By Nancy Dahlberg
A Miami-based tech startup wants to help make sure the doctor is in – in your neighborhood.
REEF Technology is re-imaging the common parking lot, with the vision of turning them into hubs for all kinds of community uses. Now REEF will be helping to expand pop-up COVID-19 testing around the country and bring clinics to dozens of underserved neighborhoods, too.
Carbon Health, a San Francisco-based primary care health-tech provider, has partnered with Miami’s REEF to expand its services nationally with 100 pop-up COVID-19 testing clinics across 20 major markets. These patient-friendly clinics will transition over time to become access points providing primary care services.
With more than 4,500 locations and a team of nearly 15,000 people, REEF transforms parking lots and garages into neighborhood hubs that connect people to locally curated goods, services, mobility, and experiences. Carbon Health says it will leverage REEF’s platform and expertise to quickly identify and deploy pop-up clinic locations in underserved communities, including potentially in Miami. The partnership removes geographic accessibility as a barrier to world-class care, the companies said.
When time is of the essence, the partnership with REEF allows Carbon Health to scale rapidly and efficiently to meet the rising demands of this pandemic, while avoiding the permitting red-tape that comes with building permanent locations.
“Our partnership with Carbon Health furthers our commitment to transforming our overlooked urban spaces into neighborhood hubs that can help connect people to the businesses and services they need to thrive. By working together we can realize the promise of the 15 Minute City, and help our neighborhoods become more sustainable and inclusive centers of community and opportunity,” said Ari Ojalvo, REEF’s CEO and co-founder, in a statement.
The 100 popup clinics will roll out rapidly; clinics are already live at REEF locations in San Francisco, Los Angeles, Brooklyn and Seattle. They will allow about 100,000 additional patients per month across the country to be tested. When the pop-up clinics transition to permanent point-of-care facilities with virtual and in-person care, Services such as flu shots, flu and strep tests, lab work, and COVID-19 vaccinations when available will be offered.
The vision goes beyond the first 100 locations, the companies said.
“Healthcare deserts exist, even in our nation’s largest cities…. With these pop-ups, we are laying the infrastructure to expand access to care in communities that need it most.” said Eren Bali, co-founder and CEO of Carbon Health.
REEF Technology, backed by SoftBank, is the largest operator of mobility, logistics hubs, and neighborhood kitchens in the United States. The fast-growing company currently lists more than 20 job openings in Miami alone.
In May, Reef announced it was partnering with logistics giant DHL Express on a pilot program to deploy environmentally friendly cargo bikes for last-mile deliveries across downtown Miami, and for potential rollout to other cities.
Photo from REEF Technology at the top of this post shows a Carbon Health Clinic in Brooklyn.
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