Federal Agencies Recognize Swope Health for COVID-19 Efforts

On Monday, March 28, the regional leadership of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development recognized Swope Health for its efforts in fighting the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Your health center built new, non-traditional partnerships and implemented innovative strategies to reach the most vulnerable populations and ensure their access to COVID-19 prevention, vaccination, and treatment services,” said Nancy Rios, Regional Administrator of the Office of Intergovernmental and External Affairs, for the federal Health Resources and Services Administration’s Kansas City regional office.

Dr. Naiomi Jamal, Chief Health Officer, and Robin Wheeler Sanders, Chief People Officer, were on hand at the recognition ceremony at the Mid-America Regional Council’s offices in Kansas City. They accepted a citation, signed by Rios, on behalf of Swope Health.

In addition to Swope Health, the federal agencies included other regional Federally Qualified Health Centers, Public Housing Authorities and community partners in the recognition: the Kansas City, Kansas Housing Authority; the Housing Authority of the City of Kansas City, Missouri; Health Partnership Health Center; KC CARE Health Center; Samuel U. Rodgers Health Center;  and Vibrant Health Center.

COVID-19 Event Attendees (From left: Patrick Salle, CEO Vibrant Health; Will Franklin, CEO, KC CARE; Dr. Naiomi Jamal, Chief Health Officer; Swope Health; Robin Wheeler-Sanders (rear), Chief People Officer, Swope Health; Adria Edwards, Director of Special Projects, KC CARE; Catherine Wiley, Director of Marketing and Communications, Samuel Rodgers; Bob Theis, CEO, Samuel Rodgers; Amy Falk, CEO, Health Partnership, Nancy Rios, Regional Administrator, HRSA Region 7; Catherine Satterwhite (rear), Regional Health Administrator, HHS Region 7; Andrea Perdomo-Morales, Chief Health Equity Officer, Vibrant Health; Ed Lowndes, Executive Director, Housing Authority Kansas City, Missouri; Steven Tucker, Assistant Director of Resident Services, Housing Authority Kansas City, Missouri; Capt. Scott Conner, Acting Regional Director, HHS Region 7; Jose Davis, Field Office Director (Kansas/Western Missouri), HUD Region 7; (Not Pictured – Elaine Stroud, Housing Authority Kansas City, KS)

The Kansas City cohort of health centers and housing authorities from both sides of the state line, led to an estimated 977 people receiving the COVID-19 vaccination between May and December 2021, according to a release from the Housing and Urban Development agency.

In May 2021, U.S. Housing and Urban Development Secretary Marcia Fudge and U.S. Health and Human Services Secretary Xavier Becerra announced a joint-agency effort to increase access to COVID-19 prevention and treatment services, including testing and vaccines, to disproportionately affected communities.

This specifically focused on connecting HUD-assisted households and people experiencing homelessness with the care and resources of federally qualified health centers that are part of the HHS/HRSA network like those recognized at Monday’s event.

The federal partnership and local engagement focused on helping parts of the Kansas City area that traditionally have suffered from low economic opportunity and declining health outcomes to avoid letting their zip code determine their fate.

The partnership overcame these barriers and improved the COVID resilience of federally assisted households and those experiencing homelessness across the metro, through the use of several different collaborative engagement strategies such as:

  • Reviewing Geographic Information System mapping of HUD multifamily, public housing units and homelessness epicenters to create an overlay with HHS/HRSA-supported health centers that were in close proximity, to isolate where transportation barriers could impact vaccination efforts and provide transportation resources to vaccination or education events;
  • Leveraging Federal Emergency Management Agency vaccine equity survey data to identify zip-code level vaccine hesitancy rates in order to deploy education teams to enhance receptiveness to vaccination efforts;
  • Integrating multi-jurisdictional coordination calls to help determine if federally assisted households were better served by existing mass vaccination events or required on-site event development, including the use of FQHC mobile clinics at or near HUD-assisted units.

While HUD and HHS/HRSA have often worked together over the years on various events, this lasting engagement is a much more unified approach recognizing that quality and safe housing and health access is part of the same method of improving the lives of persons living at or near poverty and facing social and financial challenges.

Direct treatment of COVID was the specific focus of the May 5 pact between HUD and HHS but building equitable access to combat inequity in future health crises is the larger and more long-term play.

In addition to the work exemplified by the Kansas City-area health centers, HUD and HHS/HRSA’s joint venture to serve HUD-assisted populations continues across the Great Plains region covering Iowa, Kansas, Missouri and Nebraska as well as the whole of the nation.

