Buckner Gets New Clinic

Oct 29, 2015

Doors Open Early 2016

The Health Care Collaborative (HCC) of Rural Missouri is the only rural health care network in the country with Federally Qualified Health Centers (FQHCs). HCC’s story is a unique one. Just five years ago, the nonprofit thrived with only three employees. Today, HCC employs almost 40 staff members [and] owns and operates two FQHCs in Waverly and Concordia, and this December will open two more in Buckner and Carrollton.

“These FQHCs help the underserved receive primary, dental and behavioral health care that they may not otherwise receive,” said HCC’s Executive Director Toniann Richard. “The bottom line is that these Live Well Community Health Centers in Waverly, Concordia and soon in Buckner and Carrollton are closing gaps that have traditionally existed between quality health care services and the underserved.”

The new access points in Buckner and Carrollton will cover 15 targeted ZIP codes in Carroll, Jackson and Lafayette Counties. The service population includes 80,269 individuals, with almost 27 percent living below 200 percent of the Federal Poverty Level (FPL).
The clinics will target health risks like obesity, heart disease and mental health among other conditions. This focus is especially crucial since the prevalence of obesity for the service area is 41.2 percent compared to the 27.6 percent national benchmark and high blood pressure is prevalent among almost 40 percent of the service area compared with a national benchmark of 28.7 percent. Additionally, cigarette use during pregnancy is at 22.9 percent compared with a national benchmark of 14.1 percent. Overall, 13.6 percent of the service area’s population reported not being able to see a doctor in the past year due to cost.

“Our goal is to take the patient-centered medical home focus that we incorporated in Waverly and Concordia and reinforce this integrated approach to comprehensive care in Buckner and Carrollton,” Richard said.

Besides bridging gaps between the underserved and access to quality health care, the clinics have etched a decisive economic footprint in the communities it serves.

According to a 2014 economic impact study conducted by Capital Link, the HCC – through its Live Well Centers – saw 2,747 patients. Of those patients, 19 percent were uninsured, 22 percent received Medicaid, 20 percent received Medicare, and 39 percent were privately insured. The community impact was a reported $3 million in savings due to access to quality, preventative care.
Additionally, HCC and its Live Well Centers have had a pronounced economic impact in the community. Because of the organization, 39 jobs were created that created an economic boost to the tune of $4,849,863.

“Providing quality primary, dental and behavioral health care services is our main priority,” Richard said. “Our ability to effect the economy in the rural communities we serve is happening by default. Regardless, we are very pleased with the impact we’ve had and look forward to having a strong economic presence in Buckner and Carrollton in 2016.”

The Live Well Centers of Waverly and Concordia have been designated as Patient Centered Medical Homes (PCMHs) by the National Committee of Quality Assurance (NCQA). A patient centered medical home coordinates patient care to make accessing integrated services easy and seamless. In addition, it provides comprehensive care to patients in a manner they understand and is relevant to their needs.

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Tonia Wright

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