DETROIT, Feb. 27, 2020 — This week, The Luke Project 52 Clinic and Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan launch the Mobile Antenatal Testing Pilot program to provide free weekly antenatal testing in vulnerable patients’ homes in Detroit in order to increase compliance, achieve better outcomes and lower costs. The Luke Project 52 Clinic was awarded $75,000 by Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan to expand the mobile maternal and infant health program in Detroit by adding an outreach vehicle and the equipment necessary to provide antenatal testing to pregnant women. The funding was provided through Blue Cross’ Strengthening the Safety Net program, which has helped local safety net providers offer free or low-cost medical, dental and mental health care service to uninsured and underinsured Michigan residents. “The infant mortality rate in Detroit (13.1) is significantly higher than the national average (5.6) and is even higher among African American women (14.1)” said Rev. Brad Garrison RPh, Executive Director of the Luke Project 52 Clinic. Founded in 2016, The Luke Project 52 Clinic provides free prenatal and infant care to the uninsured and underinsured in Detroit. The company offers a wide range of services in addition to medical care such as child-care, immunizations, social services, assistance in obtaining insurance, counseling, food, reading glasses, prenatal education, etc. to carry out the mission of “saving babies, changing lives, and building community.” “By offering access to quality care, this clinic is empowering vulnerable individuals and families in the community to improve their health,” said Kimberly Kratz, senior health care analyst at Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan. “We at Blue Cross are proud to support their efforts and to have donated more than $15 million to safety net organizations for 15 consecutive years.” This award will enable the Luke Project 52 Clinic to routinely offer ultrasound, vital sign and weight measurement, non-stress test, and mood and safety assessments to at risk mothers. Other partners include the University of Michigan Department of Family Practice and Huron Valley Ambulance. The pilot project will provide at least 150 testing visits during the first year of operation. The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services is committed to addressing the racial and ethnic disparities in maternal and infant health and this project is intended to help close that gap. To learn more about the pilot, visit: thelukeproject52clinic.org Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan, a nonprofit mutual insurance company, is an independent licensee of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association. BCBSM provides health benefits to more than 4.7 million members residing in Michigan in addition to employees of Michigan-headquartered companies residing outside the state. The company has been committed to delivering affordable health care products through a broad variety of plans for businesses, individuals and seniors for more than 80 years. Beyond health care coverage, BCBSM supports impactful community initiatives and provides leadership in improving health care. For more company information, visit bcbsm.com and MIBluesPerspectives.com.
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