NIHCM Newsletter / March 2019

Stopping Diabetes in its Tracks

What if you could stop diabetes before it starts? Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina intends to do just that by investing $5 million in the Diabetes Free NC initiative. While one in three adults in North Carolina live with prediabetes - roughly 2.6 million people - prevention programs can reduce the risk of developing Type 2 diabetes by 60 percent.

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Housing is Healing: Opioid Recovery Transitional Housing

For people recovering from opioid addiction, living in a supportive environment can help prevent relapse. Access to recovery housing can be particularly challenging in rural communities where housing is limited and rates of opioid addiction are highest. Two federal agencies are teaming up to sell government-owned buildings to nonprofits to provide housing and other recovery services, including treatment and job training.

Bringing Communities Together to Break Down Health Barriers

From addressing social isolation among seniors to ensuring children are well fed during school breaks, nonprofit organizations in Willmar, Minnesota are working to meet a wide range of social needs to improve community health. To support this important work, Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Minnesota recently awarded over $260,000 to support 21 organizations. The nonprofits have diverse mission areas including promoting breastfeeding and teaching safer driving practices, as well as providing services like autism behavior therapy and mental health support.

NIHCM Webinar: The Science of Well-being

As rates of substance abuse, depression and suicide rise in the U.S., there is a growing need for a more holistic approach to well-being. From physical and mental health to financial security and social connectedness, scientific research shows that people with higher well-being are healthier and live longer.

The first segment in a four-part series entitled “Defying Despair,” this webinar will explore the scientific research on well-being and the steps to applying those findings in our daily life.

Promoting Well-being in the School House

For many students, school-based health centers are the first line of defense in preventing, screening and treating health issues like mental health, substance use and obesity. Because of this important role, the Human Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) has awarded $11 million to 120 school-based health centers to renovate facilities and purchase equipment.

The New Prescription: Healthy Meals

Doctors know that people need nutrient rich food in order to sustain a healthy lifestyle and to recover from illness and disease. Now they might be able to write a prescription for it. Health plans across the country are launching new initiatives to get healthy meals in the hands of consumers. Last month, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts partnered with a nonprofit to provide free customized meals for people with congestive heart failure following their discharge from the hospital. Similarly, Health Care Service Corporation and the Blue Cross Blue Shield Institute introduced the delivery service foodQ in areas of Chicago and Dallas to increase access to healthy meals in food deserts for customers to purchase via a subscription or flat fee.

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