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Top News Stories

Stamford Nonprofit Awards Residents For Promoting Needs Of Older Adults

Meaghan Lyver 0 662
STAMFORD, Conn. -- Silver Source Inc. -- a Stamford-based nonprofit organization that advocates for the needs of older adults and their families -- recently announced the winners of its inaugural SilverSource Awards.

The awards will be presented on Thursday, Oct. 27, during the 2nd Annual SilverSource Autumn Breakfast at the Italian Center of Stamford.

The awards recognize individuals, organizations or businesses making a significant difference in the lives of Fairfield County’s older adults.

Nominations were evaluated by a panel of judges comprised of community, business and thought leaders.

The 2016 SilverSource Award winners are as follows:

 The SilverSource Community Service Volunteer Awards go to Dorothy Canzano and Daniel S. Katz.
For 33 years, Canzano has volunteered at The Villa at Stamford (formerly Smith House), where she visits with residents, listens to their stories and keeps them up to date on local news while transporting them to special services at the Villa.

At age 93, she is the oldest volunteer at The Villa at Stamford, where she contributes her time three days each week.

Katz is a key volunteer with two programs serving Stamford's seniors. He has volunteered for 15 years with MedAssist Choices, an all-volunteer program helping more than 800 older adults each year navigate complex health-care billing and insurance issues.

 The SilverSource Contribution to Community Award by Outstanding Individuals goes to Maureen Matthews, founder of To Whom I May Concern; and attorney Jean Mills Aranha, Connecticut Legal Services, Inc.
Matthews has many years of experience as a nurse and psychotherapist, working in the field of dementia.

She created To Whom I May Concern, an interactive theater program, to give voice to people who have recently been diagnosed with a progressive brain illness such as Alzheimer’s disease and other forms of dementia.

Aranha is a staff attorney with Connecticut Legal Services, Inc., where she works in the Elder Law and Public Benefits Units as well as doing legislative advocacy on behalf of the poor.

The Elder Law Unit represents and advises low-income individuals aged 60 and up.

 The SilverSource Contribution to Community Award by an Outstanding Organization goes to Community Health Center (CHC).
Community Health Center is a leading independent, nonprofit healthcare provider in the state of Connecticut, providing comprehensive primary-care services in medicine, dentistry and behavioral health to more than 145,000 people.

Founder Mark Maselli will accept the award on behalf of CHC.

During the Annual SilverSource Autumn Breakfast, experts Lindsay Goldman and Julia Evans Starr will showcase challenges facing the communities and share innovative solutions.

For tickets and sponsorship opportunities, visit www.SilverSource.org or call (203)- 324-6584.

The event will be from  7 - 9:30 a.m.

The Italian Center of Stamford is at 1620 Newfield Ave.

Delaware tries telemedicine to lower prison health costs

Meaghan Lyver 0 595
Delaware is trying to lower the cost of providing healthcare to prisoners with a new form of telemedicine called eConsults.

Delaware rolled out eConsults in May. In essence, it’s a prison primary care doctor emailing with a specialist for advice on an inmate’s condition.

It sounds rudimentary, but it’s a jump forward in prison healthcare. In the past, a doctor would have sent an inmate outside the prison walls to see a specialist.

"They also have the option of bringing a specialist to the prison," according to Kevin Massey of the Weitzman Institute, which created the eConsults.

But both of those options are expensive.

Delaware’s Department of Corrections spends up to $1 million a year moving inmates for medical reasons. And there’s always security risks when you transport an inmate into a community facility.

“But from our research we’ve found that a significant majority of questions that come up from primary care can be resolved with a simple communication initiated from the primary care provider to the specialist,” Massey said.

A primary care doctor can treat an inmate with a specialist’s advice about 70 percent of the time, according to data from eConsults in other states.

And if you can lower the cost of transporting inmates you can lower the cost of prison healthcare.

“Lowering [the cost of transporting inmates] will result in significant savings,”  Delaware Department of Corrections Bureau Chief Marc Richman said in a statement. 



