The Enid News and Eagle, Enid, OK

Local and State News

May 12, 2014

Nominations sought for Champions of Health

ENID, Okla. — A program that awards grants to people and organizations that make an impact on the health of Oklahomans is looking for nominations.

At the 11th annual Champions of Health gala in the fall, several awards will be given.

Amy Pulliam, spokeswoman for Champions of Health, said programs that could serve as models for other communities are great choices as nominations.

“We like to award these champions because of the impact they have on their communities — but really, we select winners based on the fact that these programs could be replicated in other communities,” Pulliam said.

It holds them up as examples that others could follow, Pulliam said.

“It’s a goal of Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Oklahoma to reach out to our tribal nations and rural populations,” Pulliam said. “We are hoping that this year we see more nominations from the tribal communities and rural areas in Oklahoma.”

Award categories include:

• Champion of the Uninsured. This award is given to a person, program or group that has improved the health of people who are uninsured. It also can honor a program that has worked to lower the number of uninsured people in Oklahoma. The winning nonprofit organization will be given $5,000.

• Champion of Children’s Health. This award is for a person, program or group that has worked to improve the health of Oklahoma children and teens, mainly at-risk and underserved populations, through education, advocacy and or health care services. The winning nonprofit organization will be given $5,000.

• Community Health Champion. This award will be given to a person or group with innovative ideas and measurable results in the health of a specific community group. The winning nonprofit organization will get a $5,000 donation.

• Champion of Senior Health. This award is for a person or group that has had great success in meeting the health care needs of seniors, or for an older Oklahoman with a healthy lifestyle and community focus, serving as a role model. The winning nonprofit organization will be given $5,000.

• Corporate Health Champion. This award honors an employer that cares about the health of their workers and offers medical programs for harm caused to their workers or as result of the work environment.

The Dr. Rodney L. Huey Memorial Champion of Oklahoma Health award is the top honor in the Champions of Health program. The $15,000 grant is given to the person or group with the most unique and effective approach to improving Oklahoma health. All entries are considered for this award.

Champions of Health awards are sponsored by the Office of the Governor-Native American Liaison, the Oklahoma Dental Association, the Oklahoma Department of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services, the Oklahoma Foundation for Medical Quality, the Oklahoma Health Care Authority, the Oklahoma Hospital Association, the Oklahoma State Department of Health and the Oklahoma State Medical Association in partnership with Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Oklahoma.

The Champions of Health program was launched in 2004 after the State Board of Health’s evaluation of key health indicators.

Between 1990 and 2002, Oklahoma was the only state that saw a drop in overall health.

For more information or nominations forms, go to championsofhealth .org.

Nominations must be submitted by May 30.

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