Weiser Memorial Hospital tabs Padilla as community health worker

With plans to expand the reach and effectiveness of Weiser Memorial Hospital’s Community Health Worker position, Weiser’s own Oscar Padilla was hired this summer and began in the role in early August.
 Padilla comes to the job with a bachelor’s degree in sports medicine and certifications in personal training (PT) and strength and conditioning (CSCS), bringing an extensive understanding of nutrition and fitness to the position. Along with those initial qualifications, his strong command of both English and Spanish, and his deep connections throughout the area is a leg up for him, the medical community, and the patients he will be serving.
 WMH’s Public Health and Safety Nurse Manager Hilary Kile serves as Padilla’s immediate supervisor who said she had recently gone back to school to pursue her masters in nursing with an emphasis in public health.
 “This training certainly opened my eyes to the work and benefit of Community Health Workers and the need for outreach to underserved populations,” she said. “It is important to engage community partners and work together to ensure all individuals have the health education and access to care that is needed to improve the health of individuals, families and the community.”
 Kile said the position at WMH has evolved over time, “based on our community health needs assessment, community involvement, and strengths of the person in the position.
 “Having someone already embedded in the community, who is known and trusted, is a huge asset,” Kile added. “Obviously Oscar’s strengths in nutrition and fitness pair so well with this. He’s already learning a lot about illness and disease, and how he will help patients. 
 “Our most recent community health assessment indicates an abundance of needs in the community, including concerns over mental health and substance abuse,” Kile said. “It’s exciting to build the new program with him. We are networked with other programs in the state and will be looking for opportunities for Oscar to job shadow at other facilities.”
 New to the healthcare framework, Padilla said he hadn’t known what to expect before his first day on the job.
 “It was a welcoming environment coming in,” Padilla said. “I’ve been surprised at how it works, and I’m getting to see how everyone connects and works as a team.”
 Padilla began immediately working towards earning a certification as a Community Health Worker through Idaho State University’s Community Health Worker Training Academy.
 “I love to learn, especially about health,” he said. “So far, the course modules I have taken haven’t covered anything I learned while in school for my sports medicine degree. But I still have 24 modules to complete and from what I have looked over there are some modules that will. I plan to finish by March. Each module takes about 2-4 hours to complete, so I’ve got a lot of studying to do.”
 Kile said they estimate Padilla will begin working one-on-one with patients after three months, or so.
 “There will also be opportunities for him to work with employers if they would like to do some basic health screenings for their workers,” she said. “He will work closely with our internal experts, learning from individuals and the departments. We really desire to connect to our local providers with a goal to identify problems patients may have in accessing resources and help resolve issues early so they can move forward and prevent readmission.”
Community events coming up
Yoga in the Park
 Padilla is no stranger to organizing teams and events. He has laid plans for two separate Saturday events in September, the first in conjunction with National Yoga Awareness Month on Sept. 10, beginning at 9 a.m. at Weiser City Park.
 His networking throughout the valley includes a pair of Boise Yogis who will be here to instruct the class.
 “This is free to the community and is for all ages and all levels,” Padilla said. “Participants will only need to bring a mat and their own water.”
OutPerform Obesity
 September is also designated as National Childhood Obesity Awareness Month, and Padilla has tied the title of a Sept. 24 event to the name of his personal training business, OutPerformance Training.  
 Targeting the 10-14 age group, but open to all, the community is invited to meet Padilla at Weiser Memorial Park from 10 a.m. to noon that Saturday, where they will receive nutritional information, along with a fun list of activities for kids.
 “We are still working out the details, but we have a nice list of cool sponsors that are donating items that will be included in swag bags for the participants,” Padilla said.
 “These are just the first of events that will be coming,” Kile added. “We are trying to follow the National Health Awareness calendar.”


Signal American

18 E. Idaho St.
Weiser, ID 83672
PH: (208) 549-1717
FAX: (208) 549-1718

Connect with Us