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    Marin Community Foundation Announces $250,000 in Third Round of Grants from Sutter Health Access to Care Fund

    Grants to Support Prevention and Early Detection Efforts

    NOVATO, Calif., January 12, 2011 - To help prevent and detect disease among uninsured low-income residents of Marin, the Marin Community Foundation (MCF) has announced a $250,000 grant from its Sutter Health Access to Care Fund.

    This donor-advised fund, which was established last year in a partnership between MCF and the Sutter Health network of Northern California doctors and hospitals, has granted a total of $2 million to support a range of health services for uninsured residents. Ten million dollars in grants will be made through 2014.

    The prevention and early detection grant will be made to the Marin County Department of Health and Human Services, which in turn will re-grant these funds to community clinics and other nonprofit health care providers serving low-income residents.

    “Prevention and early detection protocols are extremely important,” stated Dr. Thomas Peters, president and CEO of the Marin Community Foundation. “These clinical services help keep people healthy, and they lead to more effective and humane treatment when that becomes necessary.”

    Peters cited as an example the importance of receiving timely laboratory tests. Often, he explained, uninsured, low-income clinic patients can experience significant delays in getting needed medical laboratory tests because of their inability to pay for the required independent lab fees. These postponements often result in undiagnosed or unconfirmed medical conditions and delays in receiving treatment.

    He added that some funds will be used to expand the number of vaccinations given to low-income residents, extending an effort funded by earlier grants made from the Sutter Health Access to Care Fund. Low-income residents—with a focus on older adults—will receive vaccinations against such diseases as hepatitis, herpes, and pneumonia.

    “Prevention and early detection programs like these are essential components of the county’s commitment to the health of all its residents,” stated Dr. Larry Meredith, Director of Marin County Department of Health and Human Services. “By increasing support for Marin’s safety net of medical services, everybody benefits.”

    “Preventative medical care and technologies have been at the core of nearly all advances in the health of individual Americans in the last century,” said Dr. Craig Lindquist, Marin County’s Medical Director. “Unfortunately those benefits have not been equally shared across the population because of access, cost, and other factors. The generosity and foresight of these Marin benefactors will make a real difference in the lives of our residents. We are very grateful to the Marin Community Foundation and Sutter Health.”

    “All of us at Sutter realize the critical importance of prevention and early detection,” added Martin Brotman, M.D., president of Sutter Health’s West Bay Region. “These approaches are key to addressing the health care crisis in this country.

    “We are extremely pleased with the impact this first year of grants is already having in Marin,” added Brotman. “The purpose of this fund is to address disparities in health care between uninsured patients and those with insurance who have access to services. We’ve come a long way during this first year, and we look forward to continuing this highly successful partnership with the Marin Community Foundation.”

    “Since the beginning, everyone involved in this effort—Sutter Health, the county’s Department of Health and Human Services, the Foundation, and nonprofit health care providers throughout Marin—has been focused on the single goal of helping people without insurance remain healthy,” stated Peters. “All of us look forward to much more work together and having an even greater impact.”

    About the Marin Community Foundation:
    The Marin Community Foundation is the primary center for philanthropy in Marin County, CA and is one of the largest community foundations in the U.S. It manages the assets of the Leonard and Beryl H. Buck Trust and nearly 400 funds established by individuals, families, and businesses. The Foundation makes significant improvements in communities around the world in two ways: by spearheading initiatives for long-term, sustainable change in Marin, and by distributing grants from donor-advised funds locally, across the U.S., and around the world. Now in its 24th year, the Marin Community Foundation has invested over $800 million in the work of nonprofit organizations. Its assets are approximately $1 billion, with annual grant distributions of approximately $50 million.

    About Sutter Health
    Serving patients and their families in more than 100 Northern California cities and towns, Sutter Health doctors, not-for-profit hospitals and other health care service providers share resources and expertise to advance health care quality and access. The Sutter Medical Network includes many of California’s top-performing, highest quality physician organizations as measured annually by the Integrated Healthcare Association. Sutter-affiliated hospitals are regional leaders in cardiac care, women’s and children’s services, cancer care, orthopedics and advanced patient safety technology.

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