Additional resources and information about the scope and reach of the partnership can be found at HUD COVID-19 Resources and Fact Sheets.

The event included a short roundtable discussion exploring how partnerships with federal agencies can be improved and deployed in future national crises.

Swope Health supports Hickman Mills School District Family Summit March 5

Swope Health will join the Hickman Mills School District Family Summit with representatives from Behavioral Health, Dental and Medical services attending.

The Family Summit will be from 10 am to 1 pm Saturday, March 5, at the Smith-Hale Middle School, 9010 Old Santa Fe Road, Kansas City, MO 64138. The event is free and open to families in the Hickman Mills School District.

More than 70 organizations plan to attend the event to share information about their services and resources. The event, held in the large gymnasium at the school, includes a job fair. The Kansas City, Missouri, Health Department will have a clinic for COVID-19 vaccinations and boosters, flu shots and school immunizations.

We hope to see you there!

Swope Health highlights Black History through Kansas City leaders

In February, Swope Health hosted a series of community conversations with leaders in Kansas City who reflected on Black History through their personal experiences.

Swope Health developed the program to recognize that Black history happens daily and deserves recognition more than once a year in Black History Month. The four conversations in the program are now available for replay.

The event featured:

Dr. Kimberly Beatty, chancellor of Metropolitan Community College. Kimberly Beatty, Ed.D., began her tenure as Metropolitan Community College’s eighth chancellor on July 1, 2017. She was formally installed as chancellor at an inauguration ceremony on Aug. 24, 2018.

Dr. Beatty came to MCC from Houston Community College, the nation’s fourth-largest community college system, where she served as vice chancellor for instructional services and chief academic officer.

As the first African American leader in the 105-year history of Metropolitan Community College, and the only African-American CEO in the Missouri community college system, “I live and walk in the truth of who I am each day,” Dr. Beatty says.

Replay: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3biukxOLt_U

 

Bob Kendrick, president of the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum. Bob Kendrick was named President of the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum in March 2011. Founded in 1990, the NLBM is the world’s only museum dedicated to preserving and celebrating the rich history of African American baseball and its profound impact on the social advancement of America.

“The Negro Leagues museum is bigger than baseball,” he said. “The Negro Leagues is about economic empowerment, justice and civil rights.”

The museum was founded in 1990 in a one-room office to tell “the story of triumph over adversity and the power of the human spirit.” In addition to stories about the players and the spirit with which they faced segregation and discrimination, Kendrick outlines ways the community can support the living history – including via the continued revival of the 18th and Vine district.

Replay: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4DHdtoQkir0

Frank Ellis, founder of Swope Health. Frank Ellis served as founder, chairman and CEO of Swope Health Services. Originally named Model Cities Health Corporation, Swope Health Services opened in 1969 in the basement of Metropolitan Baptist Church in Kansas City. He and his dedicated board saw the need to provide primary health services to those who fell through the cracks of the health care system – the working poor.

Ellis described Swope Health as a mission-driven, business-minded entrepreneurial organization. He recalled his motto from the early days — No money, no mission – which kept a focus on business growth and financial management as a key to fueling the success of Swope Health.

His recollections included a description of the site of current Swope Health central (a landfill), the work for Black harmony during the riots and years of civil unrest in Kansas City, and his own leadership style and practices (daily devotional and meditation).

Replay: https://youtu.be/nKCNjpp09hU

U.S. Rep. Emanuel Cleaver II, Congressman from Missouri’s Fifth Congressional District.  Rep. Cleaver, now serving his ninth term in congress, was Kansas City’s first African American Mayor, elected in 1991 after serving 12 years on City Council.

During his eight-year stint in the Office of the Mayor, Cleaver distinguished himself as an economic development activist and an unapologetic redevelopment craftsman. He and the City Council brought a number of major corporations to the city and led the effort, after a forty-year delay, to build the South Midtown Roadway – now known as The Bruce R. Watkins Roadway. Additionally, his municipal stewardship includes the 18th and Vine Redevelopment, a new American Royal, the establishment of a Family Division of the Municipal Court, and the reconstruction and beautification of Brush Creek.

Cleaver addressed his work on community revitalization in the Kansas City Green Impact Zone, and new efforts with the federal Build Back Better infrastructure program.

Replay: https://youtu.be/dkoJfimY_x0

Swope Health Celebrates Black History

In honor of Black History Month, Swope Health will host a series of community discussions, featuring Black leaders in Kansas City.

