Roanoke Chowan Community Health Center (RCCHC) has been awarded a $200,000 Golden LEAF grant to open and operate a medical clinic in the former Washington County Medical Clinic building in Creswell, NC. The new Creswell Primary Care is scheduled to open April 11.
"Over the past fifty years, community health centers have grown to be a vital link in providing high quality health care to all Americans. The RCCHC board is excited about this opportunity to extend our primary care mission to the Creswell and Washington County area. We are grateful for both the ongoing generous support of our donors and the excellent partnerships that have been established with our new neighbors south of Albemarle Sound, " said Guy Simmons, RCCHC Board Chair.
Golden LEAF funds will support the opening of the clinic which will provide primary care for all ages, women's health, chronic disease management, physicals, and lab services.
"This Golden LEAF grant will help close the gap in the number of professional and highly skilled health care workers in this rural, medically underserved area of North Carolina," said Golden LEAF President Dan Gerlach. "This project is expected to result in several new full-time jobs in Creswell and will provide much needed access to primary health care for the community."
Additionally, the medical group received approval to add Creswell and Roper to its service area and was awarded a $25,000 planning grant by the Kate B. Reynolds Charitable Trust to assist in the discovery process in preparation for the medical center's application for New Access Point funding.
"The Kate B. Reynolds Charitable Trust has a long history of investing in expanding access to healthcare," said Jason Baisden, Health Care Division program officer at the Trust. "We believe this funding will provide local leaders with resources to coordinate and think strategically as they map out how to provide quality healthcare in an underserved area with limited access to primary care."
Roanoke Chowan Community Health Center is a not-for-profit organization, governed by a volunteer Board of Directors, committed to providing quality service and comprehensive healthcare, regardless of the ability to pay, to meet the needs of the rural community, including the uninsured. RCCHC offers a sliding fee scale for their patients, as well as medication assistance programs. The Creswell clinic will work in partnership with RCCHC's other clinics in Ahoskie, Murfressboro, and Colerain.
"We're committed to Creswell and plan to be here for the long haul," said Kim Schwartz, RCCHC CEO. "As a nonprofit community health center funded by the Health and Humans Services division of the Federal Government with the expressed mission to provide comprehensive health care that reduces health disparities, we are wonderfully able to focus on the needs of the folks in the area. Our board and team working closely with the Washington County Commissioners, have partnered with Golden Leaf Foundation and the Kate B. Reynolds Charitable Trust enabling us to make this commitment."
Physician Assistant Kathie Bollenbach will be the lead provider at the new Crewswell Primary Care. Bollenbach has 16 years of experience in Family Practice and Emergency Medicine. Originally from Wisconsin, she moved to Eastern NC in 2013 and has been working in the Emergency Department in Ahoskie and the Urgent Care in Edenton since she arrived. The Creswell Primary Care team will also include Physician Assistant Jerry Shipman, nurse manager Amanda White, RN, an additional nurse, outreach worker, and a front desk/CNA.
"Having a primary care provider that is available 5 days a week so folks can schedule appointments and walk in when they're sick is key," Schwartz added.
RCCHC, an FQHC since May, 2005, provides comprehensive primary care and pediatric services with locations in Ahoskie and Murfreesboro (Hertford County) and Colerain (Bertie County) North Carolina. As a designated community health and migrant center, RCCHC's mission is to provide comprehensive care that reduces health disparities for the Roanoke Chowan area. The Ahoskie clinic is also open on Saturday's to meet the community's needs. Additionally, pediatric services are offered at RCCHC's Ahoskie clinic Monday through Friday, and the Hertford County Student Wellness Center which operates during the school year, allows students to seek on-site behavioral services without having to leave campus, reducing absenteeism and in turn keeping kids in the classroom giving them a greater chance to successfully complete curriculum requirements.
Roanoke Chowan Community Health Center is a not-for-profit organization, governed by a volunteer Board of Directors, committed to providing quality service and comprehensive healthcare, regardless of the ability to pay, to meet the needs of the rural community, including the uninsured. RCCHC offers a sliding fee scale for their patients, as well as medication assistance programs. Evening clinics are available at all locations.
For more information about the new Creswell Primary Care and RCCHC, visit rcchc.org. New patients or existing RCCHC patients can also make appointments prior to the April 11th opening by calling Holly Smith at 252-332-3548 Ext. 7227