"Putting Care at the Center" conference 2023

As the newest member of Transform Health I attended Putting Care at the Center 2023, in Boston, co-hosted by the Camden Coalition in connection with Commonwealth Care Alliance and The Center to Advance Consumer Partnership.

This gave us a front row seat to new opportunities that exist to strengthen and integrate behavioral health services, share and learn lessons from health systems change efforts around the country, and allow for cross sector collaboration to tackle some of the largest problems in health care today.

This event serving as a backdrop to the most recent release of the Administration’s Playbook to Address Social Determinants of Health, and the new Medicare Physician Fee Schedule, both of which set a course forward to include a critical community-informed workforce, Community Health Workers (CHWs), was enlightening and timely, to say the least.

A welcomed focus on lived experience and community level systems change.

While much was uncovered and shared at this event, the welcoming address provided by Marcella Middleton, Executive Director of A Way Home America, profoundly resonated with so many of us because of her emphasis on how systems are great at creating flows but may also create barriers. She went on to say that our leaders have a responsibility to check the cracks in their systems to ensure no one is left behind. Her examples from foster care youth where a high percentage end up falling into homelessness were demonstrative of this exact problem.

Other key points were followed up by Paolo del Vecchio, MSW, Director of the Office of Recovery and previously served in the Office of Management, Technology, and Operations for the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), further emphasized that by making strategic investments in inclusion, companies can shift power to a more collective approach to lift up voices from lived experience rather than forcing people to fit into one system’s box.

Lifting All Boats: Sharing the Story of Champions Recovery Alternatives Program Inc.

My presentation highlighted my past work with Champions Recovery Alternatives Program and our lived experiences implementing new initiatives resulting from California Advancing Innovation in Medi-Cal (CalAIM) in the Central Valley. At Champions’, we deployed a holistic approach to care that assisted the Medi-Cal members by helping them navigate their health, housing, behavioral health, and social care needs. Ultimately, at Champions we were able to house people enrolled in Medi-Cal and provide sustained care coordination. Learn more about the fantastic work Champions Recovery provides to the Central Valley community here.

As we continue to look towards future systems change efforts and make investments locally, we will need to ensure inclusion of a community-informed voice.

Transform Health is a nationally certified women and minority led health care consulting firm. Reach out to us today if you would like to work together. Contact Heather Bates, COO, and VP of Stakeholder Engagement at heather@transformhc.com We would love to hear from you!