Category Archives: News
July 2, 2019 – Muskegon, MI – If you became unable to make decisions about your healthcare, would anyone know your wishes? How will you make sure that healthcare providers know what type of treatment you want – or don’t want?
“After more than 20 years working in health and human service settings, I have witnessed many unfortunate ethical dilemmas that families and health care providers face when they are forced to make decisions for patients who can’t communicate for themselves,” says Luke Reynolds, Executive Director at LifeCircles-PACE.
It’s a common problem with an easy solution. It just takes a little planning, and the staff at Harbor Hospice and Harbor Palliative Care can help. The organization has partnered with the Charted Healthcare Planning Coalition (Charted) to ensure, through outreach and education, that adults in the region know how to make a plan for their healthcare needs.
To carry out that work, Harbor Hospice recently received a $25,000 grant from the Health Project Community Benefit Board.
“We are grateful and excited about the grant, which will make it possible for us to continue to educate members of the community on the importance of advance care planning so each individual’s healthcare wishes can be honored,” said Lisa Cummins, president and CEO of Harbor Hospice and Harbor Palliative Care. “Planning in advance means family members don’t have to make difficult decisions for someone close to them, without knowing what they want.”
“This grant will allow Charted Healthcare Planning Coalition to equip people with the education and tools necessary to ensure everyone’s wishes are known,” adds Reynolds, who is also co-chair of Charted.
There is no cost to prepare advance directives. Those requesting help can schedule an appointment with Andrea Nofsinger, Charted Coalition Coordinator, at 231-728-3442.
In addition to Harbor Hospice, and Life-Circles-PACE, Charted’s community partners include Affinia Health Network, Hackley Community Care, Mercy Health, Muskegon Community College, Muskegon Community Health Project, North Ottawa Medical Group, and Senior Resources of West Michigan.
Diabetes Personal Action Toward Health (DPATH) is a program developed by the University of Stanford, designed to help people who are affected by diabetes. The six-week course can be useful not only for those who themselves have diabetes, but also for pre-diabetics or people living with diabetic family members and loved ones. Since the course is put on by non-medical professionals, it is not a medical class (although medications and visits to physicians are discussed as important parts of managing diabetes), but rather a practical class—offering things like strategies to deal with difficult emotions, information on how to eat well as a diabetic (or cook for a diabetic friend or family member), relaxation techniques, and ideas for exercising and daily activity. Since life with a chronic disease is filled with choices that will affect your health, the class also spends time on decision-making.
An important part of the curriculum is establishing a weekly action plan, where each participant decides on a quantifiable, measurable goal for the week; and in each class, participants share their experiences from the past week with their action plan. Many plans revolve around exercise (walking one mile four days during the week) or nutrition (cooking supper three nights); but could include anything a person wants to achieve in the next week. These action plans give participants a way to feel accomplished and encouraged if a goal is met; and if the goal turns out to be too ambitious, participants are encouraged to modify as they go along. Back in the group, fellow classmates can celebrate successes and offer support and suggestions. Troubleshooting problems together as a class reinforces key problem-solving and decision-making skills the course teaches.
While the information in the class is valuable, what many participants find most uplifting is the support the class offers. Being in a room with 10 other people who have similar experiences and daily struggles provides a safe space for people to vent frustrations and fears that are present in the life of a diabetic, as well as people to help celebrate the victories. With the new tools and new relationships formed by the end of the class, the participants feel better-equipped to deal with their diabetes going forward.
Health Project was awarded the Trinity Health Innovation Award at the Trinity Health Clinical Conference October 25th, for the Innovation pilot to integrate their IT system, ClarkeIS, into Great Lakes Health Connect to share social determinants of health information with clinical providers.
World Aids Day is a day to raise awareness and support those living with HIV. On December 1st, health organizations around the world show their support by offering free, confidential HIV screening, and education at clinics, colleges, and more. The UpFront Education and Awareness Coalition held a World Aids Day Provider Forum on Thursday, December 7th in honor of World Aids Day. (more…)
Held their Strategic planning session to help identify substance abuse issues that face our youth.
One West Michigan county is a step closer to changing the age to buy tobacco products.
Muskegon County commissioners say they support changing the legal purchasing age from 18 to 21 years old. In an unanimous vote Tuesday night, the commissioners approved a resolution of support. Several things still need to happen for the resolution to become an ordinance, but the coalition behind the initiative feels the move was a step in the right direction.
“It’s a lot easier for me to keep a child from smoking than it is to get an adult to quit,” Cyndi Powers, the co-chair of the Knowsmoke Coalition, told 24 Hour News 8. “Over 83 percent of all of our adult smokers came from smoking households. So if we can keep kids from becoming that smoking generation, that’s what our mission is.” Though there’s still a long way to go before the change could happen, some area tobacco shop owners already worried.
“It’s going to affect a lot of industries. It’s going to affect the tobacco industry, regular store-bought cigarettes, the roll-your-own. It’s going to affect the vapers. It’s going to affect a lot of people,” said Rustyna Brewer, who owns the Tobacco Shack in North Muskegon. She told 24 Hour News 8 a big chunk of her store’s customers are under 21. “Raising the age, that’s going to take at least a third of our customers away and that, for small businesses, hurts,” Brewer said.
