Posts for UPHP News

UPHP one of the highest-rated health plans in the nation, top in Michigan
Posted on October 22, 2019
UPHP logo


Marquette – Upper Peninsula Health Plan is again one of the nation’s best Medicaid health plans, according to a recent national rating of Medicaid health plans. The health plan ranks in the top 15 among Medicaid managed-care plans in the United States, according to the National Committee for Quality Assurance (NCQA) Medicaid Health Insurance Plan Ratings 2019-2020. UPHP is the top rated plan in the State of Michigan earning a 4.5 out of 5 rating.

NCQA rated more than 1,000 health insurance plans based on clinical quality, member satisfaction, and NCQA Accreditation Survey results. This rating system emphasizes care outcomes and what patients say about their care. 

“We are truly honored to receive this rating from NCQA. This rating highlights the exceptional work our UPHP staff and U.P. providers do every day serving our members,” said Melissa Holmquist, UPHP Chief Executive Officer. “We are caring for our friends and neighbors and everyone takes great pride in ensuring all UPHP members have access to the highest quality care and services they deserve.”

The National Committee for Quality Assurance (NCQA) is a private, nonprofit organization dedicated to improving health care quality. NCQA accredits and certifies a wide range of health care organizations and recognizes clinicians in key clinical areas. NCQA’s HEDIS® is the most widely used performance measurement tool in health care. NCQA’s website ( contains information to help consumers, employers and others make informed health care choices.

The complete Medicaid health-plan rankings are available at Rankings for Medicare and private plans are also available.

About UPHP
Upper Peninsula Health Plan currently serves nearly 50,000 members across five product lines (Michigan Medicaid, Children with Special Health Care Services, Healthy Michigan Plan, MI Health Link, and Medicare Advantage) and its network exceeds 2,000 providers. Learn more at

Upper Peninsula Health Plan Encourages Advance Care Planning
Posted on August 08, 2019
Laura McLain and Renee Anderton

Marquette, MI – (mediaBrew Communications) – On our latest Upper Peninsula Health Plan Update we heard about Advance Care Planning.

Laura McLain, RN, BSN, Clinical Coordinator Care Manager and Advance Care Planning Facilitator Instructor with Upper Peninsula Health Plan joined the Sunny Morning Show to talk about what advance care planning is and why it’s recommended.

Renee Anderton, CHES, Community Health Worker, Upper Peninsula Health Care Solutions (UPHCS)/ Upper Peninsula Health Plan also joined the show to talk about how to approach advance care planning from the standpoint of opening the conversations that are needed to create a plan that honors your goals and values for current and future health care if you are unable to speak for yourself.

McClain explained that there are two main aspects to advance care planning, the first is assigning yourself a patient advocate that you trust who will accept the responsibility of ensuring that your wishes are carried out if you are unable to express them.

The second is an advance directive, which is a legal document that describes your specific preferences for medical treatment in case you are unable to do this. This document will only be used if you become so ill or injured you cannot communicate your wishes yourself.

Anderton talked about the “Make a Plan, Share a Plan” project that is aimed at improving access to advance care planning for all adults in the Upper Peninsula.

They also talked about why advance care planning is important and who should have an advance directive.

More information is available by calling (906)225-6742, logging onto or

LISTEN IN – Laura McClain and Renee Anderton with more about Advance Care Planning.

This article was original posted by mediaBrew Communications Aug. 8, 2019, at

Grant Funding to Support Behavioral Health Services in Rural Upper Peninsula Communities
Posted on August 01, 2019


Marquette, Mich. – Upper Peninsula Health Care Solutions (UPHCS) was recently awarded a $600,000 competitive grant from the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) (a division of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services) to integrate behavioral health services into rural primary care settings across the Upper Peninsula. HRSA awarded approximately $6.3 million for Small Health Care Provider Quality Improvement Program grants designed to support rural primary care providers in improving patient health outcomes, as well as the quality and delivery of rural health care services in the primary care setting.

