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Latest News - IEHP Quality Leaders Share the Power Behind Data
he right way makes all the difference in providing quality health care services. Illustrating the significance of data management with industry peers and professionals, IEHP is sharing their experience mitigating bias in data algorithms and insight on how data can be used to enhance care quality at the Local Health Plans of California (LHPC) Moving the Needle: Advancing Health Equity Seminar in Sacramento Oct. 27 and the National Committee for Quality Assurance (NCQA) Innovation Summit in Washington, D.C. Oct. 31. Both events target strategic collaboration and sharing of ideas to accelerate the delivery of quality care and reduce gaps in health care among disadvantaged and vulnerable populations. In their LHPC presentation, IEHP Chief Quality Officer Dr. Edward Juhn and Vice President of Quality Genia Fick will explain how data can be used to identify health disparities, define health equity issues and lay the groundwork for effective interventions to improve health outcomes. “We are committed to leveraging new data to help inform health equity,” said Fick. “This will ensure we are funding and prioritizing the appropriate resources for those who need it most.” Dr. Juhn will also be joining ideas42 Managing Director Ted Robertson at NCQA’s Health Innovation Summit to present their collaborative work in addressing algorithmic bias to advance quality and equity outcomes. Their presentation will focus on the importance of addressing disparities unintentionally produced by algorithms and how health care organizations can mitigate it in practice. “It is critical to be better stewards of our data to impactfully serve our community,” said Juhn. “Our goal and focus of leveraging data should be to improve health outcomes.” To learn more about IEHP, visit iehp.org.
Latest News - Collaborative Group Releases Inland Empire Community Health Assessment
ural areas are disproportionately impacted by negative health outcomes, according to a newly released Community Health Assessment focusing on the Inland Empire region. The 2022 Inland Empire Community Health Assessment Stakeholder Committee, comprised of over 40 representatives across 25 community organizations, united over the past year to collect and analyze the region’s health and wellness data. The collaborative group identified four at-risk population groups in need of additional support, as well as six priority areas of focus: Basic Needs for Health and Safety, Humane Housing, Meaningful Work and Wealth, Cardiovascular Disease and Diabetes, Maternal and Infant Health and Mental and Behavioral Health. The committee shared the findings in a regional Community Health Assessment report. The report is uniquely positioned for its cross-sector involvement and multiple sources of data collection, including focus groups. “We all know that health happens across zip codes,” said Jarrod McNaughton, chief executive officer at Inland Empire Health Plan (IEHP), which sponsored the Inland Empire Community Health Assessment. “Sickness and disease don't care where you live, but it is clear that certain geographic communities and subpopulations experience significant disparities when it comes to influences on health and health outcomes. This community health assessment is the first step in learning how we as health care providers, community partners and advocates can work better together to address the true health needs of our connected communities.” In addition to health and hospital data, the Community Health Assessment also included interviews with 10 community leaders and focus groups in nine communities. “Every Inland Empire community member deserves the opportunity to live their best life, and many local organizations are already working to make that possible” added Michelle Decker, president of the Inland Empire Community Foundation, one of the involved organizations. “We are now magnifying that work by uniting our efforts toward key priorities and populations.” To view the Inland Empire Community Health Assessment, visit VibrantInlandEmpire.org. To raise awareness of community work in the region, organizations are invited to share information about their projects in the Inland Empire through a form on the website. Projects will then be shared with others through the website.
Latest News - IEHP Foundation Launches to Serve Most Vulnerable Communities
is a nonprofit organization that was established to ensure access to quality and innovative health care by supporting objectives that focus on community health and clinical excellence, with an emphasis on housing insecurity, mental health, substance abuse, and food insecurity. IEHP Foundation will partner with IEHP to support its mission, vision and values through their own creative and innovative efforts. This work will serve the community in its entirety, beyond traditional health care services and reach the region’s most vulnerable populations, regardless of Medi-Cal membership. Efforts will include supporting pilot programs, identifying innovative solutions that improve health outcomes, acting as a convener, collaborator and partner with community and faith-based communities, and much more. “IEHP Foundation will be a grant maker and not a grant seeking organization so we can support our community-based groups and not compete with them for limited funds,” said IEHP Foundation President Angelica Baltazar. “Our work will focus on connecting our community with access to a better, more joyful life through programs and initiatives aimed at resolving the root causes of illness, health equity and core needs, including things like food, shelter and safety.” But these goals cannot be accomplished alone. IEHP Foundation will collaborate with other organizations and community groups whose work aligns with the health plan’s mission, vision and values, according to Baltazar. “By helping to fill the void for the most vulnerable and keeping dollars in the Inland Empire, we feel we can make the most significant positive impact,” she said. “Our creative and innovative efforts will serve as an extension of IEHP’s support to the people of the Inland Empire.” IEHP is one of the top 10 largest Medicaid health plans and the largest not-for-profit Medicare-Medicaid plan in the country. In its 26th year, IEHP supports more than 1.5 million residents in Riverside and San Bernardino counties who are enrolled in Medicaid or Cal MediConnect Plans. IEHP Foundation’s work will serve the community in its entirety, beyond traditional health care services and reach the region’s most vulnerable populations, regardless of Medi-Cal membership. These efforts could include supporting pilot programs, investing in innovative technology that improves health outcomes and acting as a convener, collaborator and partner with community groups and faith-based organizations, Baltazar added. The Journey Ahead To start this journey and set a successful path, IEHP Foundation leaders wanted to learn from others, so they traveled to Houston, New Orleans and Atlanta, observing various non-profits, bringing back best practices and innovative ways to improve care and foster community collaboration. Additionally, the Foundation’s representatives have met with local community stakeholders and organizations to discuss increasing access to vibrant health for all residents across the Inland Empire. IEHP Foundation held its first board meeting in late July, where its directors set to define the group’s vision and strategy. “I am so pleased not only with the caliber of our IEHP Foundation Board, but the sincere and heartfelt desire to make a difference for our communities. They are committed to long term sustainable change for overall community health improvement,” said Baltazar. Board Members include: Dr. Conrado Bárzaga, Desert Healthcare District & Foundation Chief Executive Officer; Dr. Geoffrey Leung, County of Riverside Public Health Officer; Josh Candelaria, Viewpoint Advocacy Principal; Karen Scott, First 5 San Bernardino Executive Director; Regina Weatherspoon-Bell, DVL Project/A Better Way/Victor Valley Domestic, Inc. Founder; Stephen Bennett, Caravanserai Project Board Chair and Co-Founder; Dr. Edward Juhn IEHP Chief Quality Officer; and Jarrod McNaughton, IEHP Chief Executive Officer. “IEHP Foundation is a direct step toward vibrant health, quality of care and will move in support of impactful solutions addressing some of our region’s most critical needs,” said IEHP Foundation Board Member and IEHP Chief Quality Officer Dr. Edward Juhn. “I look forward to serving in this capacity and furthering IEHP’s mission, vision and values in the Inland Empire.”
