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The Affordable Care Act and Whittier Street Health Center

affordable-care-act-generic-graphic-hearst

Image credit given to: www.kcci.com

ACA and Community Health

The ACA also includes a Health Center Program that awards funds to community health centers. By delivering comprehensive, high-quality preventive and primary health care to patients regardless of their ability to pay, health centers play a key role implementing the ACA. In 2013, Whittier received a grant from the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) to support our outreach and enrollment activities in the community. These funds allowed us to expand our enrollment assistance services to more residents in Roxbury, Dorchester, Mattapan, and Jamaica Plain.

Thanks to our new building, funded in part by a $12M stimulus grant, we can connect a greater number of individuals and families with our community-responsive and culturally appropriate care. With the recent closing of the Roxbury Comprehensive Community Health Center (RoxComp) and the Boston Children’s Hospital’s decision to focus only on children and adolescents in its Martha Eliot Health Center, Whittier has been welcoming thousands of new patients in the past few months.

Access to Health Care through Health Insurance

Although Massachusetts has a very high number of insured residents, many low-income and new immigrant communities remain without insurance. At Whittier, 35% of our patients are uninsured. We are working to increase our effectiveness as an access point for health insurance for this subset of patients. Our community health workers, patient navigators, and providers are working together to help patients compare qualified health plans, get answers to their questions, or find out if they are eligible for lower costs for private insurance or for subsidized health programs. Once patients make an informed decision, we help them enroll in health coverage.

The community’s uninsured health care needs continue to be significant, and we at Whittier remain committed to our mission of eliminating health disparities through strong clinical programs and free social services. We are championing equitable access to high-quality, cost-effective, and results-driven health care. Please click on Services and Programs to find out more about the care we provide.

 

Web Sources:

http://www.hhs.gov/healthcare/rights/index.html

http://www.hhs.gov/healthcare/facts/bystate/ma.html