Local Organizations Receive More Than $700,000 in Grants to Improve Health Care in Michigan

Brianna Neace

| 5 min read

Doctor's chest with a white coat, stethoscope and pens in the pocket
DETROIT, August 16, 2017— The Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan Foundation awarded a total of $722,000 to support research and community programs that identify and address critical issues affecting the health of Michigan residents. “We’re looking forward to supporting more than 50 organizations and individuals across the state who are working diligently to expand health research and improve the quality of care available to Michigan residents,” said Audrey Harvey, vice president and CEO of the Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan Foundation. The grants offered by the Blue Cross Foundation are categorized to allow for a variety of applicants and ideas, including:
  • Advancing Medication Adherence in Michigan Programs: These grants support initiatives that improve the overall wellness and health status of uninsured, underinsured, low-income and vulnerable people with chronic diseases, while lowering health care costs, by helping patients manage and adhere to their medications. Two hundred thousand has been dedicated by the BCBSM Foundation and $100,000 by BCBSM’s Social Mission Department.
  • Community Health Matching Programs: Community-based nonprofit organizations in Michigan will use these grants to develop, test or validate new techniques and programs to address the needs of its community members and produce a tangible effect in their lives.
  • Physician Investigator Research Award Programs: Michigan physicians will use these grants to support pilot projects and/or small research studies to address unmet health needs to improve the delivery and quality of patient care.
  • Student Award Programs: The Student-Award Program is available to medical and doctoral students enrolled in Michigan universities. This award is a one year, $3,000 grant to support research dissertations.
The BCBSM Foundation gives nearly $2 million each year in grants to research quality, cost and access to health care. The funding spans the state, from the Metro Detroit area to the communities of the Upper Peninsula. None of the money comes from the premium payments of Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan members. The BCBSM Foundation was created in 1980 with $800,000 in seed money, which has since grown to approximately $60 million in assets with no further contributions. An overview of the recipients of the BCBSM Foundation grants is below:
Unknown block type "table", please specify a serializer for it in the `serializers.types` prop
Student Award Programs Total Funding: $111,000, Funding per student: $3,000 Central Michigan University
  • Merna Abdou, Aortic Stenosis Community Awareness Project
  • Kristin Bartman, Barriers to Mental Health Treatment in Rural Primary Care Populations
  • Alexandra Gamber, Michigan Community Assessment of Opioid Awareness and Efficacy of Educational Interventions
  • Maryssa Lyons, Barriers to Mental Health Treatment in Rural Primary Care Populations
  • George Matar, Aortic Stenosis Community Awareness Project
  • Joe Zhao, The Impact of Computerized Information Management Systems on Primary Healthcare Information Management
Eastern Michigan University
  • Caitlyn Sorensen-Kowalski, What Do We Know About Girls with Autism Spectrum Disorder?
Michigan State University
  • Kimberly Clevenger, Characterizing the Physical Activity Environment in Michigan
  • Michelle Conway, Reliability and Validity of Physical Activity Monitors When Worn During Pregnancy and Post-Partum
  • Amber Cussen, The Effect of Exercise on the Motions and Forces of the Thumb
  • Haben Debessai, Expert Opinions on Access to Healthcare for Immigrants
  • Anne Drolet, A Multi-Dimensional View of Contraception and Teen Pregnancy in Flint Michigan
  • Andrea Kubicki, Expert Opinions on Access to Healthcare for Immigrants in the United States
  • Megan Masten, Opinions on Access to Healthcare for Immigrants
  • Reena Pullukat, Opinions on Access to Healthcare for Immigrants in Michigan
  • Kirsten Salmela, Opinions on Access to Healthcare for Immigrants in Michigan
Oakland University
  • Kade McQuivey, Implementing the Lever Sign in the Emergency Department to Assist in Acute ACL Rupture Diagnosis
University of Michigan
  • Alejandra Arango, The Protective Role of Interpersonal Connectedness in the Prospective Relationship between Bullying Victimization and Youth Suicide Risk
Wayne State University
  • Oluwabunmi Adebayo, Improving Nursing Staff Knowledge of Pulmonary Arterial Hypertensive Patients through an Educational Video Module
  • Nia Billings, Race and Emotion Perception in Adults with Traumatic Brain Injury
  • Shannon Clark, Acceptability and Feasibility of a Multicomponent Group Intervention to Initiate Health Behavior Change
  • Lana Ruvolo Grasser, Non-Pharmacological Interventions for Syrian Refugee Children Suffering from PTSD Trauma
  • Hannah Holmes, Arab American Women's Health Study
  • Anum Naseem, Exploring Muslim Women's Contraception Preferences and Needs
  • Sheri Pegram, Sexual Assault Stigmatization, Secrecy, and Avoidance: Implications for Health-Injurious Processes and Outcomes
  • Jamie Piercy, Twin Gestation and Neuropsychological Outcome in Preterm Born Preschoolers
  • Indrakshi Roy, Effects of The Great Recession on Older U.S. Workers and Their Compensation, Including Fringe Benefits
  • Victoria Sattarova, Measuring Amblyopia Patching Compliance at Children's Hospital of Michigan
  • Kelly Shakoor, Quality Improvement Project to Increase Venipuncture Best Practice in Patients with Decreased Glomerular Filtration Rat
  • Kinjal Talati, Improving Transition of Care in Diabetic Patients
  • Mohammad Toseef, Effects of MedicaidHMOs on Care Qualityand Racial/Ethnic Healthcare Disparities
  • Areeg Zuair, The Prevalence of Eating Disorders among Female Arab Americans
Western Michigan University
  • Nicole Bradford, Diversity in Community Health: From Entry Level
  • McKenna Corlis, Examining the Effects of Cell Phone Use on Caregiver Supervision and Child Injury Risk
  • Hilary Richardson, Examination of an Internet Program to Improve Discipline Strategies for Parents
  • Lydia Royeen, Perspectives on Occupational Therapy Services in the Primary Care Setting
  • Rosemary Stawasz, The Use of iPad Accessibility Features by Children with Low Vision on Reading Outcomes
Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan, a nonprofit mutual insurance company, and the Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan Foundation are independent licensees of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association. BCBSM provides and administers health benefits to more than 4.6 million members residing in Michigan in addition to employees of Michigan-headquartered companies who reside outside the state. For more company information, visit and

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.


MI Blues Perspectives is sponsored by Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan, a nonprofit, independent licensee of the Blue Cross Blue Shield Association