PHC is hiring! Integration Catalyst for GUVIST

The Public Health Council has entered into a Memorandum of Agreement to serve as Fiscal Sponsor for the Greater Upper Valley Integrated Services Team and will be the employer of record for the Integration Catalyst.

What is an Integration Catalyst?

The Greater Upper Valley Integrated Services Team (GUVIST) seeks an Integration Catalyst to guide our efforts to integrate services among our constituent member organizations in the bi-state Upper Valley region. The Integration Catalyst will use Collective Impact principles, network analysis results, and evaluator recommendations to facilitate integration.

The Catalyst will start with a focus on the early childhood sector, facilitating service delivery integration within a network that has already started this work. The Catalyst will use learning from the early childhood sector work to develop an integration model for replication in other sectors. The Catalyst will lead replication with GUVIST guidance.

The position will also support the GUVIST Executive Council and broader network, helping to implement functional growth and development. The Catalyst will work closely with two other regional positions, to ensure GUVIST’s collective decision-making, practice, and accountability are equity- and data-driven.

This position is full time and grant-funded for 3 years, with employment through the Public Health Council of the Upper Valley. This position will be hybrid (remote and in-person) as local presence will be important for certain aspects of the job.

Who are GUVIST and the Public Health Council?

GUVIST is a cohesive and diverse group of health and human services providers serving the communities of the Upper Valley region of Vermont and New Hampshire, with leadership from an Executive Council. GUVIST considers innovative and effective ways of addressing issues of health and wellbeing in our communities. We host monthly meetings to explore holistic and integrative approaches to wellbeing, organize subgroups of members and partners for targeted projects, and promote the use of collaborative work at all levels of decision making and service provision. The Public Health Council of the Upper Valley (PHC) is a broad coalition of community leaders and representatives from many community sectors. These partners work together to create a healthier, safer, more supportive, and vital Upper Valley. PHC members work together to set regional health priorities, provide guidance to regional public health activities, and ensure coordination of health improvement efforts. In the Upper Valley, the PHC leverages and coordinates existing and new resources to address priorities. The Public Health Council has entered into a Memorandum of Agreement to serve as Fiscal Sponsor for this grant and will be the employer of record for the Integration Catalyst.

How will I make a difference?

The GUVIST Integration Catalyst will make a difference in our communities by managing all aspects of a Service Delivery Integration workplan, including:

  • Improving client experience
  • Integrating service delivery
  • Building collaborative performance
  • Promoting measurable systems change

Can I see myself here?

We have found that GUVIST Integration Catalysts succeed when they:

  • Emphasize connection and relationship in their work and build meaningful relationships rooted in empathy, mutual accountability, and learning
  • Can work with a high level of independence, organization, and self-direction and manage changing priorities for self and others
  • Can effectively facilitate dialogue and communication among individuals with multiple perspectives, experiences, and communication styles, including managing difficult conversations
  • Think systemically
  • Value feedback
  • Are passionate about justice and believe everyone deserves dignity and to have their needs met

How can I be considered for the position?

You can be considered for this position if you meet the following qualifications:

  • Bachelor’s degree and at least 3 years of experience (or a master’s degree plus 2 years of experience) in the areas of social work, human services, community health, non-profits, public health, psychology, or related field; or comparable training and experience.
  • Experience with grants management, including fiscal oversight and reporting, and project management.
  • Have exceptional verbal and written communication skills
  • Presentation and meeting facilitation skills
  • Able to navigate and use Google suites, Zoom, Microsoft Word, Outlook and Excel
  • Demonstrated connection with the Upper Valley community preferred
  • Have a commitment to racial and social equity principles and an understanding of the social determinants of health

Wages and Benefits:

Wages for the position will range between $26 and $30 per hour. The position is benefits eligible. Benefits include earned benefit time, paid Holidays, Health Savings Account contribution (or alternative).

To apply for this position, please send a letter of interest to Alice Ely at alice.ely@uvpublichealth.org. In your letter, please tell us what about this position is of most interest to you. What about this position speaks to your experience or your personal goals? Please send a resume or summary of work experience as well.

If we can provide accommodations to support you in the application process, please reach out to Alice Ely at alice.ely@uvpublichealth.org.

The position is funded by a 3-year grant provided by the Couch Family Foundation.

It’s Here! Upper Valley Project Funding to Address Health Inequities

The first round of projects under the Upper Valley Community Health Equity Partnership have been selected.

