800 employees go to work each day with a mission of service, to their patients and to the community. As Cuyahoga County’s safety-net health system, MetroHealth plays an essential role in the region, caring for anyone and everyone, regardless of an ability to pay.

Founded in 1837, MetroHealth operates four hospitals, four emergency departments and more than 20 health centers and 40 additional sites throughout Cuyahoga County. The system serves more than 300,000 patients, two-thirds of whom are uninsured or covered by Medicare or Medicaid.

MetroHealth is home to Cuyahoga County’s most experienced Level I Adult Trauma Center, verified since 1992, and Ohio’s only adult and pediatric trauma and burn center.

As an academic medical center, MetroHealth is committed to research and to teaching and training tomorrow’s caregivers. Each active staff physician holds a faculty appointment at Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine. Its main campus hospital houses the Cleveland Metropolitan School District’s Lincoln-West School of Science & Health, the only high school in America located inside a hospital.

Knowing that good health is about much more than good medical care, MetroHealth has launched the Institute for H.O.P.E.™ (Health, Opportunity, Partnership, Empowerment), which uses a coordinated, collaborative and strategic approach to help patients with non-medical needs such as healthy food, stable housing and job training.

The MetroHealth Glick Center, a new 11-floor hospital, is under construction on the system’s main campus in Cleveland and is scheduled to welcome its first patients in October 2022. The billion-dollar project is the cornerstone of a wider neighborhood revitalization effort led by the system and its partners in the community.

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