Pixel Tracker

Saturday, February 16 , 2019, 6:54 pm | Partly Cloudy 53º

 
 
 
 

Direct Relief Continues to Expand Safety-Net Program with Clinics

The ranks of the uninsured fuel the nonprofit organization's commitment to regularly provide medicine and supplies

Even as the Census Bureau is reporting that 15.3 percent of Americans are without health insurance, Direct Relief International is expanding its unique program to provide bulk medicines and supplies to safety-net, nonprofit clinics and community health centers that serve nearly 7 million Americans who lack health-care coverage.

“These clinics don’t receive a lot of attention in the debate over health care, yet are a primary source of health care for people who are uninsured, especially those who lose their employer-provided or privately purchased health insurance,” said Thomas Tighe, Direct Relief International’s president and CEO.

Direct Relief, which currently partners with 1,200 of the nation’s 7,000 safety-net clinics, is the only nonprofit organization operating a program to regularly provide, in bulk, basic medicines, supplies and equipment to treat low-income and uninsured patients. The system is designed to run parallel to government and pharmaceutical company patient-assistance programs.

Direct Relief began its domestic aid program in 2004 by providing about $3 million in support to California clinics. By 2007, the program had grown to include 1,200 nonprofit clinics and community health centers serving a total of 17 million people in all 50 states.

The Goleta-based nonprofit organization’s partnerships with some of the world’s largest pharmaceutical and medical supply companies allowed it to deliver $125 million (wholesale) in medicines and supplies in the United States, including 6 million prescriptions, since 2004. These numbers do not include the $47 million in supplies and assistance Direct Relief channeled to 100 health-care partners on the Gulf Coast in 2005 in the aftermath of Hurricanes Katrina and Rita.

Click here for an interactive map of Direct Relief’s 1,200 partner clinics, or to find a link to the National Association of Community Health Centers, or NACHC. The map was built using the Google Earth mapping service, available to Direct Relief through its partnership with Google, one of hundreds of Direct Relief’s corporate donors, which also include Abbott, BD, BBoehringer Ingelheim, FedEx, Johnson & Johnson, sanofi-aventis and Schering-Plough.

“Direct Relief’s assistance has been invaluable to health centers across the country,” said Malvise A. Scott, the NACHC’s senior vice president for partnership and resource development.

“The donations free up resources, permitting health centers to increase the number of people served and/or the number of services provided,” she said.

“One of the reasons we are proud to partner with Direct Relief International is because it uses cutting-edge technology to efficiently deliver medical aid to the people and places that need it most,” said Kathy Zonca, Schering-Plough’s director of patient access and advocacy.

“By utilizing tools like Google Earth, Direct Relief International is constantly evaluating and identifying populations who can truly benefit from our donations,” she said.

Jim Prosser is press secretary of Direct Relief International.

Talk to Us!

Please take Noozhawk's audience survey to help us understand what you expect — and want — from us. It'll take you just a few minutes. Thank you!

Get Started >

Support Noozhawk Today

You are an important ally in our mission to deliver clear, objective, high-quality professional news reporting for Santa Barbara, Goleta and the rest of Santa Barbara County. Join the Hawks Club today to help keep Noozhawk soaring.

We offer four membership levels: $5 a month, $10 a month, $25 a month or $1 a week. Payments can be made using a credit card, Apple Pay or Google Pay, or click here for information on recurring credit-card payments and a mailing address for checks.

Thank you for your vital support.

Become a Noozhawk Supporter

First name
Last name
Email
Select your monthly membership
Or choose an annual membership
×

Payment Information

Membership Subscription

You are enrolling in . Thank you for joining the Hawks Club.

Payment Method

Pay by Credit Card:

Mastercard, Visa, American Express, Discover
One click only, please!

Pay with Apple Pay or Google Pay:

Noozhawk partners with Stripe to provide secure invoicing and payments processing.
You may cancel your membership at any time by sending an email to .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).

  • Ask
  • Vote
  • Investigate
  • Answer

Noozhawk Asks: What’s Your Question?

Welcome to Noozhawk Asks, a new feature in which you ask the questions, you help decide what Noozhawk investigates, and you work with us to find the answers.

Here’s how it works: You share your questions with us in the nearby box. In some cases, we may work with you to find the answers. In others, we may ask you to vote on your top choices to help us narrow the scope. And we’ll be regularly asking you for your feedback on a specific issue or topic.

We also expect to work together with the reader who asked the winning questions to find the answer together. Noozhawk’s objective is to come at questions from a place of curiosity and openness, and we believe a transparent collaboration is the key to achieve it.

The results of our investigation will be published here in this Noozhawk Asks section. Once or twice a month, we plan to do a review of what was asked and answered.

Thanks for asking!

Click Here to Get Started >

Reader Comments

Noozhawk is no longer accepting reader comments on our articles. Click here for the announcement. Readers are instead invited to submit letters to the editor by emailing them to [email protected]. Please provide your full name and community, as well as contact information for verification purposes only.

Daily Noozhawk

Subscribe to Noozhawk's A.M. Report, our free e-Bulletin sent out every day at 4:15 a.m. with Noozhawk's top stories, hand-picked by the editors.

Sign Up Now >