Columbia Rural Electric Association Contributes to the Fight Against COVID-19

Columbia Rural Electric Association (REA) has partnered with the Providence St. Mary Foundation to help strengthen our community’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Columbia REA will donate $10,000 to the Foundation for the ongoing response to the coronavirus outbreak, and more specifically, to help fund the continuation of the Community Health Worker program, which is part of the Population Health service line operated by Providence St. Mary Medical Center/Providence Medical Group.

Community Health Workers (CHWs) are able to link participants to services such as food banks, heating assistance during winter, legal aid and transportation arrangements to/from medical appointments, and connections to food, housing, and mental health services. But recently the focus of the program has shifted to the battle against the coronavirus. Working closely with the Walla Walla County Department of Community Health, the Population Health team has made over 4,000 outreach calls in the last 6 weeks to check on physical symptoms and mental health, and to create and maintain a registry of COVID-19 positive and pending cases. In addition, workers are visiting community shelters weekly, doing symptom checks and hand hygiene education.

“Columbia REA has always had a commitment to Community, and we have supported the Foundation previously with the Regional Cancer Center” says Columbia REA CEO Scott Peters. “We are very proud to partner once again with the Providence St. Mary Medical Center Foundation during this strange and unprecedented time. We value what the Foundation does, and we are pleased that they will be able to use these funds to keep this important program going for the foreseeable future.”