Foundation announces initiative

GLENS FALLS — The Charles R. Wood Foundation has announced a new initiative that it will provide one million dollars, distributed over the next three years, to community-based initiatives aimed at improving the health of the population in the region.

The foundation’s board has released a request for proposals to encourage applicants to collaborate in efforts to improve the health status of the residents and to reduce health care costs. Funding consideration will be limited to organizations serving the counties of Clinton, Essex, Franklin, Fulton, Hamilton, Montgomery, Warren and Washington.

More details about the application process are available on the Charles R. Wood Foundation website, www.charlesrwoodfoundation.com. The next deadline for online grant application submission is Sept. 1.

“Our foundation annually reviews over 150 individual applications to support the arts, children, and health services,” said Charlene Wood, chairwoman.

“To be proactive, we now support this additional initiative, and dedicate this money up front as we urge providers, businesses, social services, and other organizations to help drive innovative efforts that address the population’s barriers to health care access and cost.”

Board members cited the series of state Department of Health reports in recent years detailing the critical nature of the health issues in the region. These include the NYS Population Health Improvement Program; the DOH Prevention Agenda 2019-2024; the NYS Health Innovation Plan; and the North Country Health System Redesign Commission.

“We see prevalence of chronic illness in an aging population, health worker shortages, uncontrolled but preventable illnesses, and geographic access issues. The problems and the needs are well documented,” said Wood.

“Our objective is our own ‘triple aim.’ We seek better health care, improved population health, and more efficiency in health care delivery. We will support community applications targeted at achieving these outcomes.”

At its spring board meeting, the foundation supported a $100,000 request for development work on a telemedicine program in the region. Wood cited it as an example of “serious money for an innovative collaboration” that eventually may bring remote providers and long-distance consultation to people who can’t directly access in-person care without great difficulty.

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