In this time of crisis, the Neighborhood Resilience Project is working to build resilience in our community as we address COVID-19 crisis. Several ways we are working to combat the virus and mitigate the economic impact for people during this time are below:
- We have launched a Community Health Deputy Initiative. We are working to establish Community Health Deputies in medically underserved communities across Allegheny County. These deputies have three objectives:
- To be trained in the epidemiological frame work to combat the spread of the disease (to include screening for symptoms of and exposure to COVID-19).
- To understand and respond to the needs of the people, including but not limited to food and medicine.
- To assess and support the mental health of people in this time of crisis.
The organization has trained 118 Community Health Deputies and has 102 that are active across 15 communities in the Pittsburgh region. Through the labors of the Community Health Deputies, much work has been accomplished in these 15 communities as highlighted in the table below. These deputies will enable the organization to quickly reach, connect with and disseminate information to community members and stakeholders to build the task force and begin to address health equity in this area. Consulting with Health Deputies was how the organization began to discern that mental health is a great need within the community.
|Packages of food and emergency services distributed – 8,188|
Cases of interrupting the transmission of COVID-19 – 564
Activities to support the prevention of future spread of COVID-19 – 5,123
Instances of working to change community norms to promote less spread of COVID-19 – 247 Offerings of therapeutic interactions to community members- 740
- We have been performing Telephonic Wellness Checks. These check ups are conducted from one of our staff members or volunteers to community members who are either 60+ or who have serious underlying health issues that place them in the high risk for contracting COVID-19. During these checks, the staff and volunteers are evaluating the following:
- Assessing for signs and symptoms of and exposure to COVID-19.
- Screening for needs again such as food and medicine.
- Checking on the Mental Health of the community member.
- We have moved health center operations to Telemedicine. We are continuing to administer health care to hundreds of uninsured patients with our amazing volunteer clinicians and telemedicine. Our patients will therefore still get the care needed for their existing conditions, care for any new presenting illnesses as well as care for other needed supports. The Clinic operations have since moved to a combination of in person visits – following the COVID protocol and telemedicine visits.
- Finally, we are providing Food. We have seen a large increase in people needing food. Any canned or non-perishable items are gratefully accepted (Pop Top Cans or Can Openers are always appreciated). The numbers of people coming to get food increases each day.
If you are interested in learning more about supporting one of these initiatives to combat COVID-19 and its economic impact in our community, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Together we shall overcome!
Rev. Paul T. Abernathy, CEO