National Health Center Week (NHCW) begins on August 8 through 14, and Southwest Virginia Community Health Systems (SVCHS) is preparing to celebrate!
The theme is “The Chemistry for Strong Communities” to raise awareness about the mission and accomplishments of America’s Health Centers and the dedicated staff who bring health care to the medically underserved.
Elected officials will join communities across the country in elevating the work Community Health Centers have done while fighting on the front lines of COVID-19 to keep our communities healthy and safe. Their visits and messages will demonstrate that not only is it possible to move beyond the partisan divide over health care, but to support and agree on a program vital to our communities. Health centers provide preventive and primary care services to almost 30 million people and have continued to do so while facing a global pandemic. Community Health Centers provide care to people who disproportionately suffer from chronic disease and lack access to affordable, quality care. While our approach is community-based and local, collectively we are the backbone of the nation’s primary care system. Community Health Centers lower health care costs to the tune of 24 billion dollars a year, reduce rates chronic diseases, and stimulate local economies.
Each day of NHCW 2021 is dedicated to a particular focus area:
- Sunday, 8/8: Public Health in Housing Day
- Monday, 8/9: Healthcare for the Homeless Day
- Tuesday, 8/10: Agricultural Worker Health Day
- Wednesday, 8/11: Patient Appreciation Day
- Thursday, 8/12: Stakeholder Appreciation Day
- Friday, 8/13: Health Center Staff Appreciation Day
- Saturday, 8/14: Children’s Health Day
Southwest Virginia Community Health Systems is part of a nationwide network of locally-run health centers that serve more than 28 million people nationwide. They are on the front lines of national public health challenges – whether caring for veterans, providing opioid treatment, or responding to natural disasters. They are also a lifeline in remote and underserved communities where the nearest doctor or hospital can be as far as 50 miles or more away. Nearly half of health centers (44 percent) are located in rural communities.
- Highlights of health center accomplishments include:
- Reducing unnecessary hospitalizations and unnecessary visits to the emergency room;
- Treating patients for a fraction of the average cost of one emergency room visit;
- Serving more than one in six Medicaid beneficiaries for less than two percent of the national Medicaid budget;
- Lowering the cost of children’s primary care by approximately 35 percent;
- Treating 65,000 patients with Medication Assisted Therapy for opioid use disorder in 2017; and,
- Serving over 355,000 veterans throughout the country.
NHCW highlights how health centers are at the forefront of a nationwide shift in addressing environmental and social factors as an integral part of primary care, reaching beyond the walls of conventional medicine to address the factors that may cause sickness, such as lack of nutrition, mental illness, homelessness and substance use disorders. Community Health Centers’ success in managing chronic disease in medically vulnerable communities has helped reduce health care costs for American taxpayers.
This year, SVCHS, is celebrating the week by hosting several events:
The events that we have planned for each site are as followed:
August 9: 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. – Blood Drive at Saltville Community Health Center with Marsh Regional Blood Donation Center (in front parking lot)
– Weblink listed below to register: https://form.jotform.com/211884763795169
Meadowview Community Health Center and Bristol Community Health Center will be hosting a Donation Drive for Faith in Action in Abingdon, VA. Donations are being accepted now through August 13 during regular hours at Meadowview (Monday – Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 7 p.m.)
– Bristol Community Health Center will also be serving as a drop-off center for this donation drive
Tazewell Community Health Center will be hosting a free health fair in partnership with ETSU on Wednesday, August 11 and Thursday, August 12 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.
– Walk-ins Welcome. Appointments are suggested for health services. For more information or appointments, contact Jamie Beavers (276) 979-9899, ext. 1603 or Jill Talbert (276) 496-4492, ext. 1023
– Vendor exhibits and free giveaways
-FREE services include:
– Complete history and physical (by health care providers), oral health exams and dental education, lab-work: lipid panel (cholesterol) and fasting blood sugars*, *No food, only water and black coffee 12 hours before testing for more accurate readings on your lab- work, pap smears, sports and school physicals for children, vision & hearing screenings, and EKGs
For Patient Appreciation Day, patients who have appointments during the week will receive a small token of appreciation from SVCHS. For Agricultural Worker Day, workers with the Migrant Health Network will be passing out small tokens of appreciation to all of our agricultural worker patients. For Health Center Staff Appreciation Day, staff members from each site will be treated to breakfast from Anthem Healthkeepers Plus. For Children’s Health Day and Public Health Day, SVCHS will be celebrating all week long on social media with healthcare-related children’s book readings from staff members and their family members.
SVCHS will be posting digital content on their Facebook page and website all week long from local and national government officials and providers and staff from SVCHS. We encourage our patients and community members to like, share, and comment on any content posted.