A rural health outreach program proposed for Tamaqua took a big step forward recently as member partners were brought up to date on ways to implement the program. "Partners In Health" is a health outreach program partnering St. Luke's Miners Memorial Medical Center, Coaldale, with the South Ward Neighborhood Committee and the Morgan Campus of Lehigh Carbon Community College.

Representatives from all partnership members were on hand to discuss plans for implementing the program. The session was led by Tamanna Patel, a technical assistance consultant with the Georgia Health Policy Center. Patel provided an outline, but enouraged participants to focus on their shared vision, ways to implement it and ways to sustain the project.

The group's goal is to locate a nurse practioner from St. Luke's directly into the designated community (Tamaqua's South Ward.) The focus will be to develop and support practices addressing three primary local health care priorities: diabetes awarenedd, education and management: obesity prevention and treatment; and primary care, wellness and disease prevention.

The partnership has secured implementation funding through the Rural Health Care Services Outreach program.