KVHC receives $2.9 million grant

14 years ago

    HOULTON — Health and Human Services has announced a major new investment in Katahdin Valley Health Center with Grant funding of $2.9 million for capital improvement needs that will help improve the health center’s effectiveness, efficiency, quality of care and patient outcomes.
    Without this additional funding the projects will not have been possible.
    “The true beneficiaries of this grant will be the communities and the patients that we serve, especially during these times,” said Durward Humphrey, Chief Executive Officer of the Katahdin Valley Health Center.
    Additionally, the following private foundations offered their generous support as we continue to strive to meet the medical and dental needs of area families: Agnes Lindsay Trust, The Bangor Savings Bank Foundation, The Davis Foundation, Fisher Charitable Foundation, Hannaford Charitable Foundation, JTG Foundation, Margaret E. Burnham Charitable Trust, Mattina R. Proctor Foundation and The Stephen and Tabitha King Foundation.
    According to Humphrey, the 2,934,399.00 funding grant is a demonstration of KVHC’s 35-year commitment to provide comprehensive, culturally competent, quality primary healthcare services to medically underserved communities and vulnerable populations.
     It also shows access created for an additional 8,196 visits to 3,505 patients of the underserved populations. In addition, it will create 10.5 health center jobs and 25 construction-related jobs. This grant award will not only serve as a substantial boost to KVHC’s economic position but it will also address the need to access primary medical, dental and behavioral health services in KVHC’s 3,026 square mile service area that includes over 33 municipalities and (42 plantations and unorganized towns) revolving around the six practice sites located in Patten, Island Falls, Millinocket and Houlton, covering northern Penobscot, southern Aroostook and northern Piscataquis Counties.
    The proposed projects will significantly impact the community by making a major improvement to the existing health care delivery system. It also supports the local economy through the immediate creation of 25 construction jobs and the ongoing creation of 10.5 professional healthcare positions.
    The two projects are in line with KVHC’s mission.
    Project 1: Expansion of Millinocket Facility — The Millinocket clinic is more than 70-years-old, the 1,553 square foot facility is far too small to accommodate the ever growing need, thereby creating an overwhelming access issue. KVHC is unable to continue to recruit new providers until additional clinical facility space is available. KVHC will build and develop 8,464 square feet of new clinical office space which will lead to the creation of 15 new exam rooms; 10 will be dedicated to medical primary care, three to oral health care and two to mental health and substance abuse treatment.
    Project 2: Alterations and Renovation of the Houlton Facility- Using the primary care model of a medical home, KVHC will establish a dental home to be co-located with KVHC’s primary healthcare facility at 59 Bangor Street in Houlton.  Additional clinical space is available to add four dental exam rooms, laboratory, waiting room and a reception office. Expanding services to the Houlton area will allow low-income and uninsured children, adults and seniors, for the first time, to have access to comprehensive primary oral health services regardless of ability to pay.
    This funding will help improve KVHC’s ability to recruit and retain qualified physicians by eliminating another prominent restricting factor due to the lack of additional facility space to provide significantly more medical, oral health and behavioral health services in Millinocket and Houlton. Without substantial infrastructure funding such as this award KVHC as an organization could not complete these projects and would only be able to continue to serve 15% of the entire underserved population.
    “There is no question that the economic downturn has made it harder for some Americans to get health care and important preventive services.  Community Health Centers provide quality healthcare services to Americans across the country but are a life line for those who have lost coverage or are between jobs.  These funds from the Affordable Care Act will help get more people care in some communities where there have not been many options in the past,” said Health and Human Services Secretary Sebelius.