Stakeholders Looking Into Growing Precision Medicine Business

Meaghan Lyver 0 680

Universities, researchers and insurance industry representatives took the first step Tuesday to map plans to draw next-generation precision medicine to Connecticut to boost the slow-growth economy.

Precision medicine, promoted by the National Institutes of Health following a 2015 initiative by President Barack Obama and backed by $130 million in federal spending, considers a patient's lifestyle, environment and genes when treating disease. Promoters in Connecticut say it could fit well with the state's dominant insurance industry and a growing number of bioscience companies and research efforts.

"Our goal is to look at what would be a new economic driver for Connecticut," said Joe McGee, co-chairman of the Connecticut Commission on Economic Competitiveness.

McGee, who was economic development commissioner under former Gov. Lowell P. Weicker, compared efforts to build on Connecticut's health care industry to efforts 20 years ago seeking to draw financial services companies to Fairfield County, within commuting distance of Wall Street.

Health care has been identified as an area of strong potential growth in Connecticut, spurring nearly two dozen representatives of insurance companies and hospitals, bioscientists and others to meet at Community Health Center Inc. in Middletown to consider what McGee called "the next big thing in health care."

Connecticut can be a "full participant" in the federal effort, collecting and sharing data, he said. The state already has a good start because of its network of research hospitals, medical supply manufacturers and bioscience industry, he said.

The key question is how data sharing and precision medicine will drive economic growth, particularly employment.

"How do we create the jobs?" asked Matthew McCooe, chief executive officer of Connecticut Innovations, the state's venture capital fund.

Genetic counseling is one possible source of job growth. Mark Masselli, a founder of the Community Health Center, said Connecticut should capitalize on its workforce and the value of data available in the state's health industry, research universities and the bioscience field.

"We don't have land or oil, but we have intellectual capital," he said.

Connecticut has a growing medical manufacturing device industry that the state can foster with economic development efforts such as marketing and incentives to promote job growth similar to what's done for the state's large aerospace industry, McGee said.

Tom Peters, a professor of computer science and engineering at the University of Connecticut, said administrators at the school do not have industry or business experience, hindering efforts to promote entrepreneurs.

"They can't lead this effort," he said.

The Community Health Center will be part of a national network of health care organizations participating in the collection of data from 1 million or more volunteers whose blood and urine samples will be used for genetic sequencing. Participants also will measure activities through mobile and wearable technology.

"It will give low-income patients access to some of the best researchers in the country," said Masselli, who with Wesleyan University students and community activists founded the health center as a free clini

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News Releases

Community Health Center’s Dr. Veena Recommends Simple Steps to Avoid Flu

Meaghan Lyver 0 737

 

MIDDLETOWN, Conn., February 8, 2017: Connecticut is one of the states hit hard by the flu this year, with hundreds suffering from the virus; but it’s not too late to avoid becoming a statistic.

“Get a flu shot. It’s your best protection against the flu, which is expected to peak in March,” says Veena Channamsetty, MD, chief medical officer of Community Health Center, Inc.

Other simple steps to avoid getting the flu:

•             Wash your hands often

•             Avoid close contact with people who are sick

•             If you have flu-like symptoms (fever, cough, runny nose, sore throat, muscle aches), limit contact with others

•             Disinfect surfaces that are frequently touched by multiple people

•             Boost your immune system by eating healthy foods and drinking fluids

“The flu spreads easily this time of year, especially in schools and office buildings,” says Dr. Veena. “Taking a few precautionary steps to avoid contracting the virus can make a huge difference.”

 

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About Community Health Center, Inc.
Since 1972, Community Health Center, Inc. has been one of the leading healthcare providers in the state of Connecticut, building a world-class primary healthcare system committed to caring for uninsured and underserved populations. CHC is focused on improving health outcomes for its more than 145,000 patients as well as building healthy communities. Recognized as both a Level 3 Patient-Centered Medical Home by the National Committee for Quality Assurance and a Primary Care Medical Home by The Joint Commission, CHC delivers service in more than 200 locations statewide, offering primary care in medical, dental and behavioral health services. For more information, visit www.chc1.com.


