Projects & Programs

Through the Jewish Healthcare Foundation (JHF) and our operating arms—the Pittsburgh Regional Health Initiative (PRHI), Health Careers Futures (HCF), and the Women’s Health Activist Movement Global (WHAMglobal)—we create an army of partners, change agents, and quality improvement leaders; and turn our region into a lab for testing new models of care, new public health initiatives, and new collaboratives to improve coordination and manage population health.

We are a grantmaking organization, providing more than $120 million, since our inception, to others striving to improve health and health care in our region.

We are also a grantee, garnering myriad federal, state, and foundation grants which allow our staff to support the work of healthcare practitioners and providers. With our leadership and guidance, healthcare providers demonstrate how critical quality improvements can make enormous differences in the lives of patients and in the cost of providing care.

  • Adolescent Behavioral Health Initiative
    The Adolescent Behavioral Health Initiative began in April 2016 and aims to improve access to and accountability for effective behavioral health services for adolescents in Allegheny County, with an initial focus on those in crisis. The initiative kicked off with funding by the Jewish Healthcare Foundation, the Staunton Farm Foundation, and The Pittsburgh Foundation.
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  • AIDS Free Pittsburgh
    JHF serves as the fiscal agent for AIDS Free Pittsburgh (AFP) –  a public health movement to end the HIV/AIDS epidemic in Allegheny County. AFP is comprised of government agencies, healthcare systems, and community organizations that collectively focus on education, outreach, and advocacy work to reach AFP’s goals. For more information, visit
  • Behavioral Health Fellows
    Allegheny County Department of Human Services has launched the Behavioral Health (BH) Fellows program to support those interested in gaining professional experience serving underserved populations with behavioral health needs. The BH Fellows program offers competitive pay, educational loan repayment (up to $25,000 for a bachelor’s degree and up to $45,000 for a master’s degree), and a two-year cohort experience including a retreat, professional and leadership development, and relationship building experiences. In exchange, Fellows commit to work for a minimum of two years with a sponsoring behavioral health service provider in our region. JHF is a primary partner in recruiting fellows and delivering the cohort experience. People who are new to the behavioral health field are encouraged to apply. For more information, visit
  • Centers of Excellence Learning Network
    The Opioid Use Disorder Center of Excellence (COE) Technical Assistance Project provides technical assistance to the Commonwealth’s COEs. The University of Pittsburgh, School of Pharmacy, Program Evaluation and Research Unit (PERU) provides technical assistance, learning networks, and curriculum that is specific to the needs of each COE, and PRHI facilitates the learning networks in partnership with PERU. The COEs ensure effective care coordination, integrate physical and behavioral health needs for every patient with an Opioid Use Disorder (OUD), and increase access to Medication-Assisted Treatment (MAT).
  • Champions Programs

    JHF has demonstrated the important role that leaders or champions play in conceiving, testing, and sustaining quality improvement in health care; and develops and funds an annual program aimed at elevating the skills, knowledge and quality improvement experiences of those committed to the highest level of patient quality. Past Champions programs have included Physician Champions, Nurse Navigator, Pharmacy Agents for Change, EMS Champions, Medical Assistant/Licensed Practical Nurse Champions, and Community Health Worker Champions, and a Community Health Worker Apprenticeship program. 

    Read more about Champions Programs

  • Closure
    Closure is an initiative to change expectations for end-of-life. The goal for Closure is to empower consumers and healthcare professionals with easy-to-access, simple-to-understand information and resources to make informed decisions about end-of-life.
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  • Community HealthChoices Education
    Since 2015, JHF has convened community partners and stakeholders for education and training meetings focused on Community HealthChoices—a program to deliver long-term services and supports to seniors, individuals with disabilities, and people who are Medicaid eligible or dually eligible for Medicare and Medicaid. The goal of the program is to improve service coordination and strengthen eligible consumers’ options for receiving community-based care. Community HealthChoices officially rolled out in southwestern Pennsylvania at the beginning of 2018, and has been implemented in other regions of the Commonwealth.
  • Death and Dying Series for Healthcare Professionals

    The Death & Dying Series for Healthcare Professionals takes on a key challenge: the reality that professionals are not well prepared to deal with or talk about death, dying, and grieving families. This education series, modeled after the popular Death and Dying Fellowship for graduate students, provides healthcare professionals with an opportunity to learn, confront, and discuss the legal, medical, social, cultural, familial, and spiritual aspects of death and dying within a multi-disciplinary group in a low-pressure environment. Join us to gain the skills you need to have meaningful end-of-life conversations with your patients and their families. 

