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4/29/22

A New Stove for Dorothy and Norman ​

 

More than 28 million Americans struggle with food insecurity, or the lack of resources to source, store and cook enough food to fuel a healthy life. For many, it’s a complex problem with overlapping issues such as a lack of affordable housing, social isolation or health problems. ​

Dorothy and Norman, Humana Medicaid members in the Tampa Bay area who live day-to-day financially, found themselves facing the challenges in the kitchen. Cooking their meals had become a source of stress for the family, and they weren’t able to afford a full cylinder of fuel for their propane stove or the repairs the stove desperately needed to function. ​

These challenges left Dorothy and Norman with very few options for healthy, affordable meals. They bought prepackaged and shelf-stable food, and they cooked what they could with a microwave or hot plate. These items were costly and often unhealthy, but they remained their only solution for months. With a family to feed, Norman decided to see if Humana could help. He described his situation to Ramona, a Humana associate/employee. She was reaching out as part of a Healthy Days call back survey, phone calls where Humana checks on Medicaid members to ensure their health needs are met. ​

Ramona wanted to help the family, so she began looking for ways to change their current situation. She made sure the family received home-delivered meals, a benefit of their Humana plan. And she began looking for a local organization to help Dorothy and Norman afford propane for their stove. Ramona quickly realized that providing the family with home-delivered meals and propane would not be a long-term solution. ​

After sharing her concerns with her team, a solution surfaced: the family needed an electrical range. Ramona called Dorothy and Norman, who agreed this was the best solution. But where would they find a stove that they could afford? ​

Ramona and her team called more than 30 organizations in under 48 hours, finally finding some good news. A local home improvement store offered small grants to families in need that meet certain eligibility requirements. Ramona knew it was worth a shot to apply, and she called Dorothy and Norman again. ​

Ramona helped educate the family on the application process and walked them through the lengthy process to submit documentation and a statement of need. Five weeks after the initial Healthy Days call, Dorothy and Norman received the phone call they’d been waiting for. The local home improvement store called to schedule delivery and installation of their brand new, free electric stove. Dorothy and Norman were thrilled, and they made sure Ramona knew how much they appreciated all the hard work she and her team put in to make their new stove possible.​

At the core of each Humana associate/employee is a passion to help people live the healthiest lives possible, providing what we refer to as human care. In fact, you might say that associates/employees like Ramona are the heart of Humana’s human care. ​

 

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