Aetna Medicaid, a CVS Health company, donated a total of $450,000 to four community health partners across the state of Texas. The donations are supporting the important work of healthcare providers and amplifying the impact community organizations have on meeting needs, ranging from digital literacy to peer support for families of individuals with intellectual or developmental disabilities.
"Our commitment to communities and our partners in Texas is unwavering," said Stephanie Rogers, CEO of Aetna Better Health of Texas. "These investments will enable access to much-needed resources and empower Medicaid members to take more control of their health."
Aetna's community donations totaling $450,000 were made to the following organizations:
- The Texas Association of Area Agencies on Aging is a statewide network of local area agencies on aging that provides a forum for collaboration, training and outreach across the state, supporting people age 60 years old and older and their caregivers. COVID-19 has exposed and exacerbated gaps in digital literacy, particularly among older Americans. A 2020 survey found that nearly 50% of older adults in Central Texas are beginner users or have never used technology. This donation is ultimately helping T4A review, refine and promote evidence-based programs that enhance digital literacy so seniors can overcome barriers to participating in healthcare programs such as those related to disease management, improving balance and caregiver stress management;
- Texas Parent to Parent works to improve the lives of children and adults with disabilities, chronic and mental health conditions and other healthcare needs. It fosters independence and empowers families to be stronger advocates through parent-led support, resource referral and education. The CDC reported that, in 2020, 3% of adult Texans had difficulty completing self-care tasks, like bathing and dressing, while 11% had mobility challenges. This donation is advancing efforts to improve health and well-being by helping families and people with disabilities effectively develop a personal support network that includes healthcare providers and peers;
- National Alliance on Mental Illness Texas supports individuals living with mental illness, family members, friends and professionals. It works to improve the lives of people affected by mental illness through education, support and advocacy. The pandemic has had a significant impact on mental health particularly for frontline healthcare and public safety professionals. For example, during mid-2020, as the COVID-19 pandemic progressed, 93% of healthcare workers were experiencing stress, 86% reported experiencing anxiety, 77% reported frustration, 76% reported exhaustion and burnout and 75% said they were overwhelmed. This donation is expanding mental health and wellness programs for behavioral health providers and first responders, mitigating workforce shortages in the field and providing timely support and services to meet the mental health needs of Texans; and
- Memorial Hermann Community Benefit Corporation supports the vision of Memorial Hermann, a not-for-profit health system, to create healthier communities, now and for generations to come. Census data shows that 13% of people in Texas are in poverty. The CBC's Community Resource Centers offer efficient and early interventions for at-risk populations in the Houston area to bridge healthcare and social services. This donation is helping fund the Community Resource Center at Memorial Hermann Southwest Hospital to meet a range of social health needs.
"Area Agencies on Aging help local community members remain in their homes and offer classes on topics important to ensuring seniors stay healthy and lead independent lives," said Ginny Lewis Ford, executive director of the Texas Association of Regional Councils. "As community support and health services providers shift their delivery models, access to these programs may only be online. Increasing and enhancing digital literacy is vital for seniors and their caregivers to maintain access to health services from their homes, especially when travel is challenging. Telehealth and telemedicine are transforming how and where programs and healthcare are administered, and this donation is helping us take a big step forward in identifying and implementing digital literacy programs that will educate and empower older adults and their families through the existing area agency on aging network in Texas."
Since 2021, Aetna Medicaid has donated more than $600,000 to a range of community health partners throughout the state to positively impact population health and provide those in need with more options to access quality health care.
Aetna Better Health of Texas serves more than 140,000 enrollees across the state through the Texas Medicaid STAR, STAR Kids and Children's Health Insurance Program programs.