Affinity opens Community Service Center in The Hub

(L-r) Danny Figueroa, chief of staff for Assemblyman Peter Rivera; Abbe Abboa-Offei, Affinity Health Plan vice president of public affairs and community service; Maura Bluestone, Affinity Health Plan founder and president; Dr. Bob Lee, of WBLS-FM and Carlos Blanco, Affinity Health Plan community liaison, celebrated the opening of Affinity’s newest Community Service Center on June 19. - Photo courtesy of Matt Draper

On Thursday, June 19, Affinity Health Plan’s staff welcomed community members from the Hub section of the Bronx to help celebrate the opening of their new Community Service Center.

Located at the corner of 149th Street and Third Avenue, the new CSC is one element in Affinity’s extensive plan to begin integrating its services into the neighborhoods it serves.

“Our CSCs have become local help centers for our members as well as community meeting points,” Affinity’s vice president of public affairs Abenaa Abboa-Offei said.

The CSC was developed to provide local offices for current and prospective members to have access to information about Affinity’s various health care plans.

“It really serves as a place for people to come get health information and information about other kinds of services in the neighborhood,” Abboa-Offei explained, including the importance of being located in such a high traffic section of the Bronx.

Throughout the year the CSC will also feature a variety of engaging community events.

“Those are opportunities for us to say thank you to the neighborhoods we’re in,” Abboa-Offei said, referencing the planned community appreciation days, which will include raffles, and snacks and beverages for all to enjoy.

Affinity, an independent, not-for-profit managed care company dedicated to serving the needs of low-income residents of the New York metropolitan area, also looks forward to hosting Tasty Tuesdays, ice cream events on hot summer days, as well as motivational speakers to engage youth at after-school seminars.

Furthering their give back spirit, the health plan will also have MetroCard giveaways to reward members who chose to recertify their health care coverage.

Abboa-Offei said it’s these special connections with their clients that makes Affinity staff feel like they’re completing their mission to truly help local residents with their health care needs.

While elected officials and Affinity representatives shared their appreciation for the new CSC before a crowd of approximately 150 people, Abboa-Offei said it was the testimony of one of Affinity’s members that moved her the most.

“He was the most impassioned,” she recalled about the man who said he received his first primary care doctor after he became an Affinity member. “It’s all about accessing people to the services they need.”

The facility’s bilingual signage and materials as well as convenient operating hours of Monday through Saturday, from 9 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. makes the center easily accessible for all neighborhood residents.

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