Overcoming Barriers to Create a Healthier Community
Alma Olivas is a Pathways Navigator at Centro Savila. Her job consists of meeting with community members directly and discussing how to improve their quality of life. This one-on-one interaction with families allows the barriers to be identified and addressed so that people can access the resources they need to achieve health goals.
Alma meets with clients in their homes or at her office to help identify their priorities. In many cases, families are reluctant to seek help. Alma builds relationships with families based on trust and respect. While they may just be “getting by” there are some things that could drastically improve their current quality of life. As a navigator, Alma helps identify solutions. Alma also mentors the next generation of community health workers and navigators and provides professional development training.
Pathways targets difficult-to-reach populations in the County which include, but is not limited to low income, uninsured adults who may be experiencing one or several of the following:
- Have multiple or complex unmet needs and reports feeling unhealthy
- Have had a minimum of one Emergency Room visit within the last year
- Currently experiencing homelessness and disconnected from services
- Urban off-reservation Native American not connected to or trusting of the currently existing resources in Bernalillo County
- Undocumented and/or limited-English proficient (LEP) immigrant who does not understand how to access existing resources and/or have run into barriers trying to navigate the system
- Hungry and averaging less than two full meals per day
- Any of the above who are parenting young children
Pathways is designed to target key risk factors which include:
- History of incarceration
- Culture: fear and dislike of system; ineffective use of community resources.
- Self-reported poor health
- Lack of an established medical home
- Using the Emergency Room for non-emergency situations
- Transportation barriers
- Housing instability
- Lacking I.D. cards
- Behavioral health needs
- Lacking dental care
- Limited English proficiency
- Lacking health insurance