Wash. health center receives $500K from HHS

The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has awarded Tri-Cities Community Health (TCCH) a grant for $500,000 to establish two new school-based health centers in Pasco, WA.

On December 19, HHS approved more than $80 million in awards to establish 197 school-based health centers across the country to serve an estimated 384,000 students, TCCH said. One million was awarded to three applicants in the state of Washington, of which $500,000 was awarded to Tri-Cities Community Health. The school-based health centers will provide primary medical care.

TCCH said it is committed to the Children's Health Insurance Program Reauthorization Act (CHIPRA) and other school-based programs such as Apple Health for Kids.

The goal is to help patients stay on top of preventative measures, such as immunizations, physicals, and preventative dental care, noted Esleen Fultz, chief financial officer at Tri-Cities Community Health Clinic.

More than 50% of patients served by TCCH, a Federally Qualified Health Center, are covered by Medicaid. Another 33% have no insurance at all and are provided services on a discounted basis depending on their income level. TCCH also serves Medicare-eligible patients and has contracts with most health plans and commercial insurance companies.

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