Delta Dental is a long-term supporter and partner of Mary’s Center, and they recently featured Mary’s Center’s response to COVID-19 in a grantee spotlight blog post, originally published here.
People of color are disproportionately affected by COVID-19 and often have less access to care. Our long-term partner, Mary’s Center in Washington, D.C. has put delivering health care to immigrants, minorities and other vulnerable populations at the center of its mission since its inception. That mission has taken an increased urgency amid the current pandemic, and we spoke with Lyda Vanegas, director of communications and public relations for Mary’s Center, to learn more about how the clinic is adapting.
How has COVID-19 affected your community and your clinic?
Since March, Mary’s Center has been at the forefront of the region’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic, despite the challenges and financial impact. Every month, we have additional expenses totaling over $3 million to purchase personal protective equipment (PPE), laptops and cleaning supplies and to expand our bandwidth to allow teleworking and telehealth. At the same time, we are losing $1.2 million each month from canceled visits, lower reimbursement rates for telemedicine and providing free COVID-19 tests for the uninsured. We have used all of our reserves and haven’t been eligible for federal emergency relief funding, because it is only available for businesses with fewer than 500 employees. Thankfully, we have an amazing group of friends and supporters, including Delta Dental, who have stepped up during this crisis to contribute to Mary’s Center, which has been a tremendous help.