Convening is Key during COVID-19

NJHI 2018: Upstream Action Acceleration Accelerating Action for a Healthy Trenton

Trenton Health Team (THT) has been serving our city for more than a decade, working with partners to improve health and well-being. Yet the importance of this role has never been more clear than today, as our community confronts COVID-19.

As one of New Jersey’s first Regional Health Hubs, THT works closely with the county and city, health care providers and social service agencies. The Trenton Health Information Exchange (HIE) is tracking COVID-19 test results and THT is training new NowPow clients as service providers seek reliable service referral information to meet the unprecedented demand for help.

THT is responding to the need for expanded community services by hosting weekly online meetings for our Community Advisory Board members and other social service providers. We are reaching out to existing partners and engaging new organizations, attracting dozens of participants and then distributing information and coordinating resources.

In addition, THT is focused on the specific challenges facing Trenton residents. As an example, THT advocated for the county to open walk-up sites in the city for residents without transportation and helped establish emergency shelters for COVID-19 patients who cannot shelter in place. Despite working remotely, our community health team continues to connect with vulnerable clients by phone.

Raising public awareness and compliance with health safety rules is another priority. THT recently partnered with Latino community advocates to print flyers and signs distributed to approximately 50 neighborhood stores to urge merchants and residents to follow COVID-19 health safety rules. 

On social media, our #MyMask campaign features THT staff and community advocates posting selfies encouraging residents to follow public health guidelines. THT also moderated a Question and Answer session about COVID-19 on Facebook Live in Spanish and English. 

Our COVID-19 Updates webpage, visited by more than 2,000 users in April, provides a map of food distribution sites and availability, along with information on pharmacy delivery services and the latest COVID-19 information from the city and state in English and Spanish. COVID-19 has changed our world, our nation and our city. But even as we stay home, our community is coming together and THT is here to help.

The Grantee Blog regularly publishes updates from NJHI-supported communities. Bookmark this site to stay up-to-date and share in the work of building healthier communities across New Jersey.
Michelle Ruess
Trenton Health Team