December 14, 2016

Research, Initiatives, and Consulting

Announcing the Launch of the #WeAreRecoveryAllies Campaign

Addiction and mental illness affect millions across the country. Whether you are in recovery or identify as an ally, your story has power! Altarum Institute is collecting stories and needs your help to show the world that #WeAreRecovery! Participate as an ALLY by submitting your recovery ally story, or participate by submitting your personal recovery story. Please share this project with your friends, family, and colleagues! If you have questions, email the Recovery Allies campaign team.

Helping MI Vets

Altarum will conduct a community assessment in west Michigan to understand the level of state support available to Michigan Veterans. The insights provided by this assessment will help inform the community on what actions are needed to ensure Veterans and their families are well supported within the region. Counties covered by this assessment include Lake, Mason, Mecosta, Newaygo, Oceana, and Osceola. Fremont Area Community Foundation is the lead funder. Osceola County Community Foundation, Mecosta County Community Foundation, Lake County Community Foundation, Community Foundation for Oceana County, Pennies from Heaven Foundation, United Way of Oceana County and United Way of Newaygo County are all contributing funders. For more information, please contact Max Burke.


Publications and Resources

Sexual Health and Your Patients

In October, Altarum’s National Coalition for Sexual Health released “Sexual Health and Your Patients: A Provider’s Guide.” Created for primary care providers, the guide offers tips for ensuring a productive sexual health conversation, essential sexual health questions to ask, charts of recommended preventive services, sample responses to common patient questions, general information on recommended screening tests, and a list of clinical education and resources on sexual health topics. For more information, contact Alyson Kristensen.

Video on Violence Against Native Communities

American Indians and Alaska Natives experience high rates of violence. That’s one of many findings of a recent study supported by the National Institute of Justice (NIJ), the research and evaluation arm of the Justice Department. Palladian Partners, an Altarum company, worked with NIJ to communicate the study’s findings in a new animated video.

The video has been received enthusiastically and tribal advocates have been excited to learn about scientific evidence that supports their concerns. For more information, please contact Katie Gresham.


News and Events

Making Kids Smile

Altarum’s SmileConnect℠ joined #GivingTuesday this year—a global day of giving. We successfully raised more than $2,600, including a $1,000 donation from GoFundMe, and an additional donation of 1,000 toothbrushes, toothpaste, and floss from the Delta Dental Foundation!

The money and supplies raised will provide preventive oral health resources and services to classrooms in need. Our GoFundMe page had over 2,000 visits, 863 Bitly clicks, and more than 11,000 Twitter impressions. Follow SmileConnect℠ on Twitter: @SmileConnected. For more information, contact Allyson Rogers.

America CARES

Altarum’s Center for Elder Care and Advanced Illness (CECAI) partnered with Caring Across Generations to hold the America CARES Forum, which launched a nationwide caregiving movement of family caregivers and care workers to create a comprehensive caregiving agenda. Look for a chart book summarizing the forum’s data at the end of January.

CECAI has also received nearly $500,000 in funding from the Michigan Health Endowment Trust to work with Huron Valley PACE of Ypsilanti, MI on establishing a pilot MediCaring site, and $1.5 million from the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation to develop methods for aggregating person-centered care plans to estimate the need for services and supports for frail elders in a community.

Tobacco Use and Behavioral Health

Last month, Altarum hosted a dialog with national leaders on America’s Number One Health Disparity—tobacco use and behavioral health. There was agreement that tobacco use is still “culturally entrenched” in the behavioral health population and its treatment centers. While some facilities have developed tobacco-free policies, people with behavioral health challenges still lack access to tobacco treatment services. This health disparity requires strategies at the national, state, and local levels, and Altarum is considering how to best contribute to this cause. For more information, please contact David Zauche.

Recovery Café

Altarum’s work with Recovery Café was highlighted at the recent American Evaluation Association and the American Public Health Association conferences. The presentation, “Empowerment Evaluation & Recovery Café: Assessing a Peer Support Center for People Traumatized by Homelessness and Addiction,” stemmed from our behavioral health technical assistance work with SAMHSA. Our work assisted Recovery Café in adopting an empowerment evaluation approach to assess organizational performance and service effectiveness. To see the PowerPoint, or for more information, contact Melanie Ogleton.

Balm in Gilead

Altarum’s Behavioral Health Technical Assistance Center, along with the Detroit Recovery Project presented “The Opioid Crisis, African Americans, and the Role of Faith Leaders” as part of the Community and Faith-Based Organization TA Project at the Balm In Gilead’s, Inc. recent Healthy Churches 2020 conference in Charlotte, NC. The conference is the only conference of its kind that brings together the faith community and public health for collaborative learning and sharing. To see the PowerPoint, or for more information, contact Melanie Ogleton.

Contact Information
Sarah Litton
Manager, Communications and Public Affairs


Altarum Institute's ( mission is to create a better, more sustainable future for all Americans by applying research-based and field-tested solutions that transform our systems of health and health care. Altarum employs over 400 individuals and is headquartered in Ann Arbor, Michigan, with additional offices in Portland, Maine; Silver Spring, MD; Rockville, MD; and Washington, D.C.