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Women & Infants receives support from CVS Caremark Charitable Trust

Women & Infants Hospital of Rhode Island recently received a $25,000 grant from the CVS Caremark Charitable Trust, the private foundation created by CVS Caremark Corporation, whose mission is to provide funding for health care, education and community involvement initiatives in CVS Caremark communities. Women & Infants was one of 72 organizations selected from a pool of 660 applicants to receive an individual or multi-year grant for 2010.

The hospital will use the grant monies to provide funding for its La Van program, which provides free transportation for low-income patients coming to the Women's Primary Care Center (WPCC) for routine prenatal appointments.

"One of the obstacles faced by low-income women needing quality prenatal care is a lack of transportation," said WPCC Medical Director Robert Berry, MD. "Regular doctor visits during pregnancy are important to ensure that women and their babies stay healthy.

In fiscal year 2010, the viability of the La Van program was jeopardized by budget cuts and a substantial loss of state funds to the hospital.

"In today's challenging economy, it's more important than ever to support organizations that provide access to health care to those who otherwise could not obtain it," said Eileen Howard-Dunn, vice president, CVS Caremark Charitable Trust. "The CVS Caremark Charitable Trust is pleased to recognize Women & Infants for truly making an impact in the communities we serve through their La Van program, and we look forward to working with them in the year ahead."

The CVS Caremark Charitable Trust's grant to Women & Infants is part of $3.3 million in grants awarded to more than 70 nonprofit organizations across the country in 2010. The grants align with CVS Caremark Charitable Trust's efforts to support programs that seek to connect those in need of services to providers who participate in accountable community health care programs, as well as organizations that support children living with disabilities.

According to the March of Dimes, women who see a health care provider regularly during pregnancy have healthier babies, are less likely to deliver prematurely, and are less likely to have other serious complications related to the pregnancy.

"The Centers for Disease Control report that one in two women die in the United States each day of pregnancy-related complications," Dr. Berry said, adding that studies indicate as many as half of those deaths could be prevented if women had better access to health care, received better quality care, and made positive changes in their health and lifestyle habits. "Without transportation, many area women would not be coming into the doctor's office for regular prenatal check-ups. That could be harmful to their health and the health of their unborn babies."


Contact: Susan McDonald
Women & Infants Hospital

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