Wayne Mobile Health Unit Receives $1.1M Grant

Meridian in Michigan, a prominent managed care organization and subsidiary of Centene Corporation (NYSE: CNC), has teamed up with the Wayne Mobile Health Unit (WMHU) to enhance maternal and infant health. This partnership extends support to WMHU’s community outreach initiatives, providing preventative health services directly to neighborhoods, homes, and workplaces.

Centene Foundation and Meridian Join Forces to Enhance Maternal Health Services in Metro Detroit

In a significant move to address maternal health disparities, Centene Foundation and Meridian have allocated $1.1 million in funding to support the Wayne Mobile Health Unit (WMHU) in metro Detroit. This collaboration aims to reach low, moderate, and high-risk pregnant women who haven’t accessed routine prevention services and connect them with DMC’s OB/GYN specialists for follow-up care.

The initiative targets the reduction of maternal health mortality rates, particularly among Black and Hispanic women, who face disproportionately higher risks. Participation is open to all women, irrespective of Meridian membership.

Dr. Kay Judge, Meridian’s Chief Medical Officer, expressed enthusiasm about the partnership, emphasizing its proactive outreach to communities long affected by health inequities. The initiative seeks to directly address disparities and provide scalable solutions applicable not only to maternal health but also to various health conditions and outcomes.

Statistics from Michigan highlight alarming disparities, with Black women being 2.8 times more likely to die from pregnancy-related causes than white women. Moreover, over 63% of pregnancy-related maternal deaths were found to be preventable between 2015 and 2019.

To combat systemic biases contributing to poor maternal and infant outcomes, the program will utilize geospatial analysis from Wayne State University’s Population Health Outcomes Information Exchange (PHOENIX) program to identify targeted neighborhoods in Detroit, with plans for rural expansion.

Dr. Phillip Levy, Associate Vice President for Translational Science at Wayne State University and Director of WMHU, expressed gratitude for the substantial support from Centene Foundation, emphasizing its crucial role in sustaining outreach efforts and expanding into maternal health services. The initiative is expected to positively impact the communities served.

In addition to facilitating follow-up care at DMC, the program will include routine social determinant of health (SDoH) screenings, complemented by community health worker services to ensure continuity of care. The pilot aims to increase attendance at pre- and postnatal appointments by 10-20% in its first year, with the ultimate goal of reducing maternal mortality rates.

This maternal health pilot program builds upon WMHU’s successful pandemic response efforts. Funds from Meridian and Centene Foundation will enable the expansion of care delivery and continue the provision of no-cost routine health screenings in communities. Moreover, the partnership will focus on reaching Meridian clients who haven’t engaged in routine preventative care, creating novel billing codes to facilitate direct access to prevention screening and care management.

About Meridian: Meridian in Michigan, a subsidiary of Centene Corporation, offers government-sponsored managed care services, including Medicaid, Medicare Advantage, Medicare Prescription Drug Plans, Medicare-Medicaid Plans, and Health Insurance Marketplace plans. Committed to improving lives, Meridian strives to provide quality healthcare to diverse populations.

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