Centene Corporation Joint Initiative To Prevent Bullying Marks First Year Anniversary With "No Bullying Zone" Program In Washington, D.C.

Event Celebrates Progress in Campaign Aimed at School-Aged Children

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ST. LOUIS, Oct. 6, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Centene Corporation (NYSE: CNC), along with its subsidiary, Cenpatico, Children's National Health System and Howard University will mark the first year anniversary of the group's nationwide, three-year initiative to prevent bullying among school-aged children with an event today entitled, "No Bullying Zone," to be held from 10 a.m. to 12:15 p.m.at the Newseum, Knight Conference Center, 8th floor, 555 Pennsylvania Avenue, N.W., in Washington, D.C.

Among the activities scheduled are a panel of leading administrators, pediatricians and educators, who will address bullying identification, intervention and prevention, moderated by award-winning journalist Mabel Jong; a reading by children's book author Michelle Bain; a performance by recording artist Marcus Canty, as well as the unveiling of an anti-bullying "graffiti wall" that has traveled so far to 19 schools across the country from Washington, D.C., to Westmoreland, Calif. Students from local Friendship Blow Pierce Junior Academy will lead the Pledge of Allegiance to start the program.

Bullying has reached epidemic proportions in our schools – more than 3.2 million students across America have been impacted by physical, verbal and cyber bullying. As part of its outreach, this national joint initiative, launched during National Anti-bullying Awareness Month in October 2013, has provided education and resources to almost 5,000 students as well as their teachers and parents on how to prevent, identify and appropriately intervene when bullying threatens school-aged children.

Participants on the panel include:

  • Dr. Mary Mason, Senior Vice President and Chief Medical Officer, Centene Corporation
  • Jeremy Riddle, Vice President of Clinical Operations, Cenpatico
  • Dr. Joseph Wright, Howard University College of Medicine
  • Colleen Duewel, National Director of Education, National Alliance on Mental Illness
  • Dr. Jeffery Grant, Principal, Friendship Blow Pierce Junior Academy

In addition, renowned children's author Michelle Bain, reading a new anti-bullying book, Splotch the Madpole, which was co-authored with Centene, Cenpatico and anti-bullying expert Dr. Joseph Wright of Howard University College of Medicine.

"As a leading national healthcare company, Centene believes in treating the whole person, not just the physical body," said Mary Mason, M.D., Senior Vice President & Chief Medical Officer for Centene. "The social issue of bullying impacts both physical and mental health, which has detrimental and long-term effects on children and their communities."

"Kids who act out and bully others are many times victims themselves," said Sam Donaldson, Ph.D., Cenpatico's President and CEO. "Parents, teachers, counselors, all of us need to be aware and intervene when bullying occurs and then address the issues for the bully and the kids being bullied."

"Everyone has a role in bullying prevention, including health care professionals," said Joseph Wright, M.D., M.P.H., professor and chairman of Pediatrics and Child Health at the Howard University College of Medicine. "Physicians, particularly pediatricians, have tools to step up their recognition of the signs and symptoms of bullying, which can sometimes be disguised as constitutional complaints, such as a headache or stomach ache."

At the event, the following individuals will be available for interviews: Mary Mason, M.D., Senior Vice President & Chief Medical Officer for Centene; Jeremy Riddle, Vice President, Clinical Operations for Cenpatico; and Joseph Wright, M.D., M.P.H., Howard University College of Medicine.

About Centene Corporation
Centene Corporation, a Fortune 500 company, is a leading multi-line healthcare enterprise that provides programs and related services to the rising number of under-insured and uninsured individuals. Many receive benefits provided under Medicaid, including the State Children's Health Insurance Program (CHIP), as well as Aged, Blind or Disabled (ABD), Foster Care and Long-term Care (LTC), in addition to other state-sponsored/hybrid programs, and Medicare (Special Needs Plans). The Company operates local health plans and offers a range of health insurance solutions. It also contracts with other healthcare and commercial organizations to provide specialty services including behavioral health, care management software, correctional systems healthcare, life and health management, managed vision, pharmacy benefits management and telehealth services.

About Cenpatico
Cenpatico's expertise lies in managing benefits for vulnerable populations. Our healthcare specialties include behavioral health, foster care, school-based services, specialty therapy and rehabilitation and more. We have managed Medicaid and other public sector benefits since 1994; currently, we serve more than 3 million members nationally. Our headquarters are in Austin, Texas and we have local teams across the country in the markets we serve. Cenpatico is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Centene Corporation. We are committed to innovative solutions and designing programs tailored to improving functional outcomes with our members. Find us online at www.cenpatico.com.

About Children's National Health System
Children's National Health System, based in Washington, DC, has been serving the nation's children since 1870. Children's National's hospital is Magnet® designated, and is consistently ranked among the top pediatric hospitals by U.S. News & World Report. Home to the Children's Research Institute and the Sheikh Zayed Institute for Pediatric Surgical Innovation, Children's National is one of the nation's top NIH-funded pediatric institutions. With a community-based pediatric network, eight regional outpatient centers, an ambulatory surgery center, two emergency rooms, an acute care hospital, and collaborations throughout the region, Children's National is recognized for its expertise and innovation in pediatric care and as an advocate for all children. For more information, visit ChildrensNational.org, or follow us on Facebook and Twitter.

About Howard University
Founded in 1867, Howard University is a private, research university that is comprised of 13 schools and colleges. Students pursue studies in more than 120 areas leading to undergraduate, graduate and professional degrees. Since 1998, the University has produced two Rhodes Scholars, two Truman Scholars, a Marshall Scholar, 30 Fulbright Scholars and 11 Pickering Fellows. Howard also produces more on campus African-American Ph.D. recipients than any other university in the United States. For more information on Howard University, call 202-238-2330, or visit the University's Web site at www.howard.edu.

SOURCE Centene Corporation