LOS ANGELES, May 17, 2016 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- On May 12th, local community leaders, public officials, and foundation representatives gathered in the heart of South Central Los Angeles at the Fremont Wellness Center & Community Garden to celebrate a source of compassion and healing in the community for the past twenty years – UMMA Community Clinic.
According to Los Angeles County Department of Public Health's Key Indicators of Health publication, nearly 45% of adults and 18% of children in South LA have difficulty accessing healthcare. This is due to both affordability as well as a lack of health providers in the area; there is only 1 hospital bed per 1000 residents (South Los Angeles Health Equity Scorecard, 2008). UMMA is working to combat this inequity regardless of one's ability to pay, and discussed their plans for expanding behavioral health services and adding a mobile clinic to further support the community.
"UMMA serves as a national model of inclusion, prevention and wellness in community health, and for their leadership we are grateful," stated Dr. Robert K. Ross, President and CEO of The California Endowment, and keynote speaker for the event.
The afternoon forum ended with a representative of Congresswoman Lucille Roybal-Allard's office presenting UMMA with a certificate of congressional recognition for their service to the community. UMMA has been recognized by Congress in the past for being a model of Muslim-American philanthropy, and is the first Muslim-American health clinic to receive Federally Qualified Health Center (FQHC) status by the government.
"We are incredibly thankful to Congresswoman Roybal-Allard, whose office has been a pioneer in the community, for this honor. Our success throughout the years is due in part to the support and partnership from the congresswoman and Dr. Ross," said Dr. Miriam Y. Vega, Chief Executive Officer of UMMA.
The University Muslim Medical Association (UMMA) was founded in the wake of the Rodney King riots by Muslim-American medical students from UCLA and Charles Drew University. Now in their 20th year, UMMA is redefining health care by applying the ethical, financial and social teachings of Islam to the problems of caring for the underserved. They will be holding their annual fundraising drive and leading a month of active outreach to those who are most in need for the upcoming month of Ramadan (June 5th through July 5th).
To view photos from UMMA's event, click here.
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SOURCE UMMA Community Clinic