In October 2022, the Upper Valley Community Health Equity Partnership  (UVCHEP) sought proposals from local entities in the White River Junction District of the VT Department of Health who seek to reduce health disparities the UVCHEP Steering Committee has described in the Problem Statement:

Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC) as well as Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer, Intersex, Asexual and plus (LGBTQIA+) community members have higher levels of mental health challenges and substance use disorder, diagnosed and undiagnosed. These conditions are both caused by and contribute to isolation, other chronic health conditions, and not feeling safe.

We invited applications for projects that could be completed in the 7-month time frame of this grant period, ending May 31, 2023, and that address the Root Causes of the health disparities mentioned above. We awarded grants ranging from $5,000 to $28,000 and have a total pool of $150,000.

A summary of funded projects will be posted in January 2023.

More Equitable Grantmaking:

Our goal is to reduce the barriers that traditionally prevent groups and organizations most closely connected to the people who experience health disparities from getting funding and other resources to address health disparities in their own communities.

How was this application process more equitable and accessible?

  1. Eligibility requirements have been set to create as few barriers as possible for informal, small, and new entities to apply.
  2. We accept applications in several different formats.
  3. The application was intended to be short and simple. We estimated it would take about 2 to 4 hours to complete once you have developed a clear idea of what you want to propose.
  4. We provided several options to learn more about the application and get your questions answered. This included live Webinars with recordings available online and “Office Hours” with our Equity Facilitator.
  5. If you needed support completing the application, someone from the Steering Committee would help you.
  6. While the grant program is based on reimbursing grantees for actual expenses, and not providing grant funds at the beginning of the award, the Public Health Council (PHC) will provide up to 10% of the total award to grantees at the beginning of the award. PHC will also work with grantees on a case-by-case basis to address cash flow concerns for large grant expenses.

Who was eligible to apply?

Eligible Applicants were those who could demonstrate a clear and convincing plan to address concerns raised in the Problem Statement above, especially with projects that address one or more of the identified Root Causes.

  • Individuals
  • Grassroots Organizations (If you need a Fiscal Sponsor, we will help you find one.)
  • Nonprofit Organizations
  • Businesses
  • Federally (and non-federally) recognized Native American Indian tribes and Alaska Native entities
  • Governmental Entities
  • Funding can support organization(s) not located in VT, as long as they serve people in the White River Junction District of Vermont and can demonstrate ability to address the Problem Statement.

To learn more about how applicants were supported?

RFP Webinar Series:

Tuesday, October 4, 2022                          Health Equity Grant Purpose & Eligibility Requirements
6:30 to 7:30 pm                                            Recording Link: https://youtu.be/HOhbJmtF_4w

Thursday, October 6, 2022                        Health Equity Grant: Completing the Application
6:30 to 7:30 pm                                           Recording Link

Tuesday, October 11, 2022                       Health Equity Grant: Developing a Budget
6:30 to 7:30 pm                                           Recording Link

Questions: Contact Alice Ely

Please note that we may find it necessary or beneficial to post corrections, clarifications, or responses to frequently asked questions. These updates will be posted on this webpage, so please check the page periodically to ensure you have the most up to date information.

2022 Community Flu Vaccine Clinics

Each fall, partner organizations across the Upper Valley come together to provide seasonal flu vaccine to our community members. This year is no exception.

While the COVID-19 pandemic still impacts our communities, protecting people from seasonal flu illness is very important. Many experts predict we will see significant flu transmission this season.

There are numerous options for vaccination. Please use the information below to find the right vaccine option for you and your family.

This list DOES NOT include school-based seasonal flu vaccine clinics offered in many of our New Hampshire schools. This is because these clinics are reserved only for students of those schools. If your child has the opportunity to get a vaccine in one of these school-based clinics, we encourage you to sign them up.

Public Health Council & Dartmouth Hitchcock Hosts Series of Community Flu Clinics

Starting on Saturday, October 1, the Public Health Council, Dartmouth-Hitchcock, Geisel School of Medicine and other partners will host free seasonal flu vaccine clinics in communities around our region. Clinic details are below:

Geisel Medical Students providing flu vaccine in Bradford, VT, October 2021. Photo credits to Bill Secord.

Saturday, October 1
10 am to 1 pm
Plainfield Elementary School, 92 Bonner Road, Meriden, NH
Walk-In, No Reservation Required, Free, See other guidance below.

