GERMANTOWN, Md., June 12, 2019 /PRNewswire/ -- Yesterday, the HealthWell Foundation, an independent non-profit that provides a financial lifeline for inadequately insured Americans, celebrated the opening of their dedicated contact center, HWF Direct, LLC, with an open house and ribbon cutting ceremony. HWF Direct, located in Frederick, Maryland, is a wholly owned subsidiary of the HealthWell Foundation.
"Despite the progress that has been made in expanding access to health coverage, many families still struggle to afford the care that they need. Non-profits like the HealthWell Foundation are crucial to closing the gap to care for thousands of Americans, including many in Maryland. Working together, we will keep fighting to ensure affordable, accessible health care for all," said U.S. Senator Chris Van Hollen.
The HWF Direct contact center houses more than 75 team members who assist patients in accessing life-changing, sometimes lifesaving, medical treatments they otherwise would not be able to afford.
"The Maryland Department of Commerce is pleased that the HealthWell Foundation has chosen Maryland as the location for HWF Direct, LLC," said Maryland Commerce Secretary Kelly M. Schulz in a written statement. "In addition to bringing 75 new jobs to Frederick County, HWF Direct provides a financial safety net for those facing critical health care decisions when their insurance is not enough. Together, HWF Direct and the HealthWell Foundation help thousands of people access financial resources to help them start or continue critical medical treatments."
In 2018, the Foundation distributed financial support through more than 50 disease-specific funds, including over 20 funds in oncology. Last year, more than $512 million was awarded to over 117,500 underinsured Americans who have high out-of-pocket costs for important medical treatments.
"I am proud HealthWell has chosen Frederick to be home," stated Frederick County Executive Jan Gardner. "HealthWell is a financial lifeline for many Marylanders and Americans facing tremendous health challenges and I'm thankful for the work HealthWell is doing to support patients and connect them with needed funds to support recovery. The new contact center brings great jobs to Frederick County and fits well into our caring community. I look forward to all the good work that will continue to happen at HWF Direct."
At its busiest, the contact center representatives receive over 26,000 phone calls a month, many from people who are being forced to weigh the cost of their medical treatments and care against paying their bills and taking care of their families.
"Since 2003, HealthWell has provided support to underinsured Marylanders and Americans as they face costly health challenges," said Maryland State Treasurer Nancy Kopp. "We welcome HWF Direct to Frederick in furtherance of this goal and wish for many more years of success for HealthWell."
The HealthWell Foundation, ranked number 41 on the 2018 Forbes list of the 100 Largest U.S. Charities and number 50 on the 2018 Chronicle of Philanthropy list of America's favorite charities, will leverage the new call center to expand the Foundation's reach and assist more patients across the country.
HWF Direct officially opened its doors in late December 2018 in Frederick, just a few miles from its parent company in Germantown, and the call center had previously been operated by a third party in Chantilly, Virginia.
"The HealthWell Foundation is honored to celebrate the launch of HWF Direct, LLC with our distinguished guests," commented Krista Zodet, HealthWell Foundation President. "The opening of our dedicated contact center represents a significant milestone for the Foundation and further strengthens our ability to assist the thousands of underinsured Americans who reach out to us each month for assistance in accessing critical, sometimes lifesaving, medical treatments. We will continue to be true to our mission to ensure that no one goes without critical medical treatment simply because they cannot afford it."
About the HealthWell Foundation
A nationally recognized, independent non-profit organization founded in 2003, the HealthWell Foundation has served as a safety net across over 65 disease areas for more than 405,000 underinsured patients by providing approximately $1.25 billion in grant support to access life-changing medical treatments they otherwise would not be able to afford. HealthWell provides financial assistance to adults and children facing medical hardship resulting from gaps in their insurance that cause out-of-pocket medical expenses to escalate rapidly. HealthWell assists with the treatment-related cost-sharing obligations of these patients. HealthWell ranked #41 on the 2018 Forbes list of the 100 Largest U.S. Charities and was recognized for its 100% fundraising efficiency. For more information, visit www.HealthWellFoundation.org.
SOURCE HealthWell Foundation