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Project HOPE Now Providing Donated Medicines to Free Medical Clinics in Mississippi and Virginia

MILLWOOD, Va., Feb. 26, 2015 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Project HOPE, the Millwood, Virginia-based global health education and humanitarian assistance organization, has been helping needy patients abroad by – among other activities - providing vaccines, medicines and medical supplies free of cost since its founding in 1958. The organization is now offering the same type of assistance to low resource communities much closer to home.

Project HOPE is now providing donated medicines and medical supplies to the entire network of free medical clinics in Virginia and Mississippi, and it has obtained a license from the Board of Pharmacy of West Virginia to distribute donated medicines to free clinics in that state as well.

"Low income communities in the U.S. are struggling with high rates of chronic disease," said Linda Roberts, Project HOPE's Director of Gifts-In-Kind. "Diseases such as diabetes, obesity and hypertension are taking a serious toll on people who are already under stress. Project HOPE is thrilled to offer some relief to patients in need here at home."

Project HOPE is a long-time leader in providing medical humanitarian aid to needy communities worldwide. In response to natural disasters and in an effort to help medically underserved communities improve their ability to provide high-quality health care, Project HOPE ships more than $200 million-worth of donated medicines, vaccines and medical supplies globally each year. Recent shipments of these products have been sent to places as diverse as the Philippines, Tanzania, Macedonia and Syrian refugee camps in Turkey.

In response to requests for specific needs, Project HOPE's corporate partners donate pharmaceuticals and medical supplies to the organization. The donated products are stored at HOPE's warehouses, located in Winchester, Virginia and other international sites. These products are then shipped to clinics and hospitals in need at Project HOPE program sites worldwide.

Since the organization recognizes there is a need for this same type of assistance in needy areas of the United States and already has the infrastructure in place to store and deliver these donated products, Project HOPE is now helping patients much closer to home. Since obtaining the appropriate licenses, the organization has already shipped items such as arm slings, medicated ointment and diabetes medicines to a free medical clinic in Leland, Mississippi. In Virginia, free medical clinics at multiple locations throughout the state have received diabetes medicines and clinic equipment.

"I just finished putting up on our shelves the donated Metformin, diabetes medication that you arranged for us, said Foster D. Farone, RPh, Pharmacy Manager, Harrisonburg Rockingham Free Clinic in Harrisonburg, Virginia. "I can't tell you how much this means to us. We now have enough Metformin to provide for our patients until the end of April 2015. It was our most consistently purchased med and our biggest challenge."



Project HOPE plans to obtain licenses to donate pharmaceuticals in additional states. States that did not participate in the Medicaid expansion provision of the Affordable Care Act will be a priority for Project HOPE, since patients in these states have the greatest need for this type of assistance.

About Project HOPE

Founded in 1958, Project HOPE (Health Opportunities for People Everywhere) is dedicated to providing lasting solutions to health problems with the mission of helping people to help themselves. Identifiable to many by the SS HOPE, the world's first peacetime hospital ship, Project HOPE now provides medical training and health education, and conducts humanitarian assistance programs in more than 30 countries. Visit our website projecthope.org and follow us on Twitter @projecthopeorg

CONTACT: Geraldine Carroll gcarroll@projecthope.org Tel. +1-540-257-3746

Source: Project HOPE