Richard Johnson, MS, CHES®, TTS, is a busy man. As a public health educator for Person County Health Department (PCHD), he is involved in several projects designed to help his community lead healthier, happier lives. He gives presentations on respiratory care, speaks about the importance of high-quality sleep for good health, teaches cardiovascular disease prevention in women, and promotes tobacco and smoking cessation, just to name a few. He also uses NCCARE360 to connect individuals and families in his community to much-needed services and resources.
Richard has worked in healthcare for more than 30 years, but it was when he began working as a Community Health Worker (CHW) two years ago that he really came to understand the importance of community partnerships in improving health outcomes. During the COVID-19 shutdowns, he spent a lot of time going into communities to locate individuals and families suffering hardships caused by the pandemic. This is when he was introduced to NCCARE360 and found that it was an easily navigated referral system that enabled him to connect community members with needed resources. In March 2022, he came to PCHD to lead his department’s onboarding to NCCARE360. Richard said the onboarding process for their department may have been more involved due to their number of programs and users (seven separate programs and 17 platform users), but they started the initial inquiry of onboarding in September 2022, completed all training in November 2022, and received their first referral in December 2022.
In March 2023, Richard coordinated an information meeting to introduce NCCARE360 to the Person County community. He worked with PCHD’s Equity Advisory Council to invite a variety of community-based organizations, faith-based organizations, civic organizations, African American Greek organizations, and other organizations that serve historically marginalized populations. The meeting was successful and largely attended, and a post-event survey revealed that seven organizations attending the meeting indicated an interest in moving forward with plans to onboard to NCCARE360 within the following 90 days!
Richard continues to be a strong champion of NCCARE360. In April 2023, he co-presented with FHLI and Unite Us at the Eastern District North Carolina Public Health Association (EDNCHPA) 63rd Annual Conference, detailing his experiences and successes with using NCCARE360 in Person County.
“While using NCCARE360, I saw families receive food. I saw instances where the electricity bills were paid. I saw individuals connected with legal assistance to help them avoid eviction from their homes in the dead of winter.”
Richard reports mostly positive experiences and outcomes using the NCCARE360 network, including thousands of pounds of food delivered to individuals and families, and successful COVID-19 testing and vaccination for many underserved communities. We are proud of our partnerships with local health departments like PCHD and supporters like Richard, and we are doing all we can to help them grow and succeed. Thank you, Richard & PCHD, for your continued use and support of NCCARE360. We couldn’t do it without you!