The Vineyard Nursing Association, Vineyard Health Care Access Program and Island Health are collaborating on a pilot program for people who are living with or are at risk for chronic diseases such as diabetes, congestive heart failure and COPD. Called The Martha’s Vineyard Partnership for Health, the free program aims to help people connect with resources, education and health care needed to improve their health.

The program has been funded by a community grant from the Martha’s Vineyard Hospital, and is modeled on a nationally-recognized chronic care model developed in Seattle, Wash. The program will offer health coaching, diabetes education classes, a chronic disease management class, walking groups and other exercise and wellness programs. Classes and health coaching are offered in English and Portuguese.

The program is initially open to anyone who is at risk, including people who have been diagnosed with or are experiencing acute symptoms of chronic disease. Referrals to the program can come from a primary care provider, a nurse, a friend or self-referral. For information, contact Lindsey Strug at 508-687-7118 or visit the website