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Friday, December 04, 2020

Pittsburgh Fashion Designer Gifts $25,000 to AHN Women’s Behavioral Health Program

Pittsburgh, PA – David Alan Clothing, a renowned Pittsburgh-based fashion design company, and DBM, a Pittsburgh-based digital marketing agency have gifted the Allegheny Health Network (AHN) Women’s Behavioral Health Institute $25,000 to support an expansion of technological resources and back-to-school kits for patients and their families.

“The covid-19 pandemic, transportation and child care can present major barriers for some patients to access in-person appointments for behavioral health treatment,” said Sarah Homitsky, MD, psychiatrist and director of the AHN Women’s Behavioral Health program. “David Alan’s generous gift allows AHN to provide devices that make telemedicine appointments easier and allow mothers to continue critical care journeys with their clinicians and behavioral health specialists."

The $25,000 gift will provide the Center with funding to provide devices and technology equipped with video software that facilitates telemedicine appointments. In 2016, the AHN Women’s Behavioral Health program integrated the use of tablets for initial screenings and specialized perinatal mental health visits. More than 2,000 women have been referred to the clinic over the last year alone averaging 50 new referrals each week.

Under the direction of Dr. Homitsky, the Women’s Behavioral Health program has designed new models of mother-baby mental health care so that patients do not have to be separated from their babies to gain access to treatment.

“AHN afforded us the opportunity to pay it forward in a way that made a positive impact for a significant number of families from our hometown,” said David Alan, CEO of David Alan Clothing & DBM. “We’re thrilled to support their critical mission to increase awareness of and address such a prevalent mental health condition, and do so in a way that also considers social determinants of health across the region.”

According to the CDC, rates of birthing women with a depression diagnosis increased sevenfold from 2000 to 2015, and postpartum depression affects one in eight women in the United States. Research has also shown that the effects of maternal depression can negatively impact a child’s growth and development. Financial hardship and the inability to provide back-to-school materials and equipment can also further exacerbate the condition.

“With increased safety measures implemented throughout the pandemic, some patients have experienced in person appointments transitioned to virtual appointments. We would be remiss if we didn’t recognize that telemedicine requires equipment that some individuals simply do not have at the ready,” said Allie Quick, AHN chief philanthropy officer. “That’s why gifts, like the one from David Alan Clothing, are so vital when it comes to fulfilling our mission to create remarkable patient experiences. We’re beyond grateful for their extreme generosity — it will go directly toward increasing vital access to care to local moms and families in need.”

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