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Building Healthy Communities through Medical-Religious Partnerships

, 248 pages
July 2009



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Building Healthy Communities through Medical-Religious Partnerships
second edition

Because health care works best when patients assume greater responsibility for their own health, community outreach and patient education have taken on increased importance. Building Healthy Communities through Medical-Religious Partnerships describes an innovative approach to the development of community-based health education and patient advocacy programs targeted at the prevention and management of disease.

Partnerships between health systems and religious congregations, the authors show, can be remarkably successful at bringing appropriate care to people who are often difficult to serve. The book offers valuable guidance for religious and medical leaders interested in developing programs in their congregations and communities. It includes practical and accessible information for establishing health education programs, identifies additional resources that can be obtained from local and national organizations, and discusses a range of medical topics. It also outlines how to train volunteers to assist others in navigating our complex health system.

This revised and expanded edition of Building Healthy Communities through Medical-Religious Partnerships includes several new chapters along with descriptions of five medical-religious partnership models. Special attention is given to the challenges and opportunities presented by our aging and increasingly diverse population.

Richard G. Bennett, M.D., is the Raymond and Anna Lublin Professor in Geriatric Medicine at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine and president of Johns Hopkins Bayview Medical Center. W. Daniel Hale, Ph.D., is a professor of psychology and director of the Community Health Initiative at Stetson University.

"An excellent resource for leaders of faith communities who envision a health ministry for their adult congregants as well as for health care leaders interested in exploring partnerships with faith communities. This book literally has the potential to save lives."

"This book is an extremely effective resource."

"Churches and other religious congregations can play a vital role in helping us stay healthy. Building Healthy Communities through Medical-Religious Partnerships provides a framework for hospital and faith community leaders to develop programs that can have a meaningful impact on congregational members."

"Based on my service in the Department of Veterans Affairs and the U.S. Senate and my responsibilities caring for my elderly father, I recognize the challenges that face our country with respect to the health needs of older adults and others who are dealing with chronic illnesses or disabilities. This book provides the instruction for hospitals and religious congregations to address these challenges in a proactive and compassionate way."

"Bennett and Hale herald a new way of practicing health care that combines the strength and resources of the medical community with those of the religious community. This model of partnership provides us with a blueprint for similar partnerships throughout the United States in the decades ahead. This book is a must-read for all those contemplating such partnerships in their communities."

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