Additional Funding

Pressley, patients, providers celebrate $1.1 million grant

Special to the Record

Congresswoman Ayana Pressley (D-07) visited Chelsea HealthCare Center on Tuesday to help celebrate $1,150,000 in federal community project funding she helped secure to support Massachusetts General Hospital’s efforts to address the statewide shortage of bilingual, culturally diverse mental health providers for immigrant and limited English proficiency communities.

Courtesy photo
MGH’s Tom Sequist with
Congresswoman Ayana

Pressley was joined by MGH leadership, impacted families, and community leaders for a roundtable discussion and press conference to discuss how the funding will support a just and equitable recovery in the Massachusetts 7th Congressional District.  “Everyone deserves access to high-quality mental health services and wraparound care, including our immigrant neighbors,” said Pressley.  “This federal funding will meet a critical need across the Commonwealth by supporting MGH’s life-saving efforts to provide comprehensive, culturally congruent care to vulnerable communities. These are the types of trauma-informed resources that deserve bold federal investments, and I am so proud to partner with the MGH team and our local partners to get this critical funding over the finish line.

Joining Rep. Pressley were Tom Sequist, MD, MPH, Chief Medical Officer, Mass General Brigham; Fiona Danaher, MD, MPH, Director, MGH Center for Immigrant Health (Pediatrics); Rahel Bosson, MD, Associate Director, MGH Center for Immigrant Health (Psychiatry); Betty Descilien, Immigrant/Mental Health Community Health Worker, MGH Center for Immigrant Health; Dinanyili Paulino, Executive Vice President, La Colaborativa; Tracey Taldon, LICSW, Founder, Wellness for Our Future; Ana Espinal, MGH Center for Immigrant Health Nutrition Program participant and MGH Chelsea patient; Lyvien Feto, MGH Center for Immigrant Health Resource Navigation Program participant and former shelter resident; and MGH leadership, impacted families, and community leaders.

 “Our immigrant patients and colleagues have traveled many different paths, and they have so much to teach us about courage, tenacity, and resilience,” said Danaher. “We are proud to build upon the longstanding work of our colleagues at the MGH Chelsea HealthCare Center, and throughout the broader Mass General Brigham system, in welcoming new arrivals to Massachusetts with dignity and compassion.  We are immensely grateful to Congresswoman Pressley for her leadership in this shared mission.” As a healthcare system, clinicians are often on the frontline of welcoming immigrants and refugees in need of medical care, said Elsie Taveras, MD, MPH, Chief Community Health and Health Equity Officer for Mass General Brigham

“Across Mass General Brigham, we will continue to offer the highest quality of care to all our patients, regardless of immigration status, with the respect and dignity they deserve,” said Taveras.  “We are grateful to Congresswoman Ayanna Pressley for securing this much needed funding to support mental health efforts for immigrant communities and those with limited English proficiency.” Pressley secured the federal funding for the program in the Fiscal Year 2023 government spending package that passed Congress and was signed into law by President Biden in December 2022.

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