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Two new investments in New Orleans total $1 million and will address financial asset security, post-secondary attainment and sustaining employment, and food security

– Contributions totaling $6.6 million to 10 organizations in eight communities mark reinvestments and an expanded investment in successful programs helping people achieve greater health equity

The Humana Foundation, philanthropic arm of Humana Inc. (NYSE: HUM) for the past 38 years, is investing $7.6 million in eight communities across the southeastern United States to address social determinants of health on a local level, helping more people achieve health equity. Part of its ongoing Strategic Community Investment Program, The Humana Foundation will create two new investments in New Orleans totaling $1 million and will continue its existing investments with 10 organizations in seven other communities, including expanding its investment in Baton Rouge, La.

Through partnerships with local organizations and community members, The Humana Foundation’s Strategic Community Investment Program creates measurable results in some of the most common social determinants of health, including post-secondary attainment and sustaining employment, social connectedness, financial asset security and food security. These investments are located in Humana ‘Bold Goal’ communities, places where Humana and The Humana Foundation are working to help people improve their health 20 percent by 2020 and beyond.

“Our Strategic Community Investments holistically address social determinants of health at the systems- and community-level,” said Walter D. Woods, CEO of The Humana Foundation. “We believe this approach will positively impact health outcomes in our target communities, which our first year results confirm. Consequently, we are creating new investments in New Orleans and continuing our investments in other locations.”

Two new Strategic Community Investments in New Orleans will address financial asset security, post-secondary attainment and sustaining employment, and food security.

Kingsley House will receive an investment of $416,480 for its Career Pathways program, an employment program that helps lift families out of generational poverty by creating greater financial asset security and post-secondary attainment and sustaining employment. Kingsley House will collaborate with DePaul Community Health Centers and Crescent City Family Services to help families access community resources.

Growing Local Food Collaborative will receive $613,620 to address financial asset security, post-secondary attainment and sustaining employment, and food security in New Orleans. The program will take a unique, cooperative approach by working through local partnerships to bring fresh food into food deserts, to create new markets and train local farmers, and to provide training and an employment pipeline for youth in the local food and hospitality economy. Partners in this initiative include, Liberty’s Kitchen, New Orleans Food Policy Advisory Committee, Recirculating Farms Coalition, SPROUT NOLA, Top Box Foods Louisiana, and joined by Second Harvest Food Bank for special projects.

In the first year of the Strategic Community Investment Program, The Humana Foundation invested $7.4 million in seven communities and funded programs that served more than 16,000 individuals and their families, addressing one or more social determinant of health. Each of these seven communities will receive continued or expanded Humana Foundation investments based on the measurable results each program attained in its first year.

The Humana Foundation’s continuing and expanded Strategic Community Investments include the following:

Baton Rouge, La: Healthy BR  will receive $715,000 to continue improving food security and social connectedness via the Geaux Get Healthy project. Funded by both The Humana Foundation and Blue Cross Blue Shield of Louisiana Foundation this project addresses food deserts by saturating areas with the highest rates of food insecurity and health disparities with numerous access points for purchasing fresh food at an affordable price. HOPE Ministries will receive an additional $189,700 as a key partner in the Geaux Get Healthy project, allowing for the expansion of a workforce development program. By investing in HOPE Ministries’ The Way to Work program, The Humana Foundation is expanding its Strategic Community Investment in Baton Rouge to address post-secondary attainment and sustaining employment.

Broward County, Fla: Broward Community & Family Health Centers will receive $415,000 to continue working with health clinics to screen patients for food security and diet-related disease. Engaging Patients Impacting Care (EPIC) will also help people apply for Supplemental Nutritional Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits and help people access healthy foods via a produce prescription program.

Jacksonville, Fla: The University of Florida  will receive continued funding of $815,000 for Health-Smart, a program that promotes social connection and food security among minority, underserved and low-income seniors, as well as asset security and post-secondary success resources for their families in partnership with the Jacksonville Urban League.

