Education

NACHW – COVID Newsletter – AUG-2022

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Community Health Workers united nationally to support communities in achieving health, equity and social justice.
www.nachw.org

Order from covidtests.gov TODAY


Summer is almost over and school will soon be back in session for children and teens across the country. As we get closer to the end of summer, it is important to ensure that our communities have at-home tests to quickly confirm infection and seek treatment and prevent transmission. Since January, www.covidtests.gov has been available for residents of the U.S. and territories to place orders of rapid at-home COVID-19 test kits.

We urge you to place an order as soon as you can so you and your community do not miss out on this opportunity. If you have already placed a first order but not a second, we encourage you to place your second order as soon as possible. Tests are completely free and are mailed to your address via USPS. 

How to place a second order: 
  1. Go to www.covidtests.gov  (SpanishSimplified Chinese)
  2. Click the blue button that says “order free at home tests”
  3. Fill out the information with your residential address
  4. Click the green button that says “check out now” 
What if I never placed a first order? 
If you have not placed an initial order, you can still place your first AND second order. Complete the ordering process above two (2) times to place both a first and second order. 


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Just like with our first push for test orders, NACHW is dedicated to increasing access to testing resources for CHWs, Community Based Organizations, and our most vulnerable communities. To everyone who has and will help community members to access this opportunity, thank you!

NACHW provides resources around this opportunity and other COVID-19 materials in various languages at www.nachw.org/covidtests.

NACHW is not distributing these test kits. If you are unable to place an order because of an address issue, receive an error message, or need to make changes to your order, please use the USPS help request form to submit a ticket.
 

COVID Test Expiration Dates


Most COVID-19 Home Test Kits have received expiration extensions from the FDA. To see if your COVID-19 Test Kit has an expiration extension, see the List of Authorized At-Home OTC COVID-19 Diagnostic Tests. Scroll to the lower half of the page, locate the brand of your test, and on the far right, click to see updated expiration dates. 

 

COVID-19 Resources


VACCINES: Vaccination and boosting are still the most effective ways to protect yourself from severe COVID-19 and hospitalization. Find your nearest vaccine and booster location at the official CDC vaccine tracking site: https://www.vaccines.gov/search/ 

TREATMENT: There are now treatment options for COVID-19, including Paxlovid. Test-to-treat locations at doctor’s offices, pharmacies and clinics now offer treatment options. Find local Test-to-treat sites near you through this website: https://covid-19-test-to-treat-locator-dhhs.hub.arcgis.com/

MASKS: Continue to protect yourself and others by wearing your masks in indoor and crowded spaces. Free N95 masks are available at pharmacies and health providers. Find out more information and locate your nearest provider at https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/prevent-getting-sick/masks.html

Visit NACHW’s COVID test website for more information about covidtests.gov, opportunities, and other updates. Our webpage include resources in multiple languages, and instructional videos for tests. Visit our site at https://nachw.org/covidtests/
 
 

Telehealth Community Navigation Center

NACHW has partners with Día de la Mujer Latina to assist CHWs in ordering kits for themselves and their communities. 

A bilingual and community-centered call center for debunking misinformation, reducing mistrust, and providing navigation services for our underrepresented multicultural communities for health and social services, including information on vaccines, clinical trials and COVID 19. The TCN Center will be manned by Texas Certified Community Health Workers and Promotores statewide.

  • Call 281-801-5285 for English and/or Spanish. 
  • Call 281-801-9590 for Spanish

https://www.diadelamujerlatina.org/our-programs/ 

 
 
 
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A Grassroots Leader’s Vision for the Future Community Health Workforce | ASTHO

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AUGUST 10, 2022 | SHELBY ROWELL

Illustration of a line of people leaping over a wide ravine, in the middle is a large "helping hand" that supports them as they go.

Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, Community Health Workers (CHWs) played an integral role in educating, connecting, and assisting vulnerable individuals in communities they serve. CHWs are actively working to address both COVID-19 and the social determinants of health driving inequity in their communities. Since before the phrase “community health worker” was coined, CHWs have worked to improve access and increase health outcomes with little sustainable funding and unclear professional identities.

ASTHO spoke with Denise Octavia Smith, the inaugural executive director of the National Association of Community Health Workers (NACHW), about the critical work CHWs are leading in State Health Agencies and their communities and her roadmap to sustaining the current wave of support for a public health CHW workforce. Responses have been edited for length and clarity.

Who are CHWs and what do they do?

CHWs have hundreds of different job titles depending on where we work.  We’re the people who work at the soup kitchen, food pantry, or a shelter.  We help register people to vote or sign up for Medicaid, get people transportation so they can be vaccinated.  Oftentimes we help individuals or families overcome different barriers—literacy, technology, financial—so they can achieve their health goals.

CHWs leverage our lived experience to develop trust and relationships.  Most of us are working in a community that we’re very familiar with, be it geographically, culturally, faith-based, medically, or circumstantially.  CHWs are the natural helpers, the advocates, the people breaking down technical or clinical information to make it plain to people.

How did you become involved in CHW work?

I’ve been a CHW for about 24 years. I’m also a certified patient navigator.  I became involved in the work through the example of my family and community.  My grandmother, in her religious community, sat with people who shared her life experiences as they grieved. And my mom worked helping people with HIV for many years.  That work in the very early eighties introduced me to the “silence equals death” movement and the stigma felt by people with HIV… the fear that people had about a disease they knew little about at the time. I spent the first half of my life as a theater artist.  A lot of that work is creating a safe, collaborative space for people to be their authentic selves.  I bring all of that work into the CHW work that I do.

How does NACHW’s work enhance and strengthen community health?

NACHW was developed by and for CHWs across the country.  We had a sense that when this workforce was recognized—both at the national level and across our variety of states and local contexts and different systems—that we would be able to support the communities where we live and serve to achieve health equity and social justice.

We’re able to focus a national lens on policies that may be passed or opportunities for funding that can help to scale or sustain our profession.  CHWs leverage lived experience and trust.  They help eliminate barriers for people to access healthcare and mental health services, address the social determinants of health, and provide supports that help people achieve their own health goals.

More broadly, we are working to understand why integrating CHWs into service delivery isn’t more commonplace.  We try to amplify this profession and give concrete examples, tools, and resources, so when people want to partner with CHWs, they understand who we are, what we do, and why we do it. Because our heart is very much at the center of our work.

How have CHWs addressed social determinants of health within their day-to-day work?

When we look at the national landscape, there’s not a lot of funding that goes into community health worker programs to specifically address the social determinants of health.  Most CHW work is focused on specific diseases.

When CHWs are developing relationships, we often find that to address someone’s diabetes we must also help them navigate the financial barriers they’re having in purchasing their test strips or the healthy and nutritious food that they need to lose weight.  Or to lower their cholesterol or risk for heart disease or stroke.

What is your message to the public health field about the value of the work CHWs do?

It’s critical for public health leaders to know how important CHWs are in helping public health communications reach into monolingual and different marginalized communities.  As a profession, we are able to effectively do this work through our trusted relationships with the community, our shared identity and experiences, and our training to provide linkages to services.  Public health agencies can support CHWs in collecting data about people’s experiences and needs so that we can map not only the disease state, but where we’re seeing gaps.  This data can inform opportunities for policy or opportunities to deliver better services.

How have CHWs mobilized to meet the needs of their communities throughout the pandemic response?

CHWs were telling us the immediate needs of their communities, including that language diversity was needed for messaging and educational materials, and that mental health supports were lacking.  They were delivering diapers and food, helping people get rides to fill their prescriptions, or making doctor appointments.  CHWs in rural Arkansas delivered iPads and hotspots to older adults who were shut in and helped them understand how to use them.  A Florida coalition trained hundreds of CHWs and “promotores” on the basics of COVID-19.  In addition to training them via a Zoom conference call, they also trained almost 200 CHWs over the phone so they could educate their communities.

