Mother Nature needed only a few days in March to create a disaster that will impact Nebraska for years to come. Excessive rainfall, coupled with record-level snow melt, caused historic flooding across the eastern half of the state that left hundreds of families homeless. The floodwaters submerged businesses, farms, ranches and even a major military base, causing billions of dollars in damage.
From the onset of the flooding, UnitedHealthcare has actively supported Nebraska health plan participants who were forced to make alternate arrangements for access to care or receive early prescription refills. Optum also offered a free emotional-support line to help anyone who might be affected, even if they are not UnitedHealthcare customers.
In late March, 100 UnitedHealthcare volunteers filled 5,000 bags with supplies, such as blankets and flashlights, which were donated to the Salvation Army. Supplies from UnitedHealthcare of Florida were shipped to Nebraska and were distributed to Native American tribal communities in Knox County who were hit hard by the flooding.
“We’re grateful for the opportunity to ensure 5,000 flood victims were able to receive basic supplies to help rebuild their lives,” said Kathy Mallatt, CEO of UnitedHealthcare’s Community Plan of Nebraska. “We are also thankful for our partners in other states who donated supplies for this drive.”
UnitedHealthcare’s Medicaid and Medicare businesses in Nebraska donated $32,500 to Food Bank for the Heartland. Dozens of UnitedHealthcare workers also volunteered their time to measure and label bulk food items. Hundreds of individual meals were boxed and redistributed from the food bank’s warehouse across the region.
“Food Bank for the Heartland has already helped provide more than 390,223 disaster relief meals,” said Brian Barks, president and CEO of Food Bank for the Heartland. “We are grateful for UnitedHealthcare’s donation and their employees who volunteered to help. The Food Bank has been part of this community for 38 years, and we will continue to distribute emergency and supplemental food to our neighbors in need throughout the Heartland.”