Empresas Banmédica, a member of UnitedHealth Group, donates US $1 million to address the Covid-19 pandemic

• The resources will be allocated in equal parts to Fundación Chile and Desafío Levantemos Chile, to provide medical supplies for retirement homes and other vulnerable groups.

Empresas Banmédica, member of UnitedHealth Group (UHG), will donate US $1 million to support Chilean public hospitals and vulnerable population amid the unprecedented difficulties they are currently facing due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

The resources will be managed by Desafío Levantemos Chile to provide mobile clinics, monitors, and antibody tests for hospitals and vulnerable population; and Fundación Chile to donate personal protection equipment and other essential supplies for retirement homes supported by the National Service for the Elderly (Senama) of the Ministry of Social Development and Family.

The resources are part of a $10 million donation announced by UnitedHealth Group to help fight the Covid-19 pandemic in the countries it actually operates, which also include Brazil, Colombia, India, Ireland, Peru, the Philippines, and Portugal.

In Chile, UHG is the controller of Empresas Banmédica, the country’s largest private health group, comprising Clínica Santa María, Dávila, Vespucio, Ciudad del Mar, and Biobío, and medical centers such as Vidaintegra, HMC, and HELP, as well as Health Insurance companies such as  Isapre Banmédica and Vida Tres.

Part of the contribution of Empresas Banmédica to Desafío Levantemos Chile ($128 million), which has been handed over to Desafío Araucanía Virtual, is destined to the region of La Araucanía with personal protection kits and monitors for the hospitals in that area, plus sample collection kits to prevent vulnerable populations from having to go to health services to take a Covid-19 test.

The resources are intended to support the groups most affected by this new virus, such as senior citizens and patients and health center workers, who have to deal with this health crisis on a daily basis, particularly in the most affected areas of the Metropolitan Region and La Araucanía.

“The Covid-19 pandemic has aggravated the difficulties faced by the most exposed and vulnerable people in Chile, such as high risk populations, health workers, and long-term residents such as the elderly in care facilities,” says Fernando Matthews, Empresas Banmédica CEO, who in addition states that “the collaboration with Desafío Levantemos Chile and Fundación Chile will provide crucial help for those who need it the most in this unprecedented situation”.

Along the same line, Fundación Chile’s CEO, Marcos Kulka, praised the collaborative work that is being developed to confront this crisis with actors from the public and private sectors. “We have managed to identify the retirement homes in Santiago that are not receiving any support and are in need of personal protection supplies for their residents, health workers, and employees”.

According to the CEO, “the support of Empresas Banmédica will have a positive and direct impact on the homes’ ability to care for their elderly and to adequately protect the health workers and employees in said facilities.

“Desafío Levantemos Chile is committed to supporting the public hospitals in Santiago and Araucanía that are dealing with a dramatic increase in the demand for their services generated by the Covid-19 pandemic,” said Nicolás Birrell, executive director of Desafío Levantemos Chile. “Our healthcare workers need us now more than ever, therefore we are deeply grateful to Empresas Banmédica and UnitedHealth Group for their generous contribution, which will concretize the purchase and delivery of antibody and PPE tests for patients and healthcare personnel,” he adds. 

The donation includes:

  • $426,000,000 for Desafío Levantemos Chile to provide logistical support, equipment and medical supplies to hospitals in the South-East zone of Santiago and the Araucanía Regions, including mobile clinics, quick tests, sample collection kits, monitors and personal protection equipment kits, such as KN95 masks, disposable gloves, face shield, and plastic bibs.


  • $426,00,000 for Fundación Chile to finance health protection supplies and toiletries and basic supply baskets to support 22 non-profit, unsubsidized, highly vulnerable homes for senior citizens in the Metropolitan Region, all of which are monitored by the National Service for the Elderly (Senama).


Progress to date and impact

During May, Fundación Chile has carried out the deliveries to 11 municipalities of the Metropolitan Region, thanks to the contribution of Empresas Banmédica in coordination with the Ministry of Social Development. On Wednesday, May 27, the deliveries will end, thus completing all the contributions, which benefit 952 elderly people and 700 people from the assistance team.

“We have managed to identify in Santiago which retirement homes are currently not receiving any support and are in need of personal protection supplies for their residents, health workers, and employees”.

Marcos Kulka,


  • 1652

    People benefited in total

  • 952

    Senior Adults

  • 700

    Assisting Staff

  • 11

    locations: Cerrillos, Las Condes, Ñuñoa, Lo Barnechea, Quinta Normal, El Monte, La Florida, La Reina, Providencia y Santiago.


About UnitedHealth Group

UnitedHealth Group (UNH in the New York Stock Exchange) is a diversified health care company committed to helping people live healthier lives and working to make the health care system work better for all. UnitedHealth Group offers a wide array of products and services through two distinct platforms: UnitedHealthcare, providing health care coverage and benefit services, and Optum, providing technology-assisted health information and services.

Collaboration and Life

This initiative forms part of Colaboración y Vida (Collaboration and Life), the name Fundación Chile has given to the work it is currently deploying in response to the health and economic crisis resulting from CoVid-19 by emphasizing agile, scalable, and socially impacting initiatives and solutions. We strongly believe that the only way to overcome this crisis and move ahead is by doing so collectively. Learn more here.

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