Independence Blue Cross, the largest health insurance provider in southeastern Pennsylvania, has announced a $10 million commitment to create a foundation that will work to address healthcare challenges in the region.
Announced last week during the IBC-sponsored Nurses for Tomorrow Forum, the Independence Blue Cross Foundation will support programs that work to assist the most vulnerable in the region; develop the healthcare workforce of the future, with a focus on nursing education; and catalyze innovative approaches to health care. The foundation will be led by IBC vice president for community affairs Lorina Marshall-Blake.
In conjunction with the launch, the foundation announced grants totaling more than $2 million in three focus areas. The Blue Safety Net initiative awarded a total of $1 million to fifteen clinics that deliver quality, cost-effective care to people who are uninsured and underinsured and would otherwise face financial, cultural, and linguistic barriers to obtaining health care, while the Nurses for Tomorrow initiative awarded $1 million in scholarships to increase the supply of nurses and nurse educators in the region. The foundation also announced a grant through its $1 million Innovation Grants program to the National Nursing Centers Consortium to help nonprofit clinics use electronic medical records to provide more efficient, enhanced, and safer patient care and announced that it is accepting applications for projects and research that advance the practice and delivery of health care in the region.
"The IBC Foundation's work with clinics and nursing will build upon two areas where IBC has great passion, experience, and an established track record of successful partnerships that have delivered results," said Marshall-Blake. "In the last six years, IBC has contributed nearly $15 million to help support thirty-six private, nonprofit health clinics that serve nearly 120,000 patients and provide 400,000 visits annually in Bucks, Chester, Delaware, Montgomery, and Philadelphia counties. In that same period, IBC contributed nearly $11 million, helping 15,000 students graduate from thirty-one nursing programs in southeastern Pennsylvania. Today's announcement will extend that track record and reinforce our commitment to the next generation of these important health and wellness initiatives."