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Posted on Thu, Nov 24, 2011 : 10:18 a.m.

Ann Arbor-area free health clinics receive $15,000 grants

By Julie Baker

Four Ann Arbor-area free health clinics are among the 53 awarded $15,000 grants by Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan to help support operations, according to a news release.

Shelter Association of Washtenaw County (Ann Arbor), VINA Community Dental Center (Brighton), Hope Medical Clinic (Ypsilanti) and Faith Medical Clinic (Pinckney) each received the grants.

Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan awarded more than $1 million to free clinics across Michigan through its “Strengthening the Safety Net” program, citing the many uninsured residents that rely on the free clinics for health care.

“Free clinics play a vital role in Michigan’s health care system because they serve as a safety net for the uninsured and provide quality health care to people who need it the most,” said Lynda M. Rossi, BCBSM senior vice president of Public Affairs and Chief of Staff, in a statement. “These nonprofit clinics help reduce the need for expensive emergency room care and often provide patients with valuable health education and chronic disease management.”

Clinics applied for noncompetitive grants of at least $15,000, or competitive grants of up to $50,000. Five applicants representing six clinics were awarded the competitive grant funding, and all 53 qualified applicants received noncompetitive grant funding, the release said.

The noncompetitive grant funding is targeted at continuing existing operations, extending operating hours or adding services. Competitive grants were awarded to clinics that identified clear gaps in safety net coverage and outlined plans to address the gaps in a creative and sustainable way.

Download a map showing the clinics that received grants. 2011-Free-Clinic-Map.pdf