Institute for Family Health Receives $1.1M from Robin Hood…

Institute for Family Health Receives $1.1M from Robin Hood To Launch Comprehensive Diabetes Care Program 


New York, NY (May 11, 2010) — The Institute for Family Health today received a $1.1 million grant from Robin Hood to launch a new diabetes care initiative for low-income and other disadvantaged patients of its 10 community health centers in New York City. The cutting-edge project will combine diabetes care teams, the Institute’s state-of-the-art electronic health record, and the strength of the Institute’s community health center model to improve health outcomes for patients with diabetes.

Dr. Neil Calman, the Institute’s president and CEO stated, “The Institute currently cares for over 2,000 New York City patients with diabetes, and another 6,400 of our patients are at risk for developing diabetes in the near future. The disparities in outcomes by race are enormous. In New York City, the death rate from diabetes among blacks is nearly three times that of whites. For the past two decades, the diabetes mortality rates in low-income neighborhoods have been nearly twice as high as the rates in wealthier areas. We know from our own research that the Institute’s black and Latino patients receive the same quality of care as our white patients, yet continue to have worse health as a result of their diabetes. This project will make sure our patients with diabetes stay healthy, despite the significant barriers many face in trying to manage this complex disease.”

The Robin Hood grant will enable the Institute’s New York City health centers to set up diabetes care teams that will include primary care providers, nurses, social workers, clinic administrators, certified diabetic educators (CDEs), care managers and pharmacists. The model emphasizes patient-centered care by giving patients one-on-one time with diabetes care managers and certified diabetes educators, who will work with them to address barriers to optimal diabetes self-management. These barriers include everything from limited availability of healthy foods in a patient’s neighborhood, to difficulty finding transportation for medical visits.

“The neighborhoods with the highest poverty rates are the places with the highest prevalence of diabetes,” said Anjana Pandey, of Robin Hood. “In these neighborhoods, community health centers like the Institute for Family Health are the go-to place for quality primary care. The model the Institute has developed will ensure that patients with diabetes receive excellent care and stay healthy, and at the same time, address disparities in diabetes outcomes in our city.”

James Knickman, President and CEO of the New York State Health Foundation, which sponsors the NYS Diabetes Campaign, commented: “In New York City, 9.7% of residents have been told by their health care provider they have diabetes. In some neighborhoods where the Institute for Family Health has health centers, the diabetes prevalence is 13%. Compare these numbers to the U.S. prevalence of 7.8%, and you see we have a major health problem here in New York. We are very pleased that the Institute has developed a model of care which may help us improve diabetes outcomes statewide.”

The initiative will be led by the Institute’s diabetes medical director, Dr. Elizabeth Molina-Ortiz. “The project will take advantage of the Institute’s advanced health information technology capabilities, and use an EHR-based diabetes registry, electronic clinical decision supports, and online diabetes-related resources available to patients through our web-based patient portal,” said Dr. Molina-Ortiz. “We will also be referring patients to community-based nutrition and exercise programs in their neighborhoods. Combining these features with the use of diabetes care teams in a community health center setting is going to really have an impact on patients’ health.”   

The project will be implemented over the next several months at the Institute’s health centers in Manhattan and the Bronx, which serve predominantly low-income and minority patients, regardless of their ability to pay.

The centers in the Bronx are: Urban Horizons Family Practice, 50-98 East 168th Street; Mt. Hope Family Practice, 130 West Tremont Avenue; Walton Family Health Center, 1894 Walton Avenue; Parkchester Family Practice, 1597 Unionport Road; and Westchester Avenue Center, 1990 Westchester Avenue.

In Manhattan, the centers are: Sidney Hillman/Phillips Family Practice, 16 East 16th Street; East 13th Street Family Practice, 113 East 13th Street; and Amsterdam Center, 690 Amsterdam Avenue.


The Institute for Family Health is a federally qualified health center network with 24 practice sites in New York State. The Institute also operates two family medicine residency programs and several community health promotion programs. In 2009, all Institute centers received the highest recognition from the National Committee for Quality Assurance as Patient Centered Medical Homes.  For more information, visit 

Robin Hood holds steadfast to a single mission: fight poverty in New York City.  The organization finds, funds and creates programs and schools that generate measurable results for families in New York City’s poorest neighborhoods.  Robin Hood works closely with the 200 organizations it supports to help them reach capacity and maximize outcomes.  In 2009, Robin Hood invested $130 million in 200 programs and schools, touching approximately 430,000 New Yorkers. A rigorous system of metrics and third-party evaluation of these groups guarantee accountability.  The board pays all administrative, fundraising and evaluation costs, so 100 percent of donations goes directly to organizations helping New Yorkers in need to build better lives.  For more information, visit