Creating A New Community Health Center
The Knox Clinic has successfully been providing an avenue for a largely volunteer staff to increase access to preventative care since 1999. In the past five years, our volunteers and part-time staff have provided over 15,000 visits to local uninsured and underinsured families and $6.5 million in prescription services.
Our work reminds us how often people fall through the cracks of our healthcare system.
With your help we hope to create a Community Health Center and expand healthcare services to everyone in the Midcoast regardless of ability to pay.
A national beacon of sustainable affordable care are Federally Qualified Health Centers (FQHCs). Knox County is the only Maine county without an accessible FQHC. Ours is on Vinalhaven, an hour ferry ride away.
Together we can create an innovative center to provide medical, dental, behavioral health, and wellness care to serve Maine’s rural midcoast communities. The center would take insurance, both private and Medicare and Mainecare, as well as offer a sliding scale for neighbors without insurance or who have high deductibles.
Steps we have taken thus far:
- Completed a Community Barriers to Care Study with 537 respondents to drive our strategic planning.
- The primary barrier to all types of care = cost.
- The top three types of care community members want better access to = dental, vision, and mental health services.
- Click Here to view our Barriers to Care Executive Summary
- Starting in June were working with Health Management Associates, a national consulting firm, to get to the best model for our health care center.
- Having conversations and a joint venture with the Town of Thomaston to locate the new community health center, ideally on the Route 1 corridor of the Thomaston Green.
- Invited a number of key organizations and educational institutions to join our Caring for Coastal Communities Consortium. Our work with the CCCC is to insure that we have a model that is integrated with and enhances the network of services that already exists.
- Held exciting preliminary partnership conversations with:
- Thomaston EMS to discuss paramedic partnerships
- Roux Institute to explore augmented telehealth equipment providing novel technology focused on bringing healthcare services to the home.
- UNE and their Maine Area Health Education Center to become an externship site for schools to foster the next generation of healthcare workers.
We recognize that health is not merely the absence of disease.
Health is a positive state, an aspirational goal. We will strive for an integrated approach of wellness, risk reduction, nutrition, and, of course compassionate, equitable, and affordable care.
We welcome your voice in these conversations!
Please connect with Executive Director Meredith Batley via email at Meredith@knoxclinic.org or via phone at 207-301-6991 with all questions, concerns and suggestions.