The Health Equity Alliance of Long Island’s Innovation

Our Mission

The mission of the Health Equity Alliance of Long Island (HEALI) is to engage health and human service agencies, community members and other stakeholders to ensure equitable health and life outcomes for all Long Islanders through cross-sector partnerships, innovative funding strategies and improvements in the health & human service delivery system. We will use our collective power to influence public policy and investment decisions by funders.

Our Vision

HEALI’s vision is to build and provide an integrated, holistic, culturally and linguistically responsive health and human service delivery system that results in equitable health and life outcomes for all Long Islanders.

Our Goals

  • Develop an IT infrastructure that allows for multi-directional data sharing among agencies, while respecting clients’ rights and protecting their privacy.
  • Improve connectivity between agencies as they screen clients and track referrals within the sector.
  • Engage community members, being inclusive and using a culturally and linguistically competent lens.
  • Use our collective power and unified voice to advocate for services and investments needed for Long Island’s diverse communities.
  • Develop strategies that simultaneously prepare CBOs for change, convey value and highlight our leadership and expertise to collectively impact a transforming healthcare system.

1115 Concept Paper

Section 1115 of the Social Security Act permits the Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) to approve experimental, pilot or demonstration projects that test and evaluate state-specific policy changes in Medicaid and CHIP programs to improve care, increase efficiency and reduce costs without increasing federal Medicaid expenditures. Through the 1115 Waiver, HEALI seeks to:

  • Address health disparities and systemic health care delivery issues that have been highlighted and intensified by the COVID-19 pandemic,
    Promote community-based and non-institutional care.
  • Better integrate health care and social care,
    Leverage emerging technologies and care models.
  • Help contain costs by providing quality health care.
  • Investing in equitable and culturally appropriate health care, and ensuring everyone can get the coverage they need.

The waiver seeks to promote health equity by addressing the Social Determinants of Health (SDOH). SDOH have a major impact on people’s health, well-being, and quality of life. Examples of SDOH include:

  • Safe housing, transportation, and neighborhoods
  • Racism, discrimination, and violence
  • Education, job opportunities, and income
  • Access to nutritious foods and physical activity opportunities
  • Polluted air and water
  • Language and literacy skills


Community Health Workers

Community Health Workers (CHWs) are frontline public health workers who have a close understanding and passion for the community they will be serving. Community Health Workers provide health and social service support to individuals in the community and also build community capacity by increasing health knowledge and self-sufficiency through a range of activities such as community education, counseling, and advocacy.

Working with a Community Care team including Doctors, Nurses, Therapists and Social Workers, CHWs conduct home visits, facilitate transportation and patient appointments, link patients to supportive services and teach patients self-management techniques with the goal of improving health outcomes.

Examples of the 1115 Waiver in Other States


  • The Oregon Health Authority (OHA) has developed a set of policy concepts which outline changes OHA proposes to make to the Oregon Health Plan as part of our effort to advance health equity. These concepts are the basis of OHA’s upcoming application to CMS, whose approval is needed to implement policies reflected in these concept papers.

How To Join

To work with HEALI to build a future for Long Island in which zip code no longer determines health outcomes, please fill out this form to participate in the next HEALI meeting, which occurs the third Wednesday of every month at 10:00am. Our next meeting is Wednesday, November 17th.

If you have any questions, please email Jake Ryan at or call (516)-904-4454.

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HEALI Steering Committee

  • Lori Andrade

    Health and Welfare Council of Long Island

  • Greta Guarton

    Long Island Coalition for the Homeless

  • Jacob Dixon

    Choice for All

  • Colleen Merlo

    Association for Mental Health and Wellness

  • Joy Connolly

    Child Care Council of Nassau County

  • Kathy Rosenthal

    Family Service League

  • Jeffrey McQueen

    Mental Health Association of Nassau County

  • Marteen Hackett

    Hofstra University

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Join us in creating a future for Long Island in which everyone has an equal opportunity to prosper and thrive.

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Established in 1947, the Health and Welfare Council of Long Island (HWCLI) is a regional, nonprofit umbrella organization for health and human service providers. We are dedicated to improving the lives of Long Island’s most vulnerable residents by responding to their needs through the promotion and development of public policies and direct services.

Contact Us

110 Walt Whitman Road, Suite 101, Huntington Station, NY 11746

Phone: 516-483-1110

Fax: 516-483-4794


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