Episode 18 of the More than Health Care: A Community Health Conversation podcast is now available on the Alliance for Strong Families and Communities’ website and on Apple Podcasts, Google Play, and Spotify. Every other week, a new episode uncovers keys to collaboration and holistic health in pursuit of improved health outcomes and lower costs for all.  

Innovation leads to successful outcomes when both dreamers and doers work together for a common goal. After all, the ability to think outside-the-box must ultimately be put into practice through real-world effort coupled with funding sources to meet the targeted need. That has been the experience for Erin Keltner, vice president of operations for KVC West Virginia, who’s projects have followed this type of symbiotic relationship.

KVC provides behavioral health care, foster care, and adoption services to impoverished areas of West Virginia, and through innovation, has found better ways to serve its clients. One of those is meeting clients within their own homes to provide care. “It’s nice because we can meet families where they are, and people don’t feel like they have to gather their entire families up, drive, lose half a day, pull everyone out of school,” says Keltner. If not for this ability, Keltner feels many would not even come into a center for help. To foster more interaction, KVC secured a U.S. Department of Agriculture grant, which allowed them to provide iPads and other HIPPA compliant video conferencing equipment to families for telehealth services. This creative use of available funding enables KVC to stay connected to its clients between scheduled visits and to be more accessible in crisis situations.

For Keltner, innovation is a must, especially when dollars for established services can be scarce. “We definitely have to invest in new projects,” Keltner emphasizes. “Our previous CEO used to say, ‘if you’re not growing, you’re dying,’ and so I think that’s true, I think that if we don’t try to move forward and try to find new ways to partner and find new ideas to take on, then we’re not moving forward.” Given its record of innovative thinking and successful programs, KVC is well-prepared for a resilient future.

Listen as Keltner explains why having both dreamers and doers within an organization fosters innovation and future success in Episode 18 of the  More than Health Care Podcast  available through the Alliance website or subscribe on the Apple Podcast, Google Play, or Spotify apps

About the Podcast

While many are realizing that collaboration and holistic approaches are the solution, the health care and human services sectors are struggling to find the right formula to realize the full potential. The More than Health Care podcast is designed to help organizations overcome barriers to partnerships resulting from cultural differences, financial pressures, and rules and regulations. 

In addition to showcasing inspiring examples of integration from across the country, featured experts will expose the myths, misconceptions, and shortcomings of efforts to address the social determinants of health through collaboration across sectors. 

This podcast is presented by the Alliance for Strong Families and Communities, Ascentria Care Alliance, and Beech Acres Parenting Center. Cohosts Jill Huynh, vice president of new business development at Beech Acres, and Tim Johnstone, executive vice president of community services at Ascentria, work at the intersection of health and human services, bringing the expertise and practical experience to uncover key takeaways for improving health care and human services integration. 

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Learn more about the Alliance's efforts to improve population health and well-being.