The funding will support UPHCS’s UPlift Collaborative Care Program, which aims to address an ongoing health concern in our rural region – adult behavioral health access – with an innovative approach. The UPHCS project team will work with two primary health care delivery partners to support implementation of an integrated behavioral health strategy. Those partners are Gibson Family Health Clinic in Newberry, MI, and Schoolcraft Memorial Hospital Rural Health Clinic in Manistique, MI, both of which are federally designated Rural Health Clinics. Using case-based learning via telehealth and investment in specialized training and certification, the project will support behavioral health co-location efforts, and further enhance patient behavioral and physical health outcomes in these rural communities.

“A whole-person health care approach – one that treats physical and mental health equally – is progressive, and will ultimately improve patient outcomes,” said Melissa Holmquist, executive director, UPHCS. “This funding greatly improves our ability to support a coordinated approach to health care delivery, which will strengthen our system and make a positive impact on the lives of individuals living in our rural communities across the Upper Peninsula.”

The grant funding will support this program for three years. A full list of Small Health Care Provider Quality Improvement Program grant awardees can be viewed here:

Upper Peninsula Health Care Solutions, Inc. is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization that serves the 310,000 residents of Michigan’s Upper Peninsula. We are a network of community health care providers with a shared vision of working together to improve access, reduce cost, and promote quality health care services in the communities served by our members. Visit
for more information.

UPHP Update: Upper Peninsula Health Plan Encouraging Health Checks For Area Kids
Posted on July 03, 2019
Chelsea Tonn

Marquette, Mich. – (Great Lakes Radio) – “Healthy Kids, Healthy Futures” is a joint effort between Upper Peninsula Health Plan and Upper Peninsula Health Group designed to highlight the importance of annual preventative care for kids of all ages.

UPHP Clinical Coordinator and LPN Chelsea Tonn joined the Sunny Morning Show today to talk about the key parts of this initiative.

Tonn said UPHP is teaming up with over 20 different care providers across the U.P. and promoting the campaign throughout the Upper Peninsula.

She said the overall goal is to make sure area children get the regular health care they need for a healthy future.

Tonn says the effort runs July 8th through September 30th and there will be prizes for the kids who go in and get the well care visits they need.

LISTEN IN to the full interview with UPHP Clinical Coordinator and LPN Chelsea Tonn here.

This story was originally posted by Great Lakes Radio, Inc. July 2, 2019.

Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on linkedin
UPHP Update: Marquette County Community Resource Fair Coming Later This Month
Posted on June 05, 2019
Claudia Chavez-Rhoades

Marquette, Mich. – (Great Lakes Radio News) – On our latest Upper Peninsula Health Plan (UPHP) Update, we were joined by Claudia Chavez-Rhoades, Quality Improvement Project Coordinator at Upper Peninsula Health Care Solutions (UPHCS).

Chavez-Rhoades explained that UPHCS is a subset under UPHP and is a network of community health care providers in the Upper Peninsula with a shared vision of collaborating together in areas that will provide UP citizens with access to high quality, affordable health care.

She said the two groups have been busy over the last several months planning the first-ever Marquette County Community Resource Fair, which will take place Friday, June 21 from noon to 4 p.m. at Lakeview Arena in Marquette.

Chavez-Rhoades said the goal of the fair is to connect Marquette County residents directly with local organizations that are available to assist and support their day-to-day health and social needs.

She said the resource fair is free and open to the public, with no tickets or registration are required, so she encouraged everyone to stop by and learn more about the resources and services available to help our community.

LISTEN IN – Claudia Chavez-Rhoades with more about the Marquette County Community Resource Fair.
VISIT – The Marquette County Community Resource Fair Facebook event page.

This story was originally posted here by Great Lakes Radio, Inc. June 4, 2019.

