Kaiser Permanente Baldwin Park Changes Lives with Free Surgeries for San Gabriel Valley Residents
OREANDA-NEWS. September 26, 2016. Nineteen uninsured San Gabriel Valley residents will receive outpatient surgeries at Kaiser Permanente Baldwin Park Medical Center’s “Community Surgery Day.” This event on September 24 is made possible through a partnership between East Valley Community Health Center (EVCHC), a community clinic located in West Covina and Kaiser Permanente Baldwin Park Medical Center.
“Part of the mission of Kaiser Permanente is to improve the health of the communities we serve. Our Community Surgery Day is a way for us to assist those who are less fortunate,” explains John Bigley, MD, area medical director, Kaiser Permanente Baldwin Park Medical Center. “Since 2010, we have been able to provide surgeries and procedures to 217 patients. This year, we are providing hernia repairs, laparoscopic cholecystectomies, lipoma removals, cataract repairs, vascular surgeries and colonoscopies to 19 uninsured patients, bringing the total of Surgery Day patients to 236. This is made possible through the commitment of many volunteer frontline staff and physicians who give of their time.”
The patients identified by EVCHC all have an income at or below 350 percent of the federal poverty guidelines and do not qualify for existing public health assistance. None are able to afford private health insurance. Most are working poor individuals who serve as head of household and struggle to make a living for their families. Having the pain and discomfort associated with these health issues prevents some from working to their full capacity and others from not being able to work at all.
“A health condition that is treatable by a minor surgery should not be the reason for a deteriorating quality of life. Kaiser Permanente Surgery Days offer an opportunity for our most needy patients to have access to surgeries they could not obtain elsewhere. The impact is two-fold; improved health status and, most importantly, a marked improvement in the quality of life of the patients and their families. The staff at East Valley Community Health Center are immensely grateful to the Kaiser Permanente volunteer surgeons and all the staff that make this effort possible,” says Alicia Mardini, chief executive officer, East Valley Community Health Center.
EVCHC provides comprehensive health care and health education services to low-income and underserved populations of the East San Gabriel and Pomona Valleys. Founded in 1970, EVCHC has evolved from a free clinic that focused on family planning and counseling services into a comprehensive health care provider and, since 2002, a Federally Qualified Health Center. The clinic provides over 71,000 medical visits to more than 21,000 individuals every year. It also serves an additional 27,000 people every year with outreach, education, and prevention services.
About Kaiser Permanente Southern California
Kaiser Permanente is committed to helping shape the future of health care. We are recognized as one of America’s leading health care providers and not-for-profit health plans. Founded in 1945, our mission is to provide high-quality, affordable health care services to improve the health of our members and the communities we serve. We currently serve more than 4 million members in Southern California. Kaiser Permanente Baldwin Park serves nearly 253,000 members in the San Gabriel Valley through a network of more than 3,500 employees and 512 physicians. Facilities are located in Baldwin Park, City of Industry, Diamond Bar, Montebello, San Dimas, and West Covina. Care for members and patients is focused on their total health and guided by their personal physicians, specialists, and team of caregivers. Our expert and caring medical teams are empowered and supported by industry-leading technology advances and tools for health promotion, disease prevention, state-of-the art care delivery and world-class chronic disease management. Kaiser Permanente is dedicated to care innovations, clinical research, health education, and the support of community health. For more information, follow us on twitter: @KPBaldwinPark or visit kp.org/baldwinpark.