NYC Health + Hospitals’ NYC Care program received in a ceremony today the 2022 Bernard J. Tyson National Award for Excellence in Pursuit of Healthcare Equity from the Joint Commission and Kaiser Permanente.
Named for the late Kaiser Permanente Chairman and CEO Bernard J. Tyson, a champion for healthcare equity, the award recognizes healthcare organizations that achieve a measurable, sustained reduction in one or more healthcare disparities. Launched in 2019, NYC Care has enrolled more than 100,000 members, who made 264,976 primary care visits and 227,481 specialty visits by February 2022. After six months of enrollment, 53% of enrollees with diabetes had improved hemoglobin A1C, and 40% of enrollees with hypertension had improved blood pressure. NYC Care’s Executive Director, Dr. Jonathan Jiménez, gave remarks on behalf of the program, and was joined by NYC Health + Hospitals President and CEO Mitchell Katz, MD, and NYC Health + Hospitals Senior Vice President for Ambulatory Care and Population Health Dr. Ted Long. The Texas Children’s Pavilion for Women, Houston, was also recognized as a co-awardee.
“It is my honor to accept this award on behalf of the program and our dedicated team, who have worked tirelessly to reduce inequities in care across the city,” said Dr. Jonathan Jiménez, Executive Director of NYC Care from NYC Health + Hospitals. “I would like to thank The Joint Commission and Kaiser Permanente teams for the recognition of our efforts and for allowing us to share our accomplishments. NYC Care is a first-of-its-kind healthcare access program because of its comprehensiveness and scale. We will continue to honor Tyson’s legacy and hope to inspire other health systems to take similar action.”
Launched in 2019, NYC Care provides access to low or no-cost primary and specialty care, prescription medicines, member materials in multiple languages, a membership card, and a 24-hour customer service line. One of the most potent determinants of access to healthcare in the United States is immigration status, and close to half of undocumented New Yorkers are uninsured and expect to remain so. Two thirds of undocumented New Yorkers have resided here for over a decade. NYC Care serves all New Yorkers, regardless of immigration status or ability to pay, thereby addressing this critical health care access gap. In February, the program hit a milestone as it announced it had enrolled its 100,000th active member. Earlier this year, the program also announced the elimination of the six-month residency eligibility requirement, removing another barrier to access to care. NYC Care is integrated into all levels of NYC Health + Hospitals and advances the mission of the organization to enable all New Yorkers to live their healthiest lives.
Critical to NYC Care’s success has been a multi-pronged public awareness and outreach strategy. The program has launched citywide advertising campaigns in mainstream and community and ethnic media, supplementing ongoing outreach work at the grassroots level. The program also partners with City agencies such as the Mayor’s Office of Immigrant Affairs (MOIA) and the Mayor’s Public Engagement Unit (PEU) to host days of action and media roundtables. Additionally, NYC Care partners with 22 community-based organizations (CBOs) across the city to conduct outreach and facilitate enrollment. Their staff are trusted in their communities and speak over 30 languages. NYC Care has a central mission to ensure all New Yorkers are aware of their right to health care through the program.
“We believe every New Yorker, regardless of where they were born or what immigration status they have, is guaranteed the right to quality, affordable health care,” said Korean Community Services of Metropolitan New York President and CEO Myoungmi Kim. “Our community is grateful to have a program like NYC Care where folks unable to apply for health insurance in the past because they did not have eligible immigration status can now see a doctor and get the treatment and care that they need to live fuller and healthier lives. NYC Care is well deserving of this award and we are proud to be a partner organization of the program.”
“Congratulations to NYC Health + Hospitals’ NYC Care program for receiving the 2022 Bernard J. Tyson National Award for Excellence in Pursuit of Healthcare Equity,” said Becca Telzak, Deputy Director at Make the Road New York. “At a time when immigrant communities struggle accessing ongoing care, NYC Care stands as a symbol that all New Yorkers are welcome and valued in our city. The model of partnering with community-based organizations to conduct outreach and enrollment for this program has been crucial to build trust within the immigrant community and to educate community members about NYC Care. We look forward to continuing this partnership to ensure that immigrants are able to access affordable, quality healthcare services.”
“Voces Latinas congratulates NYC Care for receiving the Bernard J. Tyson Award for Excellence in Pursuit of Healthcare Equity,” said Nathaly Rubio-Torio, LMSW, CEO of Voces Latinas. “As a community-based agency working to connect the immigrant Latinx community to healthcare, we successfully connected over 1383 individuals to NYC Care, thus making an impact on immigrants’ access to healthcare. We value partnerships like this, who strive to deliver equitable health services and understand the fear and realities of the most vulnerable. Congratulations again NYC Care and thank you for your partnership.”
To learn more about the award program, visit the Tyson Award webpage.
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About NYC Care
NYC Care is a healthcare access program that provides comprehensive and low or no-cost healthcare services through NYC Health + Hospitals for New Yorkers who cannot afford or are ineligible for health insurance. NYC Care provides a membership card, 24/7 customer service, access to comprehensive and affordable healthcare services, like primary care, mental health services, and sexual and reproductive healthcare, low-cost medications, and member materials in multiple languages – regardless of your immigration status or ability to pay. Call 646-NYC-CARE (646-692-2273) or visit nyccare.nyc to learn more and sign up today – privacy and confidentiality guaranteed.
About NYC Health + Hospitals
NYC Health + Hospitals is the largest municipal health care system in the nation. We are a network of 11 hospitals, trauma centers, neighborhood health centers, nursing homes, and post-acute care centers. We are a home care agency and a health plan, MetroPlus. Our health system provides essential services to more than one million New Yorkers every year in more than 70 locations across the city’s five boroughs. Our diverse workforce of more than 43,000 employees is uniquely focused on empowering New Yorkers, without exception, to live the healthiest life possible. Visit us at www.nychealthandhospitals.org and stay connected on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/NYCHealthSystem or Twitter at @NYCHealthSystem.