Community Event Will Connect Marquette County Citizens to Local Services, Resources
Posted on May 23, 2019

Marquette, Mich. – Citizens of Marquette County are invited to join Upper Peninsula Health Plan and Upper Peninsula Health Care Solutions for the first-ever Marquette County Community Resource Fair. Free and open to the public, the fair will connect residents directly with local organizations that are available to assist and support their day-to-day social needs. Event attendees will be able to receive onsite navigation assistance, in addition to becoming more aware of the resources available to them in our communities. With more than 50 community-based organizations committed to participate, attendees will have the opportunity to get connected with:

  • Housing Assistance
  • Food Assistance Programs
  • Health Care Services
  • Utility Assistance
  • Senior Services
  • Transportation Services
  • Children’s Services
  • Mental Health Services
  • Women’s Services
  • Employment Services

The event will also offer several free services and items such as haircuts, dental screenings, rapid HIV testing, bike helmets, bike raffles, backpacks filled with essential items, the Feeding America Mobile Food Truck, and boxed lunches.

Another goal of the event is to improve coordination between primary health and social service providers/organizations, allowing them to work collectively to address the social determinants of health – like employment and work conditions, physical environment, and education – that have a negative impact on health outcomes for many members of our community.

“We are thrilled to have been given the opportunity to organize this event for the members of our community,” said UPHP Chief Executive Officer, Melissa Holmquist. “Many of the services and resources needed to improve the health and wellness of our community are already here. Our hope is that this event will help raise awareness of them with both Marquette County residents and health- and community-based organizations, so that we can work collectively to improve health and social outcomes for all.”     

Event Information:

When:   June 21, 2019 from noon to 4 p.m.
Where: Lakeview Arena
401 East Fair Avenue
Marquette, MI 49855


Event Poster:

Campaign Engages Women and Provider Offices to Get “HealthyHer”
Posted on May 16, 2019

MARQUETTE – May is Women’s Health Month, and to celebrate and encourage women across the Upper Peninsula to take charge of their health, Upper Peninsula Health Plan (UPHP) and Upper Peninsula Health Group (UPHG) have launched the “HealthyHer” campaign! A play on the word “healthier,” the campaign focuses on women putting their own health first by establishing one healthy goal for themselves. The goal can be anything from getting well-care exams, to exercising more, to taking time to unplug from technology and be present.

UPHP and UPHG have also engaged provider offices to participate in the campaign. Offices were sent promotional materials such as posters, magnets, pins, and health education literature to help encourage participation among female patients in their offices.

UPHP wants to remind women that prevention is key. There are a number of preventive exams and screenings that women can get to stay on top of their health, like their annual well exam, Pap smear, mammogram (if over the age of 40, or earlier based on a provider’s recommendation), and various screenings for things like cancer to sexually transmitted diseases. These preventive exams and screenings are important to get done, even when feeling healthy, as they are designed to catch health issues early when they are more easily treatable.

The video below tells the story of Ashley, who was a seemingly healthy women in her mid-20s when her doctor discovered she had cancer at her annual well-woman visit. Luckily, because Ashley went in for her exam and the doctors caught it early, she was able to beat it and is now healthy and thriving!

To learn more about women’s health and what is appropriate for your age, visit

UPHP Update: The ‘HealthyHer’ Campaign For Women’s Health Month
Posted on May 07, 2019
Kaitlyn Schroderus

Marquette, MI – (Great Lakes Radio) – Kaitlyn Schroderus, Clinical Coordinator at Upper Peninsula Health Group, a subset under Upper Peninsula Health Plan, joined the Sunny Morning Show to discuss Women’s Health Month and shared some good tips for improving health for women.

Schroderus talked about a project that UPHP/UPHG is currently working together on called the “HealthyHer” campaign to promote women’s health.

She said women, especially those with children, tend to put their own health last, and they want to encourage women to put themselves first by establishing at least one healthy goal, such as quitting or cutting down on tobacco use, to drinking more water, to being more active.

