PROVIDENCE – The Rhode Island Foundation today announced that it has awarded $1.6 million in grants from its health fund to be distributed over the next three years to eight organizations that provide or support primary care services.
The funding was the first round of grants provided by the Fund for a Healthy Rhode Island, a $20 million endowment created last year as part of a settlement between Blue Cross & Blue Shield of Rhode Island and U.S. Attorney Robert Clark Corrente. They were announced this morning at an event at Blackstone Valley Community Health Care in Pawtucket.
The foundation said the grants would supports the organizations’ efforts at making primary care services available where and when people can use them; making affordable medications available in connection with primary care; and increasing awareness and education about the importance of primary care and taking personal responsibility for health behavior.
The grants will give new access to primary care to more than 13,000 Rhode Islanders, according to the foundation.
“We need to support the development of a comprehensive system of primary care in Rhode Island. Local experts and stakeholders we consulted underscored this need, citing shortages of primary care providers, and lack of adequate resources to help patients manage chronic conditions like diabetes or asthma,” Neil D. Steinberg, the foundation’s president and CEO, said when the fund was created.
The eight organizations that received grants are:
The Rhode Island Foundation, founded in 1916, is one of the nation’s largest and oldest charitable organizations serving a specific geographic community. Additional information is available at RIFoundation.org.