IPAC meets with Ohio first lady Kasich

From left to right, IPAC president Dr. Jane Hamel-Lambert, Ohio first lady Karen Kasich, and IPAC board members Dr. Dawn Graham, Sue Meeks and Doug Debrick at Trimble Elementary School.

Ohio first lady Karen Kasich visited recently with IPAC president Dr. Jane Hamel-Lambert, along with board members Dawn Graham, Sue Meeks and Doug Debrick at Trimble Elementary School. During the meeting, they discussed the partnership between IPAC and Nationwide Children’s Partners for Kids (PFK) to replicate the Community Pathways Model.

The Community Pathways Model, developed by the Community Health Access Project (CHAP) in Richland County, has improved health and preventative care for high-risk mothers and children in difficult-to-serve areas. The model, developed by Drs. Mark and Sarah Redding, achieved a 30 percent reduction in the risk for low-weight birth. In Ohio, low-weight births account for more than 50 percent of all Medicaid birth expenditures.

In February, the Kasich administration announced it will invest $350,000 to replicate the Community Pathways Model in Southeast Ohio through a partnership between IPAC and PFK. This funding, along with opportunity to work closely with Drs. Mark and Sarah Redding, will help IPAC to advance its vision of ensuring healthy development of all children in the region.

Mrs. Kasich, who has expressed an interest in Governor Kasich’s initiative to improve maternal health, child health and to reduce low-weight births, wanted to learn more about IPAC and to explore ways her office may be of assistance.

As the project develops, IPAC and Mrs. Kasich’s office will continue to discuss opportunities for collaboration.

IPAC is a rural health network committed to improving the health of young children by fostering collaboration among professionals, families and community agencies. Founded in 2002, the network comprises 19 community agencies in Athens, Hocking, Meigs and Vinton Counties, including several Ohio University departments and clinics.