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.

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 JHF and PRHI 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 aidsfreepittsburgh.org
  • 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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  • Contact Tracing Consortium
    The Southwest PA COVID-19 Contact Tracing Consortium launched in May 2020 as the first regional consortium to support contact tracing in the Commonwealth. In collaboration with the Pennsylvania Department of Health, the Jewish Healthcare Foundation mobilized the consortium’s members and helps to coordinate their work. The consortium will establish and monitor the number of needed vs. available contact tracers in the region, recruit contact tracers, assure that specialized training is available for the contact tracers, assure ongoing supervision and education, and disseminate resources. The members will also develop a long-term plan and pipeline for the contact tracing corps that could be re-deployed to respond to other public health priorities over time.
  • GRAN - An Intergenerational Reading Program
    GRAN is an intergenerational reading program that provides opportunities for older adults and children to foster relationships and a love of reading while learning valuable lessons. Due to the COIVD-19 pandemic, GRAN is now available online through the Virtual Senior Academy. For more information, visit GRAN on Facebook.
  • 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 in 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 Health Activist Network has three main areas of focus: strengthening the adolescent behavioral health safety net, reducing maternal mortality and perinatal failures, and addressing health care’s escalating costs through new payment and delivery models that reduce waste and improve patient outcomes. 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 healthactivistnetwork.org.
  • 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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  • Liftoff PGH
    Liftoff PGH is both an event and ongoing process to launch our region beyond the frontiers of health care. Join more than 1,000 changemakers in technology, health, education, and finance to redesign Pittsburgh’s healthcare economy. This is collaborative disruption, a daring collision of the region’s boldest innovators. We are catalyzing transformation, and everyone is invited. The two day conference is coming December 15-16, 2020. Brought to you by the Jewish Healthcare Foundation. For more information, visit liftoffpgh.org.
  • 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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  • Patient-Centered Practice Transformation
    With an in-depth understanding of best practices for chronic disease management and quality improvement, PRHI is able to provide educational resources, tools, and technical assistance to clinicians through a variety of learning programs. For example, PRHI serves as faculty for the NRHI High-Value Care Support and Alignment Network (SAN) in CMS’s Transforming Clinical Practice Initiative (TCPI), with a focus on behavioral health integration, quality improvement, care management, motivational interviewing, advanced care planning, and end of life.
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  • Pennsylvania Perinatal Quality Collaborative
    The Pennsylvania Perinatal Quality Collaborative (PA PQC) was launched in April 2019, with an initial focus on reducing maternal mortality and improving care for pregnant and postpartum women and newborns affected by opioids. Perinatal Quality Collaboratives (PQCs) are statewide networks of teams working to improve the quality of care for mothers and babies across prenatal, labor/birth, newborn, and postpartum services. A wide variety of stakeholders, including all major health systems and health plans, state and local government, community-based organizations, and universities from all regions of the Commonwealth are working together to standup the PA PQC through an Advisory Group and nine work groups. PA PQC sites will participate in Learning Collaborative sessions, launch Plan, Do, Study, Act (PDSA) quality improvement cycles, and report quality data through an online data portal, which will trend the outcomes over time and compare it to the outcomes of other provider teams in the PA PQC. Currently, over 55 birth sites across Pennsylvania – covering over 75% of births – are registered with the PA PQC.
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  • 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, 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 will pull 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 will improve 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 will also establish 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.
  • 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.
  • RAVEN (Reduce Avoidable Hospitalizations using Evidence-based interventions for Nursing Facility Residents)
    A Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS)-funded initiative, RAVEN is designed to improve nursing facility resident outcomes; improve the transitions between hospitals and nursing facilities; and reduce overall health spending while ensuring access to care and choice of providers among nursing facility residents in western Pennsylvania. UPMC serves as the project lead, and JHF serves as the lead educator.
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  • Reinvesting in Health
    The Reinvesting in Health Initiative aims to remove unnecessary services and pay for what matters, with a focus on perinatal care. The initiative is funded by the Jewish Healthcare Foundation with a $600,000 grant from December 2017 to December 2020, and supported by PRHI. To remove unnecessary services and reinvest in what matters to the mom and baby, the Reinvesting in Health Initiative’s strategy includes testing bundled payment models, adopting Choosing Wisely® guidelines, and engaging purchasers to support these efforts with the leadership of the payers and providers. Bundled payments allow providers to remove unnecessary services based on the Choosing Wisely® guidelines and re-configure team roles and services based on best practices and the patients’ needs.
  • 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.
  • Virtual Senior Academy
    In August of 2017, JHF launched the Virtual Senior Academy. The Virtual Senior Academy is a platform that connects older adults in the Pittsburgh region through interactive courses online that cover topics including health and wellness, technology, book clubs, arts and music, history, current events, and much more. Class facilitators are community members who want to share their passion and knowledge with other Pittsburghers. JHF is looking for community members of all ages who want to become instructors for one-time or ongoing Virtual Senior Academy courses. If you want to share your skills and knowledge, contact help@virtualsenioracademy.org.
  • Youth Advocacy Network
    JHF has developed a 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.