Congress created the 340B drug savings program to help those hospitals serving vulnerable communities expand access to prescription drugs and support essential services for their communities. The savings generated from the 340B drug discount program are used by MedStar Washington Hospital Center to help keep pace with the rapidly rising costs of prescription drugs, as well as to offer additional needed services to our community such as the ones described below.
Access to Care for Vulnerable Populations
MedStar Washington Hospital Center recognizes the importance of early detection for cancer and has programs available for those who may not be able to afford these lifesaving screenings on their own. MedStar Washington Hospital Center also provides pathways for financial assistance for individuals who are unable to afford their treatment services and provides innovative approaches to support District of Columbia health goals.
- Colorectal Cancer Prevention in the Neighborhood provides hospital community navigators who educate residents in Wards 5, 7 and 8 about the importance of colorectal health and offers at no cost Fecal Occult Blood Test kits (FOBT) and/or assists individuals to colonoscopy appointments.
- Get2 Breast Care Program shares breast health education with residents in Wards 5, 7 and 8, by utilizing community navigators to coordinate educational programs and screenings events. The program dispels myths about breast cancer risks, provides early detection services and breast cancer education, and navigation assistance to women who need mammograms.
- Teen Alliance for Prepared Parenting (TAPP) since 1999, TAPP has helped thousands of young women avoid additional pregnancies, as the District has the nation’s highest number of pregnant teens. The program also promotes the overall well-being of these young women. TAPP is offered to women 21 years old and younger, at several locations across the city including the hospital’s Women’s Community Health Practice and the school-based health centers at D.C.’s Roosevelt and Anacostia High Schools. A midwife is on duty at each school and sees students in tandem with a TAPP social worker.
- Community Violence Intervention Program provides services to individuals, and their families, who have experienced a life-threatening intentional injury. The program engages with victims and their families while they are in the hospital recovering to create a support system that can lead to long-term change. Team members connect program participants with government and community-based services to promote healing, reduce revictimization, and prevent future violence.
- Patient Financial Services provides financial assistance to uninsured patients who reside within the communities MedStar Washington Hospital Center serves by assisting with enrollment in publicly-funded entitlement programs, refer patients to State or Federal Insurance Exchange Navigator resources and assist with consideration of funding that may be available from other charitable organizations
Health and Wellness
MedStar Washington Hospital Center outreach teams offer classes, events and activities to support a healthy body, mind and spirit. MedStar Washington Hospital Center also recognizes that at-risk, high-needs individuals living in our communities need access to trauma, chronic disease management, screenings and prevention education.
- Bedside Rx Delivery Service is a free service to eliminate barriers such as transportation, to help patients take prescribed medications as instructed, to improve health outcomes and avoid readmission.
- The Trauma Prevention and Outreach program extends well into the community, partnering with many local, state and federal agencies, providing education on concussion, alcohol and youth violence prevention, domestic violence and crime victim assistance and medical/legal needs assistance. Most recently, providing Stop the Bleed a national awareness campaign and call-to-action workshops. Stop the Bleed is intended to cultivate grassroots efforts that encourage bystanders to become trained, equipped, and empowered to help in a bleeding emergency before professional help arrives.
- Healthcare Equity Task Force has initiated programs to create a supportive and non-judgmental environment for LGBTQIA patients. Staff training on sexual and gender identity is helping to normalize conversations about these issues, and medical records will soon allow patients to note their preferences. The hospital participated in D.C.’s 2018 Pride Parade and plans to participate in other community events by providing HIV testing and safe sex education.
- The Living Well Self-Management Programs in partnership with DC Health Department, offers evidence based six-week workshops for adults who have long lasting health problems with ideas to help them take charge of their health and live active and enjoyable lives. Family members and caregivers are also welcome.
- Ask a Healthcare Professional Initiative hospital physicians and allied health professionals are committed to sharing their knowledge on various topics with members of the community to improve their health. Community Health works to arrange opportunities for our professionals to speak at community partners in Washington DC Wards 5, 7 and 8. Each year, more than 500 community members participated in the initiative.
- Emergency Department SBIRT is a program for screening and identification of substance use disorder, with an ultimate goal of providing referrals for substance abuse treatment. Peer Recovery Coaches provide brief intervention and referrals to community support services and treatment centers.
Social Determinants of Health
MedStar Washington Hospital Center invests in programs and partnerships that address the social needs of patients and community members.
- Training Physicians in the Community MedStar Health is invested in training future physicians, nurses and other clinical leaders, and equipping them with training opportunities that provide exposure to the diverse needs of the populations they will care for. Each year, 12 resident physicians at MedStar Washington Hospital Center rotate through Bread for the City’s clinic to learn about how social determinants of health play a role in the overall wellness of the patient and impact the care and services patients need.
- Food Insecurity During Prenatal Care all pregnant women receive a comprehensive screening for food security during prenatal a care. Women who screen positive receive assistance completing WIC applications and are eligible for support from our partnership with Giant Food. We also serve dinner after Centering pregnancy, our group prenatal care program.
- Transportation in partnership with Uber, MedStar Health has created a convenient ride option program with a reliable means of transportation for vulnerable patients to medical appointments and health education activities.
Access to Specialized Care
- The Burn Center is the only adult burn center in the Washington Metropolitan Area, treating more than 400 inpatients and 300 outpatients each year.
- MedSTAR Trauma Center is a regional referral center for critical illness and injury and is designated as a Level 1 center, treating more than 55,000 patients annually.