Neighborhood Health plays a critical role in the lives of some of the most vulnerable individuals and families in Northern Virginia. We provide primary medical care as well as dental care, behavioral health, HIV care, and medication assistance to over 30,000 patients. Most of our patients are low-income, uninsured, and underinsured.
Our patients and their families will be severely affected by this crisis. Many have multiple chronic diseases that aren’t on hold during a crisis. Many are at a high risk for severe complications if infected. Many work in highly impacted industries and some have already lost or are at risk of losing their income or having to work without paid leave.
Now, more than ever, they need our care, support, and solidarity. Our patients count on us for their most basic health care needs. It is imperative that we continue to meet their basic health care needs through this crisis, especially given that our emergency rooms and hospitals will be overburdened in the coming weeks and months. We must do our part to ensure that our patients do not have to rely on our emergency rooms and hospitals.
At the same time, we must recognize that these are extraordinarily challenging times for health care workers. They are at the front lines of this pandemic. It is critical that we support them as much as possible, particularly by providing them with adequate Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) and not expect them to take unnecessary risks. While we currently have PPE for our staff here at Neighborhood Health, supplies are limited.
While I am certain we will overcome this pandemic, decisive and bold action now will reduce its impact over the coming weeks and months.
At Neighborhood Health, we will continue to be here for our patients through this crisis.
As always, we are grateful for your continued commitment and support.
Sincerely, Basim Khan, MD, MPA