Better Living logoBetter Living logoThrough an exciting partnership with Partners HealthCare, Liz Walker and the Better Living team are highlighting community health programs at Partners hospitals and the health centers. The pieces represent our commitment to the communities we serve and to enhancing access to health care, building tomorrow’s health care workforce, and improving the health and well-being of our communities through prevention.

In the March 2013 episode of Better Living, the theme of navigation was weaved through each of the stories featured. This includes navigating the brain and its pathways to health, a navigation program for patients undergoing colonoscopies, care for victims of domestic violence, and a social and emotional learning program for students in Boston Public Schools. 


Healthy Brain, Healthy You

Med Flight helicopter landingAlthough many people dissociate brain function from how they look and feel, the health of one’s brain is directly connected to how one appears and enjoys daily life. Adults can continue to grow new neurons and improve their brains, namely by exercising regularly and doing things that make them happy. Two researchers at Massachusetts General Hospital explain ways people can improve brain function, and enhance their lives every day.

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Open Doors to Health: Patient Navigator

Doctor and health care worker talking at community health centerSpecially trained patient navigators in the Open Doors to Health program help patients to understand the importance of colonoscopies and walk them through the process, providing education and logistical support. Since 2009, the collaboration among Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Dana-Faber Cancer Center, Brookside Community Health Center, and Southern Jamaica Plain Health Center has resulted in 70 percent of referred patients successfully completing exams, up from 40 percent.  

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Women’s After Care Clinic and Passageways: Domestic Violence Program

Doctor and patient involved with the Working Partners programWhen a woman is a victim of domestic abuse, she can find assistance through the Brigham and Women’s Hospital Passageways and the Women’s After Care Clinic. Through these programs, clinicians and advocates provide patients a chance to talk about their experiences, seek help in healing, and sometimes plan a way for them to escape the violence. 

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Open Circle: Social and Emotional Learning

Students gathering in a circleStudents in Boston Public Schools are taking part in Open Circle, which empowers them to promote positive behaviors and healthy relationships at school and in their community. During Open Circle time, students are able to address differences and resolve issues, improve friendships, and create a strong sense of community. Students who take part in the program can resolve conflicts and manage their emotions better – ultimately cutting down on the number of classroom disruptions and freeing up more time for learning. A grant from Partners HealthCare is funding this program.

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Previous Episodes

Watch segments from previous episodes of Better Living: