Grant: $256,109 - Health Resources and Services Administration - Mar. 27, 2009
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Award Description: Cortland County, where ten of eleven Family Health Network of Central New York, Inc. (FHN) health centers are located, continues to have a higher unemployment rate than contiguous counties (currently over 10%, up from 7.1% one year ago). In Cayuga County (Moravia Health Center) the unemployment rate is 9.0%, up from 6.1% one year ago, and doubled from 4.7% two years ago (NYS Dept of Labor, March 2009). A poor Central New York economy has reduced health insurance coverage even among those who remain employed. Many employers are ceasing to offer health insurance in order to cut costs in the face of falling profits, or are reducing their contributions and shifting health insurance costs to employees, causing some of these workers to decline coverage. In addition, previously full-time workers may be shifted to part-time jobs that no longer qualify for health insurance benefits. Based upon these statistics, the area FHN serves needs a local community health center that offers comprehensive health services for the whole family regardless of patient?s ability to pay. For FHN to continue as the refuge the community depends on for health care (FHN is only FQHC in the area offering sliding fee) we need to be able to retain and/or replace our medical staff, and avoid the loss of providers to private, more lucrative practices. In February 2009, a family practice obstetrical physician left FHN to join a local private practice after 24 years of service. It was subsequently determined by the Board of Directors that due to decreased and delayed funding from the State of New York, coupled with the anticipated shift in payor mix toward the uninsured due to the economy, FHN would be unable to financially support replacing this position in 2009; it was deleted. The nursing position tied to that physician has also been deleted for 2009. FHN has determined that with IDS funding, we will be able to recreate these positions and address the increase in demand for our services. Implementation of the additional 1.0 FTE physician (and associated 1.0 FTE nurse) will include: Primary placement of the physician and nurse in Marathon, NY. FHN serves as the only health care provider to this rural community, where they have had greater than 30 layoffs at one of the local machine businesses alone. FHN?s Facilitated Enroller will hold regular office hours at the Marathon Health Center to help complete Presumptive Eligibility paperwork, facilitate enrollment in Child and/or Family Health Plus or Managed Medicaid Programs, and/or help complete a sliding fee application. FHN will expand their 340B discount prescription drug program in the Marathon Health Center providing qualifying patients with a discounted rate on prescriptions and other miscellaneous health related items. With an Alternative Methods Demonstration Program application pending, FHN will be able to expand our discount program beyond the one pharmacy in Marathon. FHN?s Occupational Health Program will proactively contact all local businesses experiencing layoffs to educate their managers and employees on the essential services FHN provides regardless of their ability to pay. Finally, the additional revenue generated will help support an electronic health records implementation improving connectivity to the local hospital increasing the overall quality of care.
Project Description: the original candidate projected to join FHN chose not to take the position. FHN also had multiple candidates that we were working with in hopes to extend a contract and fill the position quickly. At this time, all potential candidates have fallen through due to a variety of reasons. FHN has interviewed two candidates on-site, and has contacted several others by phone, without obtaining a firm commitment from any to join our practice. FHN continues to work through multiple recruiting firms and contacts at Saint Joseph's Medical University to fill this position. Additionally, during this past quarter, FHN has made a concerted effort to increase our internal recruiting expertise by sending the FHN Director of Personnel to specialized training in Denver, and also began coordinating recruitment efforts with our community hospital in an effort to increase the probability of success. FHN will continue to recruit aggressively until the position is filled. FHN also continues its outreach efforts (beyond recruitment of a physician) to assist our patients. The Occupational Health Program remains active with local businesses, the 340B Program has expanded to include additional pharmacies increasing access to our patients needing assistance with the cost of prescriptions and some over the counter drugs, and we currently have two Facilitated Enrollers who have scheduled rotations throughout our health centers to assist patients with the Managed Medicaid programs.
Jobs Summary: Due to not being able to hire a physician as required by the grant narrative FHN has not drawn any funds. FHN continues to recruit as previously noted in this report narrative. No ARRA funds have been spent; no positions have been retained or filled in relation to ARRA funds at this time. (Total jobs reported: 0)
Project Status: Less Than 50% Completed
This award's data was last updated on Mar. 27, 2009. Help expand these official descriptions using the wiki below.