Velázquez Announces Funding for HIV Patients’ Dental Care
Washington, DC – Today, Rep. Nydia M. Velázquez (D-NY) announced federal grant funding to expand dental care for patients living with the Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV). These grants, sponsored by the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) were awarded to two local Brooklyn health centers, NYC Health + Hospitals/Woodhull and Wyckoff Heights Medical Center.
“A patient’s access to quality health care should never be determined by financial status,” said Velázquez. “I am proud that these grants will help further the tireless work of the doctors, nurses and staff who serve New Yorkers living with HIV.”
The funding stems from an HHS initiative called the Dental Reimbursement Program (DRP). Started in 1994, DRP offers dental or dental hygiene education services to HIV positive patients. Founded with the goal of improving health outcomes for HIV patients in low-income and traditionally underserved communities, the grant exists to reimburse dental care costs.
NYC Health + Hospitals/Woodhull serves residents of North Brooklyn, including the neighborhoods of Bushwick and Williamsburg. The facility will be receiving $86,992 in federal grant funding from HHS. Known for a history of forging strong community partnerships, NYC Health + Hospitals/Woodhull has been serving residents in the area for over thirty years.
Wyckoff Heights Medical Center is a teaching hospital with a dedicated staff of over 1,800 who provide services for patients in thirty-five languages. Located on the border of North Brooklyn and Western Queens, Wyckoff Heights Medical Center is committed to training the next generation of medical professionals. The Center will be receiving $18,749 in HHS grant funding.
“At a time of devastating cuts to health care services for many of our most vulnerable, it is imperative that grants like the Dental Reimbursement Program continue to support local hospitals,” said Velázquez. “We must stand firm to protect community health centers and facilities for all New Yorkers.”