Hackensack Meridian JFK University Medical Center Foundation Receives Grant from Investors Foundation to Support Plainfield Health Connections Virtual Diabetes Classes

January 20, 2021

Hackensack Meridian JFK University Medical Center Foundation has received a grant of $5,000 from Investors Foundation, the philanthropic arm of Investors Bank, to support virtual classes for patients who have been diagnosed with diabetes in the Plainfield Health Connections program.

Plainfield Health Connections (PHC), established in 2014, coordinates primary medical care for patients while helping them solve many of the social problems that hinder their ability to achieve a healthier lifestyle. The program enrolls an average of 100 patients annually through screening of hospital emergency department (ED) visits and word of mouth in the community.  Participants tend to be uninsured or underinsured and rely on the JFK ED in Edison, or the Satellite ED in Plainfield, for non-urgent problems relating to their chronic conditions. A significant component of the PHC program is disease-specific education and instruction on the importance of good nutrition and physical exercise.

While in-person group classes have been discontinued due to COVID-19, ongoing intensive education and communication with individual participants is being maintained remotely according to preference.

“We are extremely grateful to Investors Foundation for their generosity and confidence in the virtual education classes that JFK University Medical Center and Plainfield Health Connections provide,” said Sheri Marino, executive director, JFK University Medical Center Foundation. “For over six years, Plainfield Health Connections has served more than 600 patients and their loved ones, and continues to make a difference in our most vulnerable residents’ lives thanks to continued support from vital philanthropic funding.”

Among PHC patients, diabetes is one of the most prevalent chronic conditions, followed by obesity, high cholesterol and hypertension. For those diagnosed with prediabetes/diabetes, the challenges inherent in preventing or managing the disease have underscored the need for this group to have a more intensive educational program. The grant from the Investors Foundation will go towards a virtual educational series around diabetes prevention, self-management and complication avoidance.

“We are so thankful to Investors Foundation for this thoughtful grant to support Plainfield Health Connections and our offering of virtual classes about diabetes,” said Beryl Sowah, MSN, RN, ANP-BC, program director of Plainfield Health Connections. “Now more than ever, our patients rely on our educational virtual class offerings, so that they may continue learning about diabetes prevention, management and care while in the comfort of their homes.”

To learn more about how you can support educational classes at JFK University Medical Center Foundation, or to make a gift to JFK University Medical Center Foundation, please call 732-632-1540 or visit www.jfkmc.org/donate/.

About Investors Bank

Investors Bank, headquartered in Short Hills, New Jersey, is a full-service commercial bank that has been serving customers since 1926. With over $26 billion in assets and a network of more than 150 retail branches, Investors Bank delivers personalized services and products tailored to the needs of its customers. Investors Bank’s services include complete deposit, loan and treasury management products for consumers and businesses. Investors Bank. Member FDIC and Equal Housing Lender.

About the Investors Foundation

Investors Bank created the Investors Foundation in 2005 to support the communities Investors Bank serves. Investors Foundation supports initiatives in the arts, youth development, health and human services, education and affordable housing.  The Investors Foundation works to improve the lives of its neighbors and communities across the bank’s footprint.  For more information, please visit https://www.myinvestorsbank.com/Community/Investors-Foundation.

About Hackensack Meridian Health

Hackensack Meridian Health is a leading not-for-profit health care organization that is the largest, most comprehensive and truly integrated health care network in New Jersey, offering a complete range of medical services, innovative research and life-enhancing care.

Hackensack Meridian Health comprises 17 hospitals from Bergen to Ocean counties, which includes three academic medical centers – Hackensack University Medical Center in Hackensack, Jersey Shore University Medical Center in Neptune, JFK Medical Center in Edison; two children’s hospitals – Joseph M. Sanzari Children’s Hospital in Hackensack, K. Hovnanian Children’s Hospital in Neptune; nine community hospitals – Bayshore Medical Center in Holmdel, Mountainside Medical Center in Montclair, Ocean Medical Center in Brick, Palisades Medical Center in North Bergen, Pascack Valley Medical Center in Westwood, Raritan Bay Medical Center in Old Bridge, Raritan Bay Medical Center in Perth Amboy, Riverview Medical Center in Red Bank, and Southern Ocean Medical Center in Manahawkin; a behavioral health hospital – Carrier Clinic in Belle Mead; and two rehabilitation hospitals – JFK Johnson Rehabilitation Institute in Edison and Shore Rehabilitation Institute in Brick.

Additionally, the network has more than 500 patient care locations throughout the state which include ambulatory care centers, surgery centers, home health services, long-term care and assisted living communities, ambulance services, lifesaving air medical transportation, fitness and wellness centers, rehabilitation centers, urgent care centers and physician practice locations. Hackensack Meridian Health has more than 36,000 team members, and 7,000 physicians and is a distinguished leader in health care philanthropy, committed to the health and well-being of the communities it serves.

The network’s notable distinctions include having four of its hospitals are among the top hospitals in New Jersey for 2020-21, according to U.S. News & World Report. Additionally, the health system has more top-ranked hospitals than any system in New Jersey. Children’s Health is again ranked a top provider of pediatric health care in the United States and earned top 50 rankings in the annual U.S. News’ 2020-21 Best Children’s Hospitals report.   Other honors include consistently achieving Magnet® recognition for nursing excellence from the American Nurses Credentialing Center and being named to Becker’s Healthcare’s “150 Top Places to Work in Healthcare/2019” list.

The Hackensack Meridian School of Medicine, the first private medical school in New Jersey in more than 50 years, welcomed its first class of students in 2018 to its On3 campus in Nutley and Clifton. The Hackensack Meridian Center for Discovery and Innovation (CDI), housed in a fully renovated state-of-the-art facility, seeks to translate current innovations in science to improve clinical outcomes for patients with cancer, infectious diseases and other life-threatening and disabling conditions.

Additionally, the network partnered with Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center to find more cures for cancer faster while ensuring that patients have access to the highest quality, most individualized cancer care when and where they need it.

Hackensack Meridian Health is a member of AllSpire Health Partners, an interstate consortium of leading health systems, to focus on the sharing of best practices in clinical care and achieving efficiencies. To learn more, visit www.hackensackmeridianhealth.org.