Title

Field Study: Kaiser Permanente

Poster Number

11

Lead Author Affiliation

Exercise Physiology

Lead Author Status

Masters Student

Introduction

My field study at Kaiser Permanente included job shadowing the Director of Health Education in Fresno, California. Lisa Huiras promoted four levels above her position as manager of the Medical Weight Loss Department in the Stockton/Manteca area in 2015. Lisa had been one of my supervisors at In Shape Health Clubs. She has been a tremendous influence in my life from our first meeting in 2004, and I can easily see myself following in her career footsteps. Lisa shares my passion for helping people live healthier lives, and health education has been the avenue Lisa has made a tremendous difference.

Purpose

The purpose of my field study was to understand how health education impacted members and the community, how the department operated, and experience the environment working with the Director of Health Education Lisa Huiras, in Fresno, California.

Method

Kaiser Permanente Fresno is a vast service area serving 1.5 million people. My focus was primarily on Health Education, though we also worked with other departments in serving member needs. The main Fresno site includes both the Kaiser Foundation Hospital on one side and a Permanente Medical Group for outpatient care on the other. Demographics of the Fresno service area includes: Population is 50% Hispanic 20% are uninsured 45% live below the Federal Poverty Line 31% of the total population are children living below the Federal Poverty Line (FPL) 30% of the adults and 15% of children are either obese or overweight. The Fresno area is known for its poor air quality and statistics reflect its effect in citing 15% of adults, and 31% of children suffer from asthma. Due to poor nutrition or lack of access to proper food, 9% of the area population has Type 1 or Type II diabetes 10% of the population are shown to live in areas termed food deserts. Field Study Activities: Employee Health Fair: shadowed director, Life Planning Health Educator, and a Nurse Health Educator for the day by working various booths and covering where needed. Attended several meetings with upper Management Observed health education classes: Sleep Management, Healthy Cholesterol, and Plant-Based Eating.

Results

Each year, Kaiser Permanente assesses the needs of the area and creates initiatives to improve community health. 2017 Initiatives Include: Improve access to medical care for all people. Increase access to fresh fruits and vegetables. Provide safe places for children to play. Educate young people about nutrition and its effect on health by providing school-based educational dramas with accompanying follow-up literature and guidance. Other area specific initiatives include: improving diabetic and asthma services management by investing in strategies to provide screenings and referrals to health services and expanding care and self-management education that are both linguistically and culturally appropriate. Lastly, Kaiser Permanente Fresno collaborates with community organizations to create awareness about how pollution impacts children and provides support to schools who work to put policies in place for students with asthma. K aiser Permanente values diversity, and excellent opportunities exist for anyone wishing to pursue a career in healthcare. One-third of the executive team are women, and every nationality is represented throughout the organization. Kaiser strives to represent the constituency they serve by hiring a diversity of people and by providing culturally appropriate communication and resources. Kaiser Permanente is involved deeply in the health of every community in which they serve. They operate using the Value Compass as their guide: at the center of the circle is Patient and Member Focus and four values surrounding the main focus is Best Quality, Most Affordable, Best Place to Work, Best Service. All goals and problem-solving take into account these core values. Decisions are filtered through their mission and vision statements (Kaiser Permanente, 2016): Vision: "We are trusted partners in total health, collaborating with people to help them thrive and creating communities that are among the healthiest in the nation." Mission: "Kaiser Permanente exists to provide high-quality, affordable, healthcare services and to improve the health of our members and the communities we serve."

Significance

Family and community outreach is just one of many areas Kaiser Permanente actively involves itself in to be a vital part the community. The greatest goal is to help keep the community healthy because a healthy community benefits everyone. Health education has become a big industry in recent years due to the rising costs of healthcare. According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, America spent three billion dollars in healthcare costs, averaging over 9523.00 per capita in 2014 (2016). One of the goals of the Director of Health Education at Kaiser Permanente is to educate and equip members and communities to focus on prevention by choosing healthy lifestyle habits. Health education begins in early childhood and Kaiser programs reach out to schools and communities as well as providing programs to meet adult member and employee needs (Leonardo, 2017). Health Education and Health Promotion is necessary to provide life changing information within the organization and the community. People who learn about healthier lifestyle choices are more equipped to choose more wisely and benefit by living healthier lives longer. Health Educators have a very important role in society, after all, everything we have learned, we learned from someone who shared information with us and perhaps we explored more on our own. What we learn impacts our thinking, and our thinking influences our decisions, and our decisions make all the difference in our quality of life and health.

Location

DUC Ballroom A&B

Format

Poster Presentation

Poster Session

Morning

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Apr 29th, 10:00 AM Apr 29th, 12:00 PM

Field Study: Kaiser Permanente

DUC Ballroom A&B

My field study at Kaiser Permanente included job shadowing the Director of Health Education in Fresno, California. Lisa Huiras promoted four levels above her position as manager of the Medical Weight Loss Department in the Stockton/Manteca area in 2015. Lisa had been one of my supervisors at In Shape Health Clubs. She has been a tremendous influence in my life from our first meeting in 2004, and I can easily see myself following in her career footsteps. Lisa shares my passion for helping people live healthier lives, and health education has been the avenue Lisa has made a tremendous difference.