Johns Hopkins Bayview Community Care-A-Van on a Roll with Donation from Verizon Wireless

LAUREL, MD — The Johns Hopkins Bayview Community Care-A-Van, which delivers mobile medical care to Baltimore's most underserved populations, has received a booster shot from Verizon Wireless. The van has been outfitted with new wireless equipment to upgrade the onboard hardware donated by Verizon Wireless when the van was originally launched three years ago. The company has replaced the two wireless phones onboard with new digital handsets, and also has donated a Mobile Office kit, which includes software and a cable to enable the van to send and receive faxes.

A familiar site — especially on Baltimore's Southeast side — the 39-foot van is nearly as large as a city bus. Equipped with two examining rooms, a mobile laboratory and a patient waiting area, the van makes weekly stops at a Hispanic Community Center, a Head Start program for 3—5 year-olds and a domestic violence shelter, the Family Crisis Center in Dundalk. In addition to performing rapid strep and pregnancy tests onboard, medical professionals also provide immunizations, physicals, acute care, patient education and referrals. The wireless phones and fax capability are invaluable because they allow the van's healthcare professionals to communicate with other healthcare providers. According to Pat Letke Alexander, physician assistant onboard the Care-A-Van, communication is especially critical for families affected by domestic violence.

"Because domestic violence victims often leave threatening situations in a hurry, there's no time to gather childhood immunization records and other vital pieces of medical history," Alexander says. "Having onboard wireless technology allows us to obtain the necessary documents victims need so they can register their children in new schools and begin to rebuild their lives."

Verizon Wireless has a longstanding commitment to raising awareness and fostering prevention of domestic violence. Through the company's HopeLineSM program, all 1,200 Verizon Wireless Communications stores nationwide collect no-longer-used wireless phones and equipment in any condition to be refurbished, recycled in an environmentally friendly manner, or sold. The proceeds fund donations to non-profit domestic violence service programs of wireless phones and airtime for emergency use by victims of domestic violence.

"In addition to providing a convenient way for people to recycle used wireless phones, the HopeLine program enables us to put our products and services to work to help people in need," said Patrick Devlin, Verizon Wireless regional president. "There's no better example of what HopeLine can achieve than the Care-A-Van, which is providing crucial support to the people of Baltimore."

To ensure HopeLine's continued success and support for community-based organizations, the public is encouraged to drop off no-longer-used wireless phones in collection bins in Verizon Wireless stores across the state.

As a result of HopeLine and related phone recycling programs the company has organized since 1995, Verizon Wireless has collected more than one million used wireless phones for the benefit of domestic violence victims and advocacy groups. In the last year alone, since the HopeLine phone recycling program launched nationwide in October, 2001, Verizon Wireless has collected more than 500,000 phones.

About Verizon WirelessVerizon Wireless is the nation's leading provider of wireless communications. The company has the largest nationwide wireless voice and data network and 36 million customers. Headquartered in Bedminster, NJ, Verizon Wireless is a joint venture of Verizon Communications (NYSE:VZ) and Vodafone (NYSE and LSE: VOD). Find more information on the Web at