The United Health Foundation has awarded $900,000 to the Tennessee Primary Care Association to support increased physician access for patients with chronic diseases.
Provided over three years, the grant will support 17 community health centers representing 104 sites of care. The Tennessee Quality Connect program will provide telehealth, behavioral and nutritional services for individuals with hypertension, diabetes, obesity and depression.
The grant is part of United Health Foundation's 'Helping Build Healthier Communities' program. The United Health Foundation is the nonprofit division of insurance giant UnitedHealth Group.
A team of Vanderbilt students will compete in the regional finals of the Hult Prize Challenge, a social enterprise project developed by the Hult Prize Foundation and the Clinton Global Initiative.
The winner will receive $1 million in start-up funding for a social enterprise project. The challenge is to develop a social venture designed to provide early childhood education to children under the age of six living in urban slums worldwide.
The Vanderbilt team includes three students from the Owen Graduate School of Management, one Peabody College of Education and Human Development student, and one Peabody alumna. The project has not yet been announced.
The regional finals will be held in five world cities in March, with the Vanderbilt team competing in San Francisco.
"One of the great things about Vanderbilt is the opportunity students have to work with their peers across different schools and across multiple disciplines," Eric Johnson, dean of the Owen Graduate School of Management, said in a release. "This team's collaboration on the prestigious Hilt Prize is a perfect example of the university's spirit of collaboration."
Vanderbilt's Center for Integrative Health is now the Osher Center for Integrative Medicine at Vanderbilt University, following a $5.5 million donation from philanthropist Bernard Osher.
The grant, given through the Bernard Osher Foundation, connects Vanderbilt with three existing Osher Centers for Integrative Medicine at the University of California, San Francisco, Harvard Medical School with a clinical program at Brigham and Women's Hospital and at the Karolinska Institute in Stockholm, Sweden. (The integrative medicine program at Northwestern University also is becoming an Osher Center.)
"This generous gift will enable Vanderbilt to play an increasingly significant role in the field of integrative medicine," said Dr. Jeff Balser, vice chancellor for health affairs. "The gift also gives Vanderbilt the opportunity to collaborate with the Foundation's other centers for integrative medicine as we seek to increase knowledge, develop new clinical programs and train students in this emerging discipline."
Mental health non-profit Centerstone announced this week it received a $200,000 grant from BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee Health Foundation to expand crisis services. The funding will create the Crisis Services High-Risk Follow-Up Project, an outreach service intended to assist people in a suicidal crisis. Callers accessing Centerstone's 24-hour crisis line and assessed as high risk for suicide will receive follow-up calls for continued risk assessment and treatment. Follow-ups will occur within 24 hours, seven days, 14 days and 30 days after the call, depending on the need of the caller.
"Follow-up services and community collaboration are equally integral to preventing hospitalizations and suicide. Isolation is the enemy of those at acute risk for suicide," Becky Stoll, Centerstone's vice president for crisis services, said in a release.
MissionPoint, Saint Thomas Health's accountable care organization, announced today it has been awarded a $80,000 grant from the Clarksville-Montgomery County Community Health Foundation to launch a chronic disease management program.
The pilot program will serve 400 uninsured patients living with diabetes in Montgomery County and Fort Campbell.
"We are very excited for the work that this grant will allow us to do in the Montgomery County area," Jason Dinger, MissionPoint CEO, said in a release. "Through this grant, we will continue our mission of serving some of the most vulnerable in our community.
Dinger said the funding would pay for case management services for patients, with the goal of helping them better manage their diabetes.
"We selected MissionPoint as the recipient of this grant because of their commitment to the health and wellness of the uninsured, as well as their proven track record of improving community health, reducing costs, increasing access and enhancing the patient experience," said Joey Smith, board member of the Clarksville-Montgomery County Community Health Foundation.
Nashville's Matthew Walker Comprehensive Health Center will receive a $173,210 grant from the AstraZeneca HealthCare Foundation's Connections for Cardiovascular Health program, according to a release.
This is the third time the center has received such a grant from Delaware-based AstraZeneca, which announced today it will dole out nearly $3.7 million in grants to 19 nonprofits around the country dedicated to improving cardiovascular health.
Matthew Walker Comprehensive Health Center in Nashville, Tenn.; $173,210: Dial Down Diabetes is geared toward African-American and Latino communities with the intention of developing a comprehensive, culturally relevant and community-based program for low-income adults with diagnosed diabetes, undiagnosed diabetes or pre-diabetes. The program will enable patients to “dial down” the impact of diabetes on their lives.
Vanderbilt University officials announced today the National Institutes of Health has renewed a seven-year grant for VU's AIDS Clinical Trials Unit.
The ACTU will receive approximately $1.4 million in 2014 to continue studies improving treatment and ultimately developing a vaccine to prevent HIV infection.
The NIH grant also supports a new partnership with the Therapeutics CRS at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis.
"This [grant] is critically important because we are the only site in our region doing HIV-related clinical research, both in vaccine discovery and therapeutics," Dr. David Haas, professor and director of the Vanderbilt Therapeutics CRS, said in a release.
Current HIV therapies enable many patients to live longer and more productive lives, but treated HIV infections often still include chronic inflammation, which can increase the risk for heart attacks, strokes and other complications. The grant research seeks to improve that treatment as well as continue the search for a vaccine.
"A vaccine is still imperative to stop the epidemic," said Dr. Spyros Kalams, associate professor at Vanderbilt, who added the team is currently evaluating a vaccine trial conducted in Thailand that showed a protective effect of about 30 percent. "We're still trying to understand exactly what about that vaccine might have protected people."
Read more here.
The Tennessee Department of Transportation announced today that federal and state aeronautics grants totaling $8.7 million have been approved for nine Tennessee airports, including Nashville International Airport. Of the total, BNA received $5.25 million. The grants are made available through TDOT’s Aeronautics Division, which administers federal and state funding to assist in the location, design, construction and maintenance of Tennessee's public aviation system. For details, read here.
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