[Metro Health News]

The BUILD Health Challenge, a national awards program, awarded The MetroHealth System, in collaboration with Environmental Health Watch, the Cleveland Department of Public Health and other local organizations, with a $250,000 grant for its efforts to improve community health. The Healthy Housing program, “Engaging the Community in New Approaches to Healthy Housing,” is one of eleven programs recognized nationwide to receive funding. In addition, MetroHealth is matching the $250,000 by providing in-kind services including data tracking and identifying patients.

This initiative targets deteriorating housing in the Stockyards Clark-Fulton Brooklyn Center neighborhood, where residents have high levels of lead poisoning, asthma, and COPD. These illness have long term effects but can be easily prevented when homes are improved.
The BUILD Health Challenge grant will allow Cleveland to create a Healthy Homes Zone.

Some of the activities that will take place in this neighborhood are:

• Using shared data to target properties, conduct initial inspections and home assessments, and request city inspections.

• Establishing systematic communication between the hospital and city housing authorities to identify families with asthma, COPD, and lead poisoning and map them to areas likely to pose significant health hazards.

• Expanding upon a best practices asthma program with home visits to high-risk patients in the Healthy Homes Zone.

The collaboration will be honored at the BUILD Health Challenge Award Ceremony on June 9, 2015 in Washington, DC by Karen DeSalvo, MD, the Acting Assistant Secretary for Health in the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and the five funding organizations: the Advisory Board Company, the Kresge Foundation, the Colorado Health Foundation, the de Beaumont Foundation, and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. You can register to follow the event via livestream at http://bit.ly/BUILDHealth.