FRESNO, California (KSEE) – Anthem Blue Cross donated $100,000 to the Fresno Center so the nonprofit could purchase an office van and bring much needed case management and therapy visits into neighborhoods in the community.

“You’re talking about serving close to a million people here in Fresno County and this van is probably gonna go for 300,000 miles, so it’s a needed service.  I don’t know of any mobile office unit here in Fresno County,” said Pao Yang, the President and CEO of the Fresno Center.

The vehicle is equipped for one-on-one care sessions and will provide clients with computer and internet access for online health needs.  Anthem says it comes at a perfect time amid a pandemic.  

“I think there’s that fear of coming in for a face-to-face service and I think also it reduces the stigma, we’re able to take those services to people where they feel comfortable and where they know the community and where they know people that are within the community,” said Janet Paine, the Program Director for Anthem Blue Cross Medical Health Plan.

Anthem Blue Cross says claims have been significantly lower in the community for individuals seeking behavioral health care, but Fresno City Mayor Jerry Dyer says this is the time people really need it.

“The health needs in Fresno are very real and not only the physical but the mental health needs of our people, especially this last year during the pandemic where so many people have suffered mental health issues.”

The new mobile unit will operate just like an office, with hours running from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.