UnitedHealthcare Awards $5.2 Million in Grants to California Nonprofits - $806,500 to Sierra Nevada Memorial Hospital Foundation, Plumas District Hospital

Wed Apr 3, 2013 9:00am EDT

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Grants support nine California nonprofit organizations to strengthen youth
wellness, care delivery and health technology in underserved communities
GRASS VALLEY, Calif.--(Business Wire)--
Two Northern California nonprofit hospitals have been awarded a total of
$806,500 in grants from UnitedHealthcare to help improve health care services
and wellness programs for local patients and community residents. 

The grants are part of $5.2 million UnitedHealthcare is awarding to nine health
care organizations to support nonprofit clinics and hospitals that improve
health care services for underserved communities statewide. 

Sierra Nevada Memorial Hospital Foundation ($699,500) and Plumas District
Hospital ($107,000) received the funding to support wellness and medical
education programs and improve the delivery of health care services in Northern
California. 

The announcement was made at Sierra Nevada Memorial Hospital in Grass Valley
where community leaders participated in a check presentation and learned about
how the funding will be used to expand the hospital`s eClinical Works program,
an initiative to expand electronic health records and health information
technology systems. 

The grant will help Sierra Nevada Memorial Hospital serve rural clinics
throughout the region, providing them access to health information exchange
systems and advanced technology to better serve patients. The funding is in
addition to a $334,268 grant the organization received from UnitedHealthcare in
2008 that helped the hospital start its health information technology program. 

"This grant from UnitedHealthcare supports our investment in new technologies
that is helping us serve rural community clinics throughout the region," said
Kimberly Parker, executive director, Sierra Nevada Memorial Hospital Foundation.
"These funds are helping expand our eClinical Works program that enables us to
deliver health care services to more people in our community, particularly
people living in rural areas." 

Plumas District Hospital in Plumas has received $107,000 to expand educational
and outreach services for women diagnosed with gestational diabetes in the
region. Plumas County has seen a significant increase in perinatal risk factors
in the last eight years, the highest percentage of which are related to diabetes
- either a Type 2 diabetes diagnosis prior to pregnancy or development of
gestational diabetes during pregnancy. In 2011, 24 percent of Plumas District
Hospital`s obstetric patients were diagnosed with gestational diabetes and
required referral or consultation. UnitedHealthcare`s latest grant enables
Plumas District Hospital to provide comprehensive services to the gestational
diabetic population through a local diabetes education program. The funding is
in addition to a $326,357 the organization received from UnitedHealthcare in
2008 to upgrade its telemedicine capabilities. 

"We are grateful to receive this critical funding that will support our diabetes
programs," said Douglas Lafferty, CEO, Plumas District Hospital. "Through this
grant we will be able to provide education and outreach to patients who live in
rural areas of this region to help diagnose, treat and prevent diabetes. Having
these resources makes a big difference in our ability to make a positive impact
in the health of our local residents." 

"This is a great investment by UnitedHealthcare in helping hospitals and clinics
that serve rural populations in our state have vital resources for improving the
care they provide local patients," said Nate Beason, Nevada County supervisor.
"We applaud your commitment and investment in these communities." 

"These organizations are doing remarkable work to serve rural areas of our state
and enhance the delivery of services to doctors and patients in those
communities," said Brandon Cuevas, CEO, UnitedHealthcare of California.
"UnitedHealthcare is grateful for the opportunity to work together with them and
help enhance health and quality of life for children, adults and families." 

Since 2008, UnitedHealthcare has provided more than $30 million in grants to 53
nonprofits statewide. Thirteen of them are in Northern California, receiving
$4.7 million. 

In addition to these grants, UnitedHealthcare`s California Health Care
Investment Program has provided $269 million in total investments to 46 health
care organizations throughout the state to help underserved, low-income and
underinsured communities and populations. This includes $20 million ($3.1
million to Plumas county hospitals) in financing to help Critical Access
Hospitals in rural communities throughout California improve health information
technology systems, including the adoption of electronic health records. 

UnitedHealthcare, a UnitedHealth Group (NYSE: UNH) company, serves more than 2.4
million Californians with a care provider network of 320 hospitals and more than
57,000 physicians statewide. 

About Sierra Nevada Memorial Hospital Foundation
Sierra Nevada Memorial Hospital Foundation, founded in 1984, is located in Grass
Valley, California. The Foundation`s mission is "to nurture the spirit of
generosity and volunteerism of the community, we focus our philanthropic efforts
in fostering quality healthcare of the highest standards for Sierra Nevada
Memorial Hospital." For more information about SNMH Foundation, call
530-477-9700 or visit www.supportsierranevada.org. 

About Plumas District Hospital
Plumas District Hospital (PDH) is located in Quincy, providing the residents of
central Plumas County with inpatient services, general surgery, labor, delivery
and postpartum care, outpatient surgery, endoscopy, emergency room services, a
hospital-based ambulance service and dental clinic. PDH also serves the
community with two rural health clinics, providing family practice physicians
and care for patients in the region. 

About UnitedHealthcare
UnitedHealthcare is dedicated to helping people nationwide live healthier lives
by simplifying the health care experience, meeting consumer health and wellness
needs, and sustaining trusted relationships with care providers. The company
offers the full spectrum of health benefit programs for individuals, employers
and Medicare and Medicaid beneficiaries, and contracts directly with 780,000
physicians and care professionals and 5,900 hospitals and other care facilities
nationwide. UnitedHealthcare serves more than 40 million people in health
benefits and is one of the businesses of UnitedHealth Group (NYSE: UNH), a
diversified Fortune 50 health and well-being company. 

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UnitedHealthcare
Matthew Yi, 714-822-1097
matthew.yi@uhc.com
or
Sierra Nevada Memorial Hospital Foundation
Kimberly Parker, 530-477-9700
kparker@snmhf.com
or
Plumas District Hospital
Tiffany Leonhardt, 530-283-7971
tleaonhardt@pdh.org

Copyright Business Wire 2013