    Read more about the Death & Dying Series

  • Dementia Friends Pennsylvania

    In May of 2018, JHF became the state administrator for the Dementia Friends Pennsylvania initiative. JHF seeks to educate communities across the commonwealth about dementia, break down stigma surrounding dementia, and encourage individuals to implement practical changes to best support people living with dementia. Through a train-the-trainer model, Dementia Friends Champion Volunteers are equipped to offer in-person Dementia Friends sessions to community members. Dementia Friends Pennsylvania is part of Dementia Friends USA, a global movement that is changing the way people think, act, and talk about dementia. For more information, visit:

  • Feinstein Fellowships

    Through the Jewish Healthcare Foundation's annual Feinstein Fellowships, graduate students and professionals work in a collaborative, multi-disciplinary learning environment to acquire new skills that aren’t part of traditional healthcare graduate programs. The Feinstein Fellowships aim to inspire the next generation of healthcare leaders and activists. 

    The Patient Safety Fellowship focuses on quality and safety in healthcare settings and provides participants the opportunity to apply learnings in a real-world healthcare setting. 

    The Salk Health Activist Fellowship focuses on changing practice, policy, and perspectives around a health issue.

    The Death and Dying Fellowship explores the medical, legal, social, cultural-familial, and spiritual components of end-of-life care, using JHF's Closure model.

    Read more about Fellowships

  • GRAN - An Intergenerational Reading Program
    The GRAN Intergenerational Reading program aims to increase opportunities for children and seniors to engage and learn together. The program matches childcare centers with seniors residing in long term care facilities, who faced increased isolation during the COVID-19 pandemic. Utilizing the foundation of the Heartwood Ethics Curriculum for Children, participants young and old engage in meaningful conversations around seven values (hope, loyalty, justice, courage, love, respect, and honesty) while sharing the pleasure of reading. A virtual platform also allowed the GRAN Intergeneration Reading program to connect generations and foster meaningful relationships in a time of social distance.
  • Health Activist Network
    The Health Activist Network empowers health professionals to create the health system in which they want to work. Launched in 2017, the Health Activist Network is an in-person and online hub for health professionals from across the continuum to create the health system we all need by accelerating policy and care delivery improvements. The network, which started with participants and graduates of the Jewish Healthcare Foundation's Fellowship, internship, and Champions programs, has since grown to include a broad swathe of Pittsburgh’s healthcare community as well as national policy and advocacy leaders. The Pittsburgh Regional Health Initiative manages the Health Activist Network, with funding from the DSF Charitable Foundation and the Jewish Healthcare Foundation. For more information, visit
  • HealthChoices Patient-Centered Medical Home Learning Network
    The HealthChoices Physical Health Managed Care Organizations (MCOs) are working with Pittsburgh Regional Health Initiative (PRHI) and the Health Federation of Philadelphia (HFP) to facilitate the HealthChoices Patient-Centered Medical Home (PCMH) Learning Network—one of the provider requirements for this PCMH Program. PRHI is coordinating the PCMH Learning Network across Pennsylvania, and facilitating the quarterly, regional learning collaborative sessions for the Southwest/Northwest and Northeast regions. HFP is facilitating the quarterly, regional learning collaborative sessions for Lehigh/Capital and Southeast. The goals of the PCMH Learning Network are to support the PCMH providers and Physical Health MCOs in achieving the shared PCMH aims, identifying and acting on improvement strategies in response to opportunities for improvement toward the common PCMH aims and measures, and developing an internal capacity to continuously learn, adapt, and improve.
  • HIV/AIDS Fiscal Agency
    JHF has been the fiscal agent for HIV/AIDS funding in southwestern Pennsylvania since 1992. In this capacity, the Foundation manages funds from multiple government funding sources, providing oversight, monitoring, data reporting, quality management, technical assistance, and funding to the AIDS Service Organization (ASO) grantees under its agency. These ASOs facilitate the delivery of healthcare, supportive, and housing services to eligible individuals living with HIV, and prevention/education services to at-risk populations.
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  • Internships
    Graduate students who are passionate about innovations in healthcare delivery, policy, and patient safety can pursue their interests through paid summer internship opportunities with the Jewish Healthcare Foundation and its supporting organizations. Internships are available during the school year as well, although the program is less formal. 
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  • Long-Term Care Champions Training Center

    Across southwestern Pennsylvania, JHF is providing training for certified nurse assistants and licensed practical nurses at skilled nursing facilities, and community health worker apprenticeships. JHF’s experienced trainers and coaches have developed customizable courses around quality improvement education and coaching, work flow design and process improvement, leadership and communication, customer service in long-term care, and dementia awareness and education. The trainings have also included Mental Health First Aid and abuse prevention for families and caregivers who care for seniors. Across the State, JHF also provides courses on end-of-life and palliative care, as well as Pennsylvania Orders for Life-Sustaining Treatment (PA POLST), the Commonwealth’s endorsed program to help seriously ill patients indicate the treatment they want or do not want to receive in a medical crisis.

