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Portico Healthnet Assumes Operation of 489-CARE Information and Referral Service
Date:7/1/2009

Statewide resource will continue to help Minnesotans find affordable medical, dental, and behavioral health care, regardless of insurance status

ST. PAUL, Minn., July 1 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Portico Healthnet, a non-profit agency working to reduce the number of people without coverage for health care services, today announced the assumption of operations for 489-CARE, a statewide health care information and referral service, from the non-profit Neighborhood Health Care Network (NHCN). The transfer in program operation and oversight will be seamless to 489-CARE callers, and the services provided by program specialists will continue unchanged.

Since the 1990s, the 489-CARE information and referral line has helped thousands of Minnesotans find affordable health care services in their local communities, regardless of insurance status. Initially established as a referral source for community clinics in the Twin Cities, NHCN oversaw the growth of the 489-CARE program in recent years into a centralized resource for information on low-cost and sliding-fee medical, dental, and behavioral health services available in local communities across the state. NHCN routinely referred callers to Portico for assistance in identifying health care coverage options, and earlier this year NHCN approached Portico to explore a potential operational transfer of the program due to its own shifting priorities and strategic goals.

"We're proud to be taking the reins of the 489-CARE program from our colleagues at Neighborhood Health Care Network," said Debra Holmgren, executive director of Portico Healthnet. "We've worked closely with NHCN and callers to the referral service for a number of years now, and we look forward to continuing this important initiative." Walt Cooney, NHCN executive director, expressed his pleasure with the transfer, as well. "We have been pleased by the results of our successful partnership with Portico Hea
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SOURCE Portico Healthnet
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