Passport Health Plan Promotes Carl Felix to Position of Vice-President and Chief Operating Officer

Passport Health Plan has promoted Carl Felix to the position of Vice-President and Chief Operating Officer (COO).

“Carl joined Passport in May 2016 as Vice-President–Operations Oversight, responsible initially for the organization’s Medicare Advantage Dual-Special Needs Plan (called “Passport Advantage”) and the overall relationship with Evolent Health,” said Passport CEO Mark B. Carter. “Over the course of the year, Carl accepted a number of new responsibilities and performed at the highest level in doing so. His elevation to COO is simply being formalized at this time.”

Carl’s initial career in the United States Army culminated with his service at the rank of Sergeant Major. After an assignment with the Army in Kentucky and his retirement from active service, Carl served in the administrations of two governors. During his state government service his responsibilities, among others, included management of the Kentucky Employees Health Benefit plans and Commissioner of Personnel Administration. After leaving state government, Carl was Chief Operating Officer for Bluegrass Family Health in Lexington for 10 years. Carl will provide overall leadership to Passport’s operations and will be a key leader in the continuing development and evolution of the Medicaid Center of Excellence.

“Carl has brought talent, drive and dedication to Passport,” Mr. Carter added. “He is a rare executive in that he balances the qualities of an effective manager with those of a leader. And, he’s fully committed to our mission to improve the health and quality of life of our members.”

For more information, please click here.

 

March of Dimes and others continue to help women reduce risk factors of premature births

HopeEvery expectant mother has an ideal vision of the birthing process, one that results in her holding her newborn in her hospital room with family gathered around.

But the reality is that premature births happen — and in Kentucky they happen at a rate 2 percent higher than the national average. When a baby is born prior to the 37th week of pregnancy, it is considered premature. There’s no official cause of premature birth, and the March of Dimes spends millions of dollars on research to determine ways to help mothers carry babies to full term births.

“The cause of premature birth is unknown,” Ryan Burt, Wellness Manager at Passport Health Plan, said in an Insider Louisville article. “There are certain risk factors that can lead to premature birth and we can tell women to be sure to lower their risk, but the actual reason is still unknown.”

To read more about this, please click here. To register for the March of Dimes’ biggest annual fund-raiser, the Greater Louisville March for Babies, on Saturday, May 13 on the Big Four Lawn at Waterfront Park, please click here.

 

Passport Announces Decision to Move Company Headquarters to West Louisville

Passport Health Plan announced today that it has acquired a significant West Louisville property at 18th Street and Broadway. Passport’s plan for the 20-acre site is to create a state-of-the-art Health and Wellness Campus to serve the needs of the local community and house its 500-plus employees in its new corporate headquarters.

Plans for the campus would include health- and service-based retail sites adjacent to the newly announced YMCA facility. Together, the new developments will help transform this important section of West Louisville by providing much-needed services, jobs, and economic development opportunities. Before construction begins, Passport will engage the West Louisville community through a series of meetings and listening sessions to hear about residents’ needs and desires for the Health and Wellness Campus.

“Passport Health Plan is growing because of the great service we provide to our members, and we need to find a new home for our current and future employees,” CEO Mark B. Carter said at a news conference announcing the purchase. “After 20 years in the Louisville community, we realize that to truly meet our mission – to improve the health and quality of life of our members – we need to build a new model in healthcare. This new campus, and our initiative to integrate social determinants of health into our health plan, will ensure access to resources and services in our community and beyond to help our members flourish in all aspects of their lives.”

The corporate headquarters will initially be home to Passport’s current 500-plus employees, but will be designed with the extensive future growth in mind.

To read more about this announcement, please click here. For more information about the terms of the agreements, please click here.  To see an early rendering of what the site could look like, please click here

Healthcare Leadership School Co-Founder Explains How Compassionate Program Was Formed

Insider Louisville LogoHanaâ Benjeddi is one of the founders of Healthcare Leadership School (HLS), an international organization that ignites the passions of the next generation of compassionate healthcare leaders.

Ahead of North America’s first HLS, which is cosponsored by Compassionate Louisville’s Healthcare Constellation and the University of Louisville School of Medicine and will be held June 10-18 in Leitchfield, Kentucky, Dr. Benjeddi looks back on how the organization came to be:

In 2011, a group of like-minded and ambitious medical students gathered and agreed that the current healthcare system was far from where they envisioned it. They realized that in order to change things, they, as a next generation of healthcare workers, must embody the change so that they can be living examples of our values. And so, HLS was born.

