Grant: $277,938 - Health Resources and Services Administration - Mar. 27, 2009
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Award Description: The purpose of this award is to expand access to needed primary health care services specifically by expanding services at existing health center sites in an underserved area or for an underserved population. Missouri Highlands Health Care provides services in Butler, Carter, Iron, Reynolds, Ripley, Shannon, and Wayne Counties in rural Southern Missouri. Butler, Ripley, and Wayne were three of the Missouri Counties identified as poor counties without health centers. The expansion of services to these counties, beginning in late 2005, significantly increased the population and geographic area of the service area. Poverty is a long-standing problem and 48.2 percent of the population lives within two-hundred percent of poverty level. According to information published by Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services, 18.9 percent of residents were uninsured in 2008. Other reports indicate 27.8 percent of residents received Medicaid benefits. These individuals encounter extreme difficulty in access health care services. As a result, the population suffers high rates of mortality and disease. Access to care is further limited by a lack of health care providers. There are no other physicians in five of the ten towns where Missouri Highland?s clinics are located. Prior to the IDS project, the organization employed six nurse practitioners and 4.8 equivalent physicians. The proposed IDS project will impact the need for health services, in rural Missouri, through increased health center staffing including one full-time physician, one full-time receptionist, and one full-time billing staff member. The employment of these individuals will strengthen organizational capacity to provide services to uninsured and underinsured individuals in seven rural counties in Southern Missouri.
Project Description: During the second quarter of the IDS project, Missouri Highlands Health Care added one full-time receptionist and one full-time billing person. These two positions, coupled with the full-time physician and full-time dental assistant added in the first quarter, complete the hiring anticipated for the IDS project. Through the IDS project, Missouri Highlands Health Care has been able to meet the community needs in three of the poorest counties in Southern Missouri identified as lacking health centers, Butler, Ripley and Wayne Counties. In Ripley County, the medical clinic was operating without a full-time physician prior to the IDS project. With the assistance provided by the IDS grant, the total patient encounters for that clinic have increased an average of 95 percent. Following the addition of the full-time dental assistant at the Butler County dental clinic, patient encounters have increased 12.3 percent. In Wayne County, the addition of the full time receptionist allowed medical staff to focus on patient care rather than on administrative duties. Finally, the addition of the full-time third-party biller enabled the billing department to focus on delinquent and rejected claims, as well as timely filing for all third-party claims. This in turn will increase the funding stream for the entire organization.
Jobs Summary: Missouri Highlands anticipated that the IDS project would increase the number of full-time physicians by 13 percent, from a 2008 baseline of 7 full-time physicians to 8 full-time physicians. On September 30, 2009, 8.5 full-time equivalent physicians and 5.5 full-time equivalent nurse practitioners were employed. We also anticipate the IDS project will increase the number of patients served by 10 percent, from a 2008 baseline of 15,341 individuals to 16,875, by March 31, 2011 and increase the number of clinic visits by 10 percent, from a 2008 baseline of 50,522 clinic encounters to 55,574 encounters by March 31, 2011. Other anticipated outcomes are to increase the number of patients served at the Naylor Medical Clinic in Ripley County, by 10 percent, from a 2008 baseline of 1,154 patients to 1,270 and to increase the number of uninsured patients served by 10 percent from a 2008 baseline of 331 to 365 by March 31, 2011. The project has and will continue to allow Missouri Highlands to address the demand for services as well as create employment opportunities in three rural counties identified, in 2005, as poor counties without health centers. (Total jobs reported: 4)
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.