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Kaiser donates $1M to support coronavirus prevention and treatment for homeless people

Central City Concern in Portland is one of the initial recipients of the donation and will receive $100,000.

PORTLAND, Ore. — National health care provider Kaiser Permanente is donating $1 million to support coronavirus prevention and treatment for homeless people across the country.

One of the initial recipients is Portland's Central City Concern, which will receive $100,000 in funding.

Dr. Rachel Solotaroff, president and CEO of Central City Concern, said the organization appreciates Kaiser Permanente's support of their mission to serve "those who are most vulnerable in our communities."

"Central City Concern is working rapidly to ensure we can maintain access to our most critically needed health services and social service supports, while keeping the thousands of people we house healthy," Solotaroff said. "The funds provided by Kaiser will provide significant support to cover the costs of cleaning supplies, personal protective equipment and other necessities to allow us to respond quickly, appropriately and humanely."

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Other recipients include the Seattle/King County Coalition on Homelessness; Destination Home in Santa Clara County; and Homeless Health Care Los Angeles.

"These organizations are leading coordinated response efforts and are already closely connected to the homeless communities in their areas. They are ready to deploy resources immediately and this funding support will allow them to move quickly," Kaiser Permanente said in a press release.

The National Health Care for the Homeless Council will work with Kaiser Permanente to direct the funds to programs that support the homeless population in locations most impacted by coronavirus.

"Given the elevated risk faced by people living on the streets or in shelters at this time, we are making it a priority to support outreach, prevention, and treatment for this community," said Dr. Bechara Choucair, chief health officer with Kaiser Permanente.

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In Oregon, the risk of contracting COVID-19 remains low, according to officials. At KGW, we’re focusing our news coverage on the facts and not the fear around the virus. To see our full coverage, visit our coronavirus section here.