All events are free, online and open to all. Please plan on joining us. 

Noon, Feb. 24 https://swopehealth.zoom.us/j/91975085077

U.S. Rep. Emanuel Cleaver II, Congressman from Missouri’s Fifth Congressional District.

Rep. Cleaver is now serving his ninth term in congress, where he is a member of the House Committee on Financial Services; Chair of the Subcommittee on Housing, Community Development, and Insurance; member of Subcommittee on Investor Protection, Entrepreneurship, and Capital Markets; member of Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations; member of the House Committee on Homeland Security; member of the Subcommittee on Transportation and Maritime Security; and member of the Select Committee on the Modernization of Congress.

Cleaver was Kansas City’s first African American Mayor, elected in 1991 after serving 12 years on City Council.

During his eight-year stint in the Office of the Mayor, Cleaver distinguished himself as an economic development activist and an unapologetic redevelopment craftsman. He and the City Council brought a number of major corporations to the city, including TransAmerica, Harley Davidson, and Citi Corp. Cleaver also led the effort, after a forty-year delay, to build the South Midtown Roadway. Upon completion of this major thoroughfare, he proposed a new name: The Bruce R. Watkins Roadway. Additionally, his municipal stewardship includes the 18th and Vine Redevelopment, a new American Royal, the establishment of a Family Division of the Municipal Court, and the reconstruction and beautification of Brush Creek.

Cleaver has received five honorary Doctoral Degrees augmented by a bachelor’s degree from Prairie View A&M, and a master’s from St. Paul’s School of Theology of Kansas City.

In 2009, Cleaver, with a multitude of accomplishments both locally and Congressionally, introduced the most ambitious project of his political career—the creation of a Green Impact Zone. This zone, consisting of 150 blocks of declining urban core, has received approximately $125 million dollars in American Recovery and Reinvestment funds. The Green Impact Zone is aimed at making this high crime area the environmentally greenest piece of urban geography in the world. This project includes rebuilding Troost Avenue, rehabbing bridges, curbs and sidewalks, home weatherization, smart grid technology in hundreds of homes, and most importantly, hundreds of badly needed jobs for Green Zone residents.

Cleaver, a native of Texas, is married to the former Dianne Donaldson. They have made Kansas City home for themselves and their four children, and grandchildren.

Noon, Feb. 16:

Frank Ellis, founder of Swope Health. Frank Ellis served as founder, chairman and CEO of Swope Health Services. Originally named Model Cities Health Corporation, Swope Health Services opened in 1969 in the basement of Metropolitan Baptist Church in Kansas City. He and his dedicated board saw the need to provide primary health services to those who fell through the cracks of the health care system – the working poor.

That first year, with a budget of $100,000 and 20 employees, 2000 patients were served. As a true nonprofit entrepreneur, Mr. Ellis grew the organization and founded FirstGuard Health Plan in 1996. He grew the company after an initial $5 million in raised equity to more than $250 million in revenue and later sold it to Centene Corporation for $123 million in 2004.

During his 42 years as head of Swope Community Enterprises, Ellis has received local and national recognition for his impact as a nonprofit entrepreneur—effectively applying business principles and practices to address the total health and economic well-being of the indigent and working poor. He served as the Chairman of the Greater Kansas City Chamber of Commerce, where he was leading the efforts on the Chamber’s Big 5 Ideas to create a better business climate, create jobs, and to make Kansas City the most entrepreneurial city in the world.

He graduated from the University of Michigan with a Master of Science degree in Public Health. He has postgraduate work at Harvard University School of Business and UMKC’s Henry Block School of Business and Public Administration. He is happily married to Dr. Janice S. Ellis, Ph.D., and they have three children and four grand kids.

Today Ellis is the Managing Principal of PL Strategies, LLC, an executive coaching, management, consulting and investment services company. He also serves as senior search advisor to The Moran Company, an executive search firm.

Replay: https://youtu.be/nKCNjpp09hU

 

Noon, Feb. 10:

Bob Kendrick, president of the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum. Bob Kendrick was named President of the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum in March 2011. Founded in 1990, the NLBM is the world’s only museum dedicated to preserving and celebrating the rich history of African-American baseball and its profound impact on the social advancement of America.

Kendrick is responsible for the museum’s day-to-day operations and the development and implementation of strategies to advance the mission of the 501 c3, not-for-profit organization. Since 2011, he has helped orchestrate a nearly $20 million turnaround that has helped the NLBM regain its vitality and financial stability.

