Weyling White, Practice Administrator for Roanoke Chowan Community Health Center (RCCHC), has been selected by the Board of Directors of the North Carolina Institute of Medicine to the prestigious honor of membership. White joins over 150 leaders in health, medicine, and policy across North Carolina to receive this honor and partner with the North Carolina Institute of Medicine (NCIOM) to advance health policy for a healthier state.
"Joining the NCIOM is a huge honor and I am extremely grateful. I started my career with one goal in my mind and that was to give back to my community in a way that will save lives. We all have a part to play in our community and I have never looked at what I do as work, but as a responsibility to the people we serve," says White.
CEO of Roanoke Chowan Community Health Center and current NCIOM board member, Kim Schwartz, adds, "As a member of the NCIOM Board, I am well aware of what it takes to be nominated to membership of NCIOM - and Weyling White is recognized as an emerging leader in the safety net health care community across North Carolina. We are very proud of his accomplishments, along with his leadership at RCCHC."
"We are pleased to welcome new members to the NCIOM," said Dr. Adam Zolotor, president and CEO of the NCIOM. "We look forward to working with them to continue the mission of the Institute, seeking constructive solutions to statewide problems that impede the improvement of health and efficient and effective delivery of health care for all North Carolinians."
The North Carolina Institute of Medicine (NCIOM) is an independent, quasi-state agency that was chartered by the North Carolina General Assembly in 1983 to provide balanced, nonpartisan information on issues of relevance to the health of North Carolina's population. The NCIOM convenes task forces of knowledgeable and interested individuals to study complex health issues facing the state in order to develop workable solutions to address these issues to improve health, health care access, and quality of health care in North Carolina.
ncIMPACT, a program produced by UNC-TV, will feature Roanoke Chowan Community Health Center employees and the many barriers to transportation in rural parts of the state during an upcoming segment airing next month. UNC-TV Public Media North Carolina is partnering with the UNC School of Government, with sponsorship by Civic Federal Credit Union, for this compelling new series.
Episode 13 of ncIMPACT will cover the barrier of rural transportation and how innovative programs in the Roanoke Chowan area are addressing these issues. Programs and services included in this episode are the HHMA TRIP pilot program and CPTA (Choanoke Public Transportation Authority).
HHMA TRIP (Transporting Residents with Innovative Practices) pilot program was designed to increase the "health, wellness, and general well-being" of patients by implementing a "patient-centered" transportation model. TRIP was developed for a target population of high-risk patients who face transportation barriers preventing them from adequately accessing medical care. This program serves identified patients that reside in Hertford and Bertie counties and ensures that each patient has an opportunity to access locations that are directly related to their medical conditions, recovery needs, and overall well-being.
"Every person should have the right to access quality healthcare and the resources they need to survive. My team and I developed this program to ensure that transportation will no longer be the source for people having to suffer because they simply cannot find a ride to places that are essential to their health, and we are planning to expand to serve more people", says Weyling White, TRIP Program Manager.
HHMA TRIP is funded by the Roanoke-Chowan Foundation and operated out of Roanoke Chowan Community Health Center.
The television news program is also looking at the services provided by Choanoke Public Transportation Authority. CPTA serves the citizens of Bertie, Halifax, Hertford and Northampton Counties. For over 40 years, CPTA has provided transportation needs for any person in the four county area who is in need of a ride, whether it be to local community colleges, shopping centers, medical offices, senior centers, day cares, human service agencies, etc.
“I would like to say a big “Thank You” to all our riders, partners, and communities for allowing CPTA to provide their transportation needs. We most certainly enjoy you giving us the opportunity, and we look forward in continuing to serve you. That’s what we’re here for! Just give us a call and “Hop A Ride”, says Pam Perry, Executive Director of Choanoke Public Transportation Authority.
The episode is scheduled to air Thursday, May 2 at 8pm on UNC-TV.
Hertford County native Catherine Parker received the inaugural Public Health Early Career Alumni Achievement Award during East Carolina University’s College of Health and Human Performance’s National Public Health Week celebration.
Just six months after starting her professional career with Roanoke Chowan Community Health Center, Parker took on leadership of its school-based health program, working with the public school system in Hertford County.
“I’ve always been passionate about making wellness fun and that radiated—my supervisors saw that I’d be good match to work with youth. And I love it. It’s been super rewarding and exciting,” she said.
