In the Community

Patient Care

Children's National Health System has a long and proud tradition of collaborating with public and private entities to proactively address the health needs of local families. The District of Columbia Healthy Communities Collaborative, an alliance of hospitals and community health centers, works to define the city's health priorities and identify the best approaches for improving community health. In June 2013, it released a citywide community health needs assessment and an interactive community health web portal called DC Health Matters.

Programs highlighted in our annual community benefit report provide a glimpse of the important work being done at Children’s National every day to foster healthier, stronger children and communities.

The latest report,We Stand for Children., from fiscal year 2013, highlights a few of the many programs that, in 2013, were of great benefit to their communities, and were instrumental in helping Children’s National address several priority areas – asthma, obesity, oral health, and sexual health.

These programs include the:

  • Heart Health Learning Power Collaborative (KiPOW!):A partnership with George Washington University Medical School and DC Public and Public Charter Schools, that aims to improve child health by promoting adherence to the DC Healthy Schools Act, a landmark school wellness policy in close alignment with evidence-based pediatric obesity prevention guidelines. KiPOW is a mentored behavioral change model in which medical students not only talk about nutrition and physical activity; they also eat lunch with students and play together at recess. Improvement post-intervention in health literacy,blood pressure, and fitness scores in our pilot elementary schools predict a promising future for this program.
  • Teen Life Clubs:An adolescent health and development program whose goal is to reduce sexual risk through after-school courses and activities, and stress sound decision-making skills and responsible life choices. This popular program, that served 44 youth in 2013, boasts a long list of community partners, including universities, youth sports and recreation programs,and numerous health advocacy groups.
  • DC Pediatric Oral Health Coalition:A multi-disciplinary, community coalition comprised of stake holders with insight and passion for improving the state of pediatric oral health in the District, this three-year program is now entering the implementation phase of its work. In 2013, this included securing Medicaid approval of coding procedures that allow dentists and primary care providers to bill and be reimbursed for fluoride varnish application and creation of a streamlined and multi-lingual oral health assessment form.
  • Student Innovators Program:An eight-week internship program that last year brought 31 science students from all corners of the globe to Children's National to study innovation theory and practice and design projects to impact the future of medical technology and health care.
  • Parish Nursing Program:Partners nurses with leaders in the faith community to promote holistic health and well-being by raising awareness and educating families on childhood illnesses and prevention of disease and injuries through church events, community health fairs and festivals, parent meetings, and speaking engagements.
  • Magnet® Champions Cereal Drive:A program sponsored by Magnet® hospitals of nursing excellence across the country, to provide children that normally rely on school meals, with breakfast during the summer months. In 2013, an astounding 9,389 servings of cereal were donated to the District of Columbia's school children.

A community benefit is a program or activity that provides treatment or promotes health and healing as a response to identified community needs and meets at least one of these community benefit objectives:

  • Improves access to health care services.
  • Enhances health of the community.
  • Advances medical or health knowledge.
  • Relieves or reduces the burden of government or other community efforts.

To be considered as a community benefit, programs must meet fit specific criteria including showing measurable (process or impact) outcomes and a financial outlay. Information is collected and analyzed by our staff based upon an established accountability and eligibility system.

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