HealthEast joins Anchor Partnership

Kathryn CorreiaKathryn Correia, President and CEO of HealthEast, announced today that HealthEast has formally joined the Central Corridor Anchor Partnership. The Partnership is a group of 12 colleges, universities, hospitals, and health care organizations that have used the debut of the Green Line LRT as an occasion to link their investments in a vision that is “anchored” to the health, vitality, and growth of Central Corridor neighborhoods. These partners have jointly committed to spending more procurement dollars with local businesses, hiring more local residents, and promoting transit use by students and employees.

“The Anchor Partnership is a great fit with our vision,” said Correia.  “We are deeply committed to optimal health and well-being for our patients, our communities and ourselves, and we want to work together in partnership with other health care and education organizations to positively impact the factors that influence the health and resilience of our neighbors.”

Paul Pribbenow, President of Augsburg College and Chair of the Partnership, welcomed HealthEast as a great addition. “We are starting to see important traction in our initiatives,” he noted, “and adding a significant partner like HealthEast will surely expand the collective impact of this work.”

Metropolitan State University President Devinder Malhotra agreed.  “This is a really strong value and values proposition,” Malhotra stated. “We are deeply committed to fostering a campus culture of community engagement, addressing mutually-defined interests and building on the capacities of local communities, and HealthEast sees the future of health care in this same light.” Malhotra views the innovation and shared resources of the Partnership as assets to create opportunities for local residents, while also helping each organization deliver a high quality work force of the future.

Vision of community health

John Swanholm, Vice President of Community Advancement and Executive Director of the HealthEast Foundation, sees anchor partnership work as part of a larger vision of community health.  “We are in the business of providing health care services,” Swanholm explained, “but we recognize that health depends largely on what happens in our homes, schools, workplaces and communities – long before people enter our clinics and hospitals.” John Swanholm

HealthEast has already engaged its team in the workforce and procurement initiatives of the Partnership. Patty Kelley, MSN, RN, is an education and development specialist for HealthEast.  “We know that high rates of poverty and unemployment can create barriers to health and well-being,” she noted. “And we know as an employer that hiring more local residents into health care careers is a path to both community health and our own success in delivering high quality care.”

Jim VanDrasek, system director for materials management at HealthEast, has hosted the Partnership’s procurement work group and sees the connections between local food procurement and community health. “We’ve also heard from patients and our employees that who want us to include more local and fresh food in our system,” he stated. 

Connecting through the Green Line

HealthEast has a strong footprint on the Green Line, with LRT stations just a few steps away from Bethesda and St. Joseph’s Hospitals, its Downtown St. Paul clinic, as well as HealthEast corporate offices at its Midway location. “I’m excited that the Partnership presents us with opportunities to promote the connections between using transit and better health for our employees,” commented Swanholm. “We are in a great position to partner with Metro Transit and share the message that taking transit to work helps to relieve stress and shed pounds.” 

HealthEast Team - Habitat for HumanityAbout HealthEast

HealthEast is the leading health care provider in the Twin Cities East Metro. From prevention to cure, HealthEast meets the needs of the community with a blend of primary, acute and post-acute care. Its family health and specialty programs span four hospitals – Bethesda Hospital, St. John’s Hospital, St. Joseph’s Hospital and Woodwinds Health Campus – plus 14 clinics, home care and medical transportation. HealthEast’s nearly 7,500 employees and 1,400 physicians on staff work toward a vision of optimal health and well-being for our patients, our communities and ourselves. The organization is focused on a future that includes community well-being and deepening partnerships with East Metro organizations.