Un Paso a la Vez (“One Step at a Time”) is a new program in South Texas that uses Community Health Workers (CHWs) to help low-income, older Hispanic adults maintain independence with dignity. As part of the program, CHWs visit participants at their homes to identify their needs and create an action plan that involves their family and the larger community with the goal of supporting participants to remain in their homes with the appropriate support.
MHP Salud, a national nonprofit organization with an office in Weslaco, Texas, has received $707,066 for the first year of a new three-year cycle of grant funding from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services to fund Navigator services in Texas’ Cameron, Willacy, Starr and Hidalgo Counties. The funds will continue to enable bilingual Community Health Workers (CHWs) to serve as Navigators, helping consumers understand their health insurance options and enroll in the plan they select. The assistance services take place in-person at the MHP Salud office, over the phone, and at health fairs and enrollment events.
When Promotor(a) Linda Medrano checked her email, she saw something she didn’t expect; she learned she had won the Tenth Annual Esther M. Holderby Dedicated CHW Award. “I felt excited and surprised,” she said, “because I knew that a lot of people had been nominated, and I was surprised because they chose me. It made my day, hearing that great news.”
Promotores(as) have been getting enormous attention in recent years for their potential impact on directly connecting difficult-to-reach populations and health care. MHP Salud has built several programs that enable Promotores(as) to do just that.
MHP Salud is participating in a project to expand proactive, chronic care management to residents of Texas’ Rio Grande Valley who are either uninsured or covered by Medicaid. The project involves close collaboration among a team of community partners representing the clinical, academic, and nonprofit sectors. MHP’s role is to hire and manage Promotores(as) to provide participants with health education, navigation, and other related services.
In Willacy County, Texas, MHP Salud's Transforming Texas program has been working with the Lyford Consolidated Independent School District for the last couple of months to provide the community with a Community Resource Guide that will highlight all public services (nonprofits, daycares, elected officials, medical, dental, and pharmacies) across the county.