After Puerto Rico was hammered by a hurricane in 2017 the health needs on this island have been evolving. One healthcare company trying to meet these needs is InnovaCare Health. This company, based in Fort Lee, New Jersey, specializes in Medicaid and Medicare health insurance policies. They offer these policies to the residents of Puerto Rico who qualify for them. The hurricane took several hospitals and many clinics offline which has made it very challenging for people to receive care and get their prescriptions.
One way that InnovaCare Health has helped is by opening up a location at the biggest shopping mall in the capital of Puerto Rico, San Juan. This shopping mall is Plaza las Americas and InnovaCare Health rented space for “Recargate“, or “Recharge” in English. This began as a place where people in this city could come in and use power to recharge their devices (most of Puerto Rico was without power for months and most rural areas still don’t have it). This storefront evolved into being a clinic where those on Medicare and Medicaid could receive health services and exams. In just the first three months of existence Recargate helped over 20,000 patients.
In the aftermath of the hurricane the biggest immediate concerns beyond saving people were preventing diseases and helping people who needed prescription drugs. InnovaCare Health helped with these issues and their storefront morphed into a place where people could socialize and have a place for recreation. Soon they were offering educational seminars and workshops for people to manage their health. As many people were experiencing anxiety and depression from the hurricanes behavioral health specialists were also brought in to help out.
InnovaCare Health also started a number of mobile clinics which would travel to different neighborhoods to provide health services. There have been over 30 of these clinics formed which have been used by over 25,000 people. These sites include a pharmacist so people can get their prescriptions right away. The goal is to make the healthcare system even better than it was before tragedy struck.
A leader at this company, Penelope Kokkinides, traveled to the White House to meet with Donald Trump and top healthcare officials in regards to Puerto Rico. The meeting she attended was used by her to urge for reductions in the Medicaid spending budget cuts for this territory of the United States. She says more funding is desperately needed in order to meet ongoing and future healthcare needs.