Latest News - IEHP team helps break mental health stigma, one new mom at a time
he challenges it brings – can be overwhelming. After the birth of her daughter, Gerti struggled with her mental health and recognized she needed help – so she turned to IEHP. Through her connection to Katia, a behavioral health specialist on IEHP’s maternal mental health team, Gerti learned she was experiencing postpartum depression and was connected to various resources, including supportive therapy. Although common (the CDC cites 1 in 8 women who recently gave birth suffer from it), postpartum depression is more severe and long-lasting than the “baby blues,” which can include short-lived bouts of mood swings, crying spells, anxiety and difficulty sleeping. “I was just really looking for help, because it gets overwhelming – especially becoming a new mom,” explained Gerti. “Sometimes the depression just catches you. I just want to get through this, so I can push through for my baby, for my sanity, for my happiness.” As Katia explains, no mother with these challenges should ever feel ashamed. Feeling anxious, overwhelmed and depressed are all considered typical emotions during pregnancy and after birth. “It’s normal [for new moms] to feel the way they do; there is nothing wrong with feeling that way,” said Katia, who also personally experienced postpartum depression. “They should be proud of themselves for reaching out for help – and that is where we come in.” IEHP’s maternal mental health team is a small, but mighty unit within the behavioral health department that connects Members with mental health services such as therapy and psychiatry. The maternal mental health team regularly checks in with Members to ask how they are feeling, what they need and to help them make those sometimes hard, but life-altering first steps of scheduling and attending therapy appointments. The team supports Members like Gerti through every step of their recovery and journey through motherhood – even if it’s to simply ask how they are doing. “If I am able to take care of myself better, I will be able to take care of my baby much more,” explained Gerti. “I know that every time I am having trouble, help is just one phone call away.” To learn more about Gerti’s story, visit: https://youtu.be/8IRKPmIk2CM If you or someone you know is struggling with postpartum depression or mental health, IEHP is here for you. IEHP Members can call Member Services to connect with our behavioral health team. For a mental health emergency, please call the Mental Health and Suicide Crisis Hotline at 988.
Latest News - IEHP Named One of the 2022 Best Workplaces in Health Care™, Ranking #15
rofit Medicare-Medicaid plan in the nation, announced its designation as a 2022 Best Workplaces in Health Care™. The Great Place to Work® and Fortune magazine designation reaffirms what the company’s annual survey revealed: 92% of the employee respondents believe IEHP is a great place to work, a statistic 35% higher than the average U.S. company. “Our strong team culture fuels our commitment to heal and inspire the human spirit,” says IEHP Chief Organizational Development Officer Janet Nix. “Working together, we’ve cultivated a strong, collaborative working environment where our team members take pride in doing the right thing for all we serve, including each other.” The Best Workplaces in Health Care award is based on analysis of survey responses from over 161,000 current employees from Great Place to Work® certified companies. Of IEHP’s 2,817 employees, 87% completed the survey that covered a variety of workplace quality experiences, including pride in the organization’s community impact, belief that their work makes a difference and feeling their work has special meaning. Highlights from the survey of IEHP’s employees include: 96% feel good about ways the organization contributes to its community 95% report having special and unique company benefits 94% are proud to tell others their place of employment Great Place to Work is the only company culture award in America to select winners based on employees’ experiences, no matter who they are or what they do. The survey also provides team members the opportunity to give personal feedback regarding what they feel the company can do to improve even further. “The feedback delivered in these surveys is critical to moving IEHP forward and continuing to uphold our mission to heal and inspire the human spirit,” said IEHP Chief Executive Officer Jarrod McNaughton. “Our team members inspire the work we do every day and their innovative feedback has driven many of the initiatives we’ve implemented.” The Best Workplaces in Health Care list is highly competitive. Great Place to Work, the global authority on workplace culture, selected the list using rigorous analytics and confidential employee feedback. Companies were only considered if they are a Great Place to Work-Certified™ organization. “It is our honor to spotlight the Best Workplaces in Health Care,” says Michael C. Bush, chief executive officer of Great Place to Work. “Health care heroes have been on the front lines saving lives, and these organizations dug deep to tailor their support to the rapidly changing demands from the pandemic. We applaud their commitment to inclusive, high-trust cultures.” When asked if there was anything unusual or unique about IEHP that makes it a great place to work, team members responded with personal insights, highlighting the organization’s positive impact. “IEHP is unique in that they ‘walk their talk.’ In the 20 years of experience as a nurse, I have never been employed by an organization such as IEHP,” shared an IEHP team member in the anonymous survey. “They truly care for our community just as much as they care for their employees. It is a blessing to be part of such an amazing organization that exudes its mission, vision and values. I look forward to completing my mission as a nurse at IEHP.” To learn more about IEHP and career opportunities, visit iehp.org.