Schroderus added that they have engaged about 20 provider offices throughout the Upper Peninsula to take part in the project by running their own “HealthyHer” campaign within their offices.

She added that for good women’s health, prevention is key, with a number of preventive exams and screenings that women can get to stay on top of their health, like an annual well exam, pap smear, mammogram, and various screenings for things such as cancer to sexually transmitted diseases.

Schroderus closed with the advice that if you’re trying to get healthier, start small, because by choosing one simple goal and being diligent about sticking to it, that can get the ball rolling to lead to to better health and wellness.

LISTEN IN – Kaitlyn Schroderus, Clinical Coordinator at Upper Peninsula Health Group with more about the “HealthyHer” campaign.

This story was originally posted here by Great Lakes Radio, Inc. May 7, 2019.

UPHP Names Krystina Gwinn Employee of the Year
Posted on May 03, 2019

Marquette, MI – Upper Peninsula Health Plan (UPHP) proudly names Krystina Gwinn the 2018 Employee of the Year. Each year, UPHP names an Employee of the Year from a pool of Employee of the Quarter and “Caught ‘Cha” candidates. Each Employee of the Quarter is nominated by their manager. The nominees are then reviewed and a winner is selected by the senior management team. UPHP employees also participate in a peer recognition program called “Caught ‘Cha.” This is an employee-driven incentive program in which all employees can write a “Caught ‘Cha” note and give it to someone they caught doing something great. Along with each Employee of the Quarter, the two highest “Caught ‘Cha” recipients each year are entered as candidates in a company-wide vote for Employee of the Year. Krystina was one of those “Caught ‘Cha” winners.

“I am extremely grateful and honored to be selected as UPHP Employee of the year! I love servicing our members and providers. Working for UPHP has been amazing – the organization really goes above and beyond to show appreciation for their employees.”

Much of Krystina’s success can be attributed to her positive attitude and commitment to UPHP and our community. “Krystina’s knowledge of Medicaid and Medicare policies has allowed her to become a respected employee within our organization,” said UPHP Customer Services Manager Melissa Provo. “She frequently can be found volunteering her time with community and company-sponsored events, as well as belonging to Connect Marquette (formerly 40 Below). She brings the type of positive energy and commitment to her position that makes her a joy to work with, and I am so happy that she has been given this very well-deserved award and recognition. UPHP is truly fortunate to have such a dynamic young lady as part of our organization!”

Krystina has been with the UPHP Customer Service Department for three years. She grew up all over the world, as her father was in the United States Air Force. When her parents retired from the Air Force, she and her family moved to Marquette, where she has now called home for more than fifteen years. Krystina received her Bachelors of Science degree from Northern Michigan University.

When she’s not at UPHP, Krystina enjoys DIY projects, reading, knitting, working out, spending time outdoors, making bagels, and walking her cats, Nash and Luna. She and her husband, James, live in Marquette.

About UPHP

Upper Peninsula Health Plan currently manages the care of nearly 50,000 Upper Peninsula residents enrolled in Michigan Medicaid, Children’s Special Health Care Services, Healthy Michigan Plan, MI Health Link, and Medicare Advantage. Its network exceeds 2,000 providers. Learn more at

March is Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month
Posted on March 21, 2019

MARQUETTE – Upper Peninsula Health Plan (UPHP) is joining the nation in celebrating national Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month! Colorectal cancer is the second leading cause of cancer deaths in the United States, but it is also one of the most preventable. Routine screenings starting at the age of 45 for men and women can help to detect and treat it in its early stages. If you have a family history of the disease, screenings are recommended earlier. Be sure to talk with your doctor about your risks.

In the videos below, learn about prevention and what is involved with the different screening options from James Surrell, MD, a former colorectal surgeon, patient, Jackie, and UPHP Clinical Coordinator Steve Rudness.

Video 1: Colorectal Cancer Awareness

Video 2: Colorectal Cancer Awareness After Show

Follow us on Facebook for more information and updates, or learn more at