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Atlanta, GA, United States, 2013/02/19 - The GE Foundation, through its Developing Health™ program, announced a $350,000 grant to the West End Medical Centers, Inc. (WEMC) of Atlanta to increase access to quality healthcare to the Atlanta community (NYSE: GE) - GEFoundation.com. NYSE: GE
• GE Foundation Funding Helps Increase Access to Primary Care at Two WEMC Community Health Centers;
• Funding Marks Two Year Milestone and Renews Commitment for Two More Years of Partnership;
• GE Employee Volunteers Will Continue to Share Operational Skills and Knowledge to Help Build Capacity.
“Developing Health funds matched with the expertise of local GE teams brings operational improvements and improved clinical care to underserved communities through partnerships with nonprofit community health centers like WEMC,” said Bob Corcoran, president and chairman, GE Foundation. “These health centers often are the only available means of access to primary and preventive care for millions of uninsured and underinsured Americans across the country.”
The grant was presented by Denise Cullinan, VP marketing, GE Capital, and Juan de Bedout, chief technology officer, GE Energy Management, to the West End Medical Center board of directors and executive cabinet.
Today’s grant builds on an existing relationship between GE Foundation and WEMC. Previous GE Foundation funding has helped the health center’s diabetes program to grow by 30 percent over the duration of the first grant with a 10 percent increase in the number of clients attaining acceptable blood sugar levels. Support of the pediatric dental program has more than doubled the number of clients seen, with a nearly 50 percent increase in follow-up services. In addition, the local GE team has developed customer service training that has been deployed at multiple health centers in Atlanta and across the country.
“We are committed to serving those in our community who otherwise might not have access to quality health care. Without support from civic-minded corporations like GE, it would be far more difficult for us to achieve our mission,” said Mr. William T. Bledsoe, senior vice president and CFO of WEMC.
During 2012, GE’s Developing Health Atlanta team shifted its focus toward more skill-based volunteering initiatives. For 2013, the team will continue to focus and drive programs that will help local health centers to operate more efficiently while continuing to build capacity.
One way GE is doing this is by matching GE functional leaders with their health center counterparts. This effort was launched in late 2012 and will be expanded this year. Since September, GE volunteers in marketing and operations have been working alongside health center staff leaders and members to revamp marketing programs and streamline processes to decrease patient wait times.
Lisa Ivy, senior manager of direct marketing for GE Capital, has been working with Margarethia Bledsoe, WEMC director of marketing, to rebrand its communication materials.
“Working with WEMC has been great,” said Ivy. “The opportunity has allowed me to give back to the community by sharing some of the knowledge and skill sets that I developed at GE.”
“The Developing Health program success is fueled by the energy, enthusiasm and commitment of the volunteers from GE employee networks,” said Denise Cullinan, vice president of marketing for GE Capital.
Developing Health programs are in place at 100 health centers in 32 U.S. cities. GE Foundation grants totaling $37.4 million and more than 93,000 employee hours have led to improvements in clinical care and proactive management across the U.S., and it has increased access to primary care for more than 1 million people.
About the GE Foundation
The GE Foundation (gefoundation.com), the philanthropic organization of GE, works to solve some of the world’s most difficult problems. With its partners, the GE Foundation focuses its efforts in the areas of health, education, the environment and disaster relief. In 2011, the GE family invested more than $198 million to global community and educational needs.
GE (ge.com) works on things that matter. The best people and the best technologies taking on the toughest challenges. Finding solutions in energy, health and home, transportation and finance. Building, powering, moving and curing the world. Not just imagining. Doing. GE works.
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