Latest News - IEHP Extends Mental Health Awareness and Support
oughout the year and is doing something about it. “A behavioral health crisis can occur in someone’s life at any given moment,” said IEHP Clinical Director of Community Behavioral Health Amrita Rai. “Each person carries and responds to a crisis in a very personal way, which is why it is critical to meet the needs of our community and our members, ensuring they have the right resources at the right time.” Extending the conversation beyond September’s National Suicide Prevention observance, IEHP will continue to proactively encourage mental and behavioral wellness conversations throughout the year through the plan’s website and LinkedIn, Twitter, Instagram, Facebook and TikTok accounts. Sharing existing resources with the community, information will include supporting awareness of the 9-8-8 Suicide and Crisis Lifeline, post-partum maternal health resources, student behavioral health programs, grief and depression management and wellness programming through the health plan’s community resource centers. Spreading awareness further with industry peers and decision-makers from across the health care community, Rai will also join a panel at The Future of Mental Healthcare West 2022 Conference in November to share insights about engaging youth in their mental health. “Your mental health and wellness are just as important as your physical health, and there is absolutely no shame in asking for help,” said Rai. “We want to encourage our members and communities to take that courageous step and reach out.” Help is available for anyone at any time by dialing 9-8-8. IEHP members can also confidentially call Member Services at (800) 440-4347. For more information, visit iehp.org.
Latest News - IEHP Announces Angelica Baltazar as New Foundation President
it Medicare-Medicaid plan in the country, today announced that Angelica Baltazar, MSW, has been named as president of the newly created IEHP Foundation. The Foundation is the philanthropic arm of IEHP and is uniquely positioned to increase philanthropy and generosity in the region, helping to fill the void for those most vulnerable and keeping dollars in the community. The Foundation’s work is centered around achieving what IEHP calls Vibrant Health for the Inland Empire. Vibrant Health means that IEHP’s Members and the residents of the Inland Empire will have access to a better, more joyful life through programs that address the root causes of illness, health equity, and the core needs of the community. Baltazar has more than 20 years of experience in the public health and human services sectors. She joins IEHP from San Antonio Regional Hospital where she most recently served as the Executive Lead for Health Equity and the Executive Director of the Lewis-San Antonio Healthy Communities Institute. Baltazar holds a bachelor’s in social work from Cal Poly Pomona and master’s in policy planning and administration from Loma Linda University. She is a community advisory member for Inland SoCal United Way, and a board member of Partners for Better Health and Promise Scholars. “Finding the right person to lead the IEHP Foundation was a critical first step in its development,” said IEHP Chief Executive Officer Jarrod McNaughton. “Angelica’s expertise in this field will support our efforts to improve the health of the IE for decades into the future.”
Latest News - Local Student Ambassadors Target Low Campus Vaccination Rates
ease COVID-19 vaccine awareness, education, and utilization rates among students through student-led vaccine education. “I am participating in this COVID-19 Student Ambassador Program to educate and inform my community about COVID-19 vaccinations,” said Jasmine Mejia, CHC Student Ambassador. “Many lives have been lost and my community needs to know the truth about the importance of being vaccinated. If I can get the facts out about the COVID 19 vaccine, then I will play a small part in saving lives in my community.” Trained by IEHP’s Community Health Teams and the San Bernardino County Department of Public Health, the eight student ambassadors – four at each campus – aim to increase on-campus vaccine rates by distributing vaccine information at booths located in the main areas of each campus, peer presentations, pop-up clinic promotions, and helping schedule vaccine appointments. “With vaccine mandates on campus, we want to make sure our local college students have all they need to continue their education safely,” said Marci Coffey, IEHP Community Partnerships Director. “We’re excited to work with students in this capacity and empower them to effectively inform and engage with their peers.” IEHP will provide students with vaccine education resources, health plan materials, and promotional items to share during the program’s duration. In addition, the health plan will provide a stipend to the students committed to participate in the program four days (16 hours) a week. “Education is key and, if provided, I feel that each person will make an informed decision. As an ambassador, I hope to spread the word that lack of insurance, immigration status, or having permanent housing doesn't disqualify anyone from receiving vaccinations and boosters,” said Sophia Zamora, SBVC Student Ambassador. The project is set to run from January 4 to March 31 on both campuses. “We understand there are concerns and fears associated with the COVID-19 vaccine,” said Dr. Takashi Wada, IEHP’s Chief Medical Officer. “Learning from a qualified, well-informed peer can help drive positive influences and healthy decision making. We hope to increase those opportunities for students by empowering student ambassadors with all they need to spark conversations that will ultimately lead to healthier students and communities.”
