Why We Do What We Do

Creating Pathways to Health Equity for All

  • UMC Foundation is an essential partner in bridging the equity gap for persons needing hospital services through dedicated philanthropy and sound business management practices.
  • Funds raised stay in our region and go directly to building the capacity of UMC in acquiring state-of-the art equipment and supplies that help improve health outcomes.
  • Our philanthropic efforts tap into resources that stimulate economic growth for our regional health care in areas of jobcreation, increasing service line capacity, and health care facility outfitting.
  • We partner with UMC and local universities & colleges in creating cutting-edge educational and skills development opportunities for health care professionals that ultimately increase UMC’s institutional capacity.
  • We help keep families stay close to home as their loved ones receive high-quality care without having to travel outside the area.
  • Because a life-threatening diagnosis can quickly lead to poverty, debilitating illness, and an inability to sustain employment, our programs help patients with ancillary services such as transportation, acquiring pharmaceuticals for crucial treatment, and keeping their medical appointments.
  • While the Region is a thriving major international hub for transportation and commerce, many of our community members have limited or no health insurance.
  • Although El Paso is one of the largest cities in Texas, our community has a social vulnerability index score of 0.95, whichis greater than the state average of 0.65

Measuring Impact

UMC Foundation’s fiduciary integrity and commitment to excellence is demonstrated by its longstanding positive record of independent financial audits. The Foundation measures its success through a battery of performance measures tied to its guiding principles and overall mission.

  • People reached
  • People served
  • Funds raised
  • Return on investment

Our Service Area

UMC Foundation serves a medically underserved region – a 350-mile radius. As part of the El Paso County Hospital District, the Foundation embraces the philosophy of serving all who come to UMC regardless of their ability to pay. El Paso County’s population is 839,238. Its most populous city of El Paso is the sixth largest in Texas and the 22nd largest in the US with a 2021 census population estimate of 678,815.1 El Paso County is located in the Southwest Region of the country and in the Far West corner of Texas abutting the US/Mexico border. It is separated from Ciudad Juárez, Chihuahua, Mexico by the Rio Grande, and bordering Doña Ana County, New Mexico on its northwestern boundary. Together, the two international cities form the El Paso/Juárez Borderplex, the continent’s second largest bi-national metropolis on the US/Mexico border with an estimated 2.7 million people. As per the US Census, 80.9% of El Paso’s residents are of Hispanic or Latino origin and 69.3% of those over the age of five years speak a language other than English at home. 

With the inclusion of the New Mexico towns and cities of Las Cruces, Sunland Park, Santa Teresa, and Anthony; along with the nine El Paso County cities, towns and villages; and Ciudad Juárez - the international/tristate area is commonly referred to as the Paso del Norte region. El Paso is home to Fort Bliss, the US Army’s second-largest military base geographically, with over 38,589 active duty soldiers, 39,422 family members, 13,079 civilians, and 1,253 reservists (armybases.org, 2023). El Paso County has 329 colonias (CEPDPH, 2013). These are unincorporated resource-poor settlements in the outlying areas of the county. 

El Paso County has a per capita income of $20,763 which is only 63.36% of the national average of $32,621. El Paso County’s 2021 estimated poverty rate of 17.6% far exceeds the 14.7% state rate and the 11.4% national rate. Sadly, 26.9% of El Paso County children live below the Federal Poverty Level. This compares to 19% of Texas children and 16.8% of children in the US. Nearly 87% of El Paso children living in poverty are Hispanic. In 2019, it was estimated that 21.5% of El Pasoans did not have health insurance. 

The median household income in El Paso city and county is approximately $47,000 per year, falling far below the Texas and U.S. median household income ($61,874 and $62,843, respectively). According to the U.S. Census Bureau, 41% of residents in UMC El Paso’s census tract have a household income below the federal poverty level, including 69% of children under age 18. This rate is more than double the El Paso City (19.1%) and El Paso County (20.2%) rates, and far higher than the U.S. average (13.4%). 

Overarching Medical Needs

Among the overarching health disparities in the community are limited access to care and sub-specialties, hypertension, diabetes, and mental health services. Moreover, the El Paso community has a social vulnerability index score of 0.95, which is greater than the state average of 0.65. The social vulnerability index score represents the degree to which a community exhibits certain social conditions, including high poverty, low percentage of vehicle access, or crowded households. These factors directly affect a community’s ability to prevent human suffering and financial loss in the event of disaster. A higher score indicates higher vulnerability. 

Within UMC’s patient population, 20% are insured under Medicaid, 45% are indigent (uninsured, and under-insured), and the remaining 35% are insured through Medicare and/or a commercial insurance provider. One in four El Paso residents was born outside of the U.S. For residents along the Texas/Mexico border, poverty, citizenship/residency status, limited English proficiency, and related barriers contribute to poorer health and worse health outcomes than other Texas and U.S. communities. 

El Paso County contains numerous health professional shortage areas (HPSAs) and medically underserved areas/populations. The primary care physician ratio is 2,070:1 compared to a state ratio of 1,640:1. Within the county, 24% of the population is uninsured compared to 20% of the state population and 9.5% nationally (U.S. Census Bureau). Among U.S. states, Texas has the nation’s highest percentage of uninsured residents, and ranks 49th in the number of mental health providers by population.

i.El Paso County, Texas. (2018). Census Bureau QuickFacts; United States Census Bureau.