The Cigna Foundation has awarded a $94,800 World of Difference grant to
Novant Health Foundation Forsyth Medical Center in Winston-Salem, NC for
Project CARE, the Congregational Approach to Risk Reduction and
Empowerment. Project CARE will work to lower the incidence of diabetes
through comprehensive wellness services and lifestyle modifications to
underserved individuals in high-risk areas of the city.
Through a partnership with Winston-Salem State University and the
Gateway YWCA, Novant Health will collaborate with African-American
congregations in three zip codes (27101, 27105 and 27107), which are
home to many low-income, minority residents. Faculty, staff and students
at the University have introduced Project CARE to pastors and wellness
committees to kick off the program.
“Our grant to Novant Health Foundation Forsyth Medical Center is a
shining example of how we support community health navigation, helping
to eliminate health disparities in communities nationwide by addressing
the needs of the underserved,” said David Figliuzzi, executive director
of Cigna Foundation.
Early interviews with Project CARE participants indicate that 85 percent
perceive themselves as overweight, 62 percent report no regular physical
activity, and 35 percent report a family history of cardiovascular
disease. Of the original group of individuals interviewed, only seven
percent fell in the normal range of body mass index. Elevated A1C levels
indicated that 60 percent have pre-diabetes or diabetes.
The project will enroll approximately 300 individuals at-risk of
diabetes in an intensive, 12-week program, which will include weekly
group education/exercise sessions, individualized coaching, grocery
store tours, cooking classes and access to the Gateway YWCA workout
facility. Staff will track participants’ progress at six-month intervals.
Project CARE also will work closely with more than 20 congregations to
promote healthy behaviors and share information about health care
resources in the community. These congregations number more than 5,000
members, and Project CARE plans to expand its reach by adding
congregations and enrolling participants in the comprehensive wellness
program in the future.
“Winston-Salem is fortunate to have a range of wellness programs, but
most do not offer a comprehensive continuum of services, nor do they
provide the means to access those services,” said Novant Health Director
of Community Wellness and Education Karen Sigmon-Smith. “Novant Health,
Cigna, Winston-Salem State University, the Gateway YWCA and leaders in
the faith community comprise the remarkable team that it takes to
instill lifelong health behavior change to improve outcomes among our
most vulnerable, high-risk neighborhoods.”
Cigna Foundation will announce other Community Health Navigation grants
in 2017. For more information on the Cigna Foundation, go to www.Cigna.com/Foundation.
About the Cigna Foundation
The Cigna Foundation, founded in 1962, is a private foundation funded by
contributions from Cigna Corporation (NYSE: CI) and its subsidiaries.
The Cigna Foundation supports organizations sharing its commitment to
enhancing the health of individuals and families, and the well-being of
their communities, with a special focus on those communities where Cigna
employees live and work.
Cigna Corporation (NYSE: CI) is a global health service company
dedicated to helping people improve their health, well-being and sense
of security. All products and services are provided exclusively by or
through operating subsidiaries of Cigna Corporation, including
Connecticut General Life Insurance Company, Cigna Health and Life
Insurance Company, Life Insurance Company of North America and Cigna
Life Insurance Company of New York. Such products and services include
an integrated suite of health services, such as medical, dental,
behavioral health, pharmacy, vision, supplemental benefits, and other
related products including group life, accident and disability
insurance. Cigna maintains sales capability in 30 countries and
jurisdictions, and has more than 90 million customer relationships
throughout the world. To learn more about Cigna®, including links to
follow us on Facebook or Twitter, visit www.cigna.com.
About Novant Health
Novant Health is an integrated network of physician clinics, outpatient
facilities and hospitals that delivers a seamless and convenient
healthcare experience to communities in Virginia, North and South
Carolina, and Georgia. Named in 2016 by Becker’s Hospital Review
as one of the nation’s 150 best places to work in healthcare,
Novant Health consists of more than 1,380 physicians and nearly 24,000
employees and provides care at 530 locations, including 14 medical
centers and hundreds of outpatient facilities and physician clinics.
Headquartered in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, the health system serves
more than four million patients annually and in 2015 provided more than
$706 million in community
benefit, including charity care and services. Diversity MBA
has recognized the organization as one of the 50 best places for women
and managers of diverse background to work. Novant Health provides care
in Virginia under the joint operating company, Novant Health UVA Health
The mission of Novant Health foundations is to raise awareness and
funding to enhance the ability of Novant Health to deliver remarkable
medicine and compassionate care.
For more information, please visit our website at NovantHealth.org.
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