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PHAN Receives Grant from Robert Wood Johnson Foundation for new BeHeard BeHealthy PA Initiative

April 16, 2020

PHAN is announcing that it has received over $600,000 over 2 and a half years through Community Voices for Health (CVH), an initiative led by Public Agenda and Altarum, with funding from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation.

Healthcare policy affects every Pennsylvanian, but rarely are the diverse voices of real people heard directly in health policy conversations at the state level. PHAN’s new BeHeard BeHealthy PA initiative will create new ways for communities across the Commonwealth to participate in health policy decision-making by learning about their needs and priorities through statewide face-to-face conversations and a new survey panel that will quantify community concerns and opinions about healthcare.

“We are deeply grateful to the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation for providing funding for our new BeHeard BeHealthy PA initiative, an innovative new model that will create new ways to engage communities whose voices are not typically heard in health policy conversations in our state,” said Antoinette Kraus, Executive Director of the Pennsylvania Health Access Network. “We believe this initiative will be a game-changer in terms of our ability to address disparities in health and advance community-driven healthcare policy in our state.”

The work of the project will be completed in partnership with Temple’s Institute for Survey Research, the Housing Alliance of Pennsylvania, and community partners throughout the state, who will work to engage the populations they serve in this initiative.

“We are excited to begin the work of building the new BeHeard BeHealthy PA initiative,” said Phyllis Chamberlain, Executive Director of the Housing Alliance of Pennsylvania, “We have long known that good health isn’t merely a matter of what happens in the doctor’s office. This initiative will help us to better understand and quantify the barriers to good health facing the communities we serve, amplify their voices, and advance equitable policies that will ultimately improve their health.”

About the Community Voices for Health Initiative

The Community Voices for Health initiative provides support to six organizations improving healthcare at the state level to increase engagement between policymakers and community members, with particular emphasis on giving a voice to marginalized and underserved communities. The goal of CVH is to build stronger engagement infrastructure that involves a broader range of people and be inclusive of the social determinants of healthcare, such as housing, poverty, and safety to improve health outcomes of communities.

The work of the initiative will be carried out in partnership with Public Agenda, a non-partisan research and public engagement organization, and Altarum, both of which will provide technical expertise to leverage the impact of the grant support.