Many CHWs got vaccinated, shared with others the importance of doing so, and dispelled common myths about vaccination.  CHWs helped when the White House was rolling out covidtest.gov, making sure people could order free rapid at home antigen test kits, understand how to use them, and know what to do if they had a positive test.

How would you describe the state of the CHW workforce today, and how does it need to evolve to meet the growing needs of communities?

CHWs are incredibly diverse in language, culture, across geographies, and with many different experiences and training. With more than six decades of evidence base, we’re proven.  We are present in the conversations about racial health equity, the need for better data and funding for communities to ensure that our communities can come out of this pandemic more resilient than ever before.

Self-determination and clear professional identity are of the utmost importance for the future of the CHW workforce.  We need a clear definition of CHW that is driven and developed by the workforce outlining who we are, what our roles and competencies are, and how we partner with others to achieve health and well-being for families and communities.

How can allies of CHWs support the field?

It’s important for the public health field to come together and consider how we can better define and sustain this profession and how we can be authentically partnered.  I think many of our allies already do a great job of supporting the unique leadership voice of CHWs in policy and program development.  They create space for us to share our leadership and lived experience, they partner with us on grants, and they advocate alongside of us for racial and health equity.  It’s important for the public health field to come together and consider how we can better define and sustain this profession and how we can be authentically partnered.

It is important that development of policies surrounding training, certification, funding, and sustainability are done in partnership with CHWs.  And I can’t say that strongly enough.  If you’re looking to partner, please visit NACHW’s website and look at our CHW training and certification and partnership list so that you can have local voices and local expertise.

Conclusion

The CHW workforce has played an essential role in addressing COVID-19 throughout communities and will continue to do so as their communities’ needs evolve.  ASTHO and NACHW will continue to provide resources for our members to learn more about the CHW workforce and the ways CHWs can be integrated into state and territorial health agencies.  For further information on NACHW and the work they are doing, please visit nachw.org.


The development of this blog post is supported by the Health Resources and Services Administration of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services under grant number 2 UD3OA22890-10-00. Information, content, and conclusions will be those of the author and should not be construed as the official position or policy of, nor should any endorsements be inferred by HRSA, HHS, or the U.S. Government.

Community Message: 6-24-22 Police Warn Public About the Dangers of Illicit Fentanyl

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From: Hawaii Police Department <hawaii-police-department@emails.nixle.com>
Date: Fri, Jun 24, 2022 at 11:39 AM
Subject: Community Message: 6-24-22 Police Warn Public About the Dangers of Illicit Fentanyl

Agency Logo
Friday June 24, 2022, 11:38 AM

Hawaii Police Department

committed to preserving the spirit of aloha

   
Pictured: (1) Hawai‘i Police Department recently recovered fentanyl pills hidden in candy containers. (2): front and back of fentanyl laced oxycodone pill. Photo credit DEA. (3): Lethal dose amount of fentanyl on pencil tip. Photo credit DEA.

Community: 6-24-22 Police Warn Public About the Dangers of Illicit Fentanyl

FROM:
  Hawai‘i Police Department
  Criminal Investigation Division – Area II
  Captain Thomas A. Shopay III
  Phone: (808) 326-4646 ext.263

Media Release

Hawai’i Island police are educating the public about the dangers of fentanyl after seeing an increase in the amount of fentanyl being recovered in conjunction with recent drug investigations. Hawai‘i Police Department is a member of a newly formed fentanyl task force and is providing information in collaboration with the County of Hawai‘i, Hawai‘i Island Community Health Center, and the Hawai‘i Health and Harm Reduction Center.

“We’re seeing more arrests and more fentanyl recovered,” said Captain Shopay, who oversees Hawai‘i Police Department’s Area II Criminal Investigation Division.

