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City College awarded federal grant to streamline health care for former prisoners

July 18, 2012
City College will train former prisoners to be community health workers who will help chronically ill prisoners navigate the health care system when they are released from prison. – Photo: Paula Burch-Celentano
San Francisco – The San Francisco Community College District (City College of San Francisco) has received a Health Care Innovation Award from the U.S. Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. City College, in partnership with the University of California San Francisco and Yale University, won the award for their plan to address the health care needs of high-risk, high-cost Medicaid and Medicaid-eligible patients released from prison.

The program, called “Transitions Clinic Network: linking high-risk Medicaid patients from prison to community primary care,” will target 11 community health centers in six states – New York, California, Massachusetts, Connecticut, Maryland, Alabama – as well as the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico. It will work with each area’s department of corrections to identify chronically ill patients prior to release and will employ community health workers to help them navigate the care system, find primary care and other medical and social services, and coach them in chronic disease management.

City College of San Francisco will train former prisoners to be community health workers in their innovative Post-Prison Health Worker Certificate Program. Through this training, these former prisoners will overcome the stigma of incarceration, leverage their experience of incarceration to gain employment as community health workers and in return give back to their communities.

Communities struggling to care for returning prisoners, especially in difficult financial times, will benefit as the outcomes will include reduced reliance on emergency room care, fewer hospital admissions, and lower costs associated with improved patient health and better access to appropriate care.

City College of San Francisco will train former prisoners to be community health workers to help chronically ill patients released from prison navigate the care system, find primary care and other medical and social services, and coach them in chronic disease management.

“This award is the culmination of years of research, planning and collaboration to address the issue of access to health care for some of our highest risk and medically complex populations,” said Shira Shavit, M,D., associate clinical professor at UCSF and executive director of the Transitions Clinic Network. “The important work we will do with the funds from this award will result in streamlined care and ultimately, more than a million dollars in public health cost savings to our target areas.”

The funding amount of the award is $6,852,153 and the estimated three-year savings to various public health programs upon completion is $8,115,855. Over a three-year period, the Transitions Clinic Network will create an estimated 12.3 jobs and train an estimated 53.7 workers. The new workforce will include seven community health workers, 11 part-time panel managers, two part-time project coordinators, one research analyst and two part-time project staff.

This is a cooperative agreement between the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Innovation, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, and the Department of Health and Human Services. The Health Care Innovation Awards are funding up to $1 billion in grants to applicants who will implement the most compelling new ideas to deliver better health, improved care and lower costs to people enrolled in Medicare, Medicaid and Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP), particularly those with the highest health care needs.

For more information about the funding program, see http://innovations.cms.gov/initiatives/Innovation-Awards/index.html.

About City College

City College of San Francisco (CCSF) is an urban community college serving about 90,000 students annually at nine campuses and many other sites throughout San Francisco. The largest school in California, it offers an affordable opportunity to earn associate degrees, prepare for transfer, and pursue career and technical education. City College also offers distance learning and free noncredit courses in many fields. For more information, visit www.ccsf.edu.

 

12 thoughts on “City College awarded federal grant to streamline health care for former prisoners

  1. Nash Kevin

    This is really a good approach towards the community services in the country. Since college students are the foremost requirement for doing such good services they must be encouraged in the future to do such services soon. So to bring to effect to concern about each individual towards this good thing of health care and provide them the necessary treatment also, it is towards the path of success. The need of urgent care the medical help and further awareness has also been created through this. Prisoners will certainly be working at a good while for health and community services after they have gotten the bail from the jail.

    Reply
  2. Eric Wright

    Glad to know the government is funding projects to educate former criminals when there are children from hard working parents who've never done an ounce of wrong in their lives who are still being deprived a proper college education due to lack of funds.

    Sometimes I really worry about America.

    Reply
  3. zishami8

    Healthcare reforms are need of time, all governements should work for human and animal health care. I have write my essay for me to present on international health day in my college. Students should creat awareness in people to force vovernments to focus on health.

    Reply
  4. six pack abs

    I appreciate City College for awarded federal grant to streamline health care for former prisoners. This is really a very good way to make them inspire for giving more effective health care services. Thanks :)

    Reply

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