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Take a Stand Against Hunger During Hunger Action Month

From ALLtech medical provider Regence BlueShield

Nearly 1 in 8 Americans, or almost 42 million people, are expected to experience food insecurity this year and may not know where their next meal will come from. This includes nearly 13 million children across the United States.

In early 2020 the overall food insecurity rate had reached its lowest point in three decades, however many families relied on food assistance at the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic due to loss of jobs and income. Food insecurity remains a critical issue for many, both during the pandemic and beyond.

The good news is that we can work together to address hunger and ensure food is available to all who need it. September is Hunger Action Month, a recognition created by the nonprofit Feeding America that offers an opportunity to fuel conversations and take actionable steps toward reducing hunger in our communities. Below are three ways to get involved:

Learn about the state of hunger in your community

Chances are a neighbor, colleague or friend may have, at some point, been faced with a difficult decision of keeping up with bills or putting nutritious food on the table. Each person and community’s situation is unique, so it’s important to understand the many factors that contribute to hunger.

Feeding America offers its “Map the Meal Gap” interactive resource as an inside look at the state of food insecurity across the globe, as well as the significant impact the COVID-19 pandemic has had on people and families.

Support your local food bank

Local food banks are a critical resource for individuals and families in need of food assistance. Last year, Regence matched 100% of employee donations made to local food banks and collectively raised more than $218K to help these organizations meet growing demand.

In addition to monetary donations, food banks, food pantries and other meal programs often seek physical donations like canned goods, and some offer ongoing volunteer opportunities. Use Feeding America’s locator tool to find a food bank near you and get involved.

Use your voice to end hunger

Ending hunger requires action from us all. In support of Hunger Action Month, Feeding America has put together a pledge to end hunger and encourage lawmakers to make ending hunger a priority. Learn more about the pledge and other steps you can take to address rising rates of food insecurity.

Regence is proud to recognize Hunger Action Month and support nonprofit organizations who are taking a stand against hunger. Visit the Regence blog to learn how the organization is supporting the health of our communities.

Video: Why an Eye Exam is About More Than Just Vision

From ALLtech vision care providers VSP Vision Care Inc. 

Perhaps you don’t wear glasses or contacts and haven’t had any issues with your eyes. So, you think, “Why would I need to go to the eye doctor every year?” You might be surprised to know that there is more to an eye exam than just checking your visual clarity. Here are three reasons why you should visit your eye doctor every year.

1. Detecting Early Signs of Chronic Diseases like Diabetes

Your eyes reveal a lot about your overall wellness. An eye exam can detect early signs of serious health conditions such as diabetes and hypertension. Regular eye exams are critical because what may seem like a vision-related problem might be an indication of a broader health issue.

2. Some Eye Diseases Are Symptom-Free

What do glaucomacataracts and macular degeneration all have in common? All these conditions share a common characteristic—no early warning signs. Getting an annual eye exam can help detect health conditions before they progress and may help preserve your vision.

3. Your Vision Might Not Be as Clear as You Think

You may think your vision is clear, but many people are often surprised to discover they aren’t seeing as well as they thought they were. You may not notice that your vision changed, but an eye exam can reveal if you need glasses or contacts – or an update to your current prescription to ensure you’re seeing as clearly as possible.

Need an eye exam but not sure where to go? Use our Find a Doctor tool to locate a VSP network eye doctor near you. If you need to make an appointment to see an eye doctor, but don’t have vision benefits, visit VSPDirect.com to learn how VSP Individual Vision Plans can help you save money on your next eye exam and glasses.

Information received through VSP Vision Care channels is for informational purposes only and does not constitute medical advice, medical recommendations, diagnosis or treatment. Always seek the advice of your eye doctor, physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. 

ALLtech Medical Carrier Keeps You Up-to-Date on COVID-19

Looking for up-to-date information on COVID-19? ALLtech medical carrier Regence* BlueShield offers plenty of tips and resources to help keep you informed on its COVID-19 (coronavirus) updates page.

Get links for state and federal government sites, employer resources and more, and you can learn how Regence is taking steps to support members through:

  • COVID-19 testing and treatment
  • Enhanced support for high-risk members
  • Enhancing coverage for virtual care

ALLtech members enrolled in medical coverage can find links to more information on how to create a Regence.com account or how to download the Regence app.

Be sure to also keep an eye on the Regence blog for the latest news on coronavirus and more.

*For members of Asuris Northwest Health, a subsidiary of Regence BlueShield that services the Asotin, Adams, Benton, Chelan, Douglas, Ferry, Franklin, Garfield, Grant, Kittitas, Lincoln, Okanogan, Pend Oreille, Spokane, Stevens, and Whitman counties, please see the Asuris COVID-19 (coronavirus) updates page.