“Prior to 2020, annual statewide seizures of fentanyl were less than one pound, but from 2020 to 2021 Hawai‘i Island was responsible for roughly 30 pounds of the state’s overall 53 pounds of fentanyl seizures.

“The increase is troubling because very small amounts of the fentanyl, sometimes an amount equivalent to a few grains a salt, can be fatal.”

Fentanyl is a synthetic opioid that can exist in various forms (e.g., powder, tablet, capsule, solution, or rocks). Although medically prescribed fentanyl has a legitimate purpose, illicit fentanyl, produced in unregulated and uncontrolled clandestine laboratories, can be deadly.

Illicit fentanyl production is not regulated and therefore there are no standards in production.  Because of this, concentration of the drug, even within the same lot can vary widely. This is of concern, since as little as two milligrams (about one grain of Hawaiian salt) of fentanyl can be fatal in a non-opioid-tolerant individual.

Drug traffickers will often try to disguise fentanyl as legitimate prescription pills in an attempt to reduce detection by law enforcement, but officers are also recovering fentanyl in powder form.

The powder form is more dangerous since it can easily aerosol if disturbed and when inhaled is rapidly absorbed into the body. Thus, personnel responding to a scene where powdered fentanyl is suspected may wear personal protective equipment while investigating the incident.

Be cautious of:

  • Unknown or unlabeled powders, solutions, or rocks.
  • Pills or capsules that may resemble actual medications, but their origin is not certain.
    • Did it come from a pharmacy?
    • Is it properly packaged/labeled?
    • Is there a medical prescription associated to it?
    • If the answer is no, do not touch.

What to do:
If you encounter prescription medication or drugs of unknown origin, don’t touch them. Try to determine the item’s identity by checking with people who could have placed it there. If unable to determine its origin and the drug-related item seems suspicious, notify police at (808) 935-3311.

Recognize fentanyl poisoning:
An individual experiencing fentanyl poisoning may exhibit one or more of the following:

  • Drowsiness or unresponsiveness
  • constricted or pinpoint pupils
  • slow or no breathing

If these signs are observed, contact emergency medical services at 911 and provide a description of the circumstances.

An option may be to administer Naloxone, if it is available and you have received training in its administration (Link below). Otherwise, follow directions from the dispatcher until emergency medical services arrive.

Below are additional resources available to help further your education on this topic:

Additional Resources:
https://www.getsmartaboutdrugs.gov/sites/default/files/2021-08/Fentanyl-2020.pdf
https://www.getsmartaboutdrugs.gov/drugs/fentanyl
https://www.dea.gov/sites/default/files/2021-12/DEA-OPCK_FactSheet_December%202021.pdf
https://www.hhhrc.org/naloxone
https://www.bayclinic.org/cntu-campaign/publications.html

Additionally, households with unused or expired prescription medication may dispose of them at drop boxes at Hawai‘i Police Department district stations, listed in the below link:
https://www.hawaiipolice.com/community/drug-take-back-program

Nā Pua Noʻeau Spring Break Classes – March 2022

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I invite you to sign your children, students, ʻohana members and friends to our Spring break classes being offered for students in the 4th-12th grade.  Please note the details on the attached flyers & feel free to share the flyers in your circles of influences as you see fit.

All classes are FREE and VIRTUAL, & Native Hawaiian preference.

Let me know if you have any questions or concerns.

Aloha, 🌸

Loke Evans-Bautista
Na Pua No’eau Coordinator
University of Hawaii at Hilo
808-974-7848

Zentangle

Papa ʻAmaʻama Flyer

High School Students help to create Public Service Announcement for Marshalese

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High school students assisted KRHCAI staff to create a Marshallese Public Service Announcement video.
Aunty Jessie presented them with an honorarium on Friday, 29 OCT 2021.
2021-OCT-KRHCAI-PSA-Marshalese-ukelele