The first edition took place in The Netherlands and gathered 64 participants and 20 trainers, as well as speakers and volunteers. Through a public invitation in which hundreds of students were mobilized, they featured Dr. Patch Adams to the first edition as a doctor who truly walked his talk and served as an example of a different kind of working as a physician.

Two more editions followed in 2013 (The Netherlands again) and 2015 (South Africa), and now the organization is coming to the United States to meet in Kentucky in June. All in all, nearly five hundred students and young professionals from over 44 different countries have been a part of the Healthcare Leadership School community and now form a network of compassionate leaders poised to be the change they envision for the health of their own communities.

To read more, please click here. For more information on HLS-Louisville, please visit the Humans of Health website.

 

Passport and American Diabetes Association encourage all Kentuckians to take part in Diabetes Alert Day

ADA-passport-logoAre you at risk for developing diabetes? The American Diabetes Association and Passport Health Plan are asking all Kentuckians to take the Type 2 Diabetes Risk Test in honor of all the Association’s annual Alert Day set for Tuesday, March 28, 2017.

Alert Day is a day to sound the alarm about the prevalence of type 2 diabetes across Kentucky and our country.

Companies and/or organizations interested in participating in Alert Day can download the complete e-toolkit by visiting WellLivesHere.org.

The following locations in Lexington will have screenings on Alert Day, March 28, from 10 am to 2 pm:

  • Walmart – 4051 Nicholasville Road
  • Walmart North Park Marketplace – 500 New Circle Road

Paper type 2 diabetes risk tests and other diabetes materials will also be available on Alert Day from 10 am to 2 pm at the following locations:

  • Walmart- 112 Osbourne Way, Georgetown
  • Walmart- 2350 Grey Lag Way, Lexington

The following locations in Louisville will have screenings on Alert Day from 9 am to 2 pm:

  • Neighborhood Place Ujima – 3610 Bohne Ave.
  • Neighborhood Place Charmoli – 200 Juneau Drive, Suite 200
  • Neighborhood Place3 South Central – 4255 Hazelwood Ave.
  • Neighborhood Place South Jefferson/Fairdale – 1000 Neighborhood Place
  • Family Health Centers Portland – 2215 Portland Ave.

For more information, please click here.

 

Oral Health Has a Huge Effect on Overall Health

Insider Louisville LogoWhile many adults are focused on staying healthy through exercise and eating right, one area that is closely connected to a person’s overall health and often overlooked is oral health. Inside the mouth aren’t just teeth, but clues to keeping disease away.

The connection between oral health and overall health wasn’t always widely discussed, Cliff Maesaka, the president and CEO of Delta Dental of Kentucky, said in a Passport-sponsored article on Insider Louisville.

“Everybody knows the mouth is connected to the body, but in 2000, the surgeon general provided his first-ever report on the state of oral health in America, and it was the first time in about a hundred years anyone had said out loud that the mouth is connected to the rest of the body and things that go on in the mouth affect the rest of the body,” he said.

For more information, please click here.

 

Passport and the American Heart Association Distribute CPR Anytime Kits around Appalachian Region

Soar logoPassport and the American Heart Association (AHA) are working together to create a new generation of lifesavers in eastern Kentucky.

In conjunction with SOAR (Shaping Our Appalachian Region), the AHA and PHP are giving away “CPR Anytime” kits in rural areas of Kentucky throughout the spring and summer of 2017. The groups will be working together to assure the kits are distributed to families and at-risk groups where CPR training will have the best opportunity of saving lives. 

“We are proud to be collaborating with the American Heart Association to provide these CPR Anytime kits to our friends at SOAR and share them all over the region,” said Jill Bell, Passport Vice President and Chief Communications Officer. “It is our mission to help improve the health and quality of life of all our members, and by working together, we can help all Kentuckians live healthier lives.”

The first distribution of these lifesaving kits was held March 16 at Union College at the SOAR Obesity and Diabetes Roundtable and representatives from PHP, as well as the AHA were in attendance. SOAR’s involvement in this program is in direct correlation with their mission to improve the quality of life and support all those working to achieve these goals in Appalachian Kentucky.

For more information, please click here. For more information about SOAR, please click here.

 

Passport Health Plan and Louisville Grows to Plant “South Points Food Forest” in Beechmont area on March 25

growsPassport Health Plan and Louisville Grows are planting the seeds for a healthier community in Louisville’s Beechmont neighborhood on Saturday, March 25, by installing a walk-by, free-to-all food forest on Bicknell Avenue, outside the Hope Community Farm.

Community members and volunteers are invited to come plant trees and bushes for the new “South Points Food Forest,” which will take place from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at 1400 Bicknell Avenue, near the intersection with Hazelwood Avenue.

