Kaiser Permanente Approves $19 Million in Community Benefit Grants in First Quarter of 2008

OAKLAND, Calif., April 29 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- In the first quarter of 2008, Kaiser Permanente approved almost 300 Community Benefit grants and donations totaling more than $19 million. The quarter's charitable contributions reinforce the not-for-profit organization's long-standing commitment to improve the health of the communities it serves with significant funding to programs supporting children and families in at-risk and underserved communities. Key grants support critical medical care in California, Colorado and Virginia.

"We recognize that individuals and families cannot be healthy if they don't have access to preventative care and quality treatment in their communities," said Raymond J. Baxter, Ph.D., senior vice president, Kaiser Permanente Community Benefit. "In addition to providing charitable care and coverage to underserved individuals, we are deeply committed to strengthening the community infrastructure by partnering with existing public programs to provide care for vulnerable populations."

Support for the Underserved

Kaiser Permanente's Northern California Community Benefit program awarded Doctors Medical Center of San Pablo, Calif. $12 million over three years to enable the hospital to continue providing critical medical care to individuals and families in Contra Costa County.

Kaiser Permanente's three-year grant is part of an overall approach, including government support and enhanced Medi-Cal payments, to assist Doctors Medical Center, as the Center's new permanent management team redesigns clinical programs and hospital operations. With approximately 30 percent of West Contra Costa County's 250,000 residents living below the poverty level, Doctors Medical Center is a vital member of the healthcare "safety net," providing essential medical care for the community's uninsured and underserved for 50 years. Contra Costa County Health Services is the fiscal agent for this grant.

Health Care for Children and Families Nationwide

Kaiser Permanente continues to provide funding nationwide to support and increase awareness of preventative care for children and families. Kaiser Permanente Northern California this quarter approved a $3 million grant to fund school-based health centers in Oakland's public middle and high schools. The grant will expand school-based health services to provide comprehensive clinical and social services while simultaneously developing primary prevention programming based on best practices in public health, youth development, and academic enrichment.

Other Community Benefit grant recipients throughout the Kaiser Permanente regions include the Colorado Children's Immunization Coalition; Colorado Community Health Network, Inc.; Summit Health Institute for Research and Education; and the Howard County Community Educational Foundation.

Kaiser Permanente has been partnering with community-based organizations for more than 60 years to improve community health. Today, the emphasis is on providing care and coverage to vulnerable populations, encouraging healthy eating and active living, working with community health care providers to expand services and improve care, and sharing the organization's research and experience with community partners, the public and the field.

About Kaiser Permanente

Kaiser Permanente is America's leading integrated health plan. Founded in 1945, it is a not-for-profit group practice program headquartered in Oakland, Calif. Kaiser Permanente serves 8.7 million members in nine states and the District of Columbia. Today it encompasses the not-for-profit Kaiser Foundation Health Plan, Inc., Kaiser Foundation Hospitals and their subsidiaries, and the for-profit Permanente Medical Groups. Nationwide, Kaiser Permanente includes approximately 159,000 technical, administrative and clerical employees and caregivers, and 13,000 physicians representing all specialties. In 2007, Kaiser Permanente proudly directed an estimated $1 billion to fund community benefit programs and services through research, community-based health partnerships, and direct health coverage for low-income families and collaboration with community clinics, health departments and public hospitals. For more Kaiser Permanente news, visit http://www.kp.org/communitybenefit and the KP News Center at: http://xnet.kp.org/newscenter.

SOURCE Kaiser Permanente