CareFirst COVID-19 Response and Relief Request for Proposal
Communities around the globe are experiencing an unprecedented strain on resources and capacity as a result of COVID-19. This rapidly evolving situation has taxed resources everywhere, particularly among disproportionately disadvantaged populations.
To learn more about how the pandemic is impacting our Region, CareFirst partnered with more than 60 local organizations to identify critical needs across Maryland, D.C., and Northern Virginia. As a result, we have earmarked an initial investment of $2 million to aid the immediate health, social and economic needs of our communities.
Through the release of multiple requests for proposals (RFP), CareFirst will support nonprofit 501(c)(3) organizations or public health entities working to provide relief to communities’ health, social, and economic needs that continue to arise during the COVID-19 pandemic.
In the first round of funding, CareFirst supported 49 nonprofits providing relief to communities’ health and social needs during the outbreak and recovery phases. In this second round of funding, CareFirst will support nonprofits providing relief to communities’ social and economic needs. Only selected organizations will be invited to apply.
Providing PPE at No Cost to Organizations
We know critical supply shortages of personal protective equipment (PPE) have put a strain on local healthcare providers and community-based organizations. To help organizations continue to deliver quality care safely during the coronavirus pandemic, CareFirst established a $5 million PPE initiative for COVID-19 relief: "Care, delivered."
The PPE equipment available through the program—isolation gowns, nitrile examination gloves and N95 masks—is FDA approved and authorized for use by healthcare personnel.
Nearly 200 healthcare and social service organizations across the Mid-Atlantic region were invited to request PPE, including community clinics and organizations providing home visiting services to seniors; nonprofits providing services to individuals experiencing homelessness or substance use disorders; and independent primary care practices serving Medicare and Medicaid populations.
Learn more about the initiative in our press release.
Community Food Relief Program
In partnership with Aramark, cafeteria staff at three CareFirst facilities will prepare and package cold, boxed meals for organizations being impacted by COVID-19. Prepared food will help close the gap organizations are facing to serve their beneficiaries.
The program commenced on April 13, 2020. Due to the demand, the number of meals delivered on a weekly basis has increased 100%, from 600 per week to 1,200 per week. As of July 2, 2020, this program has delivered 12,620 meals and employed Aramark staff for a total of 1,382 hours. CareFirst is utilizing Middle Mile Program in Baltimore and Food Rescue US in Washington, D.C. respectively, for the pickup of boxed lunches and delivery to nonprofit organizations.
This program will not only feed those in need, but also helps Aramark continue to employ their staff.