Congestive Heart Failure Outreach Project

Saint Joseph – London, London, KY

In just three years, the Congestive Heart Failure (CHF) Outreach Project of Saint Joseph – London made a significant difference in hospital readmission rates for patients with congestive heart failure (CHF).

In 2008, the hospital’s readmission rate for patients with CHF was 38%; now, it is just 6%, the lowest in the area. The program provides a full-time nurse who teaches CHF patients how to monitor and control their disease process. So far, more than 1,750 patients have been able to benefit from the program.

Chester Newby, Sr., shares his story:

“I am 61 years old and London, Kentucky is where I consider home. Eleven years ago, my health began failing me, and actually they told me then that I had three months to live. I have lung and heart problems as well as diabetes. I have been hospitalized many times.

My favorite lung doctor, who I really trust, referred me to the congestive heart failure

program. The nurse, Rita, makes home visits, checks my blood pressure, listens to my lungs, and has taught me the importance of daily weights and my diet, and she helps me with my medication needs.

This is what I would like to tell you about Rita and the program. This program is worth more than anything else. Without Rita, I could not make it. She calls to check on me and if I need her, she will either talk to me on the phone or be right here. Rita has taught me more than anyone else has. In fact, she explains everything to me in a way that I can understand what she has said, and I do what she says because I trust her.”

Community Recreation and Playground Safety Project

Oakes Community Hospital, Oakes, ND

During the 1990s, the outdated playground equipment at the public school in Oakes was the cause of some painful cuts, slivers and broken arms. A committee of local volunteers raised funds for new equipment, but more than that was needed to make the playground safe.

Sister Dianna Hell and other leaders at Oakes Community Hospital secured a Mission and Ministry Fund grant and:

  • Educated children, teachers and day-care providers about safe play
  • Hired an aide to monitor play during school hours
  • Resurfaced the playground
  • Remove trees and an old fence for greater safety

Sr, Diana Hell

Improving Health and Wellness in East Chattanooga

Memorial Health Care System, Chattanooga, TN

In the neighborhoods of East Chattanooga, more than one in four people live in poverty; nearly one in three adults over age 25 have less than a high school education. Compared to all residents of Hamilton County, residents of East Chattanooga are more likely to be:

  • Uninsured
  • Overweight or obese
  • Have high blood pressure and high cholesterol
  • Have babies born at less than 5.5 pounds.  

Improving Health and Wellness offers exercise classes, health education, healthy cooking contests, volunteer opportunities and a “Biggest Loser” contest. Data shows the program is improving the overall health status of East Chattanooga through:

  • Decreases in weight and blood pressure readings
  • Improved blood sugar levels
  • Reduced use of medications to treat high blood pressure and diabetes

Improving health and wellness

Some comments from participants:

“Since I started the wellness program, I can get in and out of the bathtub with no assistance. Before the program, my daughter and granddaughter would have to come assist me. Before, I would be out of breath by the time I got to the top of the steps; now, I almost run up the steps.”

“I love the fellowship and bond we have developed with this wellness program. I thank everyone for your prayers each week.”

“My clothes are fitting better. And guess what, ladies: I actually pulled the skin off my fried chicken the other day. I shock myself.”

“I have been suffering from knee issues for a while, I mean years. Every morning when I got out of bed, it would be so painful I could hardly stand it. Now, there is no more pain. I can’t believe it.”

Read more stories about the Mission and Ministry Fund or download a copy of the Mission and Ministry Fund 15th Anniversary brochure

Mission and Ministry Fund 15th Anniversary