Passport Discusses Requested Zoning Change for Health and Well-Being Campus in Downtown Louisville

Well Being Campus LogoPassport held a public meeting on Tuesday, April 17, to discuss a requested change in zoning for the Health and Well-Being Campus that is being planned in the West End of Downtown Louisville.

During this meeting, Jon Baker, an attorney with Wyatt Tarrant & Combs, discussed the zoning request that Passport will be making.

Passport is requesting a zoning change from C1 (Commercial), EZ1 (Enterprise Zone) and R6 (Multi-Family Residential) to PD (Planned Development). This is because PD zoning is a good fit here, allowing Passport to have design flexibility while maintaining oversight that ensures every building fits into the vision of the Health and Well-Being Campus. PD zoning respects and supports the existing neighborhood, integrating the new development to ensure it is compatible; it provides flexible design standards to create a livable community; and it promotes efficient and economic land usage.

In the next few weeks, Passport will file a zoning application with Louisville Metro Planning and Design Services. During this step, agencies like MSD, Public Works, the Fire Department and Health Department also have a chance to review the plans. Once their comments are addressed, Passport will be scheduled to attend the Land Development & Transportation Committee, which is open to the public. If LD&T determines that everything is in order, they will set another Public Hearing date. After the Public Hearing, the plan goes through Metro Council which has final say on the re-zoning. This entire process usually takes 6 to 8 months.

Nothing in this process will derail the current construction under way on the headquarters.

 

‘Pet therapy’ Can Help Many People Through the Healing Process, No Matter the Challenges

Insider Louisville LogoFor many hospital patients and residents of assisted-living facilities, medicine is not always what’s needed most. Sometimes, they just need something to smile about. And that’s where animal-assisted therapy can be a real benefit.

Animal-assisted therapy, also known as pet therapy, is recognized by those in the medical profession as a “growing field that uses dogs or other animals to help people recover from or better cope with health problems, such as heart disease, cancer and mental health disorders,” according to the Mayo Clinic.

Linda Laun saw the benefits of pet therapy first-hand when she was a little girl and her ailing grandmother snuck out of the hospital to see her dog, Patsy, in the parking lot. She said that even though her grandmother was in great pain, her face lit up at the sight of her dog.

“When she was interacting with Patsy, she had a tiny piece of tranquility. It made a huge difference in her life,” Laun said in a Passport-sponsored article on Insider Louisville. “I recognized the impact dogs can have on people. When I had time, I got more involved and started a therapy program.”

Today, Laun heads Wonderful Animals Giving Support (WAGS) Pet Therapy of Kentucky, Inc., which utilizes the human-animal bond to bring smiles to the faces of those who are mentally, physically or emotionally challenged. To hear more from Laun, please click here. For more information about pet therapy, please click here.

Passport Plans Public Meeting to Discuss Requested Zoning Change

Well Being Campus LogoProperty owners and neighborhood group representatives who live and work near the site of the future Passport Health Plan headquarters building and Health and Well-Being Campus at 18th and West Broadway in Downtown Louisville are invited to an informal meeting on Tuesday, April 17, to discuss a requested change in zoning.

Passport has filed applications with Metro Louisville Planning & Design for a change in zoning to Planned Development (PD) and variance relief involving the property at and near 1800 W. Broadway, 1912 W. Broadway, 2014 W. Broadway, and 2028 W. Broadway. This will be an informal meeting to give residents the opportunity to review the proposed plans and provide comments.

  • WHAT: Informal meeting to discuss applications for a change in zoning
  • WHEN: 6:30-7:30 p.m. on Tuesday, April 17
  • WHERE: Roosevelt-Perry Elementary School, 1615 W. Broadway, Louisville
  • RSVP: Please go online to www.passportwellbeing.com or call (502) 585-7301

Representatives of Passport will explain the proposal and address any questions that residents may have. Due to the short length of this meeting, there will be no refreshments served. For more information, please click here.

