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Chautauqua Center receives emergency grant

The Chautauqua Center has received $50,000 in emergency grant funding from the medical aid organization Direct Relief, in partnership with the National Association of Community Health Centers.

The Chautauqua Center was among 518 federally qualified health centers to receive funding last week through Direct Relief’s $25 million Covid-19 Fund for Community Health, which recognizes the profound effects of the Covid-19 pandemic on the finances, services, staff, and patients of community health centers.

The Chautauqua Center will use the money to help expand their screening and telehealth programs. The screening program demands have increased over the past few weeks as the community moves through the phased re-opening plan for local businesses. The telehealth program has permitted the center to offer a safe way to continue providing vital healthcare services to residents of Chautauqua County.

“Access to primary care is what keeps people healthy and out of the hospital, and the frontline work of The Chautauqua Center and other nonprofit community health centers across the US is more critical than ever with the onset of Covid-19,” said Thomas Tighe, Direct Relief president and CEO. “Direct Relief is doing everything possible to bolster the work and support the staff at the safety-net health facilities on which so many patients and their families rely for excellent care and trust for advice in this public health emergency.”

Nearly 30 million (one in 12) of the country’s most vulnerable residents — including one in three individuals living in poverty, one in five Medicaid beneficiaries and one in nine children — rely on federally qualified health centers like The Chautauqua Center for their health care. That number is expected to rise as more people lose employer-sponsored insurance.

“We are grateful for this critical and immediate support as Community Health Centers work hard to keep communities safe during an unprecedented pandemic,” said Tom Van Coverden, president and CEO of the National Association of Community Health Centers. “We are also deeply appreciative of our longstanding partnership with Direct Relief in these uncertain times and their efforts to ensure that health centers confronting multiple challenges in underserved communities have the resources when and where they need them. We know that many donors and contributors have helped to make this fund possible, and we further extend our appreciation to all of them.”

Since opening in 2013, the Chautauqua Center has created an affordable health care option for more than 10,000 patients annually. The Chautauqua Center has locations in Dunkirk and Jamestown and is open from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday through Thursday and 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Friday. For more information, visit tcchealth.org or call 484-4334.

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