BHSH Spectrum Health West Michigan Receives National Award for CenteringPregnancy Program

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. – August 19, 2022 The BHSH Spectrum Health West Michigan OB/GYN Residency Practice has been named the first-ever Centering Site of the Year by the Centering Healthcare Institute (CHI) for its work implementing and executing the CenteringPregnancy® care model, in collaboration with Priority Health. Spectrum Health was recognized for patient care as well as how the program adapted and continued to care for expecting women amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

CenteringPregnancy, an evidence-based model of group health care, combines a health assessment with interactive learning and community building to help support positive health behaviors, drive better health outcomes and address the complex social determinants of health. CenteringPregnancy brings expecting patients who are due around the same time together for routine prenatal care. Research confirms active participation in CenteringPregnancy lowers the risk of preterm birth, closes the disparity gap in preterm birth for all patients, increases breastfeeding rates and improves both prenatal visit adherence and patient satisfaction.

During the COVID-19 pandemic, Spectrum Health pivoted from in-person meetings to offering a virtual option for patients. The team developed tools and resources for providers, residents, clinical staff, and scheduling teams to support Centering conversations with their patients.

“We are deeply grateful to receive this national award for our CenteringPregnancy program, especially considering the challenges COVID-19 created for this normally in-person program,” said Cheryl Wolfe, MD, MBA, vice president and department chief of Women’s Health, Spectrum Health West Michigan. “Our team has gone above and beyond to keep patients engaged and motivated and to find the best way to serve our patients.”

Priority Health was the first insurer in the state to invest in the CenteringPregnancy model by providing additional funding to address barriers to care and support participation.

“Supporting a care model that not only improves health outcomes for members but also lowers overall health costs is a win-win,” said James Forshee, MD, Senior Vice President and Chief Medical Officer at Priority Health. “Priority Health and Spectrum Health are both honored to receive this recognition from CHI. We look forward to continuing our partnership with the Centering Healthcare Institute to help address racial health disparities within prenatal care here in Michigan.”

Angie Truesdale, CEO of CHI, will present this inaugural award to Spectrum Health today.

The Women’s Health team is working with the Spectrum Health Foundation and community partners to expand the CenteringPregnancy program to additional locations outside of Grand Rapids in the near future.


About Priority Health
With over 30 years in business, Priority Health is the second largest health plan in Michigan, offering an extensive portfolio of health benefits options for employer groups and individuals, including Medicare and Medicaid plans. Serving more than one million members each year and offering a broad network of primary care physicians in Michigan, Priority Health continues to be recognized as a leader for quality, customer service, transparency and product innovation. Learn more about affordable, quality health coverage options from Priority Health.


About BHSH Spectrum Health West Michigan
People are at the heart of everything we do, and the inspiration for our long and continuing legacy of strong community partnerships, philanthropy, and transparency. Our award-winning team improves health, inspires hope, and saves lives across 13 counties in West Michigan. We bring together 11 hospitals—including Spectrum Health Helen DeVos Children’s Hospital, with expert care from 350+ pediatric specialists in 70+ specialties and programs—three rehabilitation and nursing centers, 120 outpatient sites and telehealth services. We are proud to work with 4,000 physicians and advanced practice providers, including Spectrum Health Medical Group, one of the largest and most comprehensive multispecialty physician groups in West Michigan.



About Centering Healthcare Institute
CHI is a national non-profit organization, based in Boston with a mission to improve health and transform the way care is delivered. With over two decades of experience as the go-to resource for group healthcare, CHI has pioneered and sustained the Centering model of group care currently offered across 600 healthcare practice sites. Visit for more information.