The Blue Cross of Idaho Foundation for Health, through its Rural Health Initiative, is awarding grants to three organizations working to help solve some of the healthcare challenges that exist in rural Idaho.

Dr. Rhonda Robinson Beale
Chief Medical Affairs Officer
Blue Cross of Idaho Foundation for Health

“Idaho’s landscape can make it difficult for people to access healthcare and for doctors and other medical professionals to provide the best care,” said Dr. Rhonda Robinson Beale, the Chief Medical Affairs Officer at the Blue Cross of Idaho Foundation for Health. “Of Idaho’s 44 counties, 35 are considered rural and face many of the challenges that our Rural Health Initiative was created to help address.”

The three grant recipients are:

Idaho Community Foundation and Idaho Rural Partnership. This $40,000 grant will help address health disparities in rural Idaho. These organizations are partnering to design and implement a process that engages community leaders in meaningful health-related dialogues about evidence-based information specific to their community to facilitate transformative action planning.

Southwest District 3 Behavioral Health Crisis System. This $75,000 grant will identify and implement a pilot practice and financial redesign model to advance the current behavioral health crisis center to a system model that coordinates care and addresses the needs of rural and vulnerable populations. The project will map gaps and necessary connections and coordination points to transform the crisis center into a crisis system of care with the goal of successfully stabilizing this population in rural areas as effectively as in urban areas.

University of Idaho. This $75,000 infrastructure grant will allow the university to further develop the Project Echo initiative to enhance its training curriculum and processes that easily connects rural providers to collegial teaching teams, giving them to access to knowledge that will help improve their diagnosis and treatment skills.