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Independence Blue Cross Foundation announces $250K grant to support education and childcare personnel vaccination program

By March 1, 2021June 24th, 2022News
Thomas Farley MD, MPH, Commissioner, Philadelphia Department of Public Health, Lorina Marshall-Blake, IBC Foundation president, and Dr. William R. Hite, Jr.. Superintendent, School District of Philadelphia

Pictured left to right: Thomas Farley MD, MPH, Commissioner, Philadelphia Department of Public Health, Lorina Marshall-Blake, IBC Foundation president, and Dr. William R. Hite, Jr., Superintendent, School District of Philadelphia

PHILADELPHIA – March 1, 2021 — The Independence Blue Cross Foundation (Foundation) today announced it is awarding a $250,000 grant to the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP) Foundation to help make possible the City of Philadelphia’s program to inoculate teachers, principals, and staff of all Philadelphia schools. Grant funds will be used for a portion of vaccine program related operating expenses and administrative costs.

The City’s vaccination program launched on February 22, with an initial clinic at CHOP’s Roberts Center for Pediatric Research. Starting this week, the program will expand to include pop-up clinics located in school buildings throughout Philadelphia. Vaccinations will be available to staff of all School District of Philadelphia, charter, independent and parochial schools, as well as those employed by childcare centers and pre-K providers.

“We are so grateful that Independence Blue Cross is again answering the call to support our community,” said Madeline Bell, president and CEO at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia. “The safe reopening of schools is a priority we all share. This vaccine program is another example of how public-private partnerships benefit our city, so that every child has the chance to thrive.”

“It’s wonderful to see one of our city’s prominent institutions supporting another to meet this moment,” said Mayor Jim Kenney. “CHOP eagerly jumped into this teacher vaccination campaign with no guarantee that its costs would be covered. I applaud the Independence Blue Cross Foundation for quickly responding to this need.”

While most students continue to engage in online learning, research shows that in-classroom instruction remains the most effective form of education for students from lower-income communities and disadvantaged backgrounds. The collaborative effort to provide vaccinations to educators and childcare providers is part of a broader strategic partnership to safely re-open schools across Philadelphia and return to in-classroom instruction.

Lorina Marshall-Blake, IBC Foundation president, shown here with Dr. Ron Keren, Chief Medical Officer, Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia.

“Working collaboratively with CHOP and the City of Philadelphia to support their efforts to vaccinate front line workers who care for and educate our children is paramount to the battle against COVID-19,” said Lorina Marshall-Blake, president of the Independence Blue Cross Foundation and vice president of Community Affairs for Independence Blue Cross. “Now is the time for civic leaders, health care providers and the community to join together and put an end to a pandemic that has impacted us in countless ways and claimed the lives and livelihoods of far too many of our loved ones. Vaccines have proven highly-effective against the virus and this program represents an important step to keeping our community safe and healthy.”

The Independence Blue Cross Foundation has dedicated $2 million for COVID recovery efforts in our communities including grants totaling $750,000 to improve access to COVID education, testing and vaccination. The Foundation expands upon the nearly 80-year commitment of Independence Blue Cross to improve the health and well-being of our neighbors in southeastern Pennsylvania.

Press contacts:
Grant Gegwich
Director of Corporate Communications
Independence Blue Cross
E: Grant.Gegwich@ibx.com
P: 610-909-3937

Emily DiTomo
Director of Public Relations
Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia
E: ditomoe@chop.edu
P: 267-426-6063

About the Independence Blue Cross Foundation:
Celebrating its 10th anniversary, the Independence Blue Cross Foundation (Foundation) is a private, corporate charitable foundation that was established in 2011 with a mission to lead sustainable solutions that improve the health and well-being of the community. The Foundation has awarded $48M in grants to nonprofits and academic institutions in the southeastern Pennsylvania region whose programs and services address access to care, the health care workforce, and nonprofit sustainability.

Learn more by visiting our website: www.ibxfoundation.org. Connect with the Independence Blue Cross Foundation on Twitter at @ibxfdn.

Independence Blue Cross Foundation Team

The Independence Blue Cross Foundation is leading a future for equitable health in our communities and nation. The IBC Foundation’s grant programs and the Independence Blue Cross Foundation Institute for Health Equity are advancing three areas of impact: Access to Care, the Healthcare Workforce, and Health Equity. Since inception the IBC Foundation’s most important stakeholder – the community – has been at the center of the work. By the end of 2023, the IBC Foundation will have awarded grants totaling more than $80 million to support nonprofits and research improving the health and well-being of communities in southeastern Pennsylvania.

Learn more by visiting our website: ibxfoundation.org. Connect with the Independence Blue Cross Foundation on LinkedIn.

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