 

Passport Sponsors WFPK’s Waterfront Wednesday Concerts in Downtown Louisville All Summer Long

Passport Health Plan is excited to sponsor the 2018 season of WFPK’s Waterfront Wednesday Concert Series, which takes place in Downtown Louisville on the last Wednesday of the month from April through September.

Passport will have a tent at each concert, where we will be able to answer your questions and give away some educational information and fun stuff.

The Great Lawn opens at 5 p.m. for each show, with the music beginning at 6 p.m. The concerts are all free and open to all ages. The dates for this year’s shows (rain or shine) are:

  • April 25
  • May 30
  • June 27
  • July 25
  • August 29
  • September 26

For more information, including a complete FAQ guide and updated list of performers, go online to wfpk.org.

 

Special Enrollment Period Allows Kentucky HEALTH-Eligible Adults to Change MCOs if They Want

A Special Enrollment Period (SEP) is occurring April 1 through May 31 for Kentucky HEALTH-eligible households in which adult members of the household are enrolled in different managed care organizations (MCOs) such as Passport.

Starting July 1, these Medicaid members will be required to pay a monthly premium to each MCO represented by the; if family members are in the same MCO, they will pay only one premium. The SEP is occurring so that households may select one of the MCOs the household currently uses now.

Members can contact their local Application Assister, visit www.benefind.ky.gov or call 1-855-446-1245 to make changes to their household’s MCO.

Please note that children do not have to pay premiums, so they can remain on a separate MCO from the adults, if needed.

The notice content and related FAQs can be found online at kentuckyhealth.ky.gov.

 

Passport Plans Member Education Sessions Around West Louisville

Passport Health Plan members and community advocates in West Louisville have a number of opportunities to learn more about Passport through member education sessions and other events.

Diane Corsey, Passport Community Engagement Representative, will be hosting Member Education Sessions for Passport members in which they will learn valuable information about their benefits, fill out their health assessment, and receive a special gift for attending.

Some upcoming programs of interest are:

  • Wednesday, April 4: Sister Visitor Center, 2235 W. Market St.
  • Monday, April 9: Shawnee Christian Healthcare Center, 234 Amy Ave.
  • Thursday, April 12: Louisville Urban League, 1535 W. Broadway
  • Saturday, April 14: Family Spring Explosion: Molly Leonard Portland Community Center, 640 N. 27th St.
  • Tuesday, April 17: Park Duvalle Community Health Center, 3015 Wilson Ave.
  • Wednesday, April 18: Nia Center, 2900 W. Broadway
  • Thursday, April 19: Ujima Neighborhood Place, 3610 Bohne Ave.
  • Tuesday, April 24: California Community Center, 1600 W. Catherine St.
  • Saturday, April 29: Kentucky Derby Festival GospelFest: St. Stephen Church, 1018 S. 15th St.

For specific times and to RSVP, or to help find other resources in your community, please contact Diane at diane.corsey@passporthealthplan.com.

 

Homelessness Around Greater Lexington Declines to Lowest Level in 12 years

The number of people experiencing homelessness in Lexington has reached its lowest level since at least 2005, according to a new report from the city.

“We’ve still got work to do, but we’re making progress,” Mayor Jim Gray said in a news release. “Our work and investments are beginning to pay off.”

In 2005, 882 people were found to be homeless in Lexington during the annual complete count exercise. This number continued to trend upward, reaching its peak in both 2011 and 2014, with over 1,500 homeless on any given night in Lexington. Results from the 2018 count show that 685 people slept on the streets, in an emergency shelter or in transitional housing on the night of January 24.

“Today is a moment to pause and recognize our progress, celebrate what has worked, and assess the great challenges that still lie ahead,” added Polly Ruddick, Director of the Office of Homelessness Prevention and Intervention (Passport partners with the Office to help improve the health and quality of life of all Kentuckians). “Every night there are still about 700 people in our community with no place to call home, and many hundreds more on the margins, fighting to stay off the streets. Our work continues until everyone in Lexington has access to opportunities, support services, and safe, decent, affordable housing.”

