Centene (NYSE: CNC) today announced a series of investments and commitments aimed at supporting the incarcerated population and the staff that serve them. The company announced new investments in technology that will improve access to care, reinforced its commitment to providing key medical supplies to the incarcerated population during the pandemic, and announced an expansion of its social determinants of health efforts to support those in the prison system.
“It is our mission to protect and advocate for the most vulnerable populations, and incarcerated individuals have some of the greatest healthcare needs,” said Michael Neidorff, Chairman, President and CEO of Centene. “Today we are doubling down on our commitment to this population and making investments that will improve the system’s ability to serve them over the long-term.”
Improving access to care through technology
Today, the company has announced that it is doubling its investment in telehealth technology solutions in prisons through Centurion, a Centene subsidiary and a leading provider of medical and mental health services to state prison systems, to expand primary and specialty care encounters with inmates and medical professionals. The additional investment will expand the company’s primary and medical capabilities by 200% and provide an additional 3,000 mental health visits on a monthly basis.
“Centurion has a track record of improving outcomes upon entering new markets. Our ability to leverage Centene’s diabetes management program is recognized even more during this health crisis. Infusing technology into prison systems can significantly improve access to quality care,” said Centurion Chief of Clinical Operations, Johnny Wu, MD, FACP, FACCP, CCHP-A, who will be helping drive the implementation of these changes. “We continue to address patients’ acute needs during the pandemic, while investing in technology to protect their well-being in the long-term.”
This new investment will expand the capacity of these services and help more incarcerated individuals get immediate access to remote care. Centurion’s telehealth services currently provide approximately 10,000 mental health and 2,500 primary medical and specialty care appointments monthly.
Expanding PPE Supplies in Prisons to Combat COVID-19
Throughout the COVID-19 crisis, Centurion has ensured that all of its partner agencies and state departments of correction have had access to the critical medical supplies they need to serve the incarcerated population. Today, the company is reinforcing its commitment to provide personal protective equipment, hand sanitizer and COVID-19 tests.
“Access to critical medical supplies should not be an obstacle to care for incarcerated individuals,” said, Steven H. Wheeler, CEO of Centurion. “We will continue to source, distribute and supply necessary medical equipment to prison systems in need. We are proud of the partnerships with our national lab companies and local departments of health, and no incarcerated individual under our medical care that meets criteria has waited for or been denied a COVID-19 test. During this challenging time, we must come together to protect incarcerated individuals and the staff that serve them.”
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