The director of community health promotions at Robert Wood Johnson Barnabas Health in New Brunswick received the RISE Health Care Hero Award on Monday, March 21 at The RISE Summit on Social Determinants of Health in Nashville.
NASHVILLE, TN, March 22, 2022 /24-7PressRelease/ — RISE is pleased to announce that Mariam Merced, MA, director, RWJUH community health promotions, New Brunswick, Robert Wood Johnson Barnabas Health, was awarded the inaugural RISE Health Care Hero Award at The RISE Summit on Social Determinants of Health.
The RISE Health Care Hero Award is a new accolade presented at The RISE Summit on Social Determinants of Health that acknowledges an individual’s effort to make a significant impact on the lives of underserved populations through health care and/or social services interventions, and through superior example of the RISE mission to promote health equity among all patients.
Merced was chosen from a pool of 29 nominees for the award for her work to address social determinants of health (SDoH), the non-medical factors that impact an individual’s health, throughout the New Brunswick community. Among her many accomplishments:
• Oversaw the development of a regional health consortium
• Spearheaded a medical interpreters’ project to provide in-person interpretation services as an alternative to the hospital’s telephone language line
• Developed a domestic violence training program to educate more than 600 health care workers, across three states, about the public health impact of domestic violence
• Led efforts to expand access to safe and affordable housing and raise awareness of housing as a key SDoH
• Coordinated COVID-19 response programs, initiatives, and communications to support residents experiencing poor health, social, and economic outcomes as a result of the pandemic and resulting disparities
Fellow award finalists included Anthony Davis, community health worker, Penn Center for Community Health Workers, and Dr. Frederick Echols, health commissioner, St. Louis City Department of Health.
“Mariam Merced has spent the past three decades improving health outcomes and quality of life for individuals and communities throughout Middlesex County. Her passion and dedication to serve others knows no bounds–even using a bullhorn to get important messages out to the community,” wrote Lauren Scrivo-Harris, government affairs and public relations specialist, RWJBarnabas Health, in the nomination. “Throughout her tenure, she has been a staunch advocate for supporting patients and neighboring communities through programs, such as holiday celebrations for low-income children, violence prevention and intervention, drug and alcohol cessation, back-to-school donations, youth summer employment programs, and community health screenings.”
Merced also actively partners with houses of worship, health institutions, and community-based organizations throughout the community to ensure culturally appropriate health initiatives for diverse populations.
“She is truly a health care hero to so many, having a lasting impact on every resident and far beyond the region,” wrote Scrivo-Harris in the nomination.
About the RISE Health Care Hero Award
The RISE Health Care Hero Award is presented to an esteemed nominee who has made a significant impact on the lives of underserved populations through health care and/or social services interventions, and through superior example of the RISE mission to promote health equity among all patients. Eligibility requirements include the following:
1) Nominee must work in a role that addresses social determinants of health
2) Nominee must work for one of the following organizations: health plan, health care provider, social services provider / non-profit / CBO, government organization, foundation, pharmaceutical company, or vendor / supplier
3) Nominee does not need to have a medical credential to be nominated
4) Nominee must have fulfilled one of the following criteria: contributed to significant process improvement in addressing the care of underserved populations and/or dedicated 10+ years to exemplary work in this industry
Nominations are being accepted for the 2023 Health Care Hero Award. Nominations must be submitted by December 31, 2022. The award will be presented at The RISE Summit on Social Determinants of Health in March 2023.
RISE is the premier community for health care professionals who aspire to meet the extraordinary challenges posed by the emerging landscape of accountable care and government health care reform. Recognized industry wide as the number one source for information on risk adjustment and quality improvement within health care, RISE strives to serve the community on four fronts: networking, education, industry intelligence and career development. Through cutting-edge conferences, online courses, in-house training, webinars as well as an association comprised of over 4,500 members, RISE provides professionals with industry insights and critical information they need to stay ahead of the curve. RISE produces more than 30 conferences annually, focused on sophisticated topics and ample networking opportunities for thousands of executives from mid- to senior-level and C-suite. Our team of subject matter experts is often first to market with emerging topics, and we pride ourselves on consistently delivering on top quality operations and logistics to produce a seamless event.
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