In addition to the overall numbers, Lexington is also seeing improvements in:

  • The number of veterans who are homeless. In 2014, 203 homeless veterans were reported on the night of the count; this year only 92 veterans were found to be homeless, a difference of 54.6%.
  • The number of people who are chronically homeless. In 2014, 186 individuals were reported to have been living on the streets or in an emergency shelter for longer than a year, as compared to 92 people this year.

“Permanent housing is now the priority. And it’s working – we have significantly fewer people sleeping on the street,” Gray said.

The annual homeless count is conducted each January, and is required for communities receiving federal homeless funding from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. Teams of volunteers visit outdoor sites where people experiencing homelessness have been known to congregate, while shelters and housing programs report their occupancy. This year, 18 teams canvassed over 100 locations throughout Lexington and Fayette County.

 

Passport Joins American Red Cross to ‘Sound the Alarm’ and Install Free Smoke Alarms Around Kentucky

Passport is proud to be a Kentucky sponsor of the American Red Cross’s Sound the Alarm National Signature event, which will take place on April 28 in Lexington and Richmond and on May 12 in Louisville’s Portland and Russell neighborhoods.

Every day, seven people die in home fires, most in homes that lack working smoke alarms. Sadly, children and the elderly disproportionately lose their lives. The American Red Cross wants to improve the odds and save lives, and that’s why they launched the Home Fire Campaign in 2014. So far, that adds up to more than 40 lives saved in Kentucky alone!

A critical part of the campaign is Sound the Alarm, a series of home fire safety and smoke alarm installation events across the country. Together with fire departments and other community partners across the nation, Red Cross volunteers – including Passport employees and partners – will canvass at-risk neighborhoods, install free smoke alarms, replace batteries in existing alarms, and provide fire prevention and safety education.

To sign up as a volunteer, please contact David Seymour at Volunteer Services for the Red Cross Louisville Area Chapter, at david.seymour@redcross.org or (502) 409-1017.

 

Passport Sponsors Diabetes Alert Day on March 27 for people to “Know Their Numbers”

ADA-passport-logoThe American Diabetes Association is teaming up with Passport Health Plan and The Kentucky Diabetes Prevention and Control Program for Alert Day 2018 to encourage providers to share their patient’s risk and then help Kentuckians get the support they need!

Alert Day, set for Tuesday, March 27, will begin an ongoing conversation and campaign about the importance of people “Knowing their Numbers” so they can begin to take the proper steps to reduce their risk for diabetes or start to manage the disease.

Approximately 531,646 people in Kentucky, or 14.5% of the adult population, have diabetes. Of these, an estimated 108,000 have diabetes but don’t know it, greatly increasing their health risk. In addition, more than 1 million Kentuckians have prediabetes with blood glucose levels higher than normal, but not yet high enough to be diagnosed as diabetes. People with prediabetes are at risk for developing type 2 diabetes unless they take immediate action.

For more information, please contact the ADA at 859-268-9129 or krowland@diabetes.org. You can also go online to www.diabetes.org/alertdayky for more resources, including a risk test and educational information.

 

A Good Night’s Sleep is One of the Most Important Things We Can Do to Be Healthy

Insider Louisville LogoOf all the components of good health, there’s one that’s as essential as eating, breathing and physical activity. According to Lisa Bellafato, a health education manager at Passport Health Plan, a good night’s sleep can have a positive effect on everything from your energy level to your ability to lose weight.

“Sleep is a restorative time for the body,” Bellafato says in a Passport-sponsored article on Insider Louisville. “Adults need seven to nine hours of sleep. Some can get less, some need more. Teens need more, but for some it’s almost impossible to get the recommended hours.”

Bellafato spends time talking to teens about health issues, and notes that technology is a big factor in depriving young people of sleep. Phones, and the need to be constantly connected, is a huge factor. She recommends a family charging station, and said parents should insist on every family member placing phones at a central location at bedtime – even themselves.

For more information, please click here.