Traverse City Street Medicine Collaborative Earns National Award from the American Hospital Association

Traverse City Street Medicine Collaborative Earns National Award from the American Hospital Association

Earlier today, Munson Healthcare was among five hospitals from across the nation that were presented the American Hospital Association (AHA) Dick Davidson NOVA Award for hospital-led collaborative efforts to improve community health. 

Street Medicine partners receiving the NOVA award“This year’s Dick Davidson NOVA Award winners have demonstrated dedication and commitment to improving community health by forging strong partnerships with other community organizations,” said AHA President and CEO Rick Pollack. “These hospitals and health systems offer exemplary and essential services and programs that have adapted and evolved to effectively meet the changing needs of their communities.” 

Munson Healthcare was recognized for the Street Medicine program done in collaboration with Traverse Health Clinic and Goodwill of Northern Michigan. The partnership launched in 2020 in the midst of the global pandemic and has provided care to over 1,000 people experiencing homelessness in the Traverse City area.

“We are grateful for this recognition from the AHA because it is so important to raise awareness about the 650,000 plus people experiencing homelessness in this country,” said Dr. David Klee of Munson Healthcare. “While most street medicine occurs in densely populated urban areas, there is need in rural areas as well and we hope this program will help provide a model for other smaller communities like our own.” 

Following the mantra “Go to the People,” the Street Medicine program provides medical care and other supportive services twice a week for the unhoused in the streets, at community-based organizations and in encampments. The program connects those experiencing homelessness with care teams that include residents representing family medicine, psychiatric and pharmacy programs, outreach workers and social workers.

The program expanded in fall 2022 when a federal grant helped fund the addition of a Mobile Medical Unit that in its first several months logged 445 patient visits. This past week, Munson Healthcare announced a commitment to donate $300,000 to Traverse Health Clinic over the next two years to support expansion of the Street Medicine Program including accessibility upgrades to the mobile unit and hiring of a full-time community coordinator.

“As our unhoused population has continued to grow in northern Michigan, we want to ensure that folks have access to the health care services they need when they are the most vulnerable to significant or chronic health issues,” said Ed Ness, Munson Healthcare President and CEO. 

Munson is joined by four other community health initiatives including Essential Health’s (Duluth, MN) Resourceful Program, John Muir Health’s (Walnut Creek, CA) Beyond Violence, University Hospitals’ (Cleveland, OH) Food for Life Markets®, and Palomar Health’s (Escondido, CA) Forensic Health and Trauma Recovery Center Services. For details on the other NOVA winners click here

Learn more about the Street Medicine collaboration at

About Munson Healthcare

Rated by Fortune Magazine as one of the Top 15 Health Systems in the nation, Munson Healthcare is non-profit health system serving over 500,000 residents across Northern Michigan. As the largest healthcare organization in the region, MHC serves its communities through primary care and specialty clinics, urgent cares, outpatient imaging, lab, and surgical facilities, five community hospitals, and three regional hospitals including Munson Medical Center that is home to Cowell Family Cancer Center, Munson Orthopedic Institute, Traverse Heart and Vascular, and The Witham Family Comprehensive Stroke Center. Learn more at


About Traverse Health Clinic

Traverse Health Clinic is an independent 501(c)(3) non-profit, Federally Qualified Community Health Center (FQHC), offering high quality, comprehensive health care services. Learn more at


About Goodwill Northern Michigan 

Goodwill Northern Michigan is a community-owned nonprofit with food and housing community programs — including Food Rescue, Street Outreach, the Goodwill Inn, Supportive Housing, Good Meals, Patriot Place, and Good Partner Vouchers — that serve a 19-county region from Wexford to Cheboygan. Learn more at