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Program Offers Free Medical Care To Vulnerable New York Seniors

Patch logo Patch 4/30/2020 Charles Woodman
a person in a blue shirt: In particular the program aims to help seniors in low-income and minority communities. © Shutterstock In particular the program aims to help seniors in low-income and minority communities.

WASHINGTON HEIGHTS, NY — A new pilot program is offering free medical care to some of New York City's most vulnerable community members: home-bound seniors.

The program is a joint effort between ZiphyCare, YM&YWHA of Washington Heights and Inwood, and Selfhelp Community Services.

Organizers say the coronavirus pandemic has left many senior citizens without support: it's too dangerous for others to visit for fear of infecting them with the virus, and they can't leave their homes to get the care they may need. As a result, program leaders say many seniors have been left alone in isolation without any access to care or support, some may even have pressing medical issues they need treatment for but can't access.

Organizers say the new free program will allow those seniors to stay safely in their homes, but still receive the key support and medical care they need to stay afloat.

In particular, the program aims to help seniors who are also immigrants, low-income residents, non-English speakers, people of color and holocaust survivors. Organizers say minority groups have long been under-served and have been disproportionately at risk during the pandemic.

The participating groups are also offering a variety of services including tele-care, free meals, weekly or daily check up calls, interventions and more.

Anyone who is interested in the new program, who is a local senior citizen or who may know someone in need of support can call 833-ZIPHYCR to set up a screening for a free home health care visit.

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