Thursday, October 13
3 to 6 pm
La Salette Shrine, Rte 4a, Enfield, NH
Drive Thru, No Reservation Required, Free, See other guidance below.

Saturday, October 15
10 am to 1 pm
Orford Congregational Church, 617 NH Rte 10, Orford, NH
Walk-In, No Reservation Required, Free, See other guidance below.

Wednesday, October 19
3:30 to 6 pm
Oxbow High School, 36 Oxbow Drive, Bradford, VT
Drive Thru, No Reservation Required, Free, See other guidance below.

Friday, October 28
4 to 7 pm
Mascoma Community Health Center, 18 Roberts Road, Canaan, NH
Walk-In, No Reservation Required, Free, See other guidance below.

PHC Vaccination Clinic Guidance
  • Offering regular dose vaccine and enhanced vaccine for people 65+. We will NOT be offering COVID-19 vaccines at these clinics.
  • Please practice social distancing for both drive thru and walk-in clinics.
  • Everyone will be required to wear a mask. A mask will be provided for you if you do not have one.
  • Please do not come if you are experiencing symptoms of COVID-19.
  • Please do not arrive more than 15 minutes prior to the start of the clinic.

Other Flu Vaccine Options in the Upper Valley

Dartmouth Health

Dartmouth-Hitchcock will also be offering numerous flu vaccine clinic options for Dartmouth Health patients at various locations at the Medical Center this year. Please go to their Lebanon Flu Clinic Schedule webpage for details. Many of these clinics are drive thru and a few are walk-in. Reservations are required. If you are a DHMC patient and use myD-H.org to make an appointment. If you do not use myD-H, you may call the Flu Hotline at 603-653-3731.

When you schedule your appointment, please have your insurance card ready. If you carry health care insurance, we will bill your carrier at no cost to you. For individuals who do not have any health insurance, we will be providing flu vaccines free of charge. Please contact the Flu Hotline for more information.

Visiting Nurse and Hospice for VT and NH

Tuesday, October 11
9 am to 2 pm
Thompson Senior Center, 99 Senior Lane, Woodstock
Walk-in clinics open to people age 18 and older. Limited number of enhanced doses available.

Tuesday, October 18
9 am to 2 pm
Bugbee Senior Center, 262 N. Main Street, White River Junction
Walk-in clinics open to people age 18 and older. Limited number of enhanced doses available.

Friday, October 28
9 am to 2 pm
Grantham Town Hall, 300 NH Rte 10, Grantham
Walk-in clinics open to people age 18 and older. Limited number of enhanced doses available.

Valley News

Many of these clinics will be posted to the Valley News Calendar, available online and in the print edition.

We wish all our Upper Valley neighbors a healthy and safe fall and winter!

On suicide: It’s no longer an unspeakable word

In NH, call/text the Rapid Response Access Point at 833-710-6477 or online chat at NH988.com if you or someone you know is considering suicide. In VT, text “VT” to 741741, or call 988. Nationally, call 988, the National Suicide & Crisis Lifeline.

By Dave Celone, New Hampshire Bulletin, September 2, 2022

Suicide is the 12th leading cause of death in America. Suicide is highest among white males, followed by Native Americans, followed by black males. A suicide occurs about every 11.5 minutes. Suicide is the 2nd leading cause of death globally for people 15 – 24 years old.

I just used the word “suicide” 4 times in the above 4 sentences. How did that feel to you? Not so bad, I suspect. You can do it, too.

I mention this to underscore the point that talking about suicide with anyone, regardless of their age, is okay. And it’s even more okay if you think they may be considering suicide. It does not increase the risk of suicide.

September is National Suicide Prevention Month, so you’ll hear more about this in the media. Suicide is preventable, and I hope what you read in September will inspire you to talk about suicide in terms that are candid, positive, and helpful to others in the throes of a crisis. Aside from awareness, what’s your role? Here are 5 steps to take if you think someone you know is considering suicide:

  1. Ask the question, “Are you thinking about killing yourself?” This will not increase the risk of suicide, it will lead to the next step. Other good questions are, “How do you hurt?” and “How can I help?” (And if you are considering suicide, reach out to a friend and let them know, with these 5 steps in hand for them to read.)
  2. Be there. Be present. Stay with the person. Being there for someone increases their connectedness and limits their isolation. These have been shown to be protective factors in decreasing suicide risk.
  3. Keep them safe. Find out more. Does the person have a plan to kill themself? What is that plan? Have they attempted suicide before? Have they experimented with it? What is their timing? Remove lethal weapons or objects to distance them from their chosen method.
  4. Help them connect. Call a crisis line so they can speak with a trained crisis clinician. In NH, call or text the NH Rapid Response Access Point at 833-710-6477, or chat online at com. This will ensure a local NH mobile crisis in-person response when needed. In VT text “VT” to 741741 or call 988, the National Suicide & Crisis Lifeline. Nationally, outside NH & VT, call 988.
  5. Follow up. After the fact, call, text, visit, email, find them on social media and ask how they’re doing. Leave a message if they don’t answer the phone. Tell them you care. Supportive, ongoing contact is an important part of suicide prevention.

