A Health Equity Strategy Focused on Community Engagement

November 14, 2023

Community engagement is a cornerstone of public relations. Effectively breaking down the barriers to health care access is a far greater challenge.

// By Marcia Simon, APR //

Simon-Marcia-AuthorHow can a health system make a difference in utilization, quality and outcomes, and cost — and improve engagement with underserved members of its community? This was the topic of a recent presentation at the 2023 SHSMD Connections Virtual Conference.

Lindsay Cosimano, senior director of marketing communications, Nebraska Health Network

Lindsay Cosimano, senior director of marketing communications, Nebraska Health Network

Lindsay Cosimano is senior director of marketing communications at Nebraska Health Network, an accountable care organization. In her presentation, “How Marketing and Public Relations Can Help Advance Your Organization’s Health Equity Strategy,” Cosimano discusses the social determinants of health, their impact on patients, and how the organization finds ways to connect patients with social services providers.

“As an ACO, we leverage data,” says Cosimano. “That data helps us find ways to intervene earlier and perhaps add services for individuals who are more likely to need our support.”

Many physicians believe it’s not their job or their business to ask personal questions about their patients’ circumstances. But without that understanding and knowledge of resources to get them the help they need, patients may delay care, or seek care in higher-cost settings like the ED when their conditions worsen.

Read on to discover how Nebraska Health Network, even with lean resources, found ways to amplify the message, educate providers, and connect patients with needed services.

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