Latest News - Meet Leslie: Finding hope in life’s uncertainties
changed. But after a tragic accident in October 2021, much of Leslie’s life will never be the same again. “I was on my way to LA, and I stopped because there was an accident in my lane,” said Leslie from her Jurupa Valley home. “I had gotten out and evidently, somebody got inpatient and went around us and … took me for a little drag down the road.” The car that hit Leslie ended up on top of her, causing severe injuries to her lower body. Throughout the entire ordeal, a police officer on the scene stayed with Leslie – even lying on the pavement with her – until the vehicle was removed and she was transported to a hospital. When Leslie woke up after an emergency eight-hour surgery, she discovered the devasting results of that fateful day. “I just lifted the sheets and went, ‘Oh, I have no legs,’” said the Inland Empire Health Plan (IEHP) member. ‘TRIAL AND ERROR’ Once Leslie was discharged from the hospital, some immediate needs became apparent quite quickly, including: Learning to operate an electric wheelchair Fitting through narrow doorways at home Using the bathroom safely It was a time of uncertainty and worry for Leslie and her husband, Robert. “I was scared, I didn’t know what to do – I didn’t know what I was supposed to do,” said Robert B., wiping away tears at the memory of those first days as his wife’s primary caregiver. “I didn’t know about having this house ready … how do I feed her, how do I bathe her? “… You don’t know. It’s just all trial and error.” As they navigated their new world, the couple had to find ways to adapt to a completely different lifestyle. “Because you can’t just go out and get in my truck and go do something,” said Leslie, a cowgirl who grew up on a ranch, routinely riding horses. She still proudly wears a Texas-shaped gold charm Texas around her neck. Leslie also used to raise chickens and sell their eggs to neighbors, but she can’t maneuver her wheelchair in the coop. And Robert gave up his truck driver job to be available for his wife. He has now taken over the chicken coop duties as well as laundry tasks since the couple’s washer and dryer are in their home’s basement. FINDING HOPE Leslie and Robert soon learned – thanks to the community partnership among Inland Housing Solutions (IHS), CalAIM and IEHP – help was available. In August 2022, Leslie and Robert received an authorization from IEHP for the CalAIM Community Supports Home Modifications (Environmental Accessibility Adaptations), which started the remodel process. With this program, individuals receive access to specialized care – whether that means changes to the inside or outside of their homes – ensuring the best quality of life. “We were doing so much on our own because we didn’t know what to ask for, who to ask for help – and that all kind of just started falling into place when Ron (Estrada of IHS) found us and he stepped up,” said Leslie. In many ways, Leslie and Robert simply needed their same home to function differently, but with things most people take for granted in their own homes. “They need those accessibility renovations to be able to use their space the way they used to,” said Kate Nazareno, director of client services at IHS. The renovations, which were completed for free in November 2022, focused on the couple’s only bathroom and included: Widening/adjusting doors Installing grab bars Modifying flooring to tile for electric wheelchair access Repositioning/rewiring of electrical outlets and switches Adding a wheelchair-accessible vanity, medicine cabinet and towel bars The vanity may be Leslie’s favorite update. “So I can blow dry my hair, put my make-up on and all that girly stuff,” she said. According to Robert, the modifications to their bathroom represent something much bigger for his wife than just the actual construction work. “She wants to be as independent as she can and having that bathroom finished in there was a huge burden taken off of us – big,” he said. And that’s exactly what this kind of multi-agency collaborative effort intends to do: help Inland Empire residents experiencing life-changing circumstances. “Through this program with CalAIM and IEHP, we are able to provide the home modifications and other services to help people like Robert and Leslie return to their homes, recover and be healthy and stable in their homes,” Nazareno said. For Leslie and Robert, receiving the accessibility modifications with no out-of-pocket costs is a welcomed positive change. “When things like that happen, it gives you hope that hey, it’s gonna get better,” Robert said. Leslie agreed. “That remodel has been a God’s gift – it’s made a big difference,” she added. See an inspiring video about Leslie and Robert.
Latest News - IEHP Supports Local Trunk-Or-Treat for Children with Disabilities
loween this year with a special Trunk-Or-Treat in San Bernardino. The second annual Trunk-Or-Treat event is the result of a partnership between Inland Empire Health Plan (IEHP) and Southern California Resource Services for Independent Living (SCRS-IL) and will be held on Saturday, Oct. 15, from 5-8 p.m. at the SCRS-IL’s San Bernardino office at 1950 S. Sunwest Lane. “This is the only Inland Empire event serving our disabled community in the month of October,” said SCRS-IL Chief Executive Officer Rudy Contreras, who organized the inaugural Trunk-Or-Treat in just 30 days last year after learning the community needed a Halloween activity for children with disabilities during the pandemic. The Trunk-Or-Treat will feature carnival games, candy, accessible spooky mazes, snacks, refreshments, community resources and a vaccine clinic. “Last year’s event was a reopening of inclusivity, and this year, we’re building on that with more sponsors, games, prizes, booths and even more community,” added Contreras. “With partners like IEHP, we’re able to make that happen and create safe, inclusive spaces that celebrate the diversity of our community.” Attendees who receive a vaccine at the event will receive a free cooler or beach chair, and IEHP members ages 6 and older who receive their first vaccine will be given a $50 gift card. Grocery boxes will also be provided to the first 150 families in attendance. “When community partners and organizations come together and support the needs of our neighbors and communities, we move one step closer to ensuring vibrant health to those we serve,” said IEHP Independent Living and Diversity Services Community Health Representative Jose Solorzano. “It doesn’t get any better than that.” For more information, visit https://www.scrs-ilc.org/trunkortreat.
