Nationwide Children’s Hospital Awarded Prestigious Hearst Health Prize

Healthy Neighborhoods Healthy Families

Above, at left, home before. At right, Healthy Home after.

Hearst Health and the Jefferson College of Population Health have announced Nationwide Children’s Hospital as the winner of the 2020 Hearst Health Prize for Excellence in Population Health. Nationwide Children’s was awarded this prize for its Healthy Neighborhoods Healthy Families (HNHF) initiative and its mission to improve outcomes for children and families by creating healthy, opportunity-rich communities.

Hearst Health Prize logoThe national Hearst Health Prize for Excellence in Population Health is awarded to an institution that demonstrates population health impact by measurable improvement; use of evidence-based interventions and best practices; promotion of communication, collaboration and engagement; scalability and sustainability and innovation. The award comes with a $100,000 cash prize which will be used to further the HNHF mission.

In 2009, Nationwide Children’s joined with community partners to launch Healthy Neighborhoods Health Families. The initiative, composed of faith-based organizations, community development organizations, youth-serving nonprofits and local public schools, seeks to create positive health outcomes in the community. HNHF’s focus began on Columbus’s South Side, the area around the hospital, where it has improved community, family and individual well-being. The initiative has now expanded to the Linden area. The HNHF initiative targets five impact areas: affordable housing, education, health and wellness, community enrichment and economic development.

“This honor is validation of what can be accomplished when a community comes together,” says Tim Robinson, CEO of Nationwide Children’s. “It is a vitally important part of our mission to not only provide high quality care to our patients and families, within the hospital’s walls, but to also address the social determinants of health in the community, as well. We wouldn’t have been able to do it without strong partnerships with Community Development for All People, the United Way, Franklin County and its Commissioners, the City of Columbus and Mayor Andrew Ginther and others, and this prize is as much theirs as ours. We’re grateful for their teamwork and collaboration.”

Since its creation in 2009, HNHF has seen the following major achievements:

  • 370: More than 370 homes were impacted, including full-gut renovations, new builds, and grants to current residents through the Home Repair Program.
  • 58: The Residences at Career Gateway provides 58 units of apartments and townhomes along with on-site career development training
  • 50%: Neighborhood vacancy rates fell from 25% to 6%, and owneroccupied home sale volumes increased by 50% in the Southern Orchards neighborhood.
  • 79%: Early childhood programs have driven kindergarten readiness scores from 32% to 96% for participants, and graduation rates increased from 64% in 2013 to 79% in 2017
  • Children who are Medicaid-eligible have experienced decreases in emergency department use and probability of inpatient admission
  • In surveys, residents report feeling safer and a stronger sense of community.

“We have demonstrated that equitable community development leads to positive outcomes for children and families,” says Kelly Kelleher, MD, MPH, vice president of Community Health and Community Health Services Research at Nationwide Children’s Hospital, who accepted the Hearst Health Prize today. “To be recognized for this important work is one step closer to addressing social determinants of health on a larger scale.”