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Family health center gets booster shot

Post Independent Writer

Mountain Family Health Center in Glenwood Springs is Colorado’s fastest-growing rural community health center, according to the center’s executive director David Adamson. By Carrie ClickPost Independent StaffMountain Family Health Center in Glenwood Springs is Colorado’s fastest-growing rural community health center, according to the center’s executive director David Adamson.So it’s a good thing the Glenwood Springs facility just got a shot in the arm. Caring for Colorado Foundation announced Thursday that Mountain Family is the recipient of more than $70,000 in grant money from the foundation. “They are incredible,” said David Adamson of Caring for Colorado. “We’ve consistently received money from them for at least the past four years. I really can’t say enough good things about them.” A hundrednew patients a monthMountain Family, which Adamson said has received support from Valley View Hospital since it started in 1999, provides health care to what Adamson describes as “medically indigent” people – that is, people without health insurance or the ability to pay for medical care.The center also serves people on Medicaid and Medicare. Jobs that typically don’t include health insurance coverage are often in the natural gas industry and second-home construction – two sectors that are booming in this area, he said. The availability of these jobs has caused Mountain Family to grow from serving just a few hundred people in its first year to serving more than 4,000 people during 13,000 visits to the center in 2003, Adamson said. And people keep on coming.”We get 100 new patients every month,” Adamson said. Healthy Beginnings, tooJust like a primary care office, Mountain Family offers a range of services, such as immunizations, and can treat a range of chronic diseases, such as diabetes. And Healthy Family patients can be referred to Valley View Hospital for specialized screenings such as mammograms. In addition, Healthy Beginnings, a regional nonprofit that serves expecting mothers, their babies and families, has folded its services in with Mountain Family – so the center is seeing additional pre- and postnatal care patients, too. Each new patient meets with an intake enrollment specialist, Adamson said, who determines if the person qualifies financially to receive care at the center, and matches the patient with appropriate funding sources to offset costs, such as the Colorado Indigent Care program. Just in timeAdamson said the grant money from Caring for Colorado comes right in time for the center’s expansion. “We started off in a 1,200-square-foot space,” Adamson said. That grew into the center’s current 4,500-square-foot office in the former Glenwood Medical Associates building on Blake Street, across from Valley View Hospital to 9,000 square feet that the center will soon occupy – virtually the entire downstairs portion of the old GMA building. The new space will contain 16 exam rooms and two procedure rooms and will be staffed by three physicians, three physician assistants and two family nurse practitioners. Caring for Colorado’s money will fund new equipment needed, including exam tables, digital pulse and blood pressure monitors, and specialized diagnostic screening equipment. Contact Carrie Click: 945-8515, ext. 518cclick@postindependent.com


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