Latest News - IEHP Earns Anti-Bullying HERO Business of the Year Award
iverside Medical Clinic Charitable Foundation’s (RMCCF) 2022 HERO Business of the Year Award at its annual fundraiser Aug. 18. RMCCF also recognized IEHP Community Partnerships Manager LuAnna Jauregui with a HERO Award for outstanding cooperation and capturing the spirit of being a true hero. The HERO Program annual awards recognize organizations and individuals who demonstrate leadership and exceptional efforts in supporting and promoting kindness, empathy and inclusion within the community. For the last four years, IEHP has partnered with the RMCCF and its Anti-Bullying Institute’s programs that help children, parents, schools and youth organizations deal with bullying. “IEHP has been a foundation community partner for many years. They are receiving our 2022 HERO Business of the Year Award because of their generous support for our growing programs,” said RMCCF’s Executive Director Lynda Bailey. “They continue to reach out to us with open communication to assist us in meeting the needs in our community. They make our ‘small but mighty non-profit’ feel heard and supported.” For over 25 years, IEHP has worked tirelessly to “do the right thing” for the Inland Empire community it serves, fostering collaborations that emphasize goodwill and inclusivity. “IEHP is committed to helping foster a culture where kindness, empathy and inclusion are the rule, not the exception,” said IEHP Chief Executive Officer Jarrod McNaughton. “We are honored to receive this award and also proudly congratulate team member, LuAnna Jauregui on the well-deserved recognition of her tireless efforts to make a difference in our communities.” Connecting the dots and helping to facilitate the partnership on behalf of IEHP, LuAnna Jauregui has been heavily involved with RMCCF’s bullying prevention efforts, as it holds a special place in her heart. “Supporting kindness and inclusion in the Inland Empire means more of my neighbors, friends, family and their children have the opportunity to live joyfully,” said Jauregui. “Receiving this recognition from RMCCF is truly an honor and I look forward to our continued work, bringing even more compassion to our region.”
Latest News - Celebrity connection: ‘Boris and Nicole’ encourage health and wellness in I.E.
ican residents through a series of local public service announcements (PSAs) that encourage navigating family health matters, including COVID-19 vaccines. Actors/entrepreneurs Boris Kodjoe and Nicole Ari Parker, currently starring on ABC’s “Station 19” and HBO Max’s “And Just Like That,” respectively, have been supporting health and wellness initiatives for years through their Kodjoe Family Foundation. Today they continue to help share fact-based health information with their community. “The truth is, our community is still being hit hardest by this virus and vaccines lower our risk of getting sick or even dying of COVID-19,” said Parker in one of the campaign segments, which were funded in partnership with San Bernardino County’s COVID Equity Grant. Nearly three years after the start of COVID-19 pandemic, the Inland Empire continues to report low vaccine rates, especially among Black residents, resulting in increased hospitalizations and deaths. “We understand the concerns our Black and minority residents have in regards to the vaccine,” said Inland Empire Health Plan (IEHP) Chief Medical Officer Dr. Takashi Wada. “It isn’t enough to just tell community members to get vaccinated and that the vaccines work, we’re inviting them to empower themselves through awareness and gathering information from trusted sources.” Like the celebrity couple of Boris and Nicole, Dr. Wada further encourages all Inland Empire residents to get the facts about COVID-19 vaccines and boosters directly from reliable sources such as official websites and licensed medical experts. “The best thing you can really do to support the health and wellness of your family is to read the data and ask your doctors questions, so you CAN make sound decisions regarding the health and wellness of your family,” Dr. Wada added. Topics of the “Boris and Nicole” PSAs include various messages about protecting the Inland Empire community and family health as well as encouraging residents who have doubts to visit IEHP’s COVID-19 website to gather accurate and timely information. The announcements began running on KMIR Palm Springs stations and IE Spectrum stations and will continue through summer 2023.