“I grew up in Hertford County. In high school, my health classes were focused more on sports than on health. It left me wanting a lot more. Youth deserve—they have a right—to know how to take care of themselves, particularly around reproductive health and safety. I have a strong passion for youth wellness and empowerment. Our work covers a broad range, from teaching prekindergarten students how to brush their teeth to teaching high school students how to build healthier relationships. We try to customize our efforts based on what school staff are seeing as issues with their students.”
Among the initiatives that Parker has supported as director of the center are the Farm to School to Healthcare project that established school gardens; student-led farmers markets that provide vouchers for access to free fruits and vegetables; and a literacy initiative within the clinic.
“I had amazing preparation at ECU,” said Parker, who earned her bachelor’s degree in 2010 and her master’s in 2012. “Faculty and staff in the health education and promotion department were incredible. The program fit exactly what I wanted to do and gave me room for creative freedom. I was fortunate to work with Student Health and Campus Wellness, where I was able to put what I learned in class into action right away. Those opportunities really prepared me. And being treated as a professional and equal member of the team, even though I was a student, meant so much to me. I think about that when I’m supervising students now,” she said.
Parker may have graduated but she hasn’t stopped learning. “One of my fears is that I’m going to get stagnant,” she said. “I love learning from other people and being inspired by what they’re doing. It motivates me.”
She was named a Bernstein Community Health Leadership Fellow in 2017 and selected for the Rural Economic Development Institute (REDI) in 2018. She’s also involved with numerous professional and community organizations, including as a board member for the North Carolina School-Based Health Alliance and a member of the Town of Murfreesboro Parks and Rec Advisory Committee.
“Everything we do is based on relationships. Community work is all about knowing and caring for people and making connections with them. Being on the parks and rec committee isn’t part of my job description, but it’s valuable to the work I do. It’s important to understand how we all fit together.
“I’m so proud that in my work I can be true to myself and my values. And that I can give back to a community that’s given so much to me. I’m able to express myself, share ideas, test new things and get people excited about these initiatives. I’ve done things I never imagined I could and it’s been through partnerships with great people in our community.”
In their nomination materials, Parker’s colleagues wrote that “Catherine’s love and passion for rural health, youth health and community health is evident in all her work. She is extremely committed to the community that raised her. She has led this center and staff to new heights of success that exceed all expectations.”
The 2018 annual report for Roanoke Chowan Community Health Center is now available for download.
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Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Day of Service
Monday, Jan. 21, 2019
On Monday, January 21st, RCCHC will celebrate Dr. Martin Luther King Day of Service. Although our offices will be closed in observance, we invite you to use the day as a way to transform Dr. King’s life and teachings of equality and racial justice into community service that helps solve social problems. That service may meet a tangible need, such as fixing up a school or senior center, or it may meet a need of the spirit, such as building a sense of community or mutual responsibility.
You can find a service opportunity near you by visiting the Corporation for National and Community Service’s “FIND A VOLUNTEER OPPORTUNITY” page: https://www.nationalservice.gov/serve/
Or, offer to help an elderly neighbor or family member, tutor a child, babysit for family or friends, send a care package to a deployed soldier or to their family at home, offer a ride to someone you know doesn't have a car, or even donate blood or sign yourself up as an organ donor.
We have also included information on local events to attend in celebration of the day.
Coretta Scott King said, “The greatest birthday gift my husband could receive is if people of all racial and ethnic backgrounds celebrated the holiday by performing individual acts of kindness through service to others.”
“Roanoke Chowan Community Health Center is a part of the more than 50 year old Health Center Movement that was created in tandem with the Civil Rights Movement and the War on Poverty. I often say the charge of Movements is to MOVE. RCCHC has certainly been on the move for the past 13 years working diligently at improving the well-being of the residents of Hertford, Bertie, Washington, Gates and Northampton Counties. To be sure, moving only for the sake of change isn’t meaningful, but as Dr. Martin Luther King said “If you can’t fly then run, if you can’t run then walk, if you can’t walk then crawl, but, whatever you do - you have to keep moving forward.”
For me, moving forward means opening my eyes, ears and heart to individuals, communities, cultures, systems, nature, to what I can learn to expand my horizons to serve. I appreciate that the motto for the Federal Dr. Martin Luther King Holiday is service…and the intention to empower individuals, strengthen communities, bridge barriers, create solutions to social problems, and MOVE us closer to Dr. King’s vision of a “Beloved Community.” I encourage all of us to reflect and consider how we may serve others next Monday in honor of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.”
Kim Schwartz, CEO