Knoxville, Tenn.: InterFaith Health Clinic, in a collaborative partnership with Catapult 4D, will receive $965,000 to continue its Truck2Table program, addressing social determinants of health and improving the health and quality of life of uninsured and underserved people by providing affordable access to healthy food, free nutrition education and access to social connectedness resources.

Louisville, Ky.: The Family Scholar House  will receive an additional $515,000 investment for its HEROES program, expanding existing programs and reaching more individuals, families and senior citizens to assess and address barriers including social isolation, food insecurity and lack of post-secondary educational attainment.  Metro United Way will receive $715,000 to continue AcceLOUrate Savings financial literacy program, improving financial independence and providing families and residents experiencing economic distress with financial literacy coaching and other social services.

San Antonio: Older Adults Technology Services (OATS) will receive $915,000 to continue its Senior Planet San Antonio program, addressing social connectedness by engaging seniors through free access to internet-connected technology and training courses. The San Antonio Food Bank  will receive $708,462 to continue its Healthy Options for the Elderly (HOPE) program, assisting seniors who screen positive for food security and social connectedness concerns with comprehensive services that stabilize their household and address prevalent health issues.

Tampa: Feeding Tampa Bay will receive $640,500 to continue work to transform affordable access to healthy food in partnership with local clinics and other social service providers via the Feeding Tampa Bay Food Pharmacy. Community Health Centers of Pinellas (CHCP) will be a key partner in this work, creating an onsite food pharmacy at the CHCP clinic and increasing access to healthy foods for the neighborhood surround the clinic.

For more information on specific investment results, please visit the Strategic Community Investment section of HumanaFoundation.org.

Each organization that receives a Humana Foundation Strategic Community Investment has the opportunity to receive continued funding for up to three years based on the specific results achieved in their programs.

“Health is local, driven by choices available to people in their communities and neighborhoods,” Woods added. “We are grateful to work with local organizations to improve and sustain positive health outcomes.”

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Humana has again been listed among the Top 100 Companies with Remote Jobs, coming in at No. 15.

“Through an analysis of the remote job posting histories of more than 54,000 companies in the FlexJobs database, we’ve pinpointed the companies that offered more remote-friendly positions than any others,” FlexJobs said. “’Remote-friendly’ means the openings must offer some level of remote work (the levels on our site are ‘100% remote work,’ ‘partial remote work,’ or ‘option for remote work’).”

“The most notable change we’ve seen over the past year is not so much the growth in the sheer volume of remote job listings, but the growth in the variety of remote job titles these companies are seeking to hire,” said Sara Sutton, Founder and CEO of FlexJobs.

See the full list here.

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The Commonwealth Fund, a nonprofit private foundation supporting independent research on health policy reform and a high-performance health system, recently reported on the CHRONIC Care Act, which passed in 2018 and made it possible “for Medicare Advantage plans to begin covering services like adult day care, support for family caregivers, pest control, or other benefits that help members maintain or improve their health.”

The story cited Humana’s Bold Goal:

“In 2015, Humana launched the Bold Goal initiative, an effort to improve members’ health 20 percent by 2020 and beyond by identifying the social determinants of poor health and partnering with community organizations to address them. The insurer is working in 14 markets, where thus far some 1 million members have been screened. About 15 percent of Medicare Advantage plan members reported being food insecure and about 37 percent report being socially isolated — both factors that put people at increased risk of getting sick and accruing higher medical spending.

Andrew Renda, M.D., Humana’s associate vice president for population health, was quoted, saying, “When you have someone with a chronic condition and put social needs on top there’s an exponential increase in cost. That’s the perfect storm we’re trying to avoid.”

The story also cited Humana’s efforts in Tampa, where lonely seniors can utilize “grandkids-on-demand;” programs in Kansas City and Knoxville, in partnership with Walgreens, to screen thousands of people for food insecurity; and toolkits to help clinicians identify and address food insecurity.

