Grant: $288,216 - Health Resources and Services Administration - Mar. 27, 2009
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Award Description: In response to increased need, JMSCHC will hire 1.5 FTE Opticians to conduct eye glass and contact lens fitting and dispensing. These staff will greatly improve our efficiency, patient wait time and service, and allow our existing Optometrist to spend more time doing patient exams. We will also hire an additional .3 FTE Optometrist so we can open an additional 12 hours/week, including evening and weekend hours. Together this will increase our capacity to see a projected 1,153 new vision patients through 3,345 additional vision visits during the 2-year project period. To reach community residents most in need of services, we will retain .625 FTE Community Health Worker (CHW) staff to outreach to community organizations and local business to inform them about our ability to provide vision services for additional hours to additional patients. Our CHW jobs have been at risk due to pending and already realized cuts in State grant funding. The bilingual CHW will refer community residents to the to-be-hired .5 Health Benefits Counselor/Patient Service Representative to assist uninsured families with enrolling in public health insurance programs, or set up qualified families to receive services on a sliding fee scale. We will also hire a .5 FTE Interpreter who will preferably be trilingual in Spanish, Portuguese and English to address the growing needs of our primarily Central American and Brazilian patients and community residents. Finally, we will hire a .25 FTE IT Manager to assist vision staff in more fully using our Electronic Medical Record system, and to build reports to assess the overall impact and effectiveness of our IDS project. A .5 FTE Billing Manager will provide oversight and support for the increased billing work created as a result of the increased vision patient volume.
Project Description: During the reporting period, Joseph M. Smith Community Health Center (JMSCHC) has undertaken several key activities contributing to the success of our ARRA supported Vision Center site. ARRA funding has enabled JMSCHC to see 818 new patients at our vision center; 242 are new to the health center as a whole. Of these new health center patients 175 patients or 72% are uninsured. This progress puts us on track to exceed our goal of seeing 1,153 new patients during the project period
Jobs Summary: To address the increase demand in services, we expanded the vision staff by creating 3 new positions for a total of 3.0 FTE. These positions include 1.5 FTE optician, .5 FTE optometrist, and 1.0FTE patient service representative/interpreter. JMSCHC developed the optician job description, advertised and hired a qualified optician who began working at JMSCHC. On 7/12/09, the optician left the health center to return to his home country. We posted the position again and are close to hiring a replacement. We plan to have a 1.0 FTE optician in place for the next reporting period. To further expand our capacity, JMSCHC has created an additional optometrist position for up to .5 FTE. We began working with New England Eye Institute (NEEI) to fill the optometrist position since our current optometrist works for us through this partnership. However, due to the economic climate we recently learned NEEI cannot fill the position, and so we are posting the position to independently hire the Optometrist as an employee of the health center. JMSCHC has also created a new position to assist in managing the increase in patients who need registration, health insurance enrollment and translation services. We are currently recruiting for a bilingual patient service representative who can also provide interpretation during vision exams and eyewear dispensing. We are interviewing several candidates and expect to hire someone shortly. ARRA funding has also allowed JMSCHC to retain .98 FTE, this includes .77 FTE community health workers to outreach to community organizations and local business to inform them about our increased capacity to provide vision services, and .21 FTE IT Manager to assist vision staff in more fully using our Electronic Medical Record system, and building reports to assess the overall impact and effectiveness of our IDS project. (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.