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Community Health Recognition Awards give back to community partners


Jean Daigle, VP Community, Horizon Health Network

Good health is more than just good health care. It goes   beyond the walls of our hospitals - good health starts with wellness, and wellness starts where people live, work and play.

People are always surprised to find out that only 10 per cent of health is tied to the health system. You may not know it, but measuring community health goes far beyond studying rates of disease and the availability of health care services. This is why Horizon is working with individuals and agencies at a community level to address the remaining 90 per cent.

Nobody knows a community better than its people and that's where good health starts: in our communities. We know that at the community level there is tremendous work being done. And when you look at it through a determinants of health lens, a lot of it supports Horizon's mission of Helping People Be Healthy. This isn't a new phenomenon, but it is why, in 2017, we introduced the Community Health Recognition Awards (CHRA)!


The awards

This award provides community programs and services with $500 to support the incredible work they're doing. They also receive a glass award and certificate in recognition of their contributions.

It's our way to say thank you to the people and organizations that work every day to improve access to health care and promote wellness in their communities - and celebrate their achievements.

In the three years since we've hosted the CHRAs, we've received more than 170 submissions representing all seven categories! This goes to show, there are so many people and organizations all across Horizon who are doing wonderful things all while Helping People Be Healthy!

Our award categories are:

  • Accessibility: Programs or services that make health care services more accessible, whether it's better hours, transportation or providing people with tools to live a healthy life.
  • Food Security: Programs or services that ensure New Brunswickers have enough food to eat and promote healthy eating.
  • Mental Health: Programs or services that assist those living with mental health issues. Programs can be direct or indirect, and can include efforts to reduce the stigma associated with mental health.
  • Multicultural Health: Programs or services geared towards multicultural groups that promote healthy living and improve their access to health care and other government services.
  • Seniors Wellness: Programs or services geared towards seniors that promote healthy living and improve their access to health care services.
  • Youth Wellness: Programs or services geared towards youth (18 and younger) that promote healthy living, including nutrition and exercise.

And new this year we added a seventh category:

  • Physicians: Physicians who are active in their communities with initiatives outside of their practice that promote seniors wellness, youth wellness, multicultural health, food security, accessibility, or mental health.

We wanted to recognize physicians for the work they do outside of their regular practice. These physicians are pillars of their communities and we wanted to showcase the selfless work they do for the people where they live.

It just goes to show, it takes a community to work together to create a healthier tomorrow.


Working together

Across Horizon, our staff is working together with community partners who are Helping People Be Healthy.

The CHRAs recognize these individuals and groups for understanding the importance of health and well-being. They aim to improve the factors that negatively impact population health in their community.

We have a good sense of population health in our communities because between 2012 and 2018 Horizon completed all 17 of its Community Health Needs Assessments (CHNAs). Just last month, we started our next series of CHNAs by going to Oromocto.

These assessments help us identify barriers to accessing health care by showing where the gaps in service lie. The advisory committee provides recommendations highlighted in the final report that help guide the community's approach to improving the health of the people who live there.

We know about some of the work being done at the community level, but with the volume of submissions for CHRA, we're learning about so many programs and initiatives that are new to us!

These community partners are making a difference and together, we are working on implementing the changes to improve the health and wellness of our citizens. It's wonderful to see all the efforts being made to foster healthy living through programs or services.

The 2019 winners

The 2019 CHRA winners will be announced April 25 at Horizon's quarterly Board meeting in Miramichi.

This year, we have 15 winners! Three from each of the following regions: Fredericton, Miramichi, Moncton, Saint John, and Upper River Valley.

I cannot wait to introduce you to our winners - they're doing exceptional work!

Helping People Be Healthy is more than our mission; it's a way of life that needs to be celebrated and promoted!

Stay tuned to Horizon's Community News Channel and social media channels on April 25 to meet our 2019 winners!

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