The Danbury Hospital Foundation has received a $40,000 contribution from the Boehringer Ingelheim Cares Foundation to support the outreach efforts of the Greater Danbury Community Care Team’s (CCT) peer engagement specialist. This is the third contribution the Danbury Hospital Foundation has received from the Boehringer Ingelheim Cares Foundation in support of the Greater Danbury CCT.

Established by Danbury Hospital in 2015, the Greater Danbury CCT is a community-based outreach initiative that is changing lives, saving lives, and helping vulnerable residents in the greater Danbury area receive the care they need. In partnership with nearly 30 community and municipal agencies, CCT Navigators work to improve access to care for at-risk residents, many of whom suffer from substance abuse, chronic medical or mental health conditions, are homeless, or frequently utilize the emergency department (ED). Approximately 80 percent of CCT clients have a substance abuse diagnosis, and 40 percent have a psychiatric diagnosis.

CCTs are population health management models that work to improve health outcomes for individuals with complex or chronic diseases who do not respond well to traditional hospital treatment models. CCTs also aim to reduce avoidable health care costs and enhance public health and safety.

CCT peer engagement specialists help high-risk clients to seek mental health or substance abuse treatment. They also facilitate successful placement for clients in substance treatment facilities and coordinate discharge plans to minimize the risk of relapse.

CCT peer engagement specialists utilize their own experiences to support clients in recovery. They demonstrate the value of the recovery experience by teaching effective coping techniques and self-help strategies. They also serve as recovery agents by providing and advocating for effective recovery-based services.

“We are extremely grateful to the Boehringer Ingelheim Cares Foundation for its continuing support of the Danbury CCT,” said Grace Linhard, chief development officer, WCHN. “The CCT’s peer engagement specialist plays a vital role in advancing the well-being of many vulnerable community residents. Since November 2017, the Danbury CCT’s peer engagement specialist has worked with over 40 of the highest risk CCT clients.”

This is the second consecutive year the Boehringer Ingelheim Cares Foundation has supported the Greater Danbury CCT’s peer engagement specialist.

“The Boehringer Ingelheim Cares Foundation is focused on improving the health and well-being of patients in need,” said Karen Iannella, president, Boehringer Ingelheim Cares Foundation. “We continue to support the Danbury CCT because its passionate problem solvers and patient advocates help some of the most vulnerable members of our community who are suffering from mental health, substance abuse, and chronic medical conditions. The CCT makes a big impact one patient at a time.”

To date, more than 170 community residents ages 23 to 83 have benefited from Greater Danbury CCT services. Nearly 50 homeless CCT clients have moved into housing or stable living environments, and ED utilization by high-risk frequent utilizers has decreased approximately 30 percent, indicating improved quality of care and financial efficiencies that can be used to care for others in need.