CSUSB Palm Desert Street Medicine Program Receives $50K Grant

Press release from CSUSB Palm Desert:

Nov. 23, 2020

The Desert Healthcare District & Foundation has awarded a $50,000 grant to the Cal State San Bernardino Palm Desert Campus to support its Street Medicine program.

Grant funds will be used to improve access to healthcare for traditionally underserved populations, increase mobile medical clinics, improve health-related infrastructure in the Coachella Valley and strengthen engagement of nurses and nursing students with the homeless, unsheltered and vulnerable populations in the Coachella Valley.

The Street Medicine program is a collaborative partnership between the CSUSB Department of Nursing at the Palm Desert Campus; the University of California, Riverside School of Medicine; Desert Regional Medical Center; Well in the Desert; and the Coachella Valley Volunteers in Medicine.

“The funds from the Desert Healthcare District & Foundation will provide support for us to continue our efforts to grow our Street Medicine program,” said Diane Vines, street medicine program coordinator and CSUSB nursing faculty member. “We are providing much-needed healthcare services for homeless and unsheltered people in the Coachella Valley, and preparing our future nurses to understand the needs of this vulnerable population.”

“Through the Street Medicine program, nurses and nursing students provide an invaluable service, taking medical care to Coachella Valley residents who may not receive it any other way,” said Carole Rogers, an RN and Desert Healthcare District and Foundation Board director. “Their work directly supports the District’s mission ‘to achieve optimal health at all stages of life for all District residents,’ and we’re happy to support them.”

Also, visit the Desert Healthcare District & Foundation website at www.DHCD.org to learn more about its programs.

The CSUSB Palm Desert Campus offers bachelor’s and master’s degrees, a doctorate in educational leadership, and teaching credentials and certificates. With more than 1,600 students, it is the Coachella Valley’s four-year public university and plays a vital role in educating and training the region’s growing population.

For more information about the CSUSB Palm Desert Campus, contact Mike Singer in the Office of Strategic Communication at [email protected] or (760) 341-2883, ext. 78107, or visit the PDC website at www.csusb.edu/pdc.

This press release was produced by CSUSB Palm Desert. The views expressed here are the author’s own.

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Connecticut Department of Public Health receives five-year, $3.5M grant from CDC to fund suicide prevention efforts

The Connecticut Department of Public Health has received a five-year, $3.5 million grant from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to enhance statewide suicide prevention efforts, Gov. Ned Lamont announced at St. Francis Hospital and Medical Center in Hartford Thursday morning.

The grant, which runs through Aug. 31, 2025, will be a joint effort between DPH, the Connecticut Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services, the Connecticut Department of Children and Families and UConn Health. The prevention efforts will concentrate on populations that are disproportionately impacted by suicide or attempted suicide, including middle-aged adults, particularly men with mental illness or substance use disorder, and adolescents and young adults (ages 10-24).

State officials at the news conference spoke about the intense mental health toll the COVID-19 pandemic has taken on Connecticut residents.

With COVID-19 cases increasing and the winter approaching, “I can feel the stress building again,” Lamont said. He described a “witches’ brew” of health concerns, economic distress and social isolation.

“I hear a lot of, ‘I thought we had a light at the end of the COVID tunnel and it looks like it’s receding,’ ” Lamont said. “I hear the economic anxiety every day.”

Dr. Steven Wolf, chairman of emergency medicine at St. Francis, said that social isolation has exacerbated local residents’ experiences of mental illness and substance use disorder.

Seven people under the age of 18 have died by suicide in Connecticut this year, including four since October, according to Miriam Delphin-Rittmon, the commissioner of the state Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services.

Connecticut averages about eight suicides of children under the age of 18 annually, Vannessa Dorantes, the commissioner of the state’s Department of Children and Families, said. She emphasized that the state must “work together to get that number to zero.”

On average, 403 Connecticut residents died annually of suicide between 2015 and 2019, a 14% increase from the annual average of 351 residents between 2010 and 2014, according to state officials.

“Though Connecticut has one of the lowest suicide rates in the United States, we know even one death is too much,” Delphin-Rittmon said.

Karen Jarmoc, president & CEO of the Connecticut Coalition Against Domestic Violence, said that calls to CTSafeConnect, the organization’s domestic violence hotline, rose by 30% due to the COVID-19 pandemic and domestic violence advocacy groups across the state faced increased demand for their services.

“When the pandemic hit in March in our state, understandably there were shut-in orders to keep people safe from a public health standpoint,” Jarmoc said. “From our perspective, it created a precarious situation where victims of domestic violence were shut in with their abusive partner.”