Latest News - IEHP Launches Early Childhood Wellness Program
), Loma Linda University Health (LLUH), and Help Me Grow Inland Empire (HMGIE) have joined forces to create the IEHP Early Childhood Wellness Program. The program encourages parental understanding of children’s (aged 0-5 years) developmental milestones through preventive screenings, interactive classes, helpful resources and more. Developmental milestones are helpful in gauging children’s growth and can provide early warning signs for developmental delays. “A child’s growth is more than just physical, and can be observed in how the child plays, learns, speaks and behaves,” said Jane Wang, IEHP Director of Health Education. “Parents and caregivers who know their child the best could be the first to identify any missed milestones and are an important part of the solution,” added Wang. “Bringing awareness to developmental milestones through activities and resources gives parents the opportunity to learn more about their child and how they can personally impact their growth.” Reflecting on her time in the program, Jessica Cortez, parent of Jayla (8 months) said, “By doing the activities in the program, I’ve learned different ways that can help me teach and improve her learning. If I didn’t take the classes, I wouldn’t be able to come up with the activities we’ve been doing on my own. The questionnaire gave me an idea of what to look for and what areas we need to improve.” The program utilizes the Ages and Stages Questionnaire (ASQ-3) in partnership with HMGIE. The questionnaire’s results provide parents with information about the developmental status of their child across five key areas that can be discussed with the child’s pediatrician. The five key areas include: communication, gross motor, fine motor, problem solving, and personal-social. In addition, parents are provided access to developmental screenings, early childhood education and learning material promoting healthy growth and development at home. The program also includes a virtual interactive Circle Time class for parents and their children and refers parents to supportive resources when any developmental concerns are observed. “Help Me Grow Inland Empire is proud to serve as the developmental screening partner for IEHP’s Health Educators,” said Dr. Marti Baum, Pediatrician and HMGIE Physician Champion. “HMGIE assists IEHP-referred parents and caregivers to assess their child’s development against well-established milestones. When concerns are identified, IEHP’s Health Educators immediately start working with the family to provide the child with necessary medical care and social services. Together, IEHP and HMGIE are making a difference in the lives of young children — a successful partnership that helps our young ones be ready to learn when they start school.” The program is offered online weekly and will resume in-person interactive classes this month at IEHP’s Victorville Community Resource Center. “Preventive care and health promotion resonates at the core of our mission within Health Education at IEHP,” said Wang. “However, to truly provide wraparound care, we believe that we must continue to strengthen our partnership with our IEHP providers as well – such as leveraging technology solutions for ease of accessing screening tools and results. In the coming years, we hope to help bridge these efforts so that our young children, 0-5 years, are getting the right care at the right time, and are able to realize their full potential.” IEHP parents can participate in the program by submitting a screening request via email to email@example.com or by participating in a Circle Time class with their child. For more information, visit iehp.org or call IEHP Member Service at (800) 440-4347 or (800) 718-4347 (TTY).
Latest News - IEHP Sponsors Inland Empire Disabilities Collaborative Scholarships and Awards
nsorship to Inland Empire Disabilities Collaborative (IEDC) that will be distributed to 10 students who applied for IEDC scholarships. Scholarships were distributed June 16 at San Bernardino Valley College, where IEDC Member Denise Booker was also honored for her dedication to bring awareness of Juneteenth to the Riverside community. “Providing opportunities, aid and continuing to advocate and honor individuals who stand for equity is critical to our mission to obtain optimal care and vibrant health in our region,” said IEHP Director of Community Health and IEDC Board President, Dr. Gabriel Uribe. “Since 2019, IEDC has distributed 33 scholarships to Inland Empire students with disabilities who are pursing undergraduate, graduate, vocational or technical degrees. It’s a tradition we hope to continue through our partnerships and community support.” Established in 2006, IEDC is powered by a partnership between IEHP, Community Access Center and PossAbilities of Loma Linda University Health. Today the organization brings together more than 900 service providers from several organizations across the Inland Empire who serve seniors and people with disabilities. “It's imperative we do what we can to level the playing field and advocate for underserved and marginalized communities. That’s what’s so inspiring about Mrs. Booker. She stood up, she spoke up and she sparked positive change in her community,” added Uribe. Booker has been an IEDC member since 2017 and has been active in advocating for the Black community. Through her organization, The Black Collaborative, Booker has led advocacy efforts to inform local politicians and leaders about Juneteenth and why the day is important in our nation’s history. “The collaboration I have with IEDC provides me the opportunity to help a section of my community that I otherwise would not be able to,” said Booker. “My relationship with IEDC brings true the African proverb, ‘If you want to go fast, go alone; if you want to go far, go together.’”
Latest News - Community Action Partnership of San Bernardino County Earns IEHP’s Mission INSPIRE AWARD
’s (IEHP) Mission INSPIRE Award at the health plan’s second annual Mission Conference on May 6. The award recognized CAPSBC’s dedication to eliminating the effects of poverty through advocacy for community members to obtain knowledge and skills for self-reliance and economic stability. In just one year, CAPSBC has supported over 800,000 individuals, distributed over 16.3 million pounds of food, served 214,415 meals through soup kitchen partners, provided 541 individuals with new rental and eviction prevention assistance, supported 389 individuals with housing placements, assisted 9,826 individuals with utility assistance, and more. “Our agency is all about helping people and changing lives and we want to acknowledge that IEHP is a valuable partner to the Community Action Partnership of San Bernardino County, and we could not do our work without that partnership,” said Patricia Nickols-Butler, CAPSBC President and CEO. In collaboration with IEHP, CAPSBC also created drive-thrus to distribute food and household items at the health plan’s three Community Resource Centers and shared logistics and best practices for food distribution with IEHP teams to support the ongoing Member needs. “We know the needs in our county are daunting and that in order to make our communities stronger and more resilient, it takes individuals and organizations that understand those needs and IEHP does that every day. They show up for the community and they support the work that’s being done to make this community a better place to live,” said Nickols-Butler. “Thank you IEHP for this recognition; we are humbled and deeply grateful.” CAPSBC is one of the first recipients of the IEHP Mission INSPIRE Award. The award honors providers, community organizations and partners for their commitment to the health plan’s mission to “heal and inspire the human spirit.” “It takes a village to support our Members,” said Jarrod McNaughton, IEHP Chief Executive Officer. “Even amidst a global pandemic, our friends at Community Action Partnership of San Bernardino County stopped at nothing to continue serving their communities and organizations like IEHP. Their knowledge, support and partnership are critical to our mission, and we are grateful for it.” To learn more about the IEHP Mission Conference and how the health plan is charting a collaborative path forward, visit iehp.org.