Despite concerns, the Knowsmoke Coalition thinks the change will be a positive for health and not a negative for business.
“When we did smoke-free bars and restaurants, we had the same concerns. Studies have shown us we did not see a decrease in their business, so we definitely will do our part as a coalition to educate the community and we’ll make sure we make it an easy transition for everyone,” Powers said.
Right now, Ann Arbor is the only city in Michigan where 21 is the minimum age to purchase tobacco products. The city council there adopted the ordinance in August.
Muskegon County Board of Commissioners voted to approve a resolution that supports raising the minimum legal age to purchase tobacco products.
At a full board meeting Tuesday, Dec. 20, the commissioners unanimously voted to support an initiative called “Tobacco 21,” which aims to raise the legal age to purchase tobacco products to 21. Behind the resolution is the Knowsmoke Coalition, a Muskegon County anti-smoking group. The resolution was introduced at board committee meeting Thursday, Dec. 15. Cyndi Powers, Knowsmoke Coalition co-chair, said reducing young peoples’ access to tobacco is the group’s focus.
“Studies have shown if we keep a child from smoking until after they’re 21, the chances of them being a long-term addicted smoker is a lot less,” Powers said.
According to an update from the One in 21 initiative, which is striving to make Muskegon County the state’s healthiest county by 2021, the rate of adult smoking in the county improved to slightly below the state average. Kendall Stagg, director of safety net transformation and community health innovation for Trinity Health, said the next step is to inform the public about Tobacco 21. “Beyond 200 jurisdictions have passed this law, so it truly is a national movement, it’s sweeping the nation,” Stagg said.
California and Hawaii, in addition to 212 cities and counties in the United States, have banned tobacco sales to people younger than 21-years-old, according to the Preventing Tobacco Addiction Foundation. In Michigan, Ann Arbor became the first city to raise the minimum age to purchase tobacco products in the from 18 to 21. An ordinance was adopted by its city council in August.
Supporters of the Ann Arbor ordinance claimed it would make it harder for teens to be introduced to nicotine or tobacco products. However, opponents argued people younger than 21-years-old could drive to other municipalities to purchase those products.
Building a more trauma-informed community, together.
Our community recently conducted an Adverse Childhood Experience (ACE) survey, finding a high prevalence of childhood trauma in adults living in Muskegon County. ACEs are directly connected to a wide host of health and social problems due to the impact of toxic stress on brain development and health and social behaviors. Learn more about Resilience Muskegon, a movement to educate the community about trauma and to develop brain-based approaches that will help heal individuals and provide connections within community.
The January 2017 Resilience Month Community Calendar is a growing list of events that promote community connections, positive relationships, and skill building. Click here to learn more and to view the ACES Muskegon Community Report and Resilience Month Community Calendar.
If you have an event you would like included on this calendar contact firstname.lastname@example.org and your event will be included in the next calendar edition.
Learn. Manage. Stop. These FREE classes will help you learn how to manage cravings, thoughts, and social relationships so you can become – and stay smoke-free. The more you try, the more likely you are to succeed!
Health Project Announces Community Benefit Board Initiative Grantees.
Funds support initiatives that address health needs identified in recent Community Health Needs Assessment.
Muskegon, MI, August 24, 2016 – The Health Project’s Advisory Board of Directors announced their grantee recipients of the Community Benefit Initiative Grant Program. Grantees will be able to utilize their funds starting August 2016 through June 2017.
A total of $125,000 has been granted to this year’s grantees: Catholic Charities West Michigan’s substance abuse counseling program, Christians for Healthcare’s community outreach and screening program, Salvation Army’s food pantry, Montague Public School’s food service program, Volunteer for Dental Care access program, Boys and Girls Club children’s health and well-being programs, Kids’ Food Basket expansion of the Sack Supper program, Oceana Hispanic Center’s family nutrition education program, and Senior Resources home-based services.
The Community Benefit Initiative Grant program was created to facilitate the investment of community benefit funds by the Health Project’s Board of Directors into the community. This fund supports initiatives that address health needs identified in Mercy Health’s most recent Community Health Needs Assessment (CHNA). To view the full CHNA report, please visit www.MercyHealth.com\CHNA
Stevi Riel, executive director of the Health Project, feels strongly that community partnerships are critical to making progress in the improvement of health behaviors in Muskegon and Oceana Counties. “The Community Benefit Initiative Grant program is an opportunity for us to invest in our community and put our Community Health Needs Assessment into action. Improving the health of the population isn’t a task that can be accomplished by one entity or group – we all have to commit to recognizing our place and moving forward together. The best investment for Mercy Health Muskegon is in the organizations that have experience – and the outcomes – doing the work that drives change at the community level.”
Grants are awarded once a year. Applications for the next round will be available March 2017. Visit our website for announcements and upcoming grant opportunities.
About the Health Project:
The Health Project, the Community Benefit Ministry of Mercy Health Muskegon, has been an inclusive, community-based, decision-making, non-profit agency committed to improving the health of the community and the delivery of health care in Muskegon County and the surrounding West Michigan region since 1992. For more information about the Health Project, to download a copy of the CHNA report and to learn more about what they do, please visit www.mchp.org