The story also noted that, “this year, Humana will introduce grocery benefits for 50,000 members in its Medicare Advantage Special Needs Plans (for people eligible for both Medicare and Medicaid).”

Read the full story here.

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“As America strives for positive changes to the healthcare system, it may find the greatest advancements for value-based care in Medicare Advantage plans,” according to an article by HealthPayerIntelligence.com.

Dr. William Shrank, Humana’s Chief Medical and Corporate Affairs Officer, was interviewed.

“We can be flexible, personalize, leverage, and a remarkable data source to be both precise about the needs of members, and to share that data with providers in a nimble way,” he said. “So if a provider is taking risks in partnering with us as compared to doing so directly with the government, we think there are a lot of advantages.

“As a result, we’re able to really accelerate the move towards value-based care and the likelihood that we will be successful in that endeavor.”

Read the full article here.

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Humana President and CEO Bruce Broussard recently spoke at the 2019 Forbes Healthcare Summit, where he participated in a panel discussion titled “Supercharging the Medicare Advantage Experience.”

Bruce and other panel participants discussed how Medicare Advantage plans are evolving to address social determinants of health, such as food insecurity.

The value of Medicare Advantage

Bruce Japsen, Senior Healthcare Contributor, Forbes, who moderated the panel, began by asking Bruce about Medicare Advantage. Bruce spoke to three key elements that make it impactful:

  1. Taking full risk for a population. Bruce talked about how health plans are paid a fixed fee but are “responsible for overall population. That gives us a lot of freedom on what we can do.”
  • He said “the consumer decides (their health plan selection), as opposed to the HR department or some other individual that is not the user.” The industry must compete to serve the customer, which drives innovation.
  • The third element “which is really unique is you get paid more for taking care of sick people, which is not an insurance model…It’s an upside down insurance model.” Bruce added that this gives Humana the freedom in what we can do to improve people’s health.

People need a purpose to improve their health

During the panel, Bruce also spoke about how people are motivated to change their health when they find purpose. He talked about Jo, a Humana Medicare Advantage member living with multiple chronic conditions. She is also responsible for taking care of her adult son, who is mentally disabled.  

Bruce credits the Humana nurse – Vicki – with getting Jo engaged in her care after having a stroke and being hospitalized.  Jo stopped smoking and started doing breathing exercises, and Humana helped her find financial assistance so she could afford her medications.

“Vicki didn’t say, ‘You’re a diabetic and you need to do these things and that smoking was bad for her.’ What she found was this motivator…She was a caregiver for her son that was mentally ill. Vicki began the conversation around let’s be able to walk with John today. That began to start having the engagement around a purpose of why she should do this as opposed to the health care system saying that she should do it. It was much around what is personal for her and what motivates her.”

Bruce said Jo’s story is “the beauty of the (Medicare Advantage) model. It’s not about just getting paid for doing a treatment; we get paid for outcomes. And those outcomes allow us to have both these broad services, but motivation and innovation to help engage with the member.”

“That’s not a fee-for-service environment. Medicare Advantage encourages organizations like ours to wrap services around them. That’s why you see us acquiring and building these capabilities and services, being able to wrap those around and have a holistic view, as opposed to just treating a particular circumstance of an individual.”

Integration is essential for this holistic approach to care

Bruce also spoke about the need to take a holistic view of an individual, incorporating lifestyle with social determinants of health, primary care, home health and behavioral health, and doing so in the “the best way that helps the individual overall.”

Humana and the industry are part of a movement to “integrate the insurance to the health care services side.” He said, “We find that that integration allows a much smoother way to manage the population health orientation, but then you also are able to integrate it and make it much easier for the individual to use it, as opposed to there’s a treatment, we get something fixed, and the person goes away.”

Brenda Schmidt, Founder & Chief Executive Officer, Solera Health; and Felicia F. Norwood, Executive Vice President and President, Government Business Division, Anthem, Inc., were the other two panel participants.

For more information on Humana’s Medicare Advantage efforts, click here to check out the company’s annual Value-based Care report, which was issued last month.

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