An evaluation of Connect for Health: A social referral program in RI
Background: Connect for Health is a social referral program based at Hasbro Children’s Hospital and the Center for Primary Care in Providence, RI, that aims to address basic needs in order to improve the health and well-being of patients. Methods: A qualitative program evaluation was con-ducted by interviewing providers and patients, assessing perceptions of effectiveness and barriers to success. Results: Providers felt their workload was alleviated and believed the program was addressing the social determinants of health. Patients similarly felt that their needs were met but acknowledged some barriers to accessing resources such as transportation, business hours, and language barriers. Ultimately, patients and providers viewed the program as effective but both groups perceived structural barriers such as housing and limited resources. Discussion: A structured program of referral for social services and benefits can alleviate some patient needs and provider workloads, but fundamental socio-economic disparities and inadequate resources limit effectiveness.
Zhu E, Ahluwalia JS, Laws MB. An evaluation of Connect for Health: A social referral program in RI. R I Med J (2013). 2020;103(5):65‐69. Published 2020 Jun 1.PMID: 32481786. Available online.