Latest News - IEHP Partners with Community Organizations to Vaccinate 38,000+ I.E. Residents
es through an IEHP sponsored or supported clinic. Clinics are made possible through partnerships with community-based organizations like Loma Linda University Health, SAC Health System, St. Paul African Methodist Episcopal Church, Inland Regional Center, and San Bernardino County and are expected to continue to combat the surging rates of COVID-19 cases. Approximately 36,900 vaccines have been administered through San Bernardino County’s super vaccination site, held at the health plan’s corporate headquarters in Rancho Cucamonga. In addition, more than 1,500 vaccines have been distributed at community events, like Que Buena’s 2021 Fiestas Patrias community event, and church or organization-hosted clinics over the past six months. “We do everything we can to meet residents where they are,” said Marci Coffey, IEHP’s Director of Community Partnerships. “For some, it comes down to convenience and accessibility. For others, it’s all about education and awareness. We’re thrilled to offer these services and resources to residents in the I.E. and are actively working to develop additional opportunities for our teams to connect with and support the community!” With funding from the state’s Medi-Cal COVID-19 Vaccination Incentive Program, IEHP plans on expanding partnerships to ensure continued vaccine clinics. The health plan is also developing provider incentive programs to encourage physician intervention among patients, increasing vaccination rates. “The facts are crystal clear. Everyone is safer when everyone is vaccinated,” said Jarrod McNaughton, IEHP Chief Executive Officer. “While we are proud of the number of vaccines we’ve helped to administer, we still have plenty of work ahead to ensure our communities can enjoy optimal care and vibrant health. We understand receiving a vaccine is a personal choice, however the community impacts are astounding. Just as this pandemic began through community spread, it must end through community collaboration and response.” For COVID-19 vaccine sites near you, visit myturn.ca.gov.
Latest News - IEHP recognized as Great Place to Work® on Certification Nation Day
h the community of Great Place to Work-Certified™ companies across the country. IEHP earned its certification this year after 92% of IEHP’s 2,817 Team Members shared the health plan was a great place to work in the organization’s annual Engagement Survey. “We have a wonderful learning center, a gym and great benefits that is afforded to us. I'm proud to be a part of the IEHP family and motivated to contribute to its success in any way that I can,” expressed an IEHP Team Member in the anonymous survey. Great Place to Work Certification™ is recognized worldwide by employees and employers alike and is a global benchmark for identifying outstanding employee experiences. “IEHP’s strong culture and values have established a work environment Team Members are genuinely excited about,” said Janet Nix, Ed.D., IEHP Chief Organizational Development Officer. “Our team culture is centered around doing the right thing and is built upon strong relationships, trust, appreciation, and commitment to continually moving forward. Our annual Engagement Survey illustrates the impact our culture has on our Team Members and the joy their work brings to them.” IEHP’s annual Engagement Survey results show 96% of Team Members feel good about ways the organization contributes to its community; 95% reported having special and unique company benefits; 95% reported Team Members are made to feel welcome when joining the company; 94% claimed facilities contributed to a good working environment; and 94% were proud to tell others their place of employment. “Great Place to Work Certification™ isn’t something that comes easily,” says Sarah Lewis-Kulin, Vice President of Global Recognition at Great Place to Work. “It takes ongoing dedication to the employee experience.” Even through the COVID-19 pandemic, IEHP’s leadership remained connected to Team Members by hosting virtual monthly company meetings, regular email updates and even delivering holiday gifts by mail to Team Member homes. IEHP employees consistently report high job satisfaction, earning the Inland Empire Top Workplaces 2020 Award and placing second in the United States Healthcare Industry. “These survey results show that our Team Members are engaged, dedicated and truly care about the work they do every day to serve the most vulnerable in our region,” said Jarrod McNaughton, IEHP Chief Executive Officer. “I am so proud to partner with them and look forward to finding even more new and innovative ways to support their continuing efforts to make a difference in our community.” WE’RE HIRING! Looking to grow your career at a company that puts its people first? Visit our careers page at: careers.iehp.org. src=" -/media/35ed3bad40144c4f8134b420c7714254.ashx?h="233&w=350"" class="" />
Latest News - From Medi-Cal to Med School: An IEHP Member’s Quest to Serve the Inland Empire
hild would be paying her medical school bills today. And yet, that’s exactly what Inland Empire Health Plan (IEHP) has done for the past two years—and counting. IEHP awarded Hough with their innovative Healthcare Scholarship Fund award in 2020, bringing Hough’s journey from Medi-Cal member to medical school student to fruition. A Victorville native and now third-year medical student at California University of Science and Medicine (CUSM), Hough was one of 50 students to receive the inaugural award from IEHP. The health plan has sustained the program with annual scholarship awards ranging from full to partial tuition at three medical schools: CUSM, Loma Linda University and University of California, Riverside. “This scholarship means the world to me,” said Hough. “Growing up in a family who struggled financially, the dream of being able to go to medical school seemed so farfetched for so long.” IEHP created the scholarship fund to help address the provider shortage in Riverside and San Bernardino counties. “By supporting local medical students, we are able to secure their service to the Inland Empire after graduation and create a pipeline of health care professionals who are committed to serving our communities with compassion and empathy,” said Jarrod McNaughton, IEHP Chief Executive Officer. Hough discovered her passion for medicine while taking human science classes at California State University Fullerton and spending countless hours volunteering at Children’s Health Orange County. Encouraged