Baltimore, Md./Washington, D.C., March 23, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Today, CareFirst BlueCross BlueShield (CareFirst) announced it will contribute $2 million to community nonprofit organizations working to provide relief for communities’ health, social and economic needs that may arise during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. This philanthropic contribution is part of CareFirst’s rapid response to urgently address the ongoing complexities people and communities continue to face as a result of COVID-19.
In a collaborative effort, CareFirst engaged more than 60 organizations in Maryland, Washington, D.C., and Northern Virginia to understand the most critical needs arising from COVID-19. During the engagement process, CareFirst enlisted insight from representatives of Federally Qualified Health Centers, hospitals, direct service organizations, community and private foundations, corporate funders, and more. Through conversations with organizations, CareFirst has identified health, social and economic needs as funding priorities.
CareFirst funds will help address complex and emerging health needs to close gaps in medical care access, minimize food insecurity and support the needs of economically vulnerable populations who are disproportionately impacted during the COVID-19 health crisis. Additionally, CareFirst contributions will help seniors quarantine in place by providing pharmacy and medication assistance, transportation and medically tailored meals. Investments will include, but are not limited to:
- Baltimore Community Foundation;
- Community Foundation of the Eastern Shore;
- Community Foundation for Northern Virginia;
- County United Way of Cumberland, Md.;
- United Way of Central Maryland; and,
- United Way of the National Capital Area.
“Now, more than ever, is the moment for empathy, urgency and corporate social responsibility. It is critical for organizations to join together and combine efforts during this time of uncertainty to help limit negative impacts to the people and communities we serve,” said CareFirst President and CEO, Brian D. Pieninck. “As a not-for-profit company, it has always been our commitment to serve not only our members, but individuals, families and communities throughout the region in pursuit of new pathways to improve health equity. We are honored to work with community organizations on the front lines to help ensure people’s short and long-term needs are met during this public health crisis.”
CareFirst funding will occur in two phases to provide ongoing relief to organizations during the outbreak and recovery phases. Funds will be available March – September 2020 through intermediary organizations such as, community foundations, and request for proposals (RFPs). More information about RFP deadlines and guidelines will be communicated shortly on CareFirst's community website.
CareFirst will continue to work to identify other barriers and solutions for coronavirus care for its members as this situation unfolds, and will continue to share information and updates on its website.
About CareFirst BlueCross BlueShield
In its 83rd year of service, CareFirst, an independent licensee of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association, is a not-for-profit healthcare company which, through its affiliates and subsidiaries, offers a comprehensive portfolio of health insurance products and administrative services to 3.3 million individuals and employers in Maryland, the District of Columbia and Northern Virginia. In 2019, CareFirst invested $43 million to improve overall health, and increase the accessibility, affordability, safety and quality of healthcare throughout its market areas. To learn more about CareFirst BlueCross BlueShield, visit our website at www.carefirst.com or follow us on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn or Instagram.
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