KHC Staff Spotlight: Daija Head

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Daija Head
Project Assistant, Kentuckiana Health Collaborative

Daija joined the Kentuckiana Health Collaborative as a Project Assistant in February 2024. Daija is responsible for providing communication, administration, and planning support for all KHC projects. She is a student at The Pennsylvania State University pursuing a degree in Biobehavioral Health. She is a dedicated advocate for diversity and inclusion, with a sincere commitment to promoting equality in healthcare, addressing gender disparities, and championing women’s health. Outside of advocacy work, she practices Pilates, indulges in hair and makeup, and dresses up her dog. More than anything, she cherishes time spent doing adventurous activities with her family. 

What are you most excited about working on in the future around health and healthcare improvement?

As a minority myself, I am most enthusiastic about creating change surrounding health equity. We as a country simply are not doing enough for underserved communities. In the future, I am looking forward to being involved in the evolution towards a more inviting healthcare system for all.

What do you see as the biggest threat to our community’s health? How do you feel it needs to be addressed?

The biggest threat to our community in my opinion is the lack of access to health whether access embodies the location of hospitals or healthy foods, insurance, or education. All of which drastically influence an individual’s quality of life. The pipeline to understanding what you need to survive heavily depends on access to those resources.

How can the KHC best coordinate and align action to change health and the healthcare system?

By engaging a diverse range of stakeholders including healthcare providers, community organizations, government agencies, insurers, businesses, and residents. Each stakeholder brings unique perspectives and resources, and their involvement is crucial for successful collaboration. Together we can advocate for policy changes at the local, state, and federal levels that support improved health and healthcare outcomes. This may include policies related to healthcare financing, reimbursement, regulation, and public health.

Why do you think a multi-stakeholder coalition like the KHC is needed in the community?

A coalition with goals of equitable and valuable healthcare must exist in every community, not just Kentucky. Specifically in Kentucky however, there are many opportunities for improvement as the state currently ranks 41st in the nation for overall health. Two of the easiest health measures to make differences in rank are increasing high school completion rates and decreasing frequent mental distress.

What is your guilty pleasure (TV show, sweet treat, etc.)?

Unfortunately, this is an awful question because I have more than one like everyone else. If I had to choose just one to share it would be ice cream, particularly Ben & Jerry’s Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Dairy Free ice cream.

What is your dream vacation spot?

My dream vacation spot is the Maldives. I have always said I wanted to have a destination wedding in the Maldives. I would request limited phone access and a ton of disposable cameras!

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