Passport Health Plan announced a partnership to aid The Salvation Army Louisville Area Command as it combats numerous negative societal effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. The Louisville-based Medicaid managed care organization is specifically supporting the charity’s Mission Essential Campaign, an effort to raise additional funding for resources strained by this health emergency.

Since the first days of the novel coronavirus outbreak, Passport significantly increased its health-focused corporate philanthropy throughout the state of Kentucky. Passport’s COVID-related support is impacting Kentucky Harvest, Jefferson County Public Schools, One Louisville: COVID-19 Response Fund, Kentucky Department of Public Health and Community Area Ministries in addition to the Salvation Army and others.

This intentional strategic effort is based on Passport’s data-driven COVID-19 risk stratification process. Passport identified more than 26,000 members in Jefferson County who are at medium or high risk for the virus. The analysis showed those at high risk were much more likely to live below the poverty line and have housing instability.

“This pandemic has preyed on the most vulnerable, and it’s imperative that we unite as a community to protect them,” said Passport CEO Scott Bowers. “Throughout this crisis, we’ve actively worked with our members to ensure their health and safety. So, helping The Salvation Army and similar charities aligns with our shared goals.”

Passport Health Plan’s contribution to the Mission Essential Campaign will assist The Salvation Army with new COVID-related costs including additional hourly staff for some positions normally filled by volunteers, the opening of a Healthy Day Shelter, a COVID-19 shelter, the increase in number of daily meals served from 400 to 2000, additional beds for individuals and families, and food box delivery to the vulnerable, seniors and those who test positive for COVID-19 and must recover at home.

“Passport Health Plan understands and shares our commitment to those living in poverty, homeless, in need of medical resources, or in a crisis,” said Kelly Hutchinson, The Salvation Army’s Director of Development. “We were strengthened as Passport stepped up as a lead donor to the Mission Essential Campaign to make sure we had the financial resources to rapidly implement social distancing protocols, expand our round-the-clock services and operations to meet the continuous increasing needs.”

Passport Health Plan has a long history of support for The Salvation Army including donations to annual fundraisers, employee volunteerism as Bell Ringers during the Red Kettle season and corporate sponsorship for the annual Angel Tree campaign.

On an even larger scale, Passport joined with the University of Louisville and U of L Health to launch the “Better Together by Staying Apart” informational initiative promoting social distancing, limited travel, hand washing and proper surface cleaning. Louisville Metro Mayor Greg Fischer has repeatedly championed the campaign during his daily briefings with the community.