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Amerigroup Foundation Supports Health Services for Virginia's Uninsured

Monday, May 16, 2011 General News J E 4
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VIRGINIA BEACH, Va., May 16, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- The Amerigroup Foundation announced that it will provide more than $150,000 in support of the delivery of health care services to uninsured Virginians. The majority of this donation will be directed toward the southwest region of the state and the 2011 Remote Area Medical® Health Expedition in Wise County, Va., this July. Organizations receiving funds include The Health Wagon, the Virginia Dental Association Foundation and The University of Virginia Office of Telemedicine.

The Remote Area Medical® Volunteer Corps is a nonprofit, all-volunteer medical relief corps serving remote and impoverished areas of the United States and abroad. In Virginia, the Virginia Dental Association Foundation (VDAF), a local free clinic, The Health Wagon, and The University of Virginia annually team up with RAM to spearhead a three-day event, providing eye, dental and medical care to the uninsured and underinsured in the region.

"This project represents positive and worthwhile endeavors that promote and enhance access to health care delivery for citizens of Southwest Virginia," said Teresa Gardner, RN, FPN, DNP, executive director of The Health Wagon. "We are very thankful for Amerigroup's support for us to continue valuable and needed services."

"Amerigroup has allowed us to expand our reach into underserved communities," said Dr. Terry D. Dickinson, executive director of the VDAF. "Their support will create $1.28 million in free dental care, benefit the community at large, decrease the disparities in health care, increase health literacy and encourage better personal choices through not only the RAM Health Expedition, but also VDAF's additional Mission of Mercy projects."

"The University of Virginia is delighted to partner with the Amerigroup Foundation to expand access to high-quality specialty care services via our telemedicine network. We have facilitated more than 22,000 clinical encounters sparing patients more than 6.5 million miles of travel for access to health care services. In many cases, the patients we have served might otherwise never receive care in a timely fashion. This partnership enhances our ability to serve patients in need when they need care, regardless of geographic and financial barriers to access," said Dr. Karen Rheuban, medical director of the University of Virginia Office of Telemedicine.

Last year's RAM Health Expedition event was the largest of its kind in the nation, drawing individuals from more than 16 states. Run with the help of 1,746 volunteers, $2.3 million in free care was provided to more than 2,800 patients with 5,683 distinct encounters. This year's event is expected to draw more than 3,000 patients.

"The Foundation is thrilled to be able to provide not only funds, but also volunteers, to support the amazing work of the RAM," said John E. Littel, chairman of the Amerigroup Foundation. "We will be able to directly connect, better understand and strengthen the long-term health needs for individuals who are uninsured or underinsured."

About Community Organizations

The Virginia Dental Association Foundation (VDAF) provides access to dental care to the underserved in Virginia including, but not limited to, the elderly, disabled, uninsured, underinsured and children. For more information about the VDAF, visit http://vadental.org.

The Health Wagon strives to meet the unique challenges of health care delivery to the medically underserved and indigent in poverty-stricken areas of rural Appalachia. For more information about The Health Wagon, visit http://www.thehealthwagon.org.

The University of Virginia Office of Telemedicine regularly facilitates linkages between remotely located patients and health professionals throughout the commonwealth of Virginia and beyond. For more information about the University of Virginia Office of Telemedicine, visit http://www.healthsystem.virginia.edu/pub/office-of-telemedicine/office-of-telemedicine.

The Remote Area Medical® (RAM) Volunteer Corps is a nonprofit, volunteer, airborne relief corps dedicated to serving mankind by providing free health care, dental care, eye care, veterinary services, and technical and educational assistance to people in remote areas of the United States and the world. For more information about the RAM Health Expedition, visit http://ramusa.org.

About the Amerigroup Foundation

The Amerigroup Foundation is the philanthropic arm of Amerigroup Corporation (NYSE: AGP), a multi-state managed health care company based in Virginia Beach, Virginia. The Foundation works to create healthy communities by fostering access to health care, encouraging safe and healthy children and families, and promoting community improvement and healthy neighborhoods. For more information about the Amerigroup Foundation, visit www.realsolutions.com/company/pages/Foundation.aspx. 

CONTACT:   Investors:  Julie Loftus TrudellAmerigroup CorporationSenior Vice President, Investor Relations(757) 321-3597jtrudell@amerigroupcorp.com

SOURCE Amerigroup Foundation

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