Contribution Provides Access to Mental Healthcare for Adults without Health Insurance during the Covid-19 Pandemic[Mobile, AL] – [August 11, 2020] – Victory Health Partners announced today that it has received a $6,850 AT&T Foundation Contribution to support Victory’s mental healthcare clinic providing free mental healthcare to all patients during the Covid-19 pandemic.
During the Covid-19 pandemic, the clinic remains open to serve uninsured adults who lack access to healthcare within the Gulf Coast. The impact of Victory Health Partners during this unprecedented time is the access to healthcare for the clinic’s established patients and adults who recently lost their jobs due to the economic strain from Covid-19 and therefore, lost their health insurance. With the increases in unemployment and our efforts to raise awareness of the clinic and our critical work, Victory is expecting an increase in new patients seeking medical care. New patients will gain access to primary care, diagnostic testing, specialty care, and free medications to treat their physical needs. An additional outcome of Victory Health Partners which is especially vital at this time is keeping our patients out of emergency rooms for illnesses that can be treated within Victory’s clinic. The access barriers facing uninsured people mean they are less likely to receive preventative care and are more likely to be hospitalized for conditions that could have been treated in a cost-effective manner. Those patients are 40 percent more likely to die in the hospital than those with insurance. With the increased volume of patients due to Covid-19 presenting in the emergency rooms, it is necessary to have our uninsured neighbors seeking care at Victory as opposed to the emergency rooms.
“One of our core values at AT&T is to be there when people need us most, and we are proud to collaborate with Victory Health Partners to provide care for patients during these unprecedented and challenging times,” said AT&T External and Legislative Affairs regional director Glyn Agnew. “We will get through this, together.”
A significant impact of Victory’s continuum of care every day, and especially now during the pandemic, is access to free mental and emotional counseling for all patients. There is undoubtedly an increase of stress, depression and anxiety due to the pandemic. With the increase of unemployment, social distancing mandates and the stress related to Covid-19, the clinic has seen an increase in appointments for mental healthcare. The clinic has continued to provide patients access to mental and emotional counseling during this time. All counseling appointments are free of charge for the patients. For uninsured adults, there is increased difficulty accessing mental healthcare due to the average cost of over $100 per hour counseling session. Victory has one full time counselor who provides mental healthcare treatment ranging from depression, anxiety, bi-polar disorder and schizophrenia. Our counselors work alongside the other primary care physicians and specialists to ensure our patients have access to a full continuum of healthcare addressing their physical, emotional and mental needs. The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation reports in the County Health Rankings that Mobile County has a ratio of 1,080:1 for the population to mental health providers. Within the same report, Mobile County residents reported having 5.2 poor mental healthcare days within the last 30 days. With the need for mental healthcare increasing and the number of adults without health insurance increasing, the support from the AT&T Foundation will make a lasting difference within the lives of many of Victory’s patients.
Victory’s Director Kim Garrett shares: “The AT&T Foundation has responded to a significant need of access to mental healthcare counseling that so many of our patients in our community are facing during the Covid-19 pandemic.” Garrett continues, “It is partners like the AT&T Foundation who equip and empower Victory to serve as a safety net for our patients and to provide the needed care to support their mental healthcare needs.”