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Ellenville Regional Rural Health Network fosters accessible community wellness

Understanding that people in rural communities are at greater risk of chronic disease and being impacted by social determinants of health, the Rural Health Network at Ellenville Regional Hospital is dedicated to pursuing healthier lives for everyone in the community.

Established in 2018, ERRHN is based on four pillars — services that increase exercise, improve nutrition, reduce healthcare risks and provide support for social determinates of health — and offers no-cost programming to the entire diverse community, 21% of whom live below the poverty level.

ERRHN’s Wellness Program uses chronic care and community health worker models to guide individuals through the prevention and management of chronic diseases. Program participants have access to a community health worker, nutritionist and physical health educator who work collaboratively to provide personal health coaching tailored to each participant’s needs through evidence-based goal-setting techniques such as motivational interviewing and brief action planning. The program also offers free fitness classes, nutrition and tobacco cessation education and health education seminars to all members of the community regardless of participation in the Wellness Program.

Since ERRHN began, 169 people at risk of or managing chronic disease and members of 53 families who are obese or at risk for developing obesity have enrolled in the Wellness Program to work one-on-one with a community health worker and nutritionist. Of the participants, 72 meet regularly for consultations with the community health workers and nutritionist. More than 1,500 community members have participated in programming such as physical activity, nutrition or health education classes annually.

For more information, contact Samantha Riley, executive director, Rural Health Network, at sriley@erhny.org or 845.647.6400, ext. 205.