What are ways to prevent suicide from creeping into your psyche? Maintain meaningful social connections. Make plans with a friend. Start a hobby like woodworking, sewing, painting, or whatever you like to do—if you can do it with others, even better. Exercise! Any kind of exercise will do, even if it’s sitting in a chair and rotating your arms. Walking is a wonderful, and underrated exercise, whether you do it indoors or out. Practice mindfulness or meditation. Become a mentor. Volunteer—getting active in your community will help you develop relationships with others. Which brings us back to the beginning of maintaining meaningful social connections. And, above all, ask for help whenever you need it.

Going a bit deeper, a friend of mine suggests that there must be some evolutionary reason for suicide. I’m not so sure there is, but I’m always willing to listen and consider. He tells me suicide is about ending suffering. I won’t disagree, but I’ll counter because I know there are many ways to end suffering. While suicide may be one option, it’s within our power to prevent it so a person in the throes of a crisis can see other ways out. Helping a person believe these other options exist is the goal. That there are people who love them. That there are things they enjoy doing. That their cat or dog needs them. That a tree is beautiful and worth visiting in the autumn when its colors are ablaze. That a breeze feels nice on their cheek. That any child would appreciate their smile today and tomorrow. That living is a choice that can be made.

Talk openly about suicide. That’s the place to start. Then, let’s offer up choices. After all, isn’t that what life is all about?

Dave Celone lives in Sharon, VT where a walk in the woods brings him joy, wonder, and an appreciation for the beauty of our natural world. He works for West Central Behavioral Health, the community behavioral health center for lower Grafton County and Sullivan County with offices in Claremont, Lebanon, and Newport, NH.

Reposted from NH Bulletin on September 2, 2022.

New Children’s Book Helps Parents and Children Learn How to Prevent Lead Poisoning

The New Hampshire Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) has announced the release of Happy, Healthy, Lead-Free Me!, a new children’s book aimed at engaging children and educating parents on lead poisoning prevention and the importance of pediatric lead level testing.

The book, developed by the Division of Public Health Services (DPHS) with clinical collaboration from NH Chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics (NH AAP), is currently available at many pediatric health care provider offices and is available for free download at https://leadfreekidsnh.org/happy-healthy-lead-free-me-resources/.

The Public Health Council has copies of the book available for free for partners able to distribute the book to families in our area. Please reach out to alice.ely@uvpublichealth.org to request copies of the book.

“We wanted to create something that would resonate with parents and children,” said Gail Gettens, coauthor and Child Development Specialist and Health Promotion Advisor in the DPHS Healthy Homes and Lead Poisoning Prevention Program. “The illustrations and rhymes engage children and the parents section provides additional details about lead exposure prevention and the importance of pediatric blood lead-level testing.”

“As New Hampshire has some of the oldest homes in America, many still have lead paint,” Knatalie Vetter, coauthor and Environmental Supervisor of the Healthy Homes and Lead Poisoning Prevention Program, stated. “On average, 55% of New Hampshire homes were built before lead-based paint was banned in 1978, and, in some communities, that percentage is as high as 83%. This underscores the importance of getting your child’s lead-level tested at both the 12 and 24 month well-child check visits.

Early blood lead testing is critical. NH’s pediatric lead level testing rates dropped 14% during 2020, due to COVID pandemic, meaning that 3108 fewer children in NH were tested for lead levels in 2020, than the year prior, 2019.

Pediatric health care providers and other agencies interested in ordering free copies of Happy, Healthy, Lead-Free Me! may contact Gail Gettens at Gail.C.Gettens@dhhs.nh.gov, or visit www.happyhealthyleadfree.me to download a free copy, available in 7 different languages.

For a printable postcard highlighting the book, go to https://leadfreekidsnh.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/01/Post-card-board-book-FINAL.pdf.