Leadership Spotlight - Casey Fenoglio

leadership Mar 14, 2023

Casey Fenoglio is the Director of Community Engagement at Pottstown Hospital, she oversees the Community Wellness Department.


Casey’s role includes conducting a Community Health Needs Assessment every three years, working with community partners to develop an implementation and execution strategy to meet the community needs that are identified, and writing grants to receive additional funds for new or continuing programs.


A large part of Casey’s work is in community engagement. She says, “I work with community partners and really listen to them and the clients they serve, to learn where their needs are, to see where we can be a good partner, and where we might be able to add a unique health perspective to a project.”


She continued, “We're doing a lot of work in health equity right now, and I'm really focused on ensuring our most vulnerable community members have the same access to care as everybody else in the community.”


Casey shared, “I love that I get to work on all aspects of health in all populations. It’s not one specific focus area or need, We do everything related to health, health equity, and the social determinants of health for all populations.”


I asked Casey what some of the biggest challenges are with the work she does and she said, ”A lot of the needs that we identify in the community aren’t something that most people would associate with health care. When we look at access to healthy foods, most people don't connect the hospital and access to healthy food. We think about grocery stores or farmers markets.

Or when we think about housing – in Pottstown access to affordable housing and having enough housing in general in the community is a challenge. Most people don’t necessarily put together a hospital and housing and how they’re related. So I think the challenge is some of these large structural issues in the community, which are the biggest needs being identified –  and figuring out creative ways as a hospital and healthcare system to utilize our resources to make an impact in those areas.”


Two examples Casey shared of existing work being done are: 

The hospital works in partnership with Green Allies to operate a one-acre farm and CSA program and so the hospital covers the costs of produce for low-income community members. This helps increase access to healthy food for those in need.

On the housing side, the hospital has a street medicine program. “We may not be able to fix the affordability of housing in the community, it's hard for one single organization in general to fix that. But we can help address some of the health and behavioral health issues of people who are in need of housing, to set them up for better success to get into housing and a housing solution.”


Casey shared an interesting statistic that 90% of our health outcomes are based on the social determinants of health, so not your health behaviors, but things like housing and accessibility, the walkability of your community, access to healthy foods, cultural competency of the people serving you, education and income, and how they can be more impactful on your health outcomes than the actual health decisions that you make.


She said, “So whether you decide to exercise 30 minutes a week, or 30 minutes a day, or even the decision you make about what you’re putting in your body, those things are only a fraction of what really impacts your health. If you don't have access to transportation to get the healthcare you need – if there’s a lack of accessibility – it’s a challenge. And so I think that's the hardest part of my job is trying to come up with creative solutions that are wanted by the community and that aren’t astronomically expensive.”


Next I asked Casey what one of the biggest lessons is that she’s learned on her leadership journey.

 She said, “I’m going to tell you, what I tell every single intern that I've had come to my department, I tell all of them to be a yes person. And for me, I am totally okay with saying no. We all obviously need to have boundaries for ourselves and for our organizations. But when something comes your way – pause, and if you have the capacity, even if it's something out of the box - just say yes. Give it a try.”


Casey continued, “I’m a huge proponent of opening yourself up to new opportunities that you might not have done before.” 

I asked Casey what she enjoys most about the work that she does and she said, “Honestly doing it in the community that I live in. There's something extra meaningful when I'm implementing programs that positively impact my community, my neighbors. We have programs that are geared toward very specific needs and we have programs that are open to anyone in the public, and being able to share that in my neighborhood is so special.” 


She added, “I've really enjoyed being a leader at Pottstown hospital, as we have done a lot of transitioning, which is of no surprise to anybody over the past five or so years.


Seeing our employees grow and the commitment that not just my department, but our entire staff has in the community, and the different ways that our staff engages – it’s incredible. Our leaders at the hospital are encouraged to serve on board of directors in the local community. They're encouraged during their work hours to participate in committee calls and meetings because we want all of the leaders, not just myself, to be a trusted messenger, a trusted community member and an engaged leader in the community.

I'm very proud of working here, and it's been really interesting to see how we have grown and how through the pandemic we really have come out stronger. I look forward to continuing to see our hospital grow, our staff and leaders grow, and to be a part of it.”

To contact Casey, you can reach her at: [email protected] or 610-327-7035

To stay connected with Pottstown Hospital news and events: 

Facebook: @PottstownHospital    Web: https://towerhealth.org/locations/pottstown-hospital


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