Bridgeport Hospital, St. Vincent’s Medical Center share Connecticut’s Hospital Community Service Award

Wednesday, June 26, 2019
Bridgeport Hospital Connecticut Hospital Community Service Award

BRIDGEPORT, CT (June 26, 2019) – Bridgeport Hospital and St. Vincent’s Medical Center have received Connecticut’s Hospital Community Service Award for their joint involvement in providing free health screenings to underserved residents through the Know Your Numbers (KYN) program. The award is presented annually by the Connecticut Hospital Association (CHA) and state Department of Public Health and was celebrated during CHA’s annual meeting May 20 at the Aqua Turf in Southington.

“I am very proud of the work we have done together with St. Vincent’s Medical Center and other local partners to improve the health of the community,” said Michael Ivy, MD, interim president and CEO of Bridgeport Hospital. “We are fortunate to have a great team of people who are committed to this important work and who have been so successful collaborating with various community partners in innovative ways.”

“St. Vincent’s is honored to be acknowledged for the Know Your Numbers program,” said Dawn Rudolph, St. Vincent’s Medical Center president and CEO. “I am proud of our partnership and hope this collaboration of hospitals, community agencies and college students can serve as an example for other communities.”

Bridgeport Hospital and St. Vincent’s Medical Center contribute a combined $20,000 annually towards KYN and together dedicate staff members to the program’s implementation and continued expansion. In addition to these staff members, approximately a dozen volunteers help at each screening, including hospital staff and local nursing students. More than 2,500 individual screenings have been provided since 2014, most at local food pantries.

“Care for the poor and most vulnerable is at the core of our mission as Catholic hospital,” said Bill Hoey, St. Vincent’s Medical Center chief mission integration officer. “This award highlights the creativity and expertise of our Health Improvement Alliance as it develops new ways to bring healthcare to our neighbors in need.”

Bridgeport Hospital and St. Vincent’s Medical Center are lead hospitals for Greater Bridgeport’s Health Improvement Alliance (HIA). Since 2003, HIA has focused on improving health outcomes in the greater Bridgeport area through a collective impact approach that brings together healthcare, academic, and not-for-profit partners. KYN is one outcome of this collaboration. “Bridgeport Hospital is honored to receive the Connecticut Hospital Association Community Service Award in collaboration with St. Vincent’s Medical Center through the Health Improvement Alliance, our local community partnership,” said Nancy Hamson, director of Strategy and Community Health Improvement for Yale New Haven Health. “This award highlights how hospitals and other community organizations working together can make a positive difference to the health of our community.”

This year, hemoglobin A1c (HA1C) screening was done for all participants. This helps identify people in the pre-diabetic range and who may not know it, an important time to counsel someone on how it can be reversed with lifestyle changes.

Additionally, during the 2019 screenings, KYN began to offer automated blood pressure (BP) cuffs to those with elevated BPs. Cuffs were distributed along with education on how and when to properly monitor BP at home. A total of 120 food pantry clients met the criteria for elevated BP and received the cuffs, representing 59 percent of the total people screened.

Community health workers were present at each screening and referred 35 people (17 percent) to local resources, including follow-up medical care. KYN also teamed with the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program to provide nutrition counseling at every site to those who screened high for BP or HA1c. Nutrition counseling is key to helping people learn ways to improve their health numbers.

KYN began in 2014 as a way to educate the community about knowing their own health numbers, and has evolved to become a multifaceted approach to improve the health of food pantry clients. Utilizing KYN screenings, referrals to follow-up care and community resources, as well as nutrition education initiatives, HIA plans to continue to work collaboratively to improve health outcomes of Bridgeport’s most vulnerable residents.

Bridgeport Hospital and St. Vincent’s Medical Center also host monthly visits by the Connecticut Food Bank’s mobile pantry and Bridgeport Farmer’s Market Collaborative farm stand to provide community residents with healthier food choices.

Bridgeport Hospital, part of Yale New Haven Health, is a non-profit 501-bed acute care hospital with two campuses (plus 42 beds licensed to Yale New Haven Children's Hospital). Its Bridgeport and Milford Campuses serve patients from across the region. The hospital admits more than 23,000 patients and provides nearly 350,000 outpatient treatments annually. The Connecticut Burn Center at Bridgeport Hospital is the only burn center in the state and one of only 64 verified burn centers in the United States. Bridgeport Hospital is committed to providing safe, compassionate and cost efficient care to its patients and the community.

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