October 2023 | Issue No. 19
Liza Greenberg Named as PCC’s New Director of Workforce Capacity
Liza Greenberg knows how to hit the ground running. Not only is she fully immersed in the Primary Care Coalition’s (PCC) mission; she’s also a featured storyteller in our 2023 Storytelling Show on November 15 at The AMP by Strathmore. Greenberg, a registered nurse with a master’s degree in public health, is PCC’s Director of Workforce Capacity. It’s a new position responsible for implementing the initiative to increase the pipeline of culturally and linguistically diverse healthcare workers who mirror the community while providing economic opportunities for underemployed residents. The partnership among PCC, Nexus Montgomery, Montgomery College, and other community-based organizations aims to train residents for entry-level healthcare positions.
These are stepping-stone roles trainees can enter relatively quickly and earn income while the program introduces them to broader healthcare opportunities. The program eases pressure on local provider capacity and costs in the near term while creating another recruitment mechanism for healthcare careers.
Tickets Available for PCC’s “Electric” Storytelling Show on November 15 at Pike & Rose
The atmosphere in the room was “electric,” as Elizabeth Arend Dutta described the Primary Care Coalition’s first Storytelling Show in 2019. She was among the PCC storytellers who took the stage that year and captivated the audience with her personal healthcare journey.
Dutta’s story helped launch PCC's tradition of celebrating community and health by demonstrating vulnerability and courage. When mixed on stage with humor, the result is pure magic.
PCC’s fourth annual Storytelling Show is scheduled for November 15, 6:30-9 p.m., at The AMP by Strathmore, located at Pike & Rose, 11810 Grand Park Avenue (4th Floor), North Bethesda, MD 20852. This year’s theme is “Stronger Together,” and the show is the culmination of the organization’s 30th anniversary year of events. Dutta will serve as the master of ceremonies.
Montgomery County Libraries Offer COVID Test Kits and N95 Masks
Montgomery County is offering COVID-19 test kits and N95 masks to the public on a first-come, first-served basis at Montgomery County Public Library locations. The libraries that still have masks and test kits available are noted on the Montgomery County Public Library website, along with the library locations and hours. The kits and masks are available for personal, individual use.
The libraries are not able to hold masks or test kits. Anyone with COVID-19 symptoms is asked not to come to a library pickup location and to contact a healthcare provider instead.
For more information about COVID-19 in Montgomery County, the County government has an online portal with current data.
AAHI Awards $1.5 Million for Asian American and Pacific Islanders
Montgomery County’s Asian American Health Initiative (AAHI), a Department of Health and Human Services program, has awarded $1.5 million from its Healthy Communities Fund to 14 local programs that enhance the health and wellness of Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) residents. The Primary Care Coalition partners with AAHI in implementing the fund and building capacity among grant recipients. Click here for more information about the competitive award process and the organizations that received the funding, which will support services through June 30, 2024.
Congratulations to Dr. Veronica X. Vela!
Dr. Veronica X. Vela, PCC's Senior Director of Healthcare Access, is a contributor to Transforming with Design: Creating New Innovation Capabilities with Design Thinking, published September 15th. With case studies from Danone to Kaiser Permanente, the book summary promises "a rich tapestry of examples, anecdotes, and lessons that place design thinking in perspective." Dr. Vela co-authored a chapter on redesigning systems of care at the Department of Veterans Affairs: "My colleagues and I worked with veterans to redesign the VA care experience so it would reflect their needs, values, and beliefs systems. We dramatically increased patient trust and satisfaction as a result. To really make an impact, we need an intimate understanding of who we’re serving. I'm so proud of this work to make health care more human-centered and look forward to translating that experience in the way we support our local safety net."
October, Brookside Gardens. The Visitor’s Center is open from 9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m., outdoor gardens are open from sunrise to sunset. Stop to see the bright fall colors of deciduous trees and shrubs such as dogwood, Japanese maple, and winged euonymus, and ornamental fruit of barberry, beautyberry, holly, pyracantha, and viburnum.
October 27, 6:30 – 8:30 p.m., Food is Freedom, featuring speakers Susan Cook and Vanessa Pierre at Josiah Henson Museum and Park. The $10 fee includes light refreshments, drinks, and a ticket to the museum that is redeemable during museum hours. Register here.
October 28, 10:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m., don’t miss Frankenskate. Bring your roller skates or inline skates and enjoy the Ridge Road Recreational Park and the sounds of spooky music. The free event is for all ages and skating abilities, and registration is not required. Food will be available for purchase from local vendors.
November 5, 10:00 a.m. – 12:00 noon, New Family Breakfast for families with a Down Syndrome child younger than five who recently moved to Montgomery County or expectant families. The Down Syndrome Network Montgomery County (DSNMC) leadership and New Family Committee members will be on hand to welcome new members. The breakfast will be held at Main Street, 50 Monroe Place, Rockville, MD 20850. Preregistration is required.
November 9, 1:00 - 2:00 p.m., Seizure First Aid and Awareness Workshop via Zoom, sponsored by Independence Now. Get ready for Epilepsy Awareness Month in November. Register here.
Introducing Pets of PCC
While we aim to fill your inbox with useful, coalition-related content, we can’t resist the occasional bit of fun. We’ve also found it to be a good strategy for engagement with messages. In fact, current consultant and former staff member Elizabeth Arend Dutta is internally (and possibly externally, too?) famous for including baby animal memes when she really needs a timely response.
That bit of inspiration, coupled with the fact that PCC has a lot of pet parents in its ranks, inspired our latest regular newsletter feature: Pets of PCC. This month’s featured pets are Tater Tot (L) and Greyson (R), proud dog and cat children of Provider Services Coordinator Danielle Carter. Dad joke via Good Housekeeping. Enjoy!