Expanding Population Health, One Borough at a Time

By: Karen Ignagni, President and CEO, EmblemHealth, and Navarra Rodriguez, MD, President and Chief Medical Officer, AdvantageCare Physicians

There’s something different on Pennslyvania Avenue in East New York, and it’s hard to miss. New Yorkers emerging from the nearby subway stops, walking along the avenue, and driving down the street may notice a new building. This modern, 75,000 square foot, state-of-the-art facility is EmblemHealth and AdvantageCare Physicians’ new health hub in Brooklyn, offering primary and specialty care, with free wellness programs and other social support services for neighborhood residents.  

As one of the nation’s largest non-profit health insurers, EmblemHealth has embraced initiatives that drive change by investing in our communities, breaking down barriers to care, and offering programs that improve health. Through our innovative partnership with AdvantageCare Physicians, a leading primary and specialty care practice, our new hub will bring convenient, high-quality and affordable care to the residents of East New York with a coordinated care approach that focuses on treating the physical, mental and lifestyle aspects of a person’s health centering around a multi-disciplined Care Team. AdvantageCare Physicians provides each patient with access to physicians, nurses, social workers, nutritionists, behavioral specialists, and other health professionals. The Care Team works together to diagnose, treat, and educate patients so they understand their health care risks and opportunities for health improvements. This ensures that patients receive quality care, no matter which AdvantageCare Physicians office they visit, as their electronic medical record travels with them in whatever borough they seek care.   

In addition to primary care services, including Family Practice, Internal Medicine and Pediatrics, the East New York site also offers patients one-stop access to specialists, including Cardiology with Echocardiography and Nuclear Stress Testing, Gastroenterology with an Endoscopy Suite for procedures, Hematology/Oncology with a dedicated Infusion Suite, Ophthalmology, Optometry, Podiatry, and Rheumatology, alongside laboratory testing services provided by Quest Diagnostics and radiology services provided by Lenox Hill Radiology.

Complementing the clinical offerings at the East New York health hub are the health and wellness services provided by EmblemHealth Neighborhood Care and Cityblock Health. EmblemHealth Neighborhood Care offers members and non-members a place to ask questions about insurance and social service eligibility, learn about stress management and diabetes prevention, and participate in yoga, Zumba and other exercise classes. The East New York location, as with all of EmblemHealth’s Neighborhood Care sites, is staffed with customer care navigators who have deep roots and close ties to the community.

Through EmblemHealth’s incubator partnership with Cityblock Health, we’re able to tackle social determinents in the East New York community head-on. Cityblock Health leverages technology and a high-touch, personalized approach to care, to identify and assist the most vulnerable people in the community and connect them with a dedicated team and medical, behavioral and social services. Working with EmblemHealth Neighborhood Care and AdvantageCare Physicians, Cityblock Health ensures those identified have access to transportation, housing, and nutritious food, to help them stay healthy.

EmblemHealth’s mission as an enterprise is to create healthier futures for our customers and communities. Through the East New York health hub, we’re partnering with the Brooklyn community to set a new standard for access to comprehensive health care services and address the complex and challenging social determinants of health.