  • PA Long-Term Care Learning Network

    The PA Long-Term Care Learning Network launched in 2022 in collaboration with the Pennsylvania Department of Human Services (DHS) and several managed care organization partners to advance and support the DHS strategic quality incentive program for nursing facilities. The statewide learning network brings timely and reliable education to the leadership and frontline in nursing facilities across PA and offers a series of webinars addressing 11 core components of strategic quality incentive program. JHF staffs an operations committee to support the program and an education committee to identify best practice models for nursing homes.

  • Minority AIDS Initiative (MAI)
    The Minority AIDS Initiative (MAI) is funded by the Pennsylvania Department of Health to engage HIV-positive individuals who have been lost-to-care. Only about 25% of individuals with HIV in the United States are successfully keeping their virus under control, and this has serious consequences for them, their partners, their living or unborn children, and for the economy. JHF is working with AIDS Service Organizations (ASOs) across the state.
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  • National Patient Safety Board (NPSB)
    In partnership with a national coalition, JHF and PRHI are advancing a National Patient Safety Board (NPSB) modeled in-part on the well-established and successful National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) and Commercial Aviation Safety Team (CAST). The NPSB would support existing agencies in monitoring and anticipating adverse events with artificial intelligence, conduct studies, create recommendations and solutions to prevent medical error, and leverage existing systems to bring key learnings into practice. The NPSB would guarantee a data-driven, scalable approach to preventing and reducing patient safety events in healthcare settings—and will save lives. For more information, visit
  • PA Youth Advocacy Network
    JHF has developed a PA Youth Advocacy Network to bring together youth and youth organizations to share resources, collaborate on a shared policy agenda, and effectively advocate for change. Representatives from 26 different high schools and over ten community partners have been involved in the network. The Network kicked off in 2018 with a Youth Advocacy Summit, and has continued with regular calls, advocacy campaigns, legislative visits, and advocacy workshops.
  • Patient Safety Technology Challenge
    The Patient Safety Technology Challenge is an initiative designed to fuel the engagement of students and innovators in creating solutions and envisioning transformational approaches to reduce preventable deaths and disabilities from medical errors and harmful events and reimagine a vastly safer healthcare system. The initiative will inject patient safety awards into existing local, regional, and national competitions to help increase awareness of the patient safety crisis and produce a documentary to bring attention to this issue. The Patient Safety Technology Challenge is guided by national partners experienced in safety technology and advanced healthcare analytics who can help determine which patient safety problem statements are a priority and which ideas have the greatest potential to be transformational. Funds to set up awards will be made available to existing competitions, ideathons, hackathons and start-up weekends as either an off-the-shelf award package that could be incorporated into their programs or to support a new award under a pre-existing program. For more information, visit
  • Pennsylvania Perinatal Quality Collaborative
    The Pennsylvania Perinatal Quality Collaborative (PA PQC) was launched in April 2019, with funding from the Pennsylvania Department of Drug and Alcohol Programs and the Henry L. Hillman Foundation as an action arm of the Maternal Mortality Review Committee (MMRC). Over 60 birth sites and NICUs and over 10 health plans across the Commonwealth are actively identifying perinatal processes that need to be improved and quickly adopting best practices to achieve the common aims. The focus areas include maternal Opioid Use Disorder (OUD), Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome (NAS), contraceptive care, maternal depression, and severe hypertension.
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  • Perinatal Health Equity Champions Program

    The Perinatal Health Equity Champions Program is designed to build workforce capacity to help address racial disparities and improve maternal health care in the Pittsburgh region. This year-long program provides the opportunity to bring together community and hospital-based birth workers for maternal care quality improvement initiatives to address racial disparities and improve maternal care outcomes. The program is part of the Pittsburgh: A Safer Childbirth City initiative and is facilitated by WHAMglobal and the Jewish Healthcare Foundation. Learn more.

