We invest in grant partners in other communities in the South who are addressing the barriers to overcoming social determinants of health by improving social connection and food security.
We are currently funding projects in the following communities: Baton Rouge, Broward County in South Florida, Jacksonville, Knoxville, New Orleans, San Antonio, and Tampa Bay.
Research has shown that loneliness, social isolation and food insecurity are correlated with poor health and more unhealthy days.1,2 The Humana Foundation invests in organizations focused on improving health and well-being by addressing these two social determinants of health.
Social connectionProjects that focus on social connection address individuals who may be unhappy with the quality of their relationships or experiencing separation from other people which may include their family, friends, or community. Projects may focus on connecting volunteers to these individuals through home visits, phone calls, or other outreach activities. These activities increase social interaction and can improve the quality of their relationships.
Food securityGrant projects that seek to improve food security can have a direct impact on the number of healthy days an individual has. Food insecurity—or not having access to enough food for a healthy, active life—looks different to every individual. It may mean you aren’t sure whether you will have enough money to buy groceries this month, or that you may have to decide between paying for your medication, your electric bill, or food.
All Humana Foundation grant recipients must use the Center for Disease Control and Prevention’s Healthy Days Survey.
Healthy Days is a U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) tool that surveys an individual’s mental and physical unhealthy days in a 30-day period.
Recipients will also be asked to use one or more of the following metrics and tracking tools while completing their projects:
McGrath E., et al. 2017. “Food insecurity in primary care patients”, Poster presentation at Art & Science of Health Promotion -Conference, Colorado Springs, Colorado,March 29-31, 2017.
J. P. Zaliak and C. Gundersen, “Food Insecurity and Health Outcomes” Health Affairs 34, no. 11 (2015): 1830–-1839.
Carla M Perissinotto, Irena Stijacic Cenzer, and Kenneth E. Covinsky,“Loneliness in Older Persons: A Predictor of Functional Decline and Death,” Archives of internal medicine 172.14 (2012): 1078–1083,accessed November 28, 2017, doi:10.1001/archinternmed.2012.1993.
“Investing to tackle loneliness: A Discussion paper,” Social Impact Bonds (June 2015): 8–100, accessed November 28, 2017, http://www.socialfinance.org.uk/sites/default/files/publications/investing_to_tackle_loneliness.pdf
Robert S. Wilson, et al, “Loneliness and Risk of Alzheimer Disease,” Arch Gen Psychiatry 64, no. 2 (2007): 234–240, doi:10.1001/archpsyc.64.2.234.
J. P Zaliak and C. Gundersen, “The health consequences of senior hunger in the United States: Evidence from the 1999-2010 NHANES”,National Foundation to End Senior Hunger(February 2014).