Health & Wellness Panel

April 8, 2021 - 12:00 pm

The connection between housing and homelessness is generally intuitive, but the strong link between health and homelessness is often overlooked. According to the American Public Health Association, people experiencing homelessness have high rates of chronic mental and physical health conditions. So how do we address this crisis?

Join us for an informative discussion on the intersection of homelessness and health. You will hear from community leaders from Anthem, Inc., LA Christian Health Centers, and Cedars-Sinai as they address the challenges people experiencing homelessness face in accessing medical care and how innovative partnerships and programs are key in abating the crisis.

If you have any questions, reach out to Nadine Hanley at events@thepeopleconcern.org

Register HERE!


MODERATOR: TuLynn Smylie | Chief Program Officer, Services | The People Concern

TuLynn currently serves as Chief Program Officer for The People Concern. She oversees all seven interim housing projects, Access Center walk-in and outreach services, k9 connection, Health and Wellness,   as well as the agency’s domestic violence programs. Prior to The People Concern, TuLynn served as Administrative Director for the Center for the Pacific Asian Family (CPAF), an organization dedicated to working primarily with API victims of domestic violence and sexual assault. From 2005 to 2012, TuLynn was the executive director for WomenShelter of Long Beach, while also serving as First Vice Chair of the Los Angeles County Domestic Violence Council and Chair of the DV Shelter Director’s Committee. As CPO at The People Concern, TuLynn oversees the Health & Wellness program, which engages people living in the streets and high utilizers of emergency department services and works with them to achieve improved health outcomes and housing.

 PANELIST: Katie Hren, LCSW, MPH | Community Health Manager | Cedars-Sinai

Katie Hren is a healthcare professional with strong clinical skills, experience in systems work, and a demonstrated commitment to serving others. Born and raised in LA, Katie graduated with her B.A. in Human Development from CSULB and holds a dual master’s degree in Social Work and Public Health from USC. In Katie’s professional experience she has worked in a variety of social service and health care settings ranging from mental health facilities, community-based organizations, hospitals, and private practice. Currently, Katie serves as the Community Health Supervisor in the Community Benefit and Systems Planning Department at Cedars-Sinai. In this role, she is supervising the design and implementation of a systems wide social determinants of health program, aiming to increase patient health by addressing health-related social needs in vulnerable patient populations. Prior to this position, Katie worked as a Licensed Clinical Social Worker in the Psychiatry department at Cedars-Sinai, delivering comprehensive services and interventions to patients experiencing mental health and/or substance use issues. In addition to patient care, Katie also has project management experience focusing on improving transitions of care for vulnerable patient populations, including individuals experiencing homelessness and older adults.

PANELIST: Shannon Fernando, MSN, FNP-C | Chief Innovations Officer | Los Angeles Christian Health Centers

Shannon Fernando is the Chief Innovations Officer at LA Christian Health Centers (LACHC), a FQHC caring for Los Angeles’ most vulnerable populations. Shannon feels particularly called to care for our neighbors in Los Angeles’ Skid Row, having first volunteered in the community as a case manager in 2006 and joining LACHC in 2013. Shannon oversees LACHC’s special clinical programs, including: street medicine, Hepatitis C and HIV treatment programs, clinical satellite sites, LACHC’s advocacy efforts and most recently, the clinic’s overall COVID-19 response. Street medicine is a particular passion for Shannon and she continues to engage in direct patient care, providing street medicine in Skid Row alongside her teams.

PANELIST: Beau Hennemann | Director, Special Programs | Anthem, Inc.

Beau Hennemann is the Director of Special Programs for Anthem Blue Cross – California Medicaid.  In this role, Beau has statewide responsibility for directing and overseeing the operations, business strategy and alignment for special programs such as Long Term Services and Supports (LTSS), Health Homes, Whole Person Care, Palliative Care, and Social Determinants of Health.  This includes responsibility for program performance, provider and community collaboration/engagement, behavioral health integration, clinical care management, policy development, process improvement/program enhancements, managing interdependencies and risks, and developing growth opportunities.

Beau has over eighteen years of experience in program development and implementation within LTSS and other Medicaid-based programs, in both public and private organizations.  Prior to working at Anthem, Beau served as Senior Manager of Home and Community Based Services at L.A. Care Health Plan where he oversaw the transition of IHSS and the Multipurpose Senior Services Program into managed care benefits, the development of a Care Plan Options program, and the development of collaborative relationships with community-based organizations working to assist individuals with their psycho-social needs. Beau also spent over 11 years working for the Los Angeles County IHSS Public Authority.  Beau is a graduate of the University of Missouri, where he earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Business and Public Administration.

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