Early in the pandemic, 18 sites across the state that house victims of domestic violence had to send some people to hotels in order to reduce capacity and the risk of a COVID-19 outbreak, she said. That resulted in more than $390,000 in unexpected fees to house about 200 adults and 200 children in hotels, from March through

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Coronavirus Vaccination Grant Awarded To Rappahannock District

FREDERICKSBURG, VA — The Mary Washington Hospital Foundation awarded a $5,000 mini-grant to the Rappahannock Area Health District to purchase supplies in preparation for mass vaccination against the coronavirus, the health district announced Friday.

The health district plans to use the grant funds to buy supplies necessary for vaccination, including syringes, needles, Band-aids and alcohol swabs, as well as personal protective equipment for vaccinators, such as gloves, gowns, face shields and masks.

“Though a vaccine that protects against COVID-19 is not yet available, planning and preparation for distribution of a COVID-19 vaccine is already underway at RAHD,” Rappahannock Area Health District Acting Health Director Dr. Denise Bonds said in a statement. “This award will help the health district to begin to build our stockpile of supplies.”

Funding from the mini-grant also will cover some items unique to the coronavirus vaccination. Since many vaccines will be delivered in an outdoor drive-thru format, the health department will be able to purchase large outdoor heaters to keep staff and volunteers warm during the winter months.

For more information on Virginia’s COVID-19 vaccination response, visit www.vdh.virginia.gov/immunization/covid19vaccine/. For more information about the Rappahannock Area Health District, visit www.vdh.virginia.gov/Rappahannock.

This article originally appeared on the Fredericksburg Patch

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New Canaan Health Department Receives Coronavirus Grant

NEW CANAAN, CT — New Canaan’s health district is one of the first 21 throughout the state that will receive a portion of a $20 million state and federal grant as part of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Epidemiology and Laboratory Capacity Cooperative Agreement, announced Gov. Ned Lamont. All the state’s 65 health districts will receive a portion of the grant.

Under the agreement, the funding will help the health districts and departments in the fight against the coronavirus through the following:

  • Enhance laboratory detection, surveillance (contact tracing), response, informatics, and other workforce capacity;

  • Strengthen laboratory testing volume and capacity;

  • Coordinate and engage with partners as needed to respond to and prevent COVID-19;

  • Prevent and minimize disease transmission of COVID-19; and

  • Conduct health promotion activities associated with each of the previously mentioned activities.

“Ensuring the availability of these resources at the local level is critical to our response efforts,” Lamont said in a statement. “We know that our municipalities, health districts, and local service organizations know their communities best. I’m pleased we’ve been able to engage them in the community resource coordinator program and allocate funding to support them in combating COVID-19. Everyone in Connecticut should know that it’s safe to get tested – and if you need to stay home, we can support you, and our contact tracers are an important part of getting you what you need.”

Added Lt. Gov. Susan Bysiewicz, “The best way to address the COVID-19 pandemic is neighborhood-by-neighborhood. Whether you’ve tested positive for COVID-19 or were in contact with someone who was, we are doing everything we can to make sure our contact tracers and community resource coordinators know your community and can address your needs as soon as possible.”

The funding is being administered by the Connecticut Department of Public Health and will be distributed to each local health district and department over the course of three years:

  • Year one: May 19, 2020 to May 17, 2021

  • Year two: May 18, 2021 to May 17, 2022

  • Year three: May 18, 2022 to November 17, 2022

New Canaan is set to receive $29,530 in Year one, and a total of $73,825.

All of Connecticut’s 65 local health districts and departments will receive a portion of the $20 million based on per-capita and poverty levels for each jurisdiction. Including New Canaan, the others in the first 21 health districts approved are:

  • Bridgeport – Year one: $510,243; Total: $1,275,606

  • Brookfield – Year one: $26,348; Total: $65,870

  • Cromwell – Year one: $22,513; Total: $56,283

  • Durham – Year one: $11,786; Total: $29,466

  • East Hartford – Year one: $136,449; Total: $341,123

  • Eastern Highlands Health District – Year one: $153,795; Total: $384,489

  • Glastonbury – Year one: $53,815; Total: $134,538

  • Guilford – Year one: $34,550; Total: $86,376

  • Ledge Light Health District – Year one: $344,683; Total: $861,707

  • Manchester – Year one: $127,278; Total: $318,196

  • Meriden – Year one: $145,939; Total: $364,847

  • New Britain – Year one: $258,350; Total: $645,876

  • Orange – Year one: $21,059; Total: $52,647

  • Pomperaug

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