Expanding access to care through whole-person health in underserved communities

The events of the past year and a half may have taken a toll on many people — from physical health and well-being to mental health, struggles with isolation and food security. As communities work to emerge from the effects of the pandemic, UnitedHealthcare is helping to expand access to care by supporting programming that works to address the holistic needs of those we serve.

In fact, 80% of what influences a person’s health happens outside of a clinical setting. This means having access to nutritious food, affordable housing and transportation, as well as the neighborhoods where they live, have a major impact on one’s overall health and quality of life.

Those factors, known as the social determinants of health, contribute to inequities and gaps in care. They may also increase the risk of health conditions such as heart disease, diabetes and obesity.

A young family cooks together in the kitchen A young family cooks together in the kitchen

With this in mind, UnitedHealthcare is awarding $11.4 million in Empowering Health grants across 18 states and the District of Columbia to help address these needs for uninsured individuals and underserved communities.

Some of the nonprofit organizations receiving those grants include:

  • Healthier Moms and Babies, to expand the Prenatal Home Visitation Program for high-risk low-income families in Allen County, Indiana.
  • Mental Health America of South Central Kansas, to support three programs that address social isolation and behavioral health, including the development of a youth-led program focused on peer-to-peer relationships. 
  • Gleaners Community Food Bank, to expand the mobile food pantry program and create a guide for developing long-term relationships with school districts in Michigan to help families experiencing food insecurity.
  • The Just One Project, to help give low-income families in Nevada access to healthy food and provide wrap-around services through case management, including supplemental nutrition assistance, transportation resources, health care referrals and financial education.
  • General Baptist State Convention of North Carolina, to implement a healthy food distribution program with faith-based organizations to help low-income individuals and families access healthy food and fresh produce from Black-owned farms.
  • Community Crisis Services, to help provide mental health first-aid training to first responders and other community members in Maryland.
  • Catholic Charities of Onondaga County, to support navigators for refugee families in New York to conduct health and mental health screenings, make referrals, manage cases, accompany clients to appointments and encourage medication compliance.

Since launching its Empowering Health commitment in 2018, UnitedHealthcare has invested more than $40 million in Empowering Health grants, reaching more than 6 million people through partnerships with community-based organizations in 29 states.

Find out more about UnitedHealthcare’s commitment to Empowering Health.