New health care access expansions to help underserved
(ADELPHI, Md.) – On Feb. 19 the issue of increasing health care access to the most underserved residents of Prince George’s County took center stage. Members of the county’s government, not-for-profit and business communities gathered at an event to introduce innovative collaborations designed to expand these critical services countywide. Through grants awarded by Wal-Mart and the Walmart Foundation, community members will have increased access to needed medical services.
The event was held at the Adelphi/Langley Park Support Center, a program of the Prince George’s Child Resource Center that annually provides family support services to more than 1,500 families and training to more than 2,000 child care providers, parents and human services workers.
“No issue is more important than making quality health care accessible to those in our community who need it most,” said County Executive Rushern L. Baker, III. “Bringing together government, not-for-profit and business resources is an essential part of achieving this objective, and I’m pleased that leaders from each of these sectors within Prince George’s County are committed to working together to develop solutions to this fundamental need. I want to thank Wal-Mart and the Walmart Foundation for their support of this important effort.”
Among the highlights of the event was the unveiling of a mobile health clinic that will be operated by Doctors Community Hospital (DCH) in conjunction with the Prince George’s County Health Department. Named “Wellness on Wheels” or “W.O.W.”, this mobile unit will be staffed with health care professionals and will travel to different locations within the county.
One of its primary focuses will be to provide medical services to residents who reside in communities where health disparities are higher than regional or national averages. Offering diabetes screenings, cholesterol screenings, blood pressure screenings, medication education and other services to residents ages 16 and older, Wellness on Wheels will help many people prevent or better manage numerous chronic diseases that occur at elevated rates in the area.
Funding for the mobile health clinic’s first year of operations is being provided by Wal-Mart and the Walmart Foundation, which awarded a total of $100,000 to the initiative.
“The ability to further expand our reach directly into individual communities will enable us to serve more patients, improve the clinical care that underserved communities receive and meet critical health care needs throughout Prince George’s County,” said Paul Grenaldo, Doctors Community Hospital’s executive vice president and chief operating officer.
The Walmart Foundation also awarded a $50,000 grant to Mary’s Center for Maternal and Child Care to further its mission of building better futures by providing health care, education and social services to Prince George’s County residents who need them. Mary’s Center staff works with program participants to identify their individual needs and to find multifaceted solutions to overcome their challenges.
“The issue of health care cannot be separated from other aspects of everyday life, such as housing, food, education and employment,” said Mary’s Center Maternal and Child Care President and Chief Executive Officer Maria Gomez. “We’re dedicated to employing a holistic approach to the various interrelated factors that contribute to good health, and the funding provided by the Walmart Foundation allows us to address these considerations in an effective way to maximize positive outcomes.”
The event was held at the Adelphi/Langley Park Support Center, a program of the Prince George’s Child Resource Center that annually provides family support services to more than 1,500 families and training to more than 2,000 child care providers, parents and human services workers. The Prince George’s Child Resource Center ensures that families have access to high-quality child care, adequate housing, health care and nutrition.
Supporting the communities where it operates is among Wal-Mart’s philanthropic missions. In recent years, the company and the Walmart Foundation have donated well in excess of $500,000 to recipients in Prince George’s County.
“We’re pleased to have the opportunity to work with local governmental agencies and exceptional not-for-profits to help transform the lives of people in need,” said Nina Albert, Wal-Mart director of community affairs. “Programs like those operated by the Prince George’s County Health Department, Doctors Community Hospital, Mary’s Center and the Prince George’s Child Resource Center provide essential services to friends, neighbors and fellow residents. It’s an honor to play a part in supporting their honorable missions and promoting the outstanding work they do every day.”
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