“For too many Kentuckians, the greatest hardship they have to deal with in order to live a quality life is related to food. Too many people can’t afford to buy healthy foods, and too many people go to bed hungry every night,” said Jill Bell, Passport Health Plan Vice President and Chief Communications Officer. “That’s why we’re so proud to be working together with Louisville Grows to sponsor this Food Forest in Beechmont. Hopefully, the food produced here will help all community members improve their health and quality of life.”

The South Points Food Forest will be a community orchard that includes dwarf fruit trees (such as apple, pear, peach, apricot, nectarine, and plum), thornless berry bushes, pollinator-friendly plants, and clover cover crop. In order to address the need for easily accessible quality food, specifically fruits and vegetables high in nutrients, the South Points Food Forest will provide community members, gardeners, families, children, and anyone that walks by with fresh and organically grown fruit. Additionally, the South Points Food Forest is conveniently located next to Hazelwood Elementary School so children can walk to grab fruit during breaks or after school.

Community orchards, complete with educational signage detailing the type of tree and when to harvest, require minimal maintenance after installation and provide high yields of efficient and free harvests. Louisville Grows estimates an average of 2 bushels of fruit per tree and shrub at the South Points Food Forest, for a total of 200 bushels, or 8,000 pounds of free fruit per year, going into the hands and mouths of community members.

The Louisville metropolitan area ranks 12th nationwide among cities facing the most hardship. About one in four local households with children say they lacked money in the last 12 months to buy food, according to a Gallup poll of 176,000 households across the United States.

For more information about this event, please click here. For more information about Louisville Grows, please click here.

Compassionate Louisville Healthcare Constellation is Hosting the First U.S. Healthcare Leadership School

Louisville’s commitment to compassion in healthcare extends beyond the region.

One example of the reach of this commitment is Compassionate Louisville Healthcare Constellation’s announcement that it will be hosting North America’s very first Healthcare Leadership School (HLS) for emerging health care leaders from around the globe in June 2017.

HLS is a weeklong immersion that mobilizes the next generation of healthcare leaders to catalyze compassionate change for the health of the communities they’re called to serve. Started four years ago by a group of international medical students, HLS has already reached hundreds of young professionals through programs sponsored in the Netherlands, South Africa and Portugal.

The HLS experience is filled with interactive lectures, group collaborations and exercises that boost personal and professional growth, leadership skills and connections that allow participants to emerge as the inspired, courageous and resilient leaders that are needed to transform health in our communities and the world. The rich curriculum is delivered by peers, seasoned teachers and wisdom practitioners.

The HLS-Louisville Organizing Team has reserved 20 participant slots for students and emerging health care leaders from Louisville to join international participants from more than a dozen countries. The team’s vision is for the HLS experience to inspire ongoing collaboration, so our future leaders are even better prepared to work together to make compassion the driving force of every Louisvillian’s experience with our health care system.

For more information, please click here.

 

Passport collaborates with other Safety Net Health Plans to help lower risk for Substance Use Disorders among youth

Passport Health Plan is one of seven Safety Net Health Plans from around the country that have committed to a joint three-year learning project that will help increase the identification of youth who are at risk for substance use disorders.

The project, led by the Center for Health Care Strategies in partnership with the Association for Community Affiliated Plans (ACAP), will make extensive use of the SBIRT model, which stands for Screening, Brief Intervention, and Referral to Treatment.

SBIRT is an evidence-based approach for identifying patients who are at risk for abuse of alcohol and other drugs, and it is intended to identify not only patients who have substance use disorders but also those who are at high risk for developing such a disorder and reducing their level of risk.

The collaborative, made possible by the Conrad N. Hilton Foundation, consists of seven health plans, each of which will pilot an SBIRT training project aimed at raising the awareness of substance use disorders among youth, and fortify these providers’ abilities to screen, intervene, and refer to treatment as needed.

The project that Passport has developed for the effort involves expanding the number of adolescents screened annually for substance use disorder, since many teens begin experimenting with substances during adolescence. Passport will develop regional trainings for providers to teach them how to implement SBIRT, and will also develop webinars for providers to complete training in their home communities, complete with continuing education for providers who participate in the training. Passport will also work with our providers to break down any barriers to coordinating care for our members who endorse positive symptoms.

“Passport recognizes that substance use disorders are a huge public health crisis in the Commonwealth,” said Elizabeth W. McKune, Ed.D., Director of Behavioral Health for Passport Health Plan. “We are working closely with our providers and the Kentucky Department of Medicaid Services to increase the number of adolescents screened for potential problems with substances and teach them where they can go should they begin having problems with substances in the future.”

For more information, please click here.