Iron River, Wisconsin—NorthLakes Community Clinic is a recipient of an Advancing a Healthier Wisconsin Endowment (AHW) grant that is designed to support health care and community agencies in the fight to prevent the spread of novel coronavirus COVID-19 across Wisconsin. The $108,628 grant will support Community Health Workers and communication staff to reach residents in northern Wisconsin with education, information and outreach services.
Of the grant, NLCC CEO Reba Rice says, “Our Community Health Workers (CHW) are trained in working with patients and non-patients to address barriers to care. During this pandemic, our team will continue to offer these services virtually, while also providing education around COVID-19 to help flatten the curve in northern Wisconsin.”
NorthLakes has 12 CHWs providing virtual services throughout northern Wisconsin. These individuals bring knowledge of the community and serve as information agents to offer culturally appropriate information and education. As part of this grant, they will provide public health information and engage individuals in choosing healthy options and finding creative solutions rooted in mutual respect. Some examples of education they may provide include:
- How to get what you need while practicing social distancing
- Guidance on staying well, overall self-care, and wellness tips during social isolation.
- Finding access to food for children, during COVID-19 school closures.
- Navigating insurance coverage with a job loss due to COVID-19.
- Hand-washing and other hygiene.
- To identify resources and recommendations for people in unsafe living conditions.
- Promoting access to primary care through telehealth and other virtual visit options.
This information will be shared with the public health, tribal health departments and other partner agencies to distribute as well.
“We hope by utilizing our existing structure, we can help flatten the curve by assisting our community partners in their community education efforts,” Rice says. “We are extremely grateful to AHW for their commitment to supporting Wisconsin’s COVID-19 Response.”
In total, AHW funded nearly $4.8 million in funding to projects throughout Wisconsin. The projects were selected through a competitive application and review process, and include efforts led by community agencies and MCW experts that will support outreach and communication to high-need populations in both rural and urban areas of Wisconsin, expand access to resources and care, and use innovative technologies and potential treatments to stop the spread. To see a full list of funded projects visit: http://www.ahwendowment.org.
If you or someone you know could benefit from a virtual appointment with a Community Health Worker, please call NorthLakes Community Clinic at 888.834.4551.
The Advancing a Healthier Wisconsin Endowment is a statewide health philanthropy established by the Medical College of Wisconsin to steward a generous financial gift from Blue Cross & Blue Shield of Wisconsin. Since 2004, AHW has invested more than $265 million in more than 430 health research, workforce development, and community health initiatives statewide.
NorthLakes Community Clinic is a regional Community Health Center, with clinic locations in Ashland, Birchwood, Hayward, Hurley, Iron River, Lakewood, Minong, Oconto, Park Falls, Turtle Lake, Washburn and White Lake. We are a 501(c)3 non-profit organization managed by a patient majority board of directors. Services we offer include: medical, chiropractic, dental, behavioral health counseling including substance use disorder and recovery services, optometry, psychiatric services, pediatric speech and occupational therapy, physical therapy and prescriptions for patients.
NorthLakes Community Clinic provides care to individuals with Medicaid and Medicare, those without insurance, and also those with private health insurance. We also provide a Sliding Fee Scale available for patients who qualify. For more information, please visit: nlccwi.org.