Free Dental Care Provided though CHC Mission of Mercy

Meaghan Lyver 0 760

MIDDLETOWN, Conn., January 23: Dental care providers from Community Health Center, Inc. provided free dental care to people in need and without insurance at its Middletown site Saturday as part of the Mission of Mercy program.

“We provided 37 patients with an array of services from exams, X-rays and cleanings to fillings, dentures and extractions,” said Sheela Tummala, chief dental officer for CHC, who participated in and organized the event. “With the support and service of our volunteers, we were able to help many of the patients in need within our community.”

CHC provides dental care to its patients regardless of their ability to pay, using a sliding fee scale for those without Medicare, Medicaid or private insurance.  It periodically holds Mission of Mercy dental clinics to provide services to those who are not patients.

“The nurses and doctors are good; and because sometimes I have a job and sometimes I don’t, it can be difficult for me and my family to pay for my teeth. This helps,” said Noemi Campos, who received dental treatment at the event. 

Thirteen staff members, including dental providers, dental assistants, hygienists, and patient service associates volunteered their time and services for the event while staff from CHC’s Healthcare for the Homeless helped schedule appointments and provide transportation.

Tummala said CHC will hold five more Missions of Mercy at different sites around Connecticut this year.

 

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About Community Health Center, Inc.
Since 1972, Community Health Center, Inc. has been one of the leading healthcare providers in the state of Connecticut, building a world-class primary healthcare system committed to caring for uninsured and underserved populations. CHC is focused on improving health outcomes for its more than 145,000 patients as well as building healthy communities. Recognized as both a Level 3 Patient-Centered Medical Home by the National Committee for Quality Assurance and a Primary Care Medical Home by The Joint Commission, CHC delivers service in more than 200 locations statewide, offering primary care in medical, dental and behavioral health 

CHC and CeCN Expand Electronic Consultations to California’s El Dorado Community Health Center

Meaghan Lyver 0 703

MIDDLETOWN, Conn., January 17, 2017: The Community Health Center, Inc. (CHC) and Community eConsult Network (CeCN) extended rapid specialty consultation service to El Dorado Community Health Center, a primary care organization serving 9,000 patients in California’s El Dorado County. 

The service gives primary care providers at the health center access to prompt electronic consultations for their patients in six specialties: cardiology, endocrinology, gastroenterology, nephrology, neurology, and rheumatology. In most cases, the consultations are completed within two business days.

“CeCN gives primary care providers the ability to communicate promptly back and forth with specialists,” says Daren Anderson, MD, a member of the CeCN Board of Directors. “Our research has shown that specialty consultations can be safely and efficiently managed through secure electronic messaging, with improved convenience for patients and without compromising the quality of care,” he adds.

CeCN, a wholly owned subsidiary of CHC, was incorporated in 2015 to improve access to specialty care, especially in areas where it is limited, such as rural and underserved communities. Restricted access to specialty consultations contributes to healthcare disparities, higher rates of disability, and complications in chronic diseases, according to Anderson.

El Dorado Community Health Center is the third healthcare organization in California to join CeCN. Ampla Health and Chapa-De Indian Health joined last year.

CeCN provides specialty consultation to primary care providers in healthcare organizations in seven states.

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About Community Health Center, Inc.
Since 1972, Community Health Center, Inc. has been one of the leading healthcare providers in the state of Connecticut, building a world-class primary healthcare system committed to caring for uninsured and underserved populations. CHC is focused on improving health outcomes for its more than 145,000 patients as well as building healthy communities. Recognized as both a Level 3 Patient-Centered Medical Home by the National Committee for Quality Assurance and a Primary Care Medical Home by The Joint Commission, CHC delivers service in more than 200 locations statewide, offering primary care in medical, dental and behavioral health services. For more information, visit www.chc1.com.

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