GE Foundation to Direct $25 Million towards Increasing Access to Primary Care for Underserved U.S. Populations

Wed Oct 21, 2009 1:30pm EDT

* Reuters is not responsible for the content in this press release.

New "Developing Health" initiative helps drive GE`s `healthymagination`
commitment in targeted American communities; enabling better health through a
focus on access
NEW YORK--(Business Wire)--
Today, GE, the GE Foundation, the philanthropic organization of GE Company, and
the GE Corporate Diversity Council announced "Developing Health," a new 3-year,
$25 million program that provides grant funding and employee engagement to
selected health centers across the United States which focus on delivering
primary care and access to quality healthcare. 

The program, which launches in New York City and is modeled after GE`s
successful philanthropic program "Developing Health Globally," aims to increase
access to primary care for underserved populations by providing GE Foundation
grants and GE employee volunteer capacity to select non-profit health centers in
targeted communities in the United States. 

"At a time when the topic of healthcare is such a priority for all Americans,
the GE Foundation continues to improve the lives of others through their
generosity," said Mayor Bloomberg. "They have been a solid partner in efforts to
enhance the lives of countless New Yorkers. We are grateful for their
recognition and generosity in supporting the hard work of New York City`s public
health clinics, and for their commitment to helping our City`s residents in
underserved communities get greater access to primary health care providers." 

New York City is home to the first four health centers awarded grants as part of
the program. Grants totaling one million dollars have been awarded to:

* Bedford Stuyvesant Family Health Center 
* Urban Health Plan, Inc. 
* Brownsville Multi-Service Family Health Center 
* Charles B. Wang Community Health Center

"While the nation wrestles with the tough issues of healthcare reform for the
country, the tens of millions of people who don`t have access today can`t wait,"
said John Rice, GE vice chairman. "We can make a real, positive difference by
supporting health centers like Bedford Stuyvesant Family Health Center in the
work that they do to serve the needs of their community." 

"With GE resources and the commitment of our employees, we have been successful
in driving real, sustainable improvement around the world through the Developing
Health Globally program, " said Bob Corcoran, President of the GE Foundation.
"Our aim here is to combine Foundation resources with our human capital to
improve access to quality healthcare in America, beginning in New York City." 

In association with this new program, an expert Advisory Panel has been formed
to work with the GE Foundation and representatives of the GE Corporate Diversity
Council to assist with structure of the program and selection process, providing
public health expertise. 

"GE`s Affinity Networks are passionate about the role they play as leaders in
community outreach around the world," said Deborah Elam, GE`s vice president and
chief diversity officer. "In this new, U.S.-based effort, the African American
Forum, Asian Pacific American Forum, Hispanic Forum and Women`s Network, along
with other employee groups, are teaming up to lead employee volunteer efforts to
support the heroic work being done by health centers across the country." 

"We are delighted to be one of the first community health centers selected as
part of this important initiative," said Mr. Ulysses Kilgore III, president of
the Bedford-Stuyvesant Family Health Center in Brooklyn, NY. "We have been on
the front line of delivering access to our community for more than thirty years
and we are excited that GE and the GE Foundation are bringing their resources to
bear to address the critical issue of healthcare delivery in our nation`s
neighborhoods." 

"When we launched healthymagination, GE made a commitment to help address
healthcare access for the underserved population across the United States," said
Mike Barber, GE`s vice president for healthymagination. "We know that nearly 16%
of the U.S. population is without health insurance and needs access to primary
healthcare, with more than 9 million children uninsured in the United States. We
can do better, and the `Developing Health` program is a significant step in the
right direction." 

Under the program guidelines, the GE Foundation will provide grants to the
selected health centers. Grant recipients will be selected based on criteria
that include, but are not limited to, need, community impact, leadership, and
willingness to partner with GE volunteers, transparency and accountability. The
GE Foundation will not accept unsolicited requests for support. The first
generation of "Developing Health" cities selected was based on local GE employee
presence and GE Affinity Network robustness. 

The "Developing Health" program builds on the success of the existing Developing
Health Globally (DHG) program. Launched in Africa in 2004 with the support of
the GE Foundation and GE`s Affinity Networks, DHG now extends to 14 countries
across Africa, Latin America and Southeast Asia. DHG aims to improve access to
quality healthcare for some of the world`s most vulnerable populations. DHG uses
GE core competencies including technology, expertise and employee engagement to
offer sustainable "enterprise solutions" to address some of the critical gaps
that exist in developing-world healthcare facilities. For more information on
Developing Health Globally, visit:
http://www.ge.com/citizenship/performance_areas/communities_philanthropy_health.jsp

About the GE Foundation

The GE Foundation, the philanthropic organization of the General Electric
Company, works to solve some of the world`s most difficult problems. In
coordination with its partners, it supports U.S. and international education,
developing health globally, the environment, public policy, human rights and
disaster relief. In addition, the GE Foundation supports GE employee and retiree
giving and involvement in GE communities around the world. In 2008, the entire
GE family - including businesses, employees, retirees and GE Foundation -
contributed more than an estimated $237 million to community and educational
programs, including more than $100 million from GE Foundation. For more
information, visit www.gefoundation.com. 

About GE

GE (NYSE: GE) is a diversified infrastructure, finance and media company taking
on the world`s toughest challenges. From aircraft engines and power generation
to financial services, medical imaging, and television programming, GE operates
in more than 100 countries and employs about 300,000 people worldwide. For more
information, visit the company's Web site at www.ge.com. 

Our "healthymagination" vision for the future invites the world to join us on
our journey as we continuously develop innovations focused on reducing costs,
increasing access and improving quality and efficiency around the world.
Healthymagination is a $6 billion commitment that was launched in May 2009.

GE
Frank Mantero
+1 203-373-3534 or + 1 203-612-0603
frank.mantero@ge.com
or
Jeff DeMarrais
+1 203-373-3244 or + 1 203-583-2495
Jeffrey.DeMarrais@ge.com

Copyright Business Wire 2009

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