JEFFERSON-The Ashe County Free Medical Clinic is consolidating services in order to continue to serve local residents who don’t have access to care.
During the Ashe County Board of Commissioners meeting Monday morning, details of changes in services were headed by the Appalachian District Health Department.
Recently, the ACFMC Board of Directors recently voted to work with the Appalachian Partners in Public Health, the non-profit, collaborative governing Board of Directors and health department staff to consolidate medical care at the local health department.
This opportunity has been made possible by the elevation of the health department to Federal Qualified Health Center status in August 2015, according to Greg Bolac, of the ACFMC.
In addition to the service currently offered by the free clinic, patients will have access to mental health care, dental care and women’s care and will be able to make appointments five days a week rather than just one day a week. They will also have access to a nurse on-call line after hours. In order to accommodate the low income, uninsured patients, the patient fees will be reduced and subsidized by ACFMC funds.
The Federally Qualified Health Center project recently awarded federal dollars to support access to dental services with emphasis on low-income residents. As a result, the health department is currently in the early stages of the dental project with the hiring of Keaton Mash, a resident of Ashe County, as Dental Director.
The dental services will be provided through a combination of portable clinic locations, collaborating closely with Ashe County Schools and a fixed location for more in-depth dental procedures for adults and children, according to the health department.
The health department has requested that the Ashe County Board of Commissioner assign the ACFMC building to the department to provide necessary space for the dental clinic.
Reach Jesse Campbell at 336-846-7164.