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Austin Family Foundation grant will help Providence care for those suffering behavioral and chronic medical needs

PMG FILE PHOTO - The Providence Newberg Health Foundation announced the $188,000 gift last week from the Austin Family Foundation, a nonprofit funded by dental manufacturing giant A-dec Inc.A gift from a Newberg philanthropic organization will allow a local agency to continue its work providing recovery space for people with behavioral health conditions, chronic medical needs or housing instability.

The Providence Newberg Health Foundation announced the $188,000 gift last week from the Austin Family Foundation, a nonprofit funded by dental manufacturing giant A-dec Inc.

"To better serve some of our most vulnerable patients, the Austin Family Foundation is investing in our community in projects like this that will provide wrap-around services, including mental and medical health care at our Newberg facilities and case management services to give clients the tools to thrive and meet their own goals, including housing stability and improved lives," a release from Providence said.

Among other things, the grant will allow Providence to lease five motel rooms in Newberg, necessary as pandemic federal funding for temporary housing projects has ended.

The funding will help Providence's Out of the Cold Program which serves Providence clients who find themselves in "emergency housing circumstances" that may include those who are medically fragile, as well as their families.

"People who are medically fragile need their own space, so we seek a non-congruent shelter to provide a safety net," the hospital said.

People who may be included in the program are typically Medicaid eligible with income at 138% or less of the federal poverty level. In fact, most clients have zero income due to their health issues. To qualify, clients must meet the criteria of homelessness or housing instability and be experiencing a mental health crisis, an acute medical need such as recovering from a procedure or frequent emergency room visits.

"This gift will make a big difference in the lives of many in our community," PNMC Chief Executive Joe Yoder said. "We are grateful to the Austin family for their generosity to Providence and we're looking forward to working with our community partners so we can serve more people on this important issue."

The program will allow 20 high-acuity people to receive housing and services, with 70% successfully transitioning to more stable housing, and enhance clients' so-called "Social Determinants of Health" by receiving services. Social Determinants of Health is a metric that measures a person's economic stability and access to education, health care, community and social contacts.

In addition to enabling Providence to supply medical and behavioral health care, the grant will allow the Providence Newberg Health Foundation to leverage funds toward the program as well, including by providing staff benefits and indirectly through such costs as computers and administrative support.


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