November 2021 Newsletter

Screening for social needs is one thing. Helping people problem-solve successfully is another.

November 2021

Spread the news

Think Different?
Lawyer Different
(And Be the Change.)

Excited by a new frontier that recognizes people’s legal rights, risks and remedies as fundamental to high-quality care planning and delivery? We’re recruiting a Law & Policy Consultant to join our team. This new colleague will partner with communities of care in Rhode Island as well as in Massachusetts and nationally; and will support MLPB’s refinement of our team-facing legal partnering innovation. 

Deadline to apply: Dec. 31, 2021

The DULCE Evidence Base Continues to Grow!

Earlier this month, a new DULCE paper was published in Pediatrics, the official journal of the American Academy of Pediatrics. Entitled Cross-Sector Approach Expands Screening and Addresses Health-Related Social Needs in Primary Care, the paper presents data collected at 5 DULCE sites that shows:

  • an increase in family engagement with well-child visits; and
  • reliable detection of, and responses to, health-related social needs disclosed by families. 

Read the paper lead-authored by MaryCatherine Arbour here, as well as a companion blog post published by the Center for the Study of Social Policy

To explore how to bring DULCE to your community, contact Azieb Ermias, Senior Program Analyst at CSSP, at

Ideas In Motion
Bridging Divides blog

Breaking Legal Developments in MA at the Intersection of Health, Housing and Justice:

An Initial Explainer & Reflection for Communities of Care

Are you seeing recent headlines about court cases involving housing and health in Boston? Confused about what this means for your team’s/organization’s housing problem-solving with the people you serve? Check out our newest blog.
You’ll learn about:
  • The cases and the rulings; 
  • Implications for housing-related problem-solving; 
  • Related policy proposals;
  • and More!

Invested in positive health and living conditions in RI?

Check out the Rhode Island Life Index 2021!

On November 8, the Rhode Island Life Index 2021 was released during a public event you can view here. A joint collaboration of Blue Cross & Blue Shield of Rhode Island and the Brown University School of Public Health, the Life Index captures Rhode Islanders’ perceptions of their quality of life and their quality of community. Key learning from the 2021 Life Index:

  • RI residents score programs and services for children significantly lower in 2021 as compared to 2019-2020.
  • For people living in core cities, as well as those who identified as Latinx, there was a significant decrease in perceptions of the availability of services for older adults from 2019 to 2021.
  • From 2019 through 2021, BIPOC Rhode Islanders living in core cities identify access to affordable housing and cost of living as much greater barriers to health and well-being than white Rhode Islanders living in non-core areas.
  • For virtually all people surveyed, access to quality and affordable housing is a challenge.

MLPB is proud to serve as a member of the RI Life Index Coalition, supporting survey design and implementation, among other things.

Screening for health-related social needs is one thing. 

Helping people problem-solve successfully is quite another.

Today, on #givingtuesday, you can advance health through justice by giving to MLPB.

Digital Digest Spotlight

Designed for teams committed to human-centered social care, MLPB’s Digital Digest distills key law and policy updates across many domains of health-related social need that impact individuals, families, and communities. 

It’s open enrollment season for health insurance!

  • Medicare’s open enrollment deadline is December 7, 2021.
  • Individuals and families can check out the Massachusetts and Rhode Island health insurance exchanges to see if they qualify for free or lower-cost health insurance. The deadline to enroll in MA is January 23, 2022; the deadline in RI is January 31, 2022.   

Visit the RI and MA Digital Digest to learn more! 

On our mind

Disparities, Inequity & Care (Re)Design

Education & Health

Employment, Income Supports & Health

Housing & Health

Immigration & Health

Criminal Legal Systems & Health 

Maternal and Child Health

Social Care Innovation

Transportation & Health