Nearly 100 community partners learned about the new Juniper Healthy Living as You Age effort at the recent Mini-Summit for Healthy Aging and Well-Care in Eagan.
“Juniper is a transformative effort to improve community health statewide by changing the culture toward self-managed health and well-being,” said Dawn Simonson, MAAA Executive Director and a Mini-Summit speaker.
Dr. Rob Schreiber of the Massachusetts Healthy Living Center of Excellence, addressed the audience at the June 28 Mini-Summit via teleconference, to explain the value of the effort.
Juniper is a network of community organizations delivering evidence-based programs to help people manage chronic health conditions, prevent falls and foster well-being. By taking an active role in their health and well-being, Juniper program participants experience improved health and quality of life, reducing the need for costly medical interventions.
Juniper is also building the infrastructure necessary to support an expanded network of new partnerships — among health systems, payers, public health and community-based organizations — broadening the statewide reach and impact of evidence-based health programs. Minnesota’s Area Agencies on Aging (AAAs) are leading the effort.
Other speakers at the event, held at the Eagan Community Center, included David Fink, MAAA Program Developer, and Nora Slawik, MAAA’s Juniper Network Manager.
A panel featured powerful testimonials from older adults who have taken classes to manage chronic conditions. Community partners on the panel included: Megan Chacon, Fairview Health Services, Roxana Linares, Centro Tyrone Guzman; Barb MacIntyre, HeathEast Care System, and Gloria Coles, East Side Neighborhood Services.
The event concluded with breakout group discussions focused on building delivery capacity; healthcare program infrastructure; establishing reliable referral pathways in the community, healthcare referrals, and identifying and securing opportunities for sustainability.