BROOKLYN, N.Y., Nov. 19, 2020 /PRNewswire/ — Medly Pharmacy, a full-service, digital pharmacy that offers free same-day prescription delivery, announced today a joint food giveaway and flu vaccination event in partnership with EmblemHealth, one of the nation’s largest not-for-profit health insurers. The event aims to reach vulnerable New Yorkers to ensure they have a safe and healthy Thanksgiving holiday. Medly Pharmacy and EmblemHealth are launching this initiative alongside The Campaign Against Hunger (TCAH) — an organization tackling food insecurity in New York. Eric Adams, the Brooklyn Borough President, will also be in attendance alongside Council Member Robert Cornegy Jr., State Senator Roxanne Persaud, Assemblymember Latrice Walker, Assemblymember Tremaine Wright, State Senator Zellnor Myrie, State Senator Kevin Parker, and Assemblymember Diana Richardson.
The initiative will take place in the Bedford–Stuyvesant neighborhood of Brooklyn. TCAH will give away turkeys and other traditional holiday foods to more than 1,000 residents in need, handing out nutritious holiday bags of food to all who have pre-registered ahead of the Thanksgiving holiday. Those who didn’t get the chance to pre-register, may visit the TCAH food pantry free of charge, where they serve 14,000 families per week through sponsorships and donations. The opportunity to receive a flu vaccine will also be offered through Medly and EmblemHealth.
As flu season nears its peak, Medly and EmblemHealth believe that tackling the disparities in accessing vaccinations needs to be addressed more than ever. As colder weather exacerbates the spread of viruses and families come together for the holidays, the threat of illness is a serious concern. Medly and EmblemHealth believe that preventive health and nutritious food go hand in hand to ensure local communities have a safe Thanksgiving holiday. After two successful flu vaccination events targeting underserved populations in Brooklyn, and now with this third initiative, the partners are working to improve equitable access to care in their local communities.
Food insecurity rates have been soaring across the country due to the COVID-19 pandemic, exacerbating child hunger and disproportionately affecting communities of color. Brooklyn, which has historically had the highest levels of food insecurity of the five boroughs, was hit especially hard by the pandemic and continues to feel the ramifications — especially with recent COVID-19 spikes in New York.
“This initiative will make a tangible difference for many New Yorkers who haven’t had access to a flu vaccine or know how they were going to put food on the table this Thanksgiving,” said Dr. Marg Patel, CEO and Cofounder of Medly. “Proper nutrition and preventative health are complementary, and necessary, as we continue to fight the ramifications of the COVID-19 pandemic. I’m eager to stand side by side today with New York Elected Officials, The Campaign Against Hunger, and EmblemHealth as we commit to equitable access to food and care throughout our local communities.”
“Whether it’s a warm meal or a trusted local pharmacist who speaks their language, the resources people have access to have a long-lasting impact on their health and the health of their communities,” said George Hulse, EmblemHealth Vice President and Senior Advisor to the CEO. “Many of the communities who have been disproportionately affected by COVID-19 are also struggling with food insecurity. I am proud to be a part of an initiative that tackles two issues in which these consequences are often, unfortunately, intertwined.”
“Kids and families are going hungry in Brooklyn neighborhoods and across the city,” said Dr. Melony Samuels, Executive Director and Founder of The Campaign Against Hunger. “Before the pandemic, 14.7% of Brooklyn residents were food insecure, which has only been on the rise since the onset of the pandemic. If you don’t even know where you’re going to get your next meal, then the barriers to healthcare are only amplified. I’m eager to get to work alongside Medly, EmblemHealth, and local elected officials to reach our most disadvantaged citizens and tackle the greatest needs along the full spectrum of health.”
“In these challenging times, I am especially thankful for community partners,” said New York City Councilman Robert Cornegy Jr. “The Campaign Against Hunger has been providing food with dignity to New Yorkers since 1998. Thanksgiving will look different from years past but love in our community is as strong as ever, especially with allies like The Campaign Against Hunger.”
More information about the event is as follow: