CHARLESTON, W.Va. — Thanks to a six-figure grant, West Virginia Health Right can continue to supply health care services to West Virginians and ease their medical debt.
Aflac, and their CareGrants initiative, awarded a grant to Health Right to the tune of $100,000, along with a commemorative park bench, during a ceremony held at Magic Island Park in Charleston.
Aflac CareGrants are given to select organizations to help them help people close the gap some are facing with medical expenses and services.
Virgil Miller, President of Aflac U.S., was in attendance Wednesday morning for the announcement of the CareGrant and to unveil the new
Aflac bench in the park, positioned right next to the splash pad. He says West Virginia is a state in need and assisting West Virginia Health Right (WVHR) with the CareGrant funding is a move they’re proud to make.
“We are here because we identify West Virginia as one of the states that could be vulnerable to unexpected medical debt,” Miller said.
The Aflac President had numbers to support that claim.
Miller said a survey conducted show that more than 84% of people in the state say they don’t have enough money in savings to cover a medical deductible or a copay expected to cover a medical claim. It also found that 51% of people have no money in their savings, a college fund, or stocks and bonds.
The grant and partnership from Aflac to Heath Right will make a positive impact on the many people that WVHR help.
“They (WVHR) are providing medication and health services for adults and we want to support that,” said Miller. “Long term we want to see people worry more about their recovery and less about their finances.”
Dr. Angie Settle, CEO of West Virginia Health Right said this money they’ve received will go right back into the people they serve who need it.
“Every dollar that we get, we’re able to turn it into about $30 worth of health care so this is going to go a long way,” Settle said excitedly.
WVHR said their plans to use the money include purchasing medication for low-income adults, medical supplies, and consumables.
Around 43,000 people are served across the 34 counties in the south-central region of the state, according to the WVHR CEO. Settle said the mission is simple and it stays the same with the additional funding coming in.
“We provide comprehensive and quality health care for uninsured and under-insured West Virginians, and we do that every day,” she said.
Miller presented the Aflac CareGrants check to Settle during Wednesday mornings ceremony, and then helped Charleston mayor Amy Shuler Goodwin cut the ribbon on the light blue bench that was dedicated to the Charleston park.
“They’re changing lives,” Goodwin said about Aflac and Health Right. “Most importantly, they’re connecting with more people, and this funding will help ensure better access for them.”