  • Pittsburgh: A Safer Childbirth City
    Pittsburgh: A Safer Childbirth City aims to transform the city into a safer, more equitable and accessible place to give birth. Through support from the Heinz Endowments and Merck for Mothers, WHAMglobal has established the WHAMglobal Community Fund for maternal health service providers to ensure that services are coordinated and meeting the needs of all moms and babies. The Community Fund brings together funding organizations committed to maternal health from across our region, and distribute funds to support small safety-net organizations providing maternal health services across the pregnancy and birth continuum. The Fund supports networks and collaboration among grassroots organizations delivering maternal health services in priority communities in order to improve access and availability of high-quality services, reduce health disparities, and improve maternal health. The Fund has also established a learning collaborative for participating organizations to provide a forum for collaboration and training (including technical assistance) on topics, such as quality improvement, marketing, communications, and strategic planning.
  • Pittsburgh Regional Autonomous Patient Safety (RAPS) Initiative
    The Regional Autonomous Patient Safety (RAPS) Initiative will build on the Pittsburgh region’s exceptional resources, such as AI and robotics leadership; the breadth and depth of health sciences research and education at the region’s universities; and the regional entrepreneurship and business community to spur an innovation ecosystem and economy for healthcare safety. Learn more.
  • Primary Care Practice Transformation

    PRHI has developed a comprehensive, customizable curriculum that integrates electronic health record meaningful use standards with Patient-Centered Medical Home (PCMH) standards and incorporates practical, real-life examples of how to implement and optimize patient-centered workflows for NCQA PCMH certification. PRHI also provides coaching and project management support for PCMH recognition applications.

    Read more about Primary Care Practice Transformation

  • Public Health
    From our inception, JHF has played a community role in public health. From our early public health campaigns, including Operation KidShot, The Breast Test, and Working Hearts®, to our current initiatives, JHF is committed to taking on public health issues that are timely, but underserved.
  • Quality Improvement Training and Coaching

    PRHI provides training in our flagship quality improvement methodology, Perfecting Patient Care℠ (PPC), which is based on Lean concepts and Toyota Production System's industrial engineering techniques. It is offered in a variety of formats for executives, managers, and frontline workers.

    Read more about PPC

  • Revisiting the Teaching Nursing Home Initiative
    The Revisiting the Teaching Nursing Home Initiative will implement a contemporary version of the Teaching Nursing Home model in three regions of Pennsylvania to demonstrate how enhanced partnerships between academic nursing schools and skilled nursing facilities can improve quality and cost outcomes. The project will draw upon existing resources from the Age-Friendly Health Systems initiative while integrating lessons learned and partnerships created through the COVID-19 pandemic and the original Teaching Nursing Home model implementation from the 1980s. The Pennsylvania State University College of Nursing, University of Pennsylvania School of Nursing (Penn Nursing) and University of Pittsburgh School of Nursing are each providing faculty and educational support. The Henry L. Hillman Foundation, Independence Foundation, the Jewish Healthcare Foundation, The John A. Hartford Foundation, and the PA Department of Human Services co-fund this initiative.
  • Senior Connections
    Since its inception, JHF has been committed to improving the physical, mental, and social well-being of older adults. With the Baby Boomer generation re-defining what it means to age well, the Foundation in 2016 kicked off a multi-pronged Senior Connections initiative. Senior Connections aims to strengthen an umbrella of services and supports that the region’s older adults require to live safely and satisfyingly—including adequate housing with and without services, exercise and recreational opportunities, geriatric-friendly health care, nutrition, technology and caregiver supports.
  • Teen Mental Health Collaborative
    JHF manages a Teen Mental Health Collaborative of Allegheny County community-based organizations that serve teens. In 2020, JHF initiated the Collaborative to facilitate opportunities for youth-serving organizations to share their approaches to providing emotional support, connection, and engagement for teens and to learn from one another. 
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  • Up Next for Patient Safety Podcast
    The Up Next for Patient Safety podcast series launched in conjunction with the campaign to establish a National Patient Safety Board, and it engages in conversations with experts in health care and technology to examine the best paths to guaranteeing patient safety. Hear about different solutions to existing problems that are possible right now. We have the capacity during the “once in a century” pandemic to gain the attention and support of a nation to address those current and ongoing errors and adverse events that cause unnecessary illness, death and long-term disability. Join host Karen Wolk Feinstein, president & CEO of the Jewish Healthcare Foundation and the Pittsburgh Regional Health Initiative, as she untangles the components of safer care for us all. Listen here.
  • What COVID-19 Exposed in Long-Term Care - Documentary
    As the COVID-19 pandemic ravaged long-term care and skilled nursing facilities during 2020, blame was thrown quickly at the facilities and their operators. But where didthe responsibility actually lie for the failure to protect tens of thousands of frail seniors? This 20-minute award-winning documentary explores the causes behind the COVID-19 crisis in long-term care facilities across the United States. What COVID-19 Exposed in Long-Term Care was awarded a Jury's Choice Award for March's A Show For A Change Film Festival, and was an Official Selection for the 2021 Manhattan Film Festival, the 2021 Marina del Rey Film Festival in Los Angeles, the 2021 Life Fest Film Festival, and the FLICKFAIR Film Festival. Stream the short documentary here.

See a list of completed or historical projects and programs here.