UnitedHealthcare Invests Nearly $23 Million in Three Health Centers in Los Angeles to Help Improve Access to Quality Care

February 21, 2012
  • Investment is part of UnitedHealthcare’s California Health Care Investment Program, a multimillion-dollar program to improve health care access for underserved communities throughout the state
  • Funding allows The Help Group, Gateways Hospital and St. John’s Well Child & Family Center to have access to capital and expand their services for patients

UnitedHealthcare has invested nearly $23 million in three Los Angeles health centers to help expand and enhance patient care and services in the region.

UnitedHealthcare purchased the tax-exempt revenue bonds of The Help Group ($11.35 million), Gateways Hospital ($5 million) and St. John’s Well Child & Family Center ($5.37 million) for a total of nearly $22 million in funding for these nonprofit organizations that serve residents in Los Angeles County. In addition, Gateways Hospital and St. John’s Well Child & Family Center also received grants of nearly $537,000 and $621,000, respectively, to help pay for closing costs, for a total of nearly $23 million in funding for the three nonprofits.

The funds will be used to build new facilities, renovate existing clinics and help the nonprofits refinance existing debts at more affordable rates so the organizations can enhance and expand care for residents in the communities they serve.

“UnitedHealthcare is committed to supporting organizations that work to ensure Californians have access to quality care, particularly those providing care in underserved areas of the state,” said David Anderson, CEO, UnitedHealthcare Employer & Individual of Southern California. “By investing nearly $23 million in Los Angeles County, we can help these health centers enhance their services and quality of care that will benefit many families and patients in the region for years to come.”

UnitedHealthcare provided the funding through its California Health Care Investment Program, which supports health care organizations that provide services to underserved, low-income and underinsured communities and populations throughout the Golden State. The investment program provides California health care entities access to capital rates that are highly competitive with those of conventional financing. To date, the California Health Care Investment Program has provided more than $224 million in total capital to 30 health care organizations in California, including $39 million for five health care organizations in the Los Angeles region.

“I commend the investment by UnitedHeathcare in supporting these nonprofit family care centers in the communities of Los Angeles,” said California State Sen. Ed Hernandez. “As the need for care continues to grow in the region, these funds will go a long way in helping improve both the quality and accessibility of care for families and individuals.”

The Help Group will be using UnitedHealthcare’s $11 million bond purchase to refinance existing debt, which is expected to save the nonprofit $250,000 each year. The organization is one of the largest, most innovative and comprehensive nonprofits of its kind in the United States – serving children with special needs related to autism, Asperger’s disorder, learning disabilities, ADHD, developmental disabilities, abuse and emotional issues.

“We thank UnitedHealthcare for its outstanding corporate citizenship. We are most grateful for its ongoing commitment to our efforts on behalf of children, adolescents and young adults with special needs,” said Barbara Firestone, Ph.D., president & CEO, The Help Group.

Gateways Hospital and Mental Health Center, which received a total of more than $5.5 million support, is a nonprofit organization providing acute inpatient, residential and outpatient services to mentally ill adolescents and adults. The organization will use the proceeds from the bonds to renovate two existing sites that will increase its capacity for serving local residents with chronic mental illness.

“The innovative combination of bond proceeds and grant funding from UnitedHealthcare provides a tremendous service for the population that so desperately needs our services in Los Angeles,” said Mara Pelsman, CEO, Gateways Hospital. “For more than 60 years we have been able to provide services to individuals suffering from mental illness in this urban area. The support from UnitedHealthcare will help ensure we are able to continue our mission well into the future.”

St. John’s Well Child & Family Center, which received a total of nearly $6 million support, operates 11 sites that log more than 100,000 patient visits a year in South Los Angeles, providing medical, dental, mental health, case management, health education and social services.

“We appreciate the support of UnitedHealthcare to assist our organization with financing that will help improve our services, expand our facilities and strengthen health services for the people in our community,” said Jim Mangia, CEO, St. John’s Well Child & Family Center.

UnitedHealthcare offers health benefits, including employer-sponsored and Medicare health plans, to nearly 3 million Californians, and partners with about 50,000 physicians across the state.

About UnitedHealthcare
UnitedHealth Group is dedicated to helping people nationwide live healthier lives by simplifying the health care experience, meeting consumer health and wellness needs, and sustaining trusted relationships with care providers. The company offers the full spectrum of health benefit programs for individuals, employers and Medicare and Medicaid beneficiaries, and contracts directly with more than 650,000 physicians and care professionals and 5,000 hospitals nationwide. UnitedHealthcare serves more than 38 million people and is one of the businesses of UnitedHealth Group (NYSE: UNH), a diversified Fortune 50 health and well-being company.  

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