116 3rd St SE
Cedar Rapids, Iowa 52401
UnityPoint Health has launched an online tool to help individuals find assistance with food, housing, transportation and other resources.
Called “Together We Care,” the online resource that launched this month connects individuals with local organizations that provide social services and programs at free or reduced cost.
TogetherWeCare.UnityPoint.org is open to the public to use. UnityPoint Health officials say their providers will use the tool to make referrals for their patients to programs and services that provide things like safe housing and reliable transportation and healthy food. By doing so, providers can help address the social determinants that can have a major impact on patients’ health.
“From health care perspective, only 20 percent of a patient’s health is related to the health care they receive. It’s really related to the factors in their community,” said Aimee Traugh, UnityPoint Health-Cedar Rapids regional director of care management.
Together We Care is powered through the social service network platform, Aunt Bertha. UnityPoint Health has joined other national organizations that have begun using the tool to help address the non-health care needs of patients.
UnityPoint Health patients can access the tool through their MyChart.
To use the website, individuals search for services by typing in their ZIP code or selecting the category of needs they have. The tool then displays information and details from participating social service organizations nearby, as well as their contact information.
The new platform fits into UnityPoint Health’s strategy to address population health in the community, Traugh said.
“It’s going to be great for those providers without social worker or care coordinator experience. Anyone can access the site and make a referral on behalf of a patient,” she said.
In addition, the resource is a continuation of the Cedar Rapids hospital’s commitment to My Care Community, a collaborative launched by Linn County officials, health care providers and not-for-profit service agencies to streamline patient access to services and improve long-term health outcomes overall.
Traugh said UnityPoint Health is looking at ways to better integrate the Together We Care tool with the My Care Community electronic system called TAVConnect.
“The focus is on the health of our community and being able to identify in our community where we have gaps,” Traugh said.
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