Health Opportunities Fund

 

GOAL

To improve access, coordination of service and quality patient outcomes for Montgomery County’s most vulnerable populations.

DESCRIPTION

The Health Opportunities Funding Priority is an open and competitive grantmaking opportunity for nonprofit organizations that meet the foundation’s eligibility criteria for this fund.

Historically the foundation has provided support to build a more responsive and accessible system of health services, particularly for vulnerable populations. The foundation continues to build upon its decade of experience and learning.

Under this funding priority, the foundation will fund initiatives that address the needs of healthcare organizations attempting to improve services for older adults who are dually-eligible for Medicare and Medicaid (dual eligible individuals).

Funding for Dual Eligible Elderly

Dual eligibles tend to be poorer and sicker than the rest of the elderly population and they are the costliest segment of the Medicaid population. Medicare and Medicaid have different rules and procedures. Care is not coordinated between the programs and some services covered under one program may not be covered under the other. This results in fragmentation of care for patients and quality and payment challenges for providers. There are more than 7800 dual eligible elderly in Montgomery County (as of 2010). With an aging population, this number is expected to increase.

In 2013, the foundation commissioned a study to learn more about the local challenges of serving this population. A workgroup comprised of knowledgeable stakeholders prepared a set of recommendations that has been shared with local and state policymakers. The workgroup shared their findings and recommendations on November 7, 2014. Their report “Planning a Better Future for Dual Eligible Elderly in Montgomery County” offers nine recommendations to improve the care and system coordination for this vulnerable population. Each recommendation is based upon the premise that managed long term supports and services will be designed and implemented by the state, likely within the next two years. Organizations in attendance at that event as well as a follow-up event on December 12, 2014, reported strong interest and readiness to engage in efforts that addressed the following recommendations:

  • #6 - Naturally Occurring Retirement Community (NORC) Plus or NORC as Anchor
  • #7 - Independence at Home - Home and Community Based Services and Supports Waiver
  • #8 - Targeted Case Management
  • #9 - Care Transitions

The report contains details about each recommendation.

The foundation is currently working with a cohort of grantees on projects that address one or more of these recommendations to improve conditions for the dual eligible elderly population in Montgomery County.

While the foundation is not currently accepting unsolicited funding requests for the Health Opportunities Fund, organizations working with the dual eligible population in Montgomery County interested in exploring funding opportunities should contact foundation staff at 215-716-5400 or info@healthspark.org.