by these experiences and several physician mentors, she decided to pursue a career as a doctor. Hough intentionally applied to only local schools so she could remain connected to her Inland Empire roots. “Most people apply very broadly—to as many schools as they want,” Hough said. “But I felt it was really important to be in this area, so I only applied to three medical schools. It was very risky, but it worked out.” Hough remembers not having much guidance or role models related to her dream of medicine growing up, so becoming a doctor didn’t seem possible. “When I got that acceptance letter,” she said, “it was really a moment of shock.” Through the medical school admissions process, Hough learned about IEHP’s Healthcare Scholarship Fund and its goal to support local students who wished to remain in the Inland Empire. Hough remembered IEHP was the health plan she had as a child and appreciated how they promoted a mission she resonated with. She applied and earned a four-year award. “After receiving the scholarship, a huge weight was lifted off of my shoulders,” said Hough. “Thank you so much IEHP, from the bottom of my heart. I don’t think words could ever explain how grateful I am.” The cost for medical school in California has been on an upward trend since 2013, increasing about $1,500 annually and currently averaging a total of $218,792. This puts the dream of being a physician even further out of reach for many IE students, and deeply impacts the ongoing provider shortage in the region. “Bridging the gap between aspiring IE medical professionals and local medical schools to serve the region’s most vulnerable populations is what this scholarship program was designed to do,” said McNaughton. “We are absolutely elated to support Jordan and our HSF award recipients on their path to becoming physicians and are especially eager to connect their desire and ability to provide optimal care and vibrant health to the communities they love so very much.” The health plan will be hosting networking and supportive events for medical students throughout their medical school journey, including a dinner at IEHP headquarters on May 3. To learn more about IEHP’s Healthcare Scholarship Fund, visit iehp.org.
Latest News - New Program Reduces Healthcare Barriers in the Inland Empire
and support community health workers (CHWs) in the Inland Empire (I.E.). The pilot program is aimed at reducing barriers to health care services in marginalized and underserved areas and encouraging diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI). In the initial stage of the program’s two-tiered approach, the health plan will professionally train a new community health workforce in an intensive nine-week program. Program curriculum encompasses CHW training provided by Loma Linda San Manuel Gateway College’s Certificated Community Health Worker Training Program and various IEHP Health Navigator courses. Continuous training opportunities will also be offered to ensure CHWs remain equipped with needed resources. The workforce will be staffed in partnership with community agencies and their employees who may be interested in a career advancement opportunity. These agencies include Young Visionaries (High Desert), Michelle’s Place (Temecula Valley), Asian American Resource Center (San Bernardino), LGBTQ Center (Palm Springs), and the Sahaba Initiative (San Bernardino). Internally, IEHP’s Community Health Managers Delia Orosco, Maria Gallegos and Carmen Ramirez are actively collaborating to support the needs of the program. “To truly encourage DEI in the I.E., each organization is focused on understanding and meeting the needs of a specific population. By working together to share knowledge and resources, we can better meet those needs and enhance wellness throughout the region,” said Orosco. DEI continues to be the focus of program’s second tier. This includes IEHP’s work to lead external CHW assignments that empower residents by teaching them how to utilize health care benefits, helping them navigate benefit services, and increasing their ability to advocate for themselves in their community. “Our hope is that we can collectively improve regional health outcomes by supporting communities that have been historically underserved and marginalized with resources and culturally relevant supports,” said Dr. Gabriel Uribe, IEHP’s Director of Community Health. “Health literacy is essential to DEI work, and no one should suffer because they are not aware of available services. This community health workforce will fill in those gaps and serve as a step forward in our effort to advance diversity, equity and inclusion in the Inland Empire.” The pilot program will run until September 2022, with the goal of expansion soon thereafter.
Latest News - UC Riverside Athletics and IEHP Partner for Community Wellness
forces this season to bring health and wellness resources, including COVID-19 education and vaccine information, to the campus community and broader audiences. Utilizing a multi-channel approach, the organizations will serve as an access point to timely and accurate health information for students, staff and the community during the ongoing pandemic. “We are excited to welcome IEHP as a partner to help us continue our mission of preparing our student-athletes for opportunities in life through sport,” said Wesley Mallette, Director of Intercollegiate Athletics. “In partnership with IEHP, we hope to educate and inform all Highlanders about the amazing resources IEHP provides and their positive impact on lives.” As a corporate sponsor, IEHP will be cheering for UCR’s basketball, baseball and softball home games, and will be sponsoring a basketball game on February 17, celebrating Black History Month. At this event, Michael Deering, IEHP’s Vice President of Innovation, Acceleration and Diversity, will be announcing the UCR Highlanders’ starting lineup. Also featured in the partnership is the health plan’s collaborative work with UCR’s Center for Healthy Communities and School of Medicine and will be aired on videoboard screens before games—appearing on ESPN+ when Highlander games are televised. “UCR’s commitment to public health is incredibly evident in all they do,” said Jarrod McNaughton, IEHP’s Chief Executive Officer. “We’re grateful to partner with them on multiple levels and look forward to sharing resources and accurate COVID-19 information so we can put our best foot forward in living healthy lives and defeating this virus, together.” For upcoming UCR game schedules and events, visit gohighlanders.com.