HEALTH & OLDER ADULTS
STRATEGIES & PROJECTS
Health & Older Adults Goal
We will expand access to health care resources to Belmont Cragin residents, improve education of key health care issues, and provide financial literacy around health expenses.
Increase community education on health care
With a diverse community comes the responsibility to widen the scope of health care outreach for residents from a variety of backgrounds and languages. By partnering with major institutions such as schools, churches and nonprofit organizations, local health providers can expand their e orts to help community members learn about health care coverage and access local services. We will encourage enrollment in the A ordable Care Act (ACA) by providing assistance to the undocumented and underinsured, and increasing outreach and education to the LGBTQ and Latina/o communities. We will create a simple- to-read resource guide in English, Spanish and Polish on how to navigate the ACA to increase enrollment in the community and how to find Medicaid health care providers.
We also will o er cardiac arrest prevention workshops in partnership with local institutions and work to improve education on nutrition through e orts such as Prosser High School’s Culinary Arts Program.
Create new centers to expand health care options
To expand local health care options for residents, the school-based health care clinic at Steinmetz High School will be expanded and provide full-scale medical services such as physicals, immunizations, gynecological exams and mental health counseling to Steinmetz students and other community members.
We will also open a Federally Qualified Health Center (FQHC), a new community health center that will provide more health care options in the neighborhood, possibly located at the new Community Center noted in the Education and Youth section.
The focus will be to promote more services to the uninsured population and those with Medicaid or ACA coverage.
Increase access to mental health resources
There is a lack of comprehensive and cost effective mental health services in our community. We will improve the referral system to existing mental health providers and provide workshops and information through partnerships with local institutions such as churches, schools, nonprofits and libraries. Education on mental health wellness should include access to local providers and dispel myths regarding treatment and support.
The FQHC and/or Community Center will also have a welcoming central gathering space that uses the “living room” model, where people who are experiencing a mental health crisis can meet with mental health professionals such as social workers, counselors, case managers and nurse practitioners for services and referrals.
Through development of a living-room space, the need to seek unnecessary emergency services to address mental health issues can be reduced. The goal is for more residents to feel comfortable seeking treatment for themselves or family members in its safe, inviting and affordable setting.
Outreach to older adults
Older adults are a key component in our community and should have the resources to better navigate their lives whether living with assistance or independently.
We will create an intergenerational health awareness program with older adults and local high school students to bring the experience of the older generation to youth and connect older adults to the community. We will also spread awareness and prevention of elder abuse, and expand existing resource fairs and workshops to educate older adults and their loved ones on challenges regarding adequate housing, safety, health and financial security. And, we will explore options for helping older adults with transit throughout the community, including public transportation.