; On The Road To Better Health – Newark Residents To Be Served By New Mobile Health Center
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Press Release

On The Road To Better Health – Newark Residents To Be Served By New Mobile Health Center

“The Horizon Foundation Mobile Medical Unit” Unveiled

June 11, 2013

Newark, NJ – With a major grant from The Horizon Foundation for New Jersey, the Jewish Renaissance Medical Center (JRMC) is bringing its medical and dental care services directly to under-served residents of Newark.  The services, along with a full complement of health care professionals, are on board a new, state-of-the-art mobile medical vehicle called The Horizon Foundation Mobile Medical Unit.

The new mobile unit was rolled out at a special ceremony conducted today at the Horizon Plaza, located at The Newark Museum.  Fitted with state-of-the-art medical exam rooms and dental chairs, the new mobile unit will operate as a “moving health center” and represents an extension of the JRMC’s Strong & Healthy Communities Initiative (SHCI), a city-wide collaboration that is utilizing health as a critical factor in revitalizing the neighborhoods of Newark.  The SHCI is funded by the Living Cities Foundation, while The Horizon Foundation for New Jersey is the charitable arm of Horizon BCBSNJ.

Adhering to the same patient care and administrative requirements as the regular Jewish Renaissance Newark School-Based Health care sites, the vehicle will be primarily deployed at the Avon Avenue, Sussex Avenue and First Avenue Schools. Beyond its deployment at the three schools, the vehicle will also be scheduled at an array of community and public events and activities.  The services are estimated to reach 6,400 uninsured and under-insured Newark residents at the school based settings in the first year, and 1,000 more at local events and venues.  Among Newark-based events, the unit will be stationed at the NJPAC’s “Sounds of the City” concert series, which will be held Thursday nights this summer, beginning July 11.

Leaders from the JRMC, Horizon BCBSNJ, the SHCI, the Newark Mayor’s Office, and Newark’s Superintendent of Schools introduced the van and its capabilities, and invited ceremony guests to take a guided tour at the grounds of the Horizon Plaza.

“Thanks to the vision and experience of the Jewish Renaissance Medical Center, we are bringing health care directly to local communities,” said Robert A. Marino, Chairman and CEO of Horizon BCBSNJ. “Thousands of Newark residents will benefit from the Mobile Medical Unit’s medical, dental and behavioral health services close to home.  And that’s why The Horizon Foundation for New Jersey was proud to provide a grant to make this possible.”

The vehicle’s deployment has been made possible through a $100,000 grant from The Horizon Foundation for New Jersey and additional support from the Living Cities Foundation, the City of Newark, Newark Public Schools, JRMC, and other benefactors.

“In 2008, JRMC along with its key partners, most notably the Strong & Healthy Communities Initiative and The Horizon Foundation of New Jersey, had a vision to bring primary healthcare to the Newark community that did not have access,” said Mark Roberts, CEO, JRMC .  “Our key partners shared that vision and funded the project.  Today, the under-served in the Newark community have more access to immunizations, dental care, and most importantly, access to establish a medical home through one of our centers located throughout the city,” Roberts said.

“This medical and dental mobile unit provides crucial health services for children and their families throughout the target neighborhoods of the Strong & Healthy Communities Initiative who would otherwise encounter serious challenges in obtaining access to care,” said Monique Baptiste, Project Director of the Strong & Healthy Communities Initiative.

“The City of Newark recognizes that the most pressing health issues of Newark's children today are asthma, obesity, diabetes and dental problems,” said Deputy Mayor Adam Zipkin.  “The Horizon Foundation Mobile Medical Unit is an innovative way to bring quality care to those who need it.  Not only will the bus revitalize an individual’s access to health, it will affect entire target neighborhoods, connecting whole neighborhoods to health,” Zipkin said.

“We could not be more excited about this wonderful new resource,” added Assistant Newark Schools Superintendent, Peter Turnamian, Ed. D.  “The Mobile Medical Unit will enable our schools to better serve hundreds of our students and families by providing them with a high quality health care option.  By improving the healthcare experience for our students we are better able to prepare our all students to be college ready and life-long learners. “

The Horizon Foundation for New Jersey:
The Horizon Foundation for New Jersey promotes health, well-being, and quality of life across our state by supporting charitable organizations.  For more information about the Foundation, visit www.horizonblue.com/foundation.

Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield of New Jersey:
Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield of New Jersey, the state’s oldest and largest health insurer, is a tax-paying, not-for-profit health services corporation, providing a wide array of medical, dental, and prescription insurance products and services.  Horizon BCBSNJ is an independent licensee of the Blue Cross Blue Shield Association, serving more than 3.6 million members with headquarters in Newark, offices in Wall, Mt. Laurel, and West Trenton, and a Retail Center in Moorestown.  Learn more at www.HorizonBlue.com

The Jewish Renaissance Medical Center
Established as the nation’s first ever faith-based, federally qualified health center (FQHC), the Jewish Renaissance Medical Center (established by the Jewish Renaissance Foundation) offers the full range of internal and family medicine, dental care, mental healthcare, and various areas of specialized treatment for over 34,000 impoverished children and families.  In community- and school-based health centers in Perth Amboy and Newark, JRMC offers the full lifespan of healthcare – from pediatric to geriatric care.  JRMC administers nine (9) different sites with operating income exceeding $19 million, with a growing team of over 180 professional and clinical staff.

Living Cities Initiative: Strong and Health Communities (SHCI)
The Strong Healthy Communities Initiative is Newark’s cross-sector partnership of committed decision-makers who work collectively to improve the health and wellness of children in Newark’s low-income neighborhoods in order to improve student educational outcomes and readiness to learn.  Using a cohesive “one-table” approach, SHCI aligns efforts to address the complex social problems facing Newark’s public school system, and aligns public and private investments in sustainable innovations that will lead to transformative systems change.

The Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association is a national federation of 37 independent, community-based and locally-operated Blue Cross and Blue Shield companies that collectively provide healthcare coverage for more than 105 million members – one-in-three Americans.  For more information on the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association and its member companies, please visit bcbs.com. We encourage you to connect with us on Facebook, check out our videos on YouTube, follow us on Twitter and check out The BCBS Blog, for up-to-date information about BCBSA.