Community Health Matters
Community Health and Wellness Matters
Beth Israel Deaconess Hospital–Plymouth (BID-Plymouth) plays an important role in the lives of those living and working in the communities we serve. We are committed to improving the health and wellness of our community by identifying the unmet health needs and collaborating with our community partners to prioritize and meet those needs. Our mission is supported by our commitment to our high quality, compassionate care for our patients and a commitment to maintaining our financial health.
The community benefits mission of BID-Plymouth is to help improve the health and wellbeing of our patients and community by providing a full continuum of healthcare services with excellence and compassion. Serving the Greater Plymouth region, the hospital collaborates with community leaders, public and private agencies and businesses, to provide healthcare, education, health protection and preventive services to improve our community’s health and wellbeing. As part of its mission to support community health, BID-Plymouth is committed to assessing root causes of health disparities and to assisting in improving health care for the disadvantaged and underserved.
We accomplish this through:
- Identifying the unmet health needs of the community through a needs assessment process that includes collaboration with our communities.
- Collaborating with local health providers, human services agencies, department of public health, and many others to develop plans and programs to help address these unmet health needs.
- Developing community benefits programs that incorporate, to the best of our ability, the social determinants of health, including transportation, employment and education.
- Implementing meaningful programs and services to address the unmet health needs and to improve the health of our community.
BID-Plymouth’s effort is led by senior administration, key staff, and the Community Benefits Advisory Council, consisting of external key stakeholders including members from the Board of Directors, Department of Public Health, South Shore Chamber of Commerce, Harbor Community Health and Plymouth Area Coalition, just to name a few.
Every three years, BID-Plymouth conducts a new Community Health Needs Assessment, sharing the results with our community partners and the public online via the hospital’s website. Click here to view the last Community Health Needs Assessment. Our current community benefits programs, listed below, work to improve health by addressing those health priorities that were gleaned from the last needs assessment.
PEDIATRIC PALLIATIVE CARE (FRAGILE FOOTPRINTS) This program provides medical case management and support services for children with potentially life-limiting illnesses and their families. Fragile Footprints works to address the issues commonly experienced by families of medically fragile children, including stress, anxiety, isolation, financial hardship, relationship issues and interruption of daily routines.
HOUSECALLS HouseCalls are free evening health educational lectures presented by a clinical professional on a health topic of interest at a local venue.
SMOKING CESSATION PROGRAM The Smoking Cessation program is a formalized system-wide approach where respiratory therapists connect inpatient tobacco users who want to quit, with a Tobacco Treatment Specialist to help them reach their goals.
CANCER PATIENT SUPPORT PROGRAM/CANCER SERVICES
- This program identifies cancer patients with extreme emotional and financial hardship and matches them with counseling and support services, when possible. This event is free to cancer patients whenever sources are available.
- A free skin cancer screening and sun exposure awareness is held where attendance is on average 100 community members.
- Bimonthly, free women’s health screenings (mammograms/Pap smears).
- BID-Plymouth hosts an annual Cancer Survivors Day with over 450 attendees. The event includes food, live music, brief remarks, massages, and face painting. The event is free and open to the public.
- BID-Plymouth hosts a biennial Women’s Health Symposium to educate and inform women on the latest in breast health. The event is free and dinner is included. The average attendance – 350 people.
BEHAVIORAL HEALTH INTEGRATED CARE INITIATIVE This initiative is a co-located behavioral health model that embeds licensed clinical social workers in primary care and specialty care settings. The social workers work with the practice’s primary care providers, advanced practice nurse practitioners with mental health training, and a psychiatrist to integrate behavioral health screening, assessment, and treatment services into the practices’ operations. These clinicians collaborate with community treatment providers to address the high number of substance abuse related cases and provide the right level of care in the emergency setting. With these services available in the emergency department, patients may begin treatment in this setting rather than delaying treatment until psychiatric beds are available. The immediate care often decreases the level of intervention required.
HEALTHY PLYMOUTH BID-Plymouth, the Town of Plymouth, Plymouth Public Schools and other community partners formed Healthy Plymouth to identify meaningful ways to foster better health in our community. This program began as a population health initiative focused on education and community wide facilitation of healthy eating and active living. In FY2015, the statewide priority and local crisis of substance abuse and inadequate behavioral health access became the more pressing concern. Today, several of Healthy Plymouth’s efforts are focused on these key issues by providing free education and activities to the community. Programming includes six Coffee House events, Algonquin Heights/Colchester Farm Market Program, April Vacation Week, Permaculture School Garden Clubs, Peer Helper Program, and Healthy Markets.
ACCESS PROGRAM The AIDS Comprehensive and Support Services Program provides HIV testing, medical care, prevention education, and support services to people living with HIV/AIDS in Plymouth and surrounding towns.
EMS SERVICES BID-Plymouth supports police and fire departments throughout BID-Plymouth’s service area with medical direction/education for their Automatic External Defibrillators (AEDs).
ACCESS TO CARE – UNINSURED AND UNDERINSURED BID-Plymouth financial counselors screen and enroll patients into MassHealth, Health Safety Net, Medical Hardship and Commonwealth Care programs.
TRANSPORTATION PILOT PROGRAM The Transportation Pilot Program was developed by a group of community agencies in Plymouth to address the tremendous transportation barriers experienced by their lowincome clients. The program, modeled after a successful pilot serving residents of Greater Attleboro, pays for Uber and Lyft rides for eligible clients in need. Funds donated by organizations to the program are matched through a state grant.
BID-Plymouth just completed a new Community Health Needs Assessment and is currently working on prioritizing the needs and then will be developing and exploring programs and partnerships to address those needs.