Community Impact

Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan Foundation grants are empowering Michigan residents to make a difference in health care. See how they've made their mark by reading their success stories.

Student Award recipient explores key to healthy aging

What are the secrets to long-term health? We all know we're supposed to eat well and exercise. But, as Wayne State University doctoral student Nasim Ferdows has learned, there's a lot more at work.

Ferdows is a 2015 Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan Foundation Student Award Program recipient.

"Different studies have identified different factors that influence aging, each drawing from a different point in life,” Ferdows said. "Inspired by these studies, I hypothesized that it is actually a combination of multiple direct and indirect factors over the course of an individual’s life that determines whether someone ages well or will develop chronic health issues."

Ferdows found that healthy aging actually starts in childhood. Her research could lead to programs that specifically address aging factors at all stages of life. Her goal is to inform the state's policy makers and garner their support for increasing the quality of health for Michigan residents throughout their lives.

To read more stories about how our latest grant recipients are making strides in health care research, see our 2016 Annual Report (PDF).

In the news

Read more about how our funding is improving health care across Michigan communities.

Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan Foundation awards more than $760,000 in grant funding

The Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan Foundation has awarded more than $760,000 to support research and community programs that identify and address critical issues affecting the health of Michigan residents.

Lions Hearing Center expands hearing screening thanks to Foundation grant

In an effort to help metro Detroit kids get hearing screenings early on, the Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan Foundation has provided the Lions Hearing Center of Michigan a $30,000 grant to expand its hearing screening services.

Data mapper seeks to increase health information accessibility

The Health Data Research, Analysis and Mapping Center, made possible by a Foundation grant, allows users to share and analyze available data from a variety of sources that can better inform public health initiatives and interventions at the neighborhood level.

Foundation funding provides tools for neurosurgery students

With the help of a $75,000 Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan Foundation grant, a University of Michigan team has developed two physical and anatomically-accurate neurosurgery simulators.

Health Minds Network aims to improve mental health on campus

College can be a stressful time in a young person's life. The Healthy Minds Network, a program funded by the Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan Foundation, has focused on learning more about students' mental health needs and more.

Coalition seeks to improve oral health for low-income, uninsured patients

Looking into the mouths of some of his patients at Baxter Community Center, dentist Scott Van Timmeren sees firsthand the damage that can take place when oral health is neglected. With a Foundation grant, he has helped uninsured patients avoid painful and expensive corrections.