BCBSND Caring Foundation grant helps better connect people to needed resources

FARGO, N.D. – Blue Cross Blue Shield of North Dakota (BCBSND) Caring Foundation has awarded Essentia Health Foundation a $35,000 grant to fully develop Resourceful, an emerging platform that will connect patients to community-based services that can support better health outcomes and overall wellness.  The grant was awarded as a part of a SPARK grant that the BCBSND Caring Foundation offers to non-profit organizations.

Strengthening People, Access, Resources and Knowledge (SPARK) grants are awarded to community-based initiatives that encourage health and well-being in local communities, reflect community priorities and demonstrate strong local collaborations.

The funds awarded for this first of its kind project will allow Essentia to work with community-based organizations within the Fargo region and statewide to identify and connect patients with community resources via a closed-loop referral system called Resourceful. This system integrates Essentia's electronic medical record and allows for strengthening the network of community-based organizations connection to potential clients with free or low-cost services, therefore creating a community resource platform and improving health outcomes for our patients and our community.

“We are very grateful for this SPARK grant. This will enable us to complete the work necessary to bring this referral platform to our communities.  Everyone can benefit and use this to find the resources they may need,” shares Executive Director of Essentia Health Foundation, Susan Omdalen.

BCBSND Caring Foundation Executive Director, Pam Gulleson states, “We are pleased to be able to support this innovative technology that will help connect individuals with critical services and supports within their communities. It is a great model and will allow individuals in the Fargo, Valley City and Lisbon areas to better access to social needs such as food, transportation and housing.”

About the Blue Cross Blue Shield of North Dakota (BCBSND) Caring Foundation
Established in 1989, the BCBSND Caring Foundation (www.BCBSND.com/Caring-Foundation) is a private 501(c)(3) charitable organization. Through giving and investing, the Caring Foundation focuses on key health issues that help improve the health and well-being of North Dakotans and their communities. Caring Foundation staff work with grantees to support nonprofit sustainability, collaborate on shared outcomes and create lasting change.