Sutter Health Receives 2004 National VHA Leadership Award
Top Honors Given for Excellence in Community Health Improvement
SACRAMENTO, Calif., June 22, 2004 – Sutter Health, one of the nation's leading not-for-profit networks of community-based health care, has been awarded the VHA Leadership Award for exceptional contributions toward advancing community health improvement. The Sutter Health network, which provided $649 million in community benefit services in 2003, was recognized for its longstanding commitment to making vital health care programs more accessible to women and children in the more than 100 communities it serves.
The VHA (Voluntary Hospital Association), an alliance of 2,200 leading health care organizations across the country, is dedicated to improving the health of communities through innovation and collaboration. In 2004, this national association selected only eight health care organizations to be recognized, including Sutter Health, for their outstanding work in improving clinical health care delivery and outcomes. This is the first time Sutter Health has received this highest honor from VHA.
"There are thousands of caregivers across our Sutter Health network who quietly make a difference in people's lives every day," said Van R. Johnson, president and CEO of Sutter Health. "These caring individuals provide the vital services that our communities need, and this prestigious award serves as a public recognition and 'thank you' for the life-changing work they do in their communities," he said.
The VHA Leadership Award for Community Health Improvement recognized the collaborative and transforming work being done in the Sacramento Sierra Region through the Regional Children's Health Project.
First implemented in 1998, Sutter’s Regional Children's Health Project works to increase access to care for children through collaborative community and multi-agency partnerships. According to California NOW, 1.2 million children in California lack basic health insurance and access to care, even though most of these children (9 out of 10) live in working families. That means that too many children are not getting the preventive check-ups, immunizations, basic nutrition and dental care that they need to grow healthy and strong.
Sutter's Sacramento Sierra Region recognized the growing need to provide vital children’s health services and partnered with local government agencies, social service organizations, other health care providers, schools, business groups, community clinics, neighborhood coalitions and faith-based organizations to create a unique children's health coalition. Since the program's inception, more than 12,000 California children have enrolled into low-cost or no-cost health insurance programs, and 7,000 more have been linked with various community resources to address immediate health care needs.