Kendrick was responsible for the creation of several signature museum educational programs and events including the Hall of Game, which annually honors former Major League Baseball greats who played the game in the spirit and signature style of the Negro Leagues.

And while he doesn’t fashion himself to be a historian, Kendrick has become one of the leading authorities on the topic of Negro Leagues Baseball history and its connection to issues relating to sports, race and diversity. He has been a contributing writer for “Ebony Magazine” and the national Urban League’s “Opportunity Magazine.”

Replay: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4DHdtoQkir0

 

Noon, Feb. 3:

Dr. Kimberly Beatty, chancellor of Metropolitan Community College. Kimberly Beatty, Ed.D., began her tenure as Metropolitan Community College’s eighth chancellor on July 1, 2017. She was formally installed as chancellor at an inauguration ceremony on Aug. 24, 2018.

Dr. Beatty came to MCC from Houston Community College, the nation’s fourth-largest community college system, where she served as vice chancellor for instructional services and chief academic officer.

As the first African-American leader in the 105-year history of Metropolitan Community College, and the only African-American CEO in the Missouri community college system, “I live and walk in the truth of who I am each day,” Dr. Beatty says.

A champion of access and equity, she is devoted to the community college mission of providing access to higher education for all. “I am passionate about the community I serve and excited about the ability to provide higher education access to the underprivileged and underrepresented,” Dr. Beatty says.

Replay: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3biukxOLt_U

 

 

 

 

 

Feb. 19 Free COVID-19 Vaccinations

Swope Health invites you to join us at a free COVID-19 vaccination event 10 am – 2 pm Saturday, Feb. 19 the DeLaSalle Education Center, 3737 Troost Ave., Kansas City, Missouri.

The event is open to all — students, family and the community of DeLaSalle. COVID-19 vaccinations will be available for individuals age 5 and up; those under 18 must have parent or guardian present.

Booster vaccinations will also be available. Boosters are recommended five months after your primary vaccine dose(s).  Please remember to bring your vaccination card.

Join us!

Free COVID-19 Testing Feb. 5

Swope Health will provide free COVID-19 testing from 10 am to 2 pm Saturday, Feb. 5, at the KC Monarchs Stadium, Legends Field, 1800 Village West Parkway, Kansas City, Kansas, 66111.

The event is co-sponsored by the Kansas City Monarchs and is supported by the Wyandotte County Health Equity Task Force and the Public Health Department ofthe Unified Government of Wyandotte County and Kansas City, Kansas.

Food Giveaway at Swope Health Central

You’re invited to a free food giveaway on Monday, Jan. 18, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day.

The event runs from 9:30 am to 1:30 pm with free food provided by Harvesters.

We look forward to seeing you.

 

Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Community Discussion

Swope Health is proud to host the Beta Lambda Chapter of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity’s community discussion on Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day: 7:30 am Monday, Jan. 17 via Zoom.

The event is titled “Health Equity, Economic Development, Education: A Community Discussion” and features:

The event is free. Registration is required to receive the Zoom connection information.

The event honors Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s life accomplishments and teachings. His writings describe his dream for America’s future, including the need for better jobs, higher wages, decent housing, and quality education. With a universal message of hope that continues to resonate, King demanded an end to global suffering, asserting that humankind-for the first time-has the resources and technology to eradicate poverty.

The panelists will take up the question: Where do we go from here? The discussion will look at the present and future, for actions and indicators that build a community of choice and advocate change. Specific discussion will address health equity, education and economic development.

 

Vaccination event POSTPONED

Swope Health and El Centro are postponing the vaccination event scheduled for 3-7 pm Monday, Jan. 10.

We will announce the rescheduled date as soon as it is available. 

 

Join us 9 am – noon Saturday, Jan. 22, for free food giveaway at Swope Health West, 4835 State Ave., Kansas City, Kan., with partners Harvesters, El Centro and Livable Neighborhoods.

Wyandotte County January events — Join us!

Swope Health has two upcoming events in Kansas City, Kan. — please plan on joining us:

3-7 pm Monday, Jan 10, for a vaccination event with El Centro Inc., 501 Minnesota, Kansas City, Kan.

9 am – noon Saturday, Jan. 22, for free food giveaway at Swope Health West, 4835 State Ave., Kansas City, Kan., with partners Harvesters, El Centro and Livable Neighborhoods.