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Achievement Awards Spotlight: Temple Health

September 01, 2023

HAP's annual Achievement Awards honor hospitals and health systems for their innovation, creativity, and commitment to patient care. The Achievement Awards showcase and share member hospitals’ and health systems’ successful programs and best practices.

This year, Temple Health received the Living the Vision award for its outstanding project to improve health outcomes and health equity by identifying and addressing barriers to patients’ health.

Here’s what you need to know:

  • The challenge:  Social determinants of health (SDOH)—such as inadequate health care access, below average wages, poor housing conditions, and food insecurity—play a significant role in health outcomes. Identifying and addressing social determinants of health can help mitigate disparities and improve outcomes.
  • Taking action:  The health system created a comprehensive multi-year program to identify and respond to social determinants of health among its patients and communities. This included:
    • Screening for social determinants of health to understand the needs of patients in a particular care setting.
    • Partnering with community-based organizations to develop and deliver interventions, especially for those social determinants of health that were overrepresented among Black and Latino patients.
    • Creating innovative internal programs to address social determinants of health in the highest-risk patients.
    • Expanding to additional care settings.
  • Results:  The program was rolled out across primary care practices, emergency departments, nurse navigation programs, the burn unit, and cancer center, resulting in more than 170,000 screenings systemwide. It also led to fewer hospitalizations and emergency department visits for patients with complex social determinants of health-related needs.
  • Next steps:  The health system planned to expand screening to inpatient units and additional outpatient settings this year, while connecting individuals to resources and building community partnerships and programs.
  • Quotable:  “Our SDOH program has been a tremendous success, with screening and interventions woven into the fabric of our organization,” the team noted in its entry.

Congratulations to Temple Health for its extraordinary commitment to address social determinants of health for patients and the communities it serves.

Questions about the HAP Achievement Awards may be directed to HAP Member Services at (717) 561-5359.