Awarded through GE's $25 million Developing Health program, which is designed to improve primary care access in underserved U.S. communities, the grant will support an effort by LPHI's School Health Connection program to increase use of school-based health centers among already eligible students while extending services to students in neighboring schools, family members, and nearby residents. The funding will build on previous philanthropic and government investments to restore and improve healthcare access in the region following Hurricane Katrina.
School-based health centers provide convenient access to comprehensive preventive, primary care, and mental health services for students, including many youth who frequently delay treatments or seek emergency room care. By boosting access, the foundation and its partners aim to reduce local emergency room crowding that is common in New Orleans.
"The Developing Heath program seeks to help fill the gap for access to quality care in underserved communities," said GE Foundation president Bob Corcoran. "This specific grant to Orleans Parish will expand access to preventive, primary care, and primary mental health services for adolescents in the area. The Louisiana Public Health Institute is well positioned to expand the school-based health center network in Orleans Parish to meet the primary health needs of students and community members."