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Great Plains QIN and the South Dakota Foundation for Medical Care are co-sponsoring a series of health equity and health disparity learning events.

Imagine bare cupboards, an empty gas tank, and a pile of past due bills. Pile on a chronic physical or mental health condition that requires time off work or expensive medication. Then add a language or cultural barrier. This is a daily reality for some individuals living in rural communities across the Dakotas. Connecting individuals with community resources can literally be a life saver.

The Reducing Health Disparity Best Practice Brief series will highlight healthcare and community organizations working together to improve quality of life by providing valuable resources and support.

* We are confirming details for the May 17 and May 24 events; will update shortly.

Working to Unite Huron 
May 3, 2022 | 12:00 PM CT

Register for Working to Unite

America is becoming more diverse each year. While the majority of the population in the Dakotas is white, multiple rural communities have become home to refugees with different ethnic backgrounds, culture, and language. Community leaders in Huron, South Dakota, have been managing the growth and change by coming together. Learn more about the challenges, solutions, and impact resulting from effective community engagement.

Robin Wallum, office manager for the Huron Job Service, commented, “I love connecting people and programs to those in need. Sometimes a member of the group will say they have a problem and other members will jump in and tell that person what solutions they have found when encountering that same problem. I call those moments “Love Connections”, and they actually make me a little emotional.

This is a great way to get them in front of a group of people who work with students, parents, parishioners, clients, and consumers who could benefit from their services. After all, helping one another is what being a part of the human race is all about.”

Jennifer Bragg, Executive Director | Heartland Region United Way
Robin Wallum, Office Manager | Huron Job Services


1.    Explain the purpose of the Huron Community Partner Roundtable
2.    PR Describe the benefits for partnerships with healthcare facilities
3.    Provide examples of the impact on the Huron population

Building Opportunities to Provide Healthy Food Options
May 10, 2022 | 12:00 PM CT

Register for Building Opportunities

When money is tight, the trip to the grocery store becomes a scavenger hunt for the cheapest options. Eating well can be a key element for combating chronic disease. Community Health Center of the Black Hills (CHCBH) and Feeding South Dakota will explain their efforts toward providing healthy food options for patients in need.

“In order to affectively serve our patients, one has to be able to identify food and other resources in the community to help with this issue. Working at CHCBH, a federally qualified health center, is all about making quality medical care accessible to all. We are devoted to removing as many barriers as we can to ensure patients receive quality care.

Our ability to help our patients with foodstuffs isn’t a long term fix, but it does get folks through until they can better access available community resources. Our community partners are invaluable with respect to achieving  this mutual goal.”


1.    Explain the value of food to health
2.    Describe the challenges for accessing healthy food
3.    Identify programs to promote healthy food

Tanja Cutting, MS, RD, CDE, LN | Community Health Center of the Black Hills
Diane Briest | Feeding South Dakota

Connecting Community to Health Care
May 17, 2022 | 12:00 PM CT

Register for Connecting Community to Health Care

Trying to understand an acute or chronic health concern can be confusing. Lacking transportation or money for prescription medication adds to the frustration. Community health representatives and community health workers serve as guides for connecting individuals with the right resources and support to achieve a positive health outcome. Focused on patient-centered care, the Community Health Worker Collaborative of South Dakota is working to expand this health professional network to reduce health disparities and improve quality of life.


1. Describe the role of community health representatives/workers
2. Explain the impact of health disparities for managing health
3. Identify methods used by CHR/CHW to improve quality of life

Valuing Diversity at Monument Health
May 24, 2022 | 12:00 PM CT

Register for Valuing Diversity

Trust is the foundation for every strong personal and professional relationship. Earning trust begins by seeking to understand. Monument Health offers cultural awareness education programs to provide perspective and promote relationship building among those providing and receiving health care.


1. Define and identify bias
2. Recognize the impact bias has on decision making
3. Build the knowledge move from awareness into action