Austin, Texas healthcare provider selected as finalist for 2012 Foster G. McGaw Prize
CHICAGO - (Jan. 23, 2013) - In honor of its broad-based efforts to improve the lives of the most vulnerable members of its community, Seton Healthcare Family in Austin, Texas, was named a finalist of the prestigious 2012 Foster G. McGaw Prize for Excellence in Community Service, one of the most esteemed community service honors in healthcare.
The Foster G. McGaw Prize is sponsored by The Baxter International Foundation and the American Hospital Association (AHA) and Health Research & Educational Trust. As a finalist, Seton will receive $10,000 to be used to support their community health initiatives.
"Seton Healthcare Family's mission inspires them to care for and improve the health of those they serve with a special concern for the poor and vulnerable," said John O'Brien, chair of the Foster G. McGaw Prize Committee. "Through programs such as a model managed care program for the uninsured, a rural pediatric mobile clinic, a mobile breast cancer outreach program, an asthma center to address this health condition holistically and a community health coalition focused on diabetes, Seton lives up to its mission and improves the health and well-being of community residents."
Established by the Daughters of Charity in 1902, the Seton Healthcare Family began as the 40-bed Seton Infirmary, and today it has grown into a non-profit network of 38 clinical facilities, including 10 acute care hospitals and the area's only nonprofit behavioral health hospital. Seton's service area spans an 11-county, 9,645-square-mile area with a population of 1.9 million. As a mission-driven Catholic healthcare system, Seton provides close to two-thirds of hospital-based charity care for the Central Texas region. The organization is committed to reaching out to the region's most economically vulnerable populations through creative interventions stressing diet management, education and adherence to medication treatment plans. Early results indicate that patients are living healthier lives as a result, and that the cost of care is decreasing.
"It is an honor to be acknowledged for our work to improve the health of the community and make care accessible for all," said Jesus Garza, president of the Seton Healthcare Family. "Seton is using innovative approaches to deliver care that is consistent with this mission such as a fleet of mobile healthcare clinics that bring basic care to rural communities, the establishment of an insurance program for the poor and vulnerable, and programs that empower patients with chronic conditions to better manage their health. With our community partners, we are developing a coordinated, efficient and comprehensive system of care to help families stay healthier and heal more quickly."
Seton was recognized for the following innovative community service initiatives:
- Seton Care Plus - A managed care plan developed in 2001 as a way to better serve the charity care population, this program promotes high-value healthcare outcomes for more than 5,000 uninsured patients in Seton's neighborhood clinics and has helped prevent inappropriate use of emergency room and hospital care.
- Rural Pediatric Mobile Health Program - Established in 2003, two pediatric mobile clinics, called "Care-a-Vans" provide a medical home for underserved children across four counties by traveling to and working with area schools. In 2011, "Care-a-Van" staff provided asthma clinics, shot clinics, health fairs and prescription assistance for more than 3,000 medically underserved children, as well as social services and food and housing support for their families.
- Seton Mobile Breast Cancer Outreach Program - The only mobile provider of free mammograms, clinical breast exams and breast health education, Seton's "Take the Time" van reaches out to nearly 2,000 underserved women each year. Eleven percent of those screened in 2011 had abnormal results and were assisted by registered nurses from the time of the abnormal screening through diagnosis. This process allowed for the early detection of 16 breast cancers.
- Seton Asthma Center - Opened in 2002, outcome data show that as outpatient visits to the clinic increased by 10 percent, the rate of emergency room visits decreased by 37 percent, inpatient hospitalizations by 63 percent and total inpatient days by 46 percent. Data also show an increase in controller medication and peak flow meter use and having an asthma action plan at school, and decreases in symptoms requiring quick relief medication and school absences.
- Community Health Coalition of Caldwell County - The Coalition provides home-based diabetes education through classes with a registered dietician. Participants are also enrolled in a prescription assistance program and receive mental/behavioral health screening and basic care management. Since the initiative began in 2009, outcomes include a reduction in glucose levels and average weight.
"The Foster G. McGaw Prize recognizes healthcare organizations that serve as role models for improving the health and well-being of the people in their communities," said O'Brien. "This year's winner and finalists exemplify what it takes to meet the unique needs of the diverse communities they serve. Through leadership and collaboration with community partners, they enhance the lives of vulnerable populations and area residents as a whole."
The 2012 winner of the $100,000 Foster G. McGaw Prize is St. Joseph's/Candler Health System in Savannah, Ga. It was recognized for its holistic approach to healing, which encourages individuals to become more knowledgeable about their personal health, and for its collaboration with numerous community partners on programs, which seek to make a compassionate impact on the lives and the health of its patients and community.
In addition to Seton, other finalists include Cheyenne
Regional Medical Center in Cheyenne, Wyo. and Yale-New Haven
Hospital in New Haven, Conn.