Recently, Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Sylvia M. Burwell announced almost $500 million in new
Affordable Care Act funding to assist public and private nonprofit health centers across the country to provide more primary care to their communities.
The awards include approximately $350 million for 1,184 health centers to increase access to services such as medical, oral, behavioral, pharmacy, and vision care. Nearly $150 million will be awarded to 160 health centers for facility renovation, expansion, or construction to increase patient or service capacity.
“These awards will give 1.4 million more Americans across every state access to comprehensive, quality health care,” said Secretary Burwell.
Rebecca A. Cornille, DDS, Vista Community Clinic Dental Director (shown above) recently shared with thedailyfloss.com, the plans for the $437,852 they will receive in Vista, California.
“We are very excited that Vista Community Clinic is a recipient of Expanded Service Funding from the federal government! Plans are currently underway for expansion of services at a few of our existing sites, as well as expansion into the community of Lake Elsinore, a town of over 60,000 residents in Riverside County, California. We will be opening a comprehensive clinic there in late 2015 that will include medical, dental, behavioral health, and enabling services.”
Currently, Vista Community Clinic sees approximately 57, 000 patients per year and about 12,000 of these patients receive dental services.
“This grant allows us to fully staff our recently completed expanded location in Oceanside, California, where we added Dental and Behavioral Health services to the previously medical-only site, and added additional capacity for medical services. Additionally, the funds will support physicians, support staff, and enabling services staff that are desparately needed at our main site in Vista. We are also in the process of expanding to Lake Elsinore, an area that is currently considered underserved – we will be opening a new clinic and delivering services that may be difficult to receive or lacking altogether in that area,” said Dr. Cornille.
What’s on the Vista Community Clinic wish list?
“We always plan and are able to provide the highest quality of services with the latest technology available for serving the people of our community. Our plans include digital radiography as well as panoramic x-ray, a state of the art sterilization center and new dental instruments equipment,” said Dr. Cornille, who was honored as one of America’s Best Young Dentists in 2014 by Incisal Edge magazine. “One of our existing dental clinics has served patients for many years, and with that comes some wear and tear on some of the more expensive pieces of equipment. We have started to look into the costs associated with replacing and upgrading some equipment. We also hope to be able to add dual monitors in the treatment rooms to allow for patient education before, during and after the actual exam and treatment are completed.”
Today’s Health Center Expanded Services funds build on HHS’s investments to expand access to affordable care for the millions of Americans who have become insured thanks to the Affordable Care Act. The next open enrollment for the Health Insurance Marketplace begins on Nov. 1, 2015, and eligible people can enroll in Medicaid year round.
“Our staff and patients are always excited to hear about growth opportunities at Vista Community Clinic. We know that this will enable us to care for those patients who may currently have to go through some serious obstacles to receive care or who may receive no care at all without our presence in their area. This funding will allow us to make a positive impact on those in need and make resources available to them so they can choose health.”
View a list of the 1,184 Expanded Services awardees: http://bphc.hrsa.gov/programopportunities/fundingopportunities/ExpandedServices/2015awards/index.html.
View a list of the 160 Health Infrastructure Investment Program awardees: http://bphc.hrsa.gov/programopportunities/fundingopportunities/hiip/2015awards/index.html.
View more information on the Health Center Program: www.bphc.hrsa.gov
